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April 4, 2010

How to start a business in Montana

The initial steps of starting a business are not as hard as one might think. You’ll be busy running around town for a couple weeks, but after that you’ll have the initial setup taken care of. Here are very common start-up steps needed in most states. I am specifically going to talk about my experiences in Bozeman.

After you’ve done your research and business plan it is time to take action. Here is what you need to do.

1. Decide what type of legal entity to form. An LLC is a very good option and is easy to form. The forms to fill out for Montana are found at the Secretary of State’s website.

https://biz.sosmt.gov/forms/business . You will also want to fill out the necessary forms to obtain your Federal Employee Identificat number (Tax ID).

You will have to wait a couple weeks after the forms have been submitted before you are officially registered with the state.

2. You’ll want to apply for a business license. The form can be picked up at City Hall.


3. Head over to your local bank and get set-up with a business bank account. You will likely need your Articles of Incorporation and Federal Tax ID number.

4. Get insured. Head over to your insurance friend and have them set you up with insurance for your business.

5. If you are planning to hire employees you will need to look into workers compensation.

6. If you are a contractor or independent contractor you will likely need to pick up the forms located at the job services building.

6.  File an annual report.

For more information on completing these steps check out the Secretary of State’s helpful tips.


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  1. If you are needing some funding. I would recommend finding a Center for Innovation, Angel Fund, Venture Capital fund. Once you find these people they ask them if they can help steer you towards someone who can help you.

    The people at Centers for innovation, Angel, and VC’s are all really busy people who tend to be well connected. Your goal in talking to them is to let them know about you and find someone in their network who has time to help you a little by sharing some knowledge.

  2. This is the 10th time I have referred to this blog post. Thanks Pete. Make sure the links open in a different tab because I want to read other blog posts!

    1. Hi Paul, I’m glad this post has been helpful! Thanks for your feedback about having links open in new tabs. I just fixed each link to open in a new tab. What other types of posts would you like to see on Think Entrepreneurship?

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