h2 { font-size: large; }

Here are the steps you need to take to form an LLC in Massachusetts. For more information on how to form an LLC in any state, see our article Forming an LLC - A 50 State Guide.

If you're ready to set up your LLC today, you can do so in any state through LegalZoom for $149 plus filing fees. To get started, click here.

Business Information



Step 1. Choose a name for your LLC

The first step to forming your LLC is to come up with a name. When doing so, there are a few things you need to look out for.

1. Follow Massachusetts' naming guidelines

  • In Massachusetts, your business name must contain the words Limited Liability Company or the abbreviation L.L.C. or LLC.
  • Restricted words (e.g. Bank, Attorney, University) require additional paperwork and may require a licensed individual, such as a doctor or lawyer, to be part of the LLC.
  • Prohibited words are those that would cause the public to mistake the name of your LLC with a federal or state agency (e.g. FBI, Secret Service, Treasury etc.)

2. Check that the name is available

The name must be distinguishable from the names of other businesses already on file with in Massachusetts. You can check Massachusetts' business name database to see if your name is available.

3. Check to see if the domain is available

You don't necessarily need a .com domain, but if you want to make sure you're going to have a domain, it's best to get one before you file any documents with the state. You can check to see if your domain name is available on GoDaddy.com.

Step 2. Choose a Registered Agent

In Massachusetts, you are required to nominate a Registered Agent for your LLC.

A Registered Agent is a person or business entity that agrees to send and receive legal papers on behalf of your LLC, such as service of process of legal action and state filings.

Your agent must be a resident of Massachusetts, or a corporation authorized to do business in Massachusetts. You can elect someone inside the business for this - including yourself.

You can learn more about registered agents here.

Step 3. Get an EIN

An Employer Identification Number (EIN) is basically a social security number for your business. It's used by the government to identify your business and track tax payments.

You'll need an EIN to file federal and local taxes, and some bank accounts require you to have one in order to open an account with them.

IMPORTANT - In Massachusetts, you must do this before filing your Certificate of Organization.

You can get your EIN here.

Step 4. File your Certificate of Organization

Filing your Certificate of Organization with the state of Massachusetts officially registers your LLC with the state.

The certificate of organization must include the following:

  • The LLC's name and address.
  • The general character of the LLC’s business.
  • The registered agent's name, address, and signature.
  • The date of LLC's dissolution, if any.
  • Whether the LLC will be manager-managed or member-managed
  • The names and addresses of each manager, if any.
  • The names and address of any people to handle documents on behalf of the LLC--there must be at least one person who can do this if the LLC has no manager.

The certificate of organization can be filed online, by mail, or in person with a filing fee of $500.

Step 5. Prepare your operating agreement

You aren't required to have an operating agreement in Massachusetts, but it's a good idea to have one in place that outlines the ownership and operation procedures of your LLC.

Check out this guide for more on creating an operating agreement for your LLC.

Step 6. Get an EIN

An Employer Identification Number (EIN) is basically a social security number for your business. It's used by the government to identify your business and track tax payments.

You'll need an EIN to file federal and local taxes, and some bank accounts require you to have one in order to open an account with them.

You can get your EIN here.


If you're ready to set up your LLC today, you can do so in any state through LegalZoom for $149 plus filing fees. To get started, click here.

Business Information



Looking for a different state? We've got you covered...