How to Start an LLC in Vermont: Key Steps & Formation Costs 

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Forming an LLC – or Limited Liability Company – is a great choice if you are starting a business.

An LLC provides legal liability protection, flexibility and potentially some tax advantages.

It is also useful for giving your business legitimacy, trust and an air of professionalism.

Forming an LLC in Vermont is a relatively simple and affordable process. We go through the main steps (and if you want to let someone else do it for you, see our recommendation below)

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How to Start an LLC in Vermont

  1. Choose a name for your business
  2. Designate a registered agent in Vermont
  3. File the articles of organization
  4. Create a Vermont operating agreement
  5. Apply for a federal Employer Identification Number

How Much Does it Cost to Form an LLC in Vermont?

Before we go through the step by step process to form an LLC in Vermont, we’ve set out the costs involved. These are the costs for filing online, sometimes paper-based filing incurs extra fees:

  • It costs $125 to file the Articles of Organization for an LLC in Vermont. It will take 24 hours to create online or 7-10 business days if filing by mail. You’ll need a registered agent service in Vermont (this costs $99 a year with our preferred agent Zen Business)
  • Recommendation: You can get Zen Business to provide both your registered agent service (for one year) and file the required documents to set up for your LLC for $49 plus the Vermont fee. If you use Northwest, you can do this for $39 plus state fees.
  • The LLC is required to file an annual report or statement each year for a fee of $45.

How to form a Vermont LLC: A Step-by-Step Guide

Follow these steps to form your Vermont LLC yourself. If you choose to use one of our recommended LLC formation services, you’ll essentially go through the same steps but within their portal rather than via the business registry department within the state.

Step 1: Choose a Name for your Business

When you name your Vermont LLC, you’ll need to choose a name that:

  1. Is available for use in Vermont. You can check this using the business entity search on the Vermont Secretary of State’s website to make sure it hasn’t been taken.
  2. Meets Vermont’s naming requirements [link]
  3. Optional but recommended: is available as a web domain

Step 2: Designating a Registered Agent for the LLC in Vermont

Once you have chosen an available name for your business, you will need to appoint and maintain a registered agent in Vermont.

A resident 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. 

The registered agent is your business’s point of contact with the state. A registered agent should be.

  • A resident of Vermont or a company registered to do business in the state. 
  • Available during normal business hours to accept service of process

We recommend using a national registered agent service to fulfil this function as they are reliable and flexible. See here for info on choosing a registered agent in Vermont.

ZenBusiness and Northwest are our preferred registered agent service providers. If you have opted to form your Vermont LLC with either of these providers, you will get your first year of registered agent service free anyway. See here for more info on the best registered agent services.

Step 3: Completing the Articles of Organization for the LLC

The Articles of Organization are what actually forms your Vermont LLC. These can be filed with the state via the Vermont Secretary of State’s website: [link]

If you are using an LLC formation service (we recommend either Incfile,  ZenBusiness and Northwest Registered Agent) you’ll do this through their portal.

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To complete this you will nominate:

  • The LLC name (it will usually have to contain the words Limited Liability Company or LLC)
  • The business’ address
  • The registered agent’s address and contact details
  • The management structure (single member LLC or multiple member LLC)

The Articles of Organization are the key founding document for the LLC so please fill out these details carefully and factually when submitting them to the Vermont Secretary of State.

Step 4: Creating an Operating Agreement for the LLC

An operating agreement isn’t required in all states, but it is a good idea to create one anyway even if it is not a requirement.

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

Specifically, it sets out

  • Who the members of the LLC are
  • What proportion of the LLC each member owns and their voting rights
  • How the LLC will be managed
  • What capital contributions have been made and how future capital contributions will be handled
  • Distribution of profits and losses among the LLC members
  • The process for removing and appointing the LLC members
  • The process for dissolving the LLC

Step 5: Applying for a Federal Employer Identification Number

An EIN or Employer Identification Number is a nine-digit number issued by the Internal Revenue System (IRS) to identify a business for tax reporting purposes. 

You don’t need to obtain an EIN, but it is required to a) open a business bank account or b) hire employees, so most LLCs will require one. It is also needed in some cases for taxation purposes.

You apply for the EIN directly on the IRS website or by downloading the SS4 form. It is better that you use a proper physical address to receive the EIN (which comes in the mail) than putting down your registered agent’s address.

Your Vermont LLC is created!

Once you have completed these steps, you have finalized the creation of your LLC.

Forming an LLC in Vermont FAQs

What is an LLC?

LLC is short for Limited Liability Company. It is a simple and popular business structure that offers more flexibility than a traditional corporation while providing many of the same benefits including legal liability protection, flexibility and potential tax advantages. 

How do I Name My LLC?

Choose a name that meets the state’s requirements for naming and isn’t already taken and preferably can be obtained as a web domain.

How Much Does it Cost to Form an LLC in other states?

Most states charge between $50 (Colorado, Vermont and others) and $100, but some some will charge up to $300 (Texas). Here is a list of the costs involved in forming an LLC in all 50 states.

Do I Need a DBA or Trade Name Too?

Not necessarily. Most LLCs do not need a DBA or Trade Name. The name of the LLC can serve as your company’s brand name and you can accept checks and other payments and enter into contracts under that name. You would register a DBA in the event that you would like to conduct business under another name for branding purposes or some other reason.

Can I Be My Own Registered Agent?

You can, provided you have a physical address in the state in which you are forming the LLC that is attended during business hours. Most people prefer to use a reputable registered agent service to avoid this requirement to be there all the time. It also protects your privacy as the name and address of a registered agent is published on company filings and is publicly accessible.

Is A Registered Agent Service Worth It?

Using a national registered agent service such as ZenBusiness or Northwest Registered Agent is a convenient, simple, risk-free and affordable way to manage government filings for your LLC. 

What is the Processing Time to Form An LLC?

This ranges from one day to two weeks, depending on the state, but can usually be expedited and completed in a day or two as required. Here is a list of the filing times for creating an LLC in all 50 states.

What is the Difference between a Domestic LLC and a foreign LLC?

An LLC is referred to as a “domestic LLC” when it conducts business in the state where it was formed. A foreign LLC is the entity that you would form if you had an existing LLC that wanted to expand its business to another state.

Can I Get an ​​EIN if I Don’t have a Social Security Number?

This question arises with foreign investors who have LLCs but don’t have a SSN. An SSN is not required to get an EIN as you can just leave that section of the Form SS-4 blank.

Do I Have to Get an EIN for my LLC?

All LLCs with employees, or any LLC with more than one member, must have an EIN by order of the IRS (Internal Revenue Service)


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Rick Wallace
Rick Wallace is an investor who has established several LLCs in different states. He writes about starting businesses via LLCs including topics such as choosing a registered agent.