Filing the Articles of Organization is Simple!
Step 1: Get Your Articles of Organization Forms
You can download and mail in your Hawaii Articles of Organization, OR you can file online. For this first step, choose your preferred method below.
Option 1: Create an account to file your Articles of Organization on the Hawaii.gov website. Select “Get Started” under the “Start” section, then select “Create an Account” under the Log In section. You must provide an email address to continue with registration.
- OR -
Option 2: Access the Articles of Organization PDF from the Hawaii.gov website. This form will need to be mailed to the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs.
Step 2: Fill Out The Articles Of Organization
In this step, we will help you complete the Hawaii Articles of Organization form.
You will need to know the following information to complete each section:
- Entity Name
- Registered Agent Name and Registered Office Address
- Names of Organizers and Governing Authority Type
- Member Liability
- Business Duration
Having a creative and smart business name is important but not as important as having a legally correct name.
When you choose a name for your business, you have to make sure the name:
- meets Hawaii naming guidelines.
- is not already in use by another business in Hawaii.
Follow the Hawaii Naming Guidelines:
- Your name must include the phrase “limited liability company,” or one of its abbreviations (LLC or L.L.C.). "Limited" and “company” may be abbreviated as "Ltd." and "Co.," respectively.
- Your name cannot be the same as or substantially identical to any existing business or trademark registered in the state. We will help with this step in the search for your business name section below.
- Your name cannot include words that could confuse your LLC with a government agency (FBI, Treasury, State Department, etc.).
- The following terms cannot be used without approval from the state commissioner of financial institutions: financial institution, bank, banker, banking, banc, savings bank, savings and loan, savings association, financial services loan company, credit union, trust company, intrapacific bank, international banking corporation, and trust.
- Domestic insurance corporations must include the word "insurance" in their name. In the case of a reciprocal insurer, the name must include one of the following words: reciprocal, interinsurer, interinsurance, exchange, underwriters, or underwriting.
- Use of the following terms also requires state approval or certification: certified public accountant, public accountant, CPA, PA, cooperative, escrow, and escrow depository.
- Your name must be permitted by law and not attempt to mislead or confuse the general public.
Check Name Availability:
Is your name available in Hawaii? Make sure the name you want isn't already taken by doing a name search on the Hawaii Business Express website.
To learn more about naming your business, including best practices and creative branding, visit our How to Name a Business in Hawaii guide.
Not sure what to name your business? Check out our Business Name Generator.
Register Your Domain Name:
We recommend checking to see if your business name is available as a web domain. Even if you don't plan to make a business website today, you may want to buy the URL in order to prevent others from acquiring it.
Registered Agent and Registered Office
A registered agent accepts and sends legal documents on your LLC’s behalf. When you register your Hawaii LLC, you are required to list your registered agent and your registered office.
Your registered agent can be anyone 18 years or older that lives in Hawaii. Your registered agent must always be available at the registered office during regular business hours.
To learn more about choosing a Hawaii registered agent, read our How to Choose a Hawaii Registered Agent guide.
To learn more about what a registered agent does and how to choose one, read our What is a Registered Agent guide.
Organizers and Governing Authority
You must list the names and addresses of all the organizing members of the LLC.
You also must state whether or not your LLC will be managed by managers or by its members. If you do have managers, you must list each initial manager. If your LLC will be managed by its members, then you must list each initial member.
To learn everything you need to know about choosing your management structure, read our Management by Members or Managers guide.
You must disclose whether the members will be liable or not liable for any debts, obligations, and liabilities of the company, or only liable for specified debts, obligations, and liabilities.
You must provide whether the LLC is set to expire on a particular date or if it is at-will, or at an unspecified time.
Step 3: File the Articles of Organization
To register your LLC, you will need to file the Articles of Organization with the Hawaii Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs.
There are two ways to file your Articles of Organization:
- Complete the forms online.
- Submit a hard copy by mail or in person.
Option 1: Create an account to file your Articles of Organization on the Hawaii.gov website.
- OR -
Option 2: File by mail with the Hawaii Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs downloadable form.
State Filing Cost: $50 plus a $1 archive fee
Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs
Business Registration Division
335 Merchant St.
P.O. Box 40
Honolulu, HI 96810
Create an Operating Agreement
A Hawaii LLC Operating Agreement is a legal document that outlines the ownership structure and member roles of your LLC.
In Hawaii, you aren’t required to have an Operating Agreement to officially form an LLC, but it's still a good idea to have one. You can start your operating agreement before, during, or after you file your Articles of Organization.
Your operating agreement will be kept in your LLC’s private business records; you do not file it with the state.
Use our free Operating Agreement Tool to draft a customized operating agreement for your LLC.
Get an EIN
An Employer Identification Number (EIN) is like a social security number for your LLC. You will need an EIN if you want to hire employees or open business bank accounts.
You can get your EIN for free through the IRS website, via fax, or by mail. If you would like to learn more about EINs and how they can benefit your LLC, read our What is an EIN article.
Open a Business Bank Account
Using dedicated business banking and credit accounts is essential to protect your business' corporate veil. When your personal and business accounts are mixed, your personal assets (your home, car, and other valuables) are at risk in the event your LLC is sued.
For reviews on some of our most trusted business banks, visit our Best Banks for Small Business review.
Get Licenses and Permits
When you are registering an LLC, you need to determine if your business needs any licenses or permits in order to remain compliant. On the federal level, there are a handful of business activities that require licenses and/or permits.
Find out how to obtain necessary licenses and permits for your business or have a professional service do it for you:
Brand Your Business
The strongest and most memorable businesses are built on a solid brand. When developing your brand, think about what your business stands for. Customers and clients are looking for companies that have a compelling brand, as much as they are shopping for high-quality products and services.
Creating a logo for your business is vital for increasing brand awareness. You can design your own unique logo using our Free Logo Generator. Our free tool can help you design your own unique logo for your new business idea.