How to File Colorado LLC Articles of Organization

You have a big idea about a successful Colorado LLC, and you’re ready to make it happen. But first, you need to handle the paperwork.

The most crucial step is to file the documents to register your limited liability company in Colorado. We have prepared all the information you need about how to file the Articles of Organization in Colorado.

What is Colorado LLC Articles of Organization?

The process of officially starting your Colorado LLC begins with filing a special document of incorporation. For a Colorado LLC, it is called the Articles of Organization and is also known as the Certificate of Organization or the Certificate of Formation. However, it does not change its nature.

The Articles of Organization is a legal document which contains the basic information about the limited liability company and its participants. The approval of the Articles of Organization LLC by the Secretary of State opens the door to the business world and makes it official.

Taking into account the great importance of the Articles of Organization, you should pay attention to its preparation and filling out. Any mistakes made at this stage can lead the owners and the company to serious consequences in the future. To get  the business started quickly without any problems, take a look at the Colorado LLC Articles of Organization guide provided in this article. 

Do I have to file an LLC Articles of Organization?

There isn’t an LLC organization without the Articles of Organization. It is required by the state of Colorado, unlike some other documents, such as the Operating Agreement. We can state that it is the most crucial and serious part of the business formation process.

The processing of the LLC Articles of Organization by the Colorado Secretary of State is not for free. When you file the documents with the state to register, you must pay a mandatory state fee of $50. Furthermore, there is no refund if the application is rejected, so you should be careful when preparing the Articles of Organization.

How to create Colorado Articles of Organization?

Generally, you should provide only basic information about the company and its owners in the Articles of Organization forms.

The first thing you must think about when preparing to file Articles of Organization is an LLC name that would be a perfect fit for your business. On the one hand, it should be unique and reflect the specifics of the company to attract potential customers. On the other hand, you must not forget that the name must comply with the laws of the state. Therefore, the state’s basic business name requirements include the following:

  • Business type indications: the company name must contain words or abbreviations that clearly describe its legal structure:
    • limited liability company;
    • ltd. liability company;
    • limited liability co.;
    • ltd. liability co.;
    • limited;
    • l.l.c.;
    • llc.
  • Availability: the name of your LLC must be unique, i.e., distinguishable in the official records of the Secretary of State. If there is already another company with the same or similar name operating in the state, the application for registration will be rejected. You can use a name availability search to check its status;
  • No forbidden words: the name of your company cannot mislead the public. For this reason, you must not use terms such as “FBI,” “Treasury”, ” State Department”, or any other words that hint at a connection with the government. 

If the Articles of Organization is correct and fully complies with the state requirements, the Secretary of State will approve it. This will not only make the LLC official, but will also give it exclusive naming rights. It means that third parties cannot legally use your business name for their own purposes.

If you’re not ready to file the Articles of Organization and to automatically register an LLC name, you can use the reservation option. This is optional, but can be very helpful especially if you need time before you start and want to be sure that the desired name will not be used.

The Colorado name reservation allows you to hold the name for up to 120 days. You can apply online by paying $25 as a mandatory fee.

One more important point in the Articles of Organization is a registered agent. According to the law, every state-registered LLC is required to have one. If you fail to comply with this requirement, it can cause fines or even administrative dissolution.

Why do you need a registered agent? In fact, it is the mediator who takes care of receiving all official papers in a timely manner, like:

  • Official state correspondence;
  • Compliance documents;
  • Legal and tax notices, etc.

Both individuals and legal entities can act as registered agents. The requirements imposed on applicants are quite flexible. They include the following basic conditions:

  • Be a Colorado resident, i.e., to live permanently in the state, for individuals, or to have permission to conduct business in Colorado, for business entities;
  • Have a physical address (cannot be a P.O. box.);
  • Be at least 18 years old;
  • Be available at the registered office during normal business hours. 

Finally, another nuance to consider before you start filling out the Articles of Organization is the management structure. 

How an LLC will be run, either managed by managers or by its members, depends entirely on the owners’ preferences. 

The default option is member management. 

You can change it in the future, switching to a more appropriate way of managing the company.

If you have taken care of the formalities and are ready to file the Articles of Organization, you can find the form on the Secretary of State’ s website. 

Your LLC’s Articles of Organization will include the following information: 

  1. Entity Name;
  2. Principal office address;
  3. Mailing address;
  4. Registered agent name and address;
  5. The organizer’s name and address;
  6. The management type;
  7. A delayed effective date;
  8. Filer’s name and address.

Once the Secretary of State approves the Articles of Organization, it will be the proof that your LLC is registered with the state and has the right to conduct business.

Filing Options

Colorado provides only one method for submitting Articles of Organization – online. To register your LLC, visit the Secretary of State’s Business Forms page and follow these steps:

  • Choose the Limited Liability Companies section;
  • Click “File Online” next to “Articles of Organization”;
  • Follow the instructions to register your LLC.

You will need to supply payment for the form’s $50 filing fee to complete the registration process. Use a credit or debit card to pay.

Online filing guarantees a fast turnaround time, immediate once payment is received, your application will be processed by the Secretary of State.