The Arkansas Economic Development Commission and other entrepreneurial organizations make Arkansas one of the most favorable states to start a small business. The state has numerous opportunity zones that make it even easier for anyone starting an LCC in Arkansas to choose a location for their business. Various community programs, financial resources, and business enterprises make securing funds for a new business a breeze. Moreover, the process of starting a new business is also easy.
If you want to start an LLC in Arkansas, follow the steps below to achieve your goal:
Name Your LLC
The first step of starting a business includes naming it. It is advisable to think of more than one name for your business for two reasons. Firstly, it may not comply with Arkansas business name regulations. Secondly, it may not be available. Search the availability of a business name in Arkansas here.
If you find coming up with names difficult, take help from a free business name generator. Share your ideas with potential customers or business partners before finalizing them. Take your time at this step, so you won't regret it later.
Reserve the Business Name
Starting an LLC in Arkansas is easy, but it takes some time. Therefore, after deciding on your business name, you must reserve it by submitting this form to the Secretary of State. The state reserves business names for 120 days for a small fee. The four-month time period is more than enough for you to get your affairs in order and start an LLC in Arkansas without the stress of potentially losing your business name.
Choose an LLC Registered Agent
An LLC registered agent is a person or entity responsible for representing the business on its behalf and handling its paperwork. Every LLC in Arkansas requires a registered agent. While you can name yourself, a business member, or even a professional registered agent service as your LLC registered agent, they must fulfill the following criteria for eligibility:
Must have a physical street address in the state
Must be available during business hours to represent the business
The first factor is more important when naming a registered agent. However, the second factor is equally vital. The absence of a registered agent can result in a fine or even a lawsuit by the state. So make sure you name someone reliable and punctual as your LLC registered agent.
Submit Articles of Organization
Articles of Organization refers to a form submitted to the Arkansas Secretary of State to establish an LLC. The form only requires basic information about the LLC, such as:
LLC name and address
Business members' names and addresses
Name and address of the registered agent
Business duration (can be indefinite)
LLC management mode (manager-managed vs. member-managed)
Names and signatures of the organizer
Articles of Organization are required in almost all US states. However, its filing fee is the lowest in Arkansas at only $50. The normal processing time is two to three weeks, but you can expedite the process for an additional fee of $50 to $100. Click here to fill out or download the Arkansas Articles of Organization.
Create an Operating Agreement
An operating agreement is not essential to starting an LLC in Arkansas. However, getting one can significantly protect your rights as a business owner and your business. An operating agreement is an internal document containing details on the process and guidelines of operating the business, such as contributions and roles of business members, division of profits, voting rights, recruitment process, members’ elimination and addition processes, liabilities against personal assets, terms for dissolution of business, meeting conditions, etc.
These details and procedures can keep your business running smoothly and ensure no unwanted claims or demands occur. Click here to find the template for Arkansas LLC operating agreement.
Once the Arkansas Secretary of State processes your LLC articles of organization, you will receive a certificate of establishment of LLC. This means that your business is now a legal entity. However, you cannot start an LLC in Arkansas without some additional steps. These include:
Get an EIN
EIN, i.e., Employer Identity Number, is a number provided to businesses by the federal government. Without this number, businesses cannot hire employees, open a bank account, or report and file taxes.
Getting an EIN is the easiest step in starting an LLC in Arkansas. Simply register your business with Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and receive the number in return. It does not cost anything to get an EIN.
Click here to register your business with the IRS.
Get a Website and Market Your Business
The last step of starting a business includes marking its presence online and announcing it to the audience. This is done by getting a website and marketing the business.
This step may be the most difficult too. Getting a website includes securing a host, buying a domain, building the website interface, designing its layout, choosing colors and fonts, writing copy, and adding visual content. It also requires optimizing the website and maintaining and updating it frequently. On the other hand, marketing the business isn’t easy either. Every business requires at least three basic forms of marketing, i.e., social media, digital, and traditional marketing. These include creating social media profiles and business accounts on platforms like Yelp, Nextdoor, etc., advertising on local websites and newspapers, brainstorming ad campaigns, and constantly creating new content to post.
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