Last Updated: May 31, 2024, 9:04 am by TRUiC Team


You can start a Denver LLC by filing the Articles of Organization with the Colorado Secretary of State and meeting the city’s local requirements.

We’ll show you how to form an LLC in the state of Colorado and establish your Denver LLC.

Or simply use a professional:

four point six out of five Northwest ($29 + State Fees)
three point four out of five LegalZoom ($79 + State Fees)

Cost to form an LLC in Denver.

Starting a Denver LLC Is Easy

In order to form a Denver LLC, you’ll need to follow Colorado state laws and start an LLC within the state of Colorado. 

Follow our step-by-step How to Start a Denver LLC guide to get started today.

Step 1: Name Your Denver LLC
Step 2: Choose a Registered Agent
Step 3: File the Articles of Organization
Step 4: Create an Operating Agreement
Step 5: Get an EIN

Steps to start an L L C in Colorado

Step 1: Name Your Denver LLC

Choosing a company name is the first and most important step in setting up your Denver LLC. Be sure to choose a name that complies with Colorado naming requirements and is easily searchable by potential clients.

1. Follow the Colorado naming guidelines for your Denver LLC:

  • Your name must include the phrase “limited liability company” or one of its abbreviations (LLC or L.L.C.).
  • Your name cannot include words that could confuse your LLC with a government agency (FBI, Treasury, State Department, etc.).
  • Restricted words (e.g. Bank, Attorney, University) may require additional paperwork and a licensed individual, such as a doctor or lawyer, to be part of your LLC.

2. Is the name available in the state of Colorado? Perform a Colorado LLC name search using the Colorado Secretary of State Business Database Search to ensure that your Denver LLC’s name is not already in use within the state.

To learn more about searching for a Colorado LLC name, read our full guide.

3. Is the URL available? We recommend that you check to see if your business name is available as a web domain. Even if you don't plan to start a business website today, you may want to buy the URL in order to prevent others from acquiring it.

Find a Domain Now

Now that you have verified your name and secured the URL you may select a professional service to complete the LLC formation process for you. We recommend using one of these professional services:

four point six out of five Northwest ($29 + State Fees)

three out of five LegalZoom ($79+ State Fees)

Step 2: Choose a Colorado Registered Agent

You are required to appoint a registered agent for your Denver LLC.

What is a registered agent? A registered agent is an individual or business entity responsible for receiving important tax forms, legal documents, notice of lawsuits, and official government correspondence on behalf of your business. Think of your registered agent as your business's point of contact with the state.

Who can be a registered agent for your Denver LLC? A registered agent must be a resident of Colorado or a corporation, such as a registered agent service, authorized to conduct business in the state of Colorado. You may elect an individual within the company including yourself.

To learn more about Colorado registered agents, read our full guide.

Recommended: Northwest provides the first year of registered agent service free with LLC formation ($29 + State Fees)

Step 3: File the Colorado LLC Articles of Organization

To register your Denver LLC, you'll need to file the Articles of Organization with the Colorado Secretary of State. You can apply online.

Now is also a good time to determine whether your LLC will be member-managed vs. manager-managed.

Note: The state of Colorado has temporarily reduced formation filing fees to $1 until June 30, 2023. 

File the Articles of Organization

File Online With the Secretary of State

File Online

State Filing Cost: Temporarily $1

Instructions: Choose "Limited liability company (LLC)" from the "File a Form" landing page to be directed to the state's online LLC registration portal.

For help with completing the form, visit our Colorado Articles of Organization guide.

Step 4: Create Your Denver LLC Operating Agreement

Colorado LLCs are not required to have an operating agreement, but we recommend creating an operating agreement for your Denver LLC.

What is an operating agreement? An operating agreement is a legal document outlining the ownership and operating procedures of an LLC.

Why are operating agreements important? A comprehensive operating agreement ensures that all business owners are on the same page and reduces the risk of future conflict.

For more information on operating agreements, read our Colorado LLC operating agreement guide.

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Recommended: Download a template or create a free operating agreement using our tool.

Step 5: Get an EIN for Your Denver LLC

What is an EIN? EIN stands for Employer Identification Number. EINs are a nine-digit number assigned by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to help identify businesses for tax purposes. It is essentially a Social Security number for a business.

An EIN is sometimes referred to as a Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN) or Federal Tax Identification Number (FTIN).

Why do I need an EIN? An EIN is required to:

  • Open a business bank account
  • File and manage federal and state taxes
  • Hire employees

What if I already have an EIN for my sole proprietorship? The IRS requires that sole proprietorships get a new EIN when converting to an LLC.

Where do I get an EIN? You can get an EIN for free from the IRS. Getting an EIN is an easy process that can be done online or by mail.

For International EIN Applicants: You do not need an SSN to get an EIN. For more information, read our How to Get an EIN as a Foreign Person guide.

Get an EIN

Option 1: Request an EIN from the IRS

Apply Online

- OR -

Option 2: Apply for an EIN by Mail or Fax

Download Form

Mail to:
Internal Revenue Service
Attn: EIN Operation
Cincinnati, OH 45999

Fax: (855) 641-6935

Fee: Free

Considering Using an LLC Formation Service?

We reviewed and ranked the top 6 LLC formation companies.

Find out which is the best LLC service for you.

Compare LLC Services

Keep Your Company Compliant

Denver Business Permits and Licenses

To operate your Denver LLC, you must comply with federal, state, and local government regulations. For example, restaurants likely need health permits, building permits, signage permits, etc.

The details of business licenses and permits vary from state to state. Make sure you read carefully. Don't be surprised if there are short classes required as well. What’s more, fees for business licenses and permits will vary depending on what sort of license you are seeking to obtain. 

The City of Denver issues roughly 70 business licenses and permits for various businesses that operate within city limits. The Excise and Licenses office oversees most of these licenses, while the Community Planning and Development office covers contractor licensing.

Some popular Denver business licenses and permits include:

  • Liquor License
  • Pawnbroker License
  • Alarm Permit
  • Residential Rental Property License
  • Medical/Retail Marijuana Licenses and Permits
  • Food Retail License
  • Dry Cleaning Establishment License
  • Tow Truck Operator License
  • Restaurant License
  • Short-Term Rental License

Find out how to obtain necessary Denver business licenses and permits for your LLC or have a professional service do it for you:

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Recommended: If you are a first-time entrepreneur, consider having a professional service research your business’s licensing requirements. Read our best business license services review on Startup Savant.

Denver LLC Tax Filing Requirements

Depending on the nature of your business, you may be required to register for one or more forms of state tax.

Sales Tax

If you are selling a physical product, you’ll typically need to register for a seller's permit through the Colorado Department of Revenue.

This certificate allows a business to collect sales tax on taxable sales.

Sales tax, also called "Sales and Use Tax," is a tax levied by states, counties, and municipalities on business transactions involving the exchange of certain taxable goods or services.

Read our Colorado sales tax guide to find out more.

Employer Taxes

If you have employees in Colorado, you will need to register for Unemployment Insurance Tax and Employee Withholding Tax online through the State of Colorado's website.

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Register for Colorado State Taxes

Sales Tax | Unemployment Insurance Tax | Withholding Tax

Local Taxes

Depending on your business activity, you may need to register for additional tax accounts with the city. Check out the City of Denver’s website to learn more.

Federal LLC Tax Filing Requirements

Most LLCs will need to report their income to the IRS each year using:

How you pay yourself as an owner will also affect your federal taxes. Visit our guide to learn more about how to pay yourself from your LLC.

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Read our LLC Tax Guide to learn more about federal income taxes for LLCs.

File Your Colorado LLC Periodic Report

Colorado requires Denver LLCs to file a periodic report with the state. This form can be submitted online. 

File Your Periodic Report

File Online with the Secretary of State

File Online

Fee: $10 (Nonrefundable)

Filing Window: Due within a 5 month period starting 2 months before and 2 months after the date in which the LLC was formed. For more information, visit Colorado's Secretary of State website.

Late Filings: Colorado charges a $50 penalty if you miss the annual report deadline. In addition, failure to file your annual report for 2 months will cause your LLC to be designated as "Delinquent," resulting in loss of certain rights and privileges.

Small Business Resources

Get Help Starting a Denver LLC

After forming your Denver LLC, you will likely encounter many challenges. Take a look at our Colorado Small Business Resources page to find more information on resources for Denver entrepreneurs.

Additionally, learn more about current US business trends so you can make the most informed business decisions.

TRUiC’s Small Business Tools

TRUiC believes business tools should be free and useful. Our tools help solve business challenges, from finding an idea for your business, to creating a business plan, writing an operating agreement for your LLC, and more.

Check out TRUiC’s small business tools: