Last Updated: March 7, 2024, 1:59 pm by TRUiC Team

How Much Does It Cost to Start an LLC in Iowa?

The cost to start an LLC (limited liability company) online in Iowa is $50. This fee is paid to the Iowa Secretary of State when filing the LLC’s Certificate of Organization.

We recommend Northwest ($29 + State Fees) to help form your LLC.

How Much Does an LLC Cost in Iowa?

Iowa LLC Online Filing Fee: $50

The main cost to start an LLC in Iowa is the $50 fee to file your LLC's Certificate of Organization online with the Iowa Secretary of State.

For a look at LLC costs in every state, read our other Cost to Start an LLC and How to Form an LLC guides.

Cost to Form a Foreign LLC in Iowa

If you already have an LLC that is registered in another state and you’d like to expand your business into Iowa, you’ll need to register your LLC as a foreign LLC in Iowa.

The cost for registering an Iowa foreign LLC is $100. You can register a foreign LLC in Iowa by filing an Application for Certificate of Authority online or by mail.

Optional LLC Formation Costs

There are optional fees associated with LLC formation:

LLC Name Reservation

Reserve your name for up to 120 days prior to LLC formation by filing an Application for Reservation of Name and paying the $10 filing fee. This can also be done by mail.

Fictitious Name

File a Fictitious Name Resolution and pay the $5 filing fee to create a name other than your legal LLC business name. This can also be done by mail.

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Iowa LLC Annual and Biennial Costs

When starting a limited liability company (LLC) in Iowa, it is important to understand the ongoing costs associated with maintaining an LLC. 

Here are the primary ongoing costs for an Iowa LLC:

  • Registered Agent Fee: Iowa requires every LLC to have a Statutory Agent, also known as a Registered Agent. The Statutory Agent is responsible for accepting legal documents and official correspondence on behalf of the LLC. The Registered Agent does not need to officially consent as the initial Registered Agent, but new Registered Agents must officially consent.
  • Biennial Report Fee: LLCs in Iowa are required to file a biennial report with the Secretary of State every other year on odd-numbered years. The filing can be done online or by mail, with a fee of $30 (online) or $45 (mail).

By taking these costs into account, you can estimate the total expenses of running an LLC in Iowa.

How to Register an Iowa LLC Yourself

Forming an LLC in Iowa is easy. Simply follow the steps outlined on this page.

Recommended: Using an LLC formation service like Northwest ($29 + State Fees) saves time and ensures compliance. Besides the low cost, we like their streamlined approach and excellent customer service.

Iowa LLC Cost FAQ

The cost to file a Certificate of Organization for an LLC in Iowa is $50. This fee is paid to the Secretary of State during the LLC formation process. You can file this document online, by mail, or by fax.

A registered agent is an individual or business entity that accepts legal documents on behalf of your LLC. This agent plays an important role in keeping your business compliant with state regulations. While a registered agent does not directly influence the cost of forming an LLC in Iowa, they usually charge an annual fee for their services.

In Iowa, while the initial registered agent is not required to officially consent during the formation of the LLC, any new registered agent must physically or electronically sign a change form. This confirms their consent to perform this role for your LLC.

Yes, in addition to the $50 filing fee, you may need to budget for a registered agent, business insurance, and obtaining a business license. The cost of these services can vary.

Maintaining an LLC in Iowa includes filing a Biennial Report every two years, which costs $60. Other potential costs include the fees for a registered agent and the renewal of business licenses and insurance.

A DBA (doing business as) name, also known as a fictitious name for LLCs, is used when your LLC operates under a name other than its legal name. The cost to register a DBA in Iowa can vary. It is not always necessary, but can be beneficial depending on your business strategy.

Yes, before you file the Certificate of Organization, you must perform a business entities search to ensure that your chosen LLC name is unique and not currently in use by another business in the state. There is no fee for this search.

A Certificate of Existence, also known as a Good Standing Certificate, verifies that your LLC is legally registered and compliant with Iowa state regulations. While this certificate isn't necessary for the formation of your LLC, it may be required for certain business transactions, like securing loans or contracts. The cost for this certificate is $5, but can vary depending on fax fees and whether you need certified copies.

The exact cost of LLC formation services can vary depending on the service provider. These services can help streamline the LLC formation process by handling tasks such as filing paperwork, maintaining compliance, and offering registered agent services. However, it's important to review what is included in the service fee to ensure it fits within your budget.

Article Sources

Iowa Fast Track Filing:

IRS - Employer ID Numbers:

Iowa Secretary of State:

SBA - Apply for licenses and permits:

Chamber of Commerce - Iowa Chamber of Commerce List: