How to Start a Series LLC in Arkansas

12 Min Read
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Last updated February 17, 2023
Written by Dmytro Kondratiev
Editor, lawyer
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Thanks to its advantageous geographic location, Arkansas offers unique opportunities for business development. It's also a great place to set up a Series LLC in Arkansas.

The state's climate makes it an agricultural economy, with a good mix of wheat, fruits, cotton, soybeans, rice, timber, and poultry. Arkansas' natural resources include gas, bauxite, oil, and coal.

In this article, we’re going to find out how to start a Series LLC in Arkansas, without missing out on any additional steps.

How to Form a Series LLC in Arkansas: Step-by-Step Guide

Let’s find out how to register a Series LLC in Arkansas.

Step 1: Name Your Series LLC

To form a series LLC in Arkansas, the first thing to do is to choose a suitable and available business name for your company. The name must contain the word “Series Limited Liability Company” or its abbreviations “S.L.L.C.” or “SLLC.”

You can visit this page to check if your chosen business name is available (i.e. not taken by any other existing business in the state). Keep in mind that this is only a preliminary search.

That said until you get an official confirmation from the Secretary of State after the filing process, there's no guarantee that the business name is, in fact, available for the initial filing.

Step 2: Appoint a Registered Agent and Register a Series LLC in Arkansas

To legally do business, you must choose a registered agent (RA). Under state law, each series LLC operating in the state must appoint and maintain an RA on an ongoing basis.

An RA is an individual or entity that you choose to receive legal/tax correspondence on behalf of your company. Note that your RA's name and address will be listed in the Certificate of Organization for public access on the Secretary of State's website.

This also means that your RA must have a physical address in the state of Arkansas.

Note that there are different options to choose from when deciding on an RA for your Series LLC:

  • You can be your own RA (if you think you have the right skills and enough time for the job);
  • This can be anyone you trust in the state, i.e. an adult friend, family member, or a colleague who is a permanent resident of Arkansas;
  • You can choose a commercial registered agent.

To save yourself from all paperwork and possible errors, choosing a professional RA company to do the job for you is the best option.

Whoever you choose, remember that your resident agent must be available at the office during normal business hours to accept important legal/tax documents (including service of process) from the state.

Also, each of your sub-companies must maintain the same RA as your parent LLC.

Step 3: How to Set up a Series LLC in Arkansas: File the Certificate of Organization

To find out how to get a Series LLC in Arkansas, you should know that one of the most important steps in the registration is submitting the Arkansas Certificate of Organization for a Series Limited Liability Company to the Office of the Secretary of State.

As mentioned earlier, in Arkansas, you will also need to file a Protected Series Designation for each sub-company that you plan to form.

To properly file a Series LLC in Arkansas, you will need to indicate the following:

  • Names of the affiliated Protected Series; 
  • Primary address of your entity;
  • Name and address of your registered agent;
  • Management type (member-managed or manager-managed);
  • Name of at least one officer and his/her title (member or manager);
  • Execution date;
  • Basic company information that is required for the annual franchise tax reporting form.

The filing fee is $50 for the Certificate of Organization for the series LLC + $50 for a Protected Series Designation.

Step 4: Prepare an Operating Agreement

If you plan to open a series LLC in Arkansas, you will need to care about one special document that will make things much easier for your business growth.

An operating agreement (OA) is an internal document that establishes how your venture will operate. The state of Arkansas does not require any type of LLCs to create such a document on a mandatory basis.

However, it's highly recommended to have one - after all, such a document is essentially an important internal contract of your venture. It will help you avoid a lot of possible undesirable situations and make it much easier to manage your company as follows:

  • An OA helps resolve inner issues and disagreements among members of the parent and sub-LLCs;
  • In the document, the most important company details, including the rules and regulations for resolving internal disputes, will be outlined;
  • Your OA will describe the process for adding/dismissing new/existing members;
  • There will be a description of certain members’ affiliation with the Protected Series and other aspects related to each of your sub-companies.

Basically, an OA is like a statement of information with your main company rules, requirements, and regulations.

Creating an effective OA will be much easier if you find a suitable template for drafting such an agreement. Simply go to the website of any reputable business formation company and download the necessary template form in PDF.

Step 5: Get an EIN for Your Arkansas Series LLC

The next thing you will need to do is get a 9-digit federal employer identification number (FEIN or EIN) to be identified as a business entity by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for tax reporting purposes. That is if you are going to hire employees for your venture.

Also, most banks and lending institutions will need your EIN to open a separate bank account for your series LLC (or sub-companies). Also, certain local tax authorities and licensing boards may require an EIN from you.

To properly start a Series LLC in Arkansas, you can get your EIN for free through the IRS website by applying online. Alternatively, you can complete Form SS-4 and submit it by mail or in person.

The IRS address for any of the 50 states is as follows:

Internal Revenue Service

Attn:  EIN Operation

Cincinnati, OH 45999

Fax: 855-641-6935

If you have no legal residence, principal office, or agency in any state, apply to the following address:

Internal Revenue Service

Attn:  EIN International Operation

Cincinnati, OH  45999

Fax: 855-215-1627 (within the U.S.)

Fax: 304-707-9471 (outside the U.S.)

Note that you will need to apply for an EIN for each of your Protected Series so that each of them has its own bank account.

Also, if you are going to open a business bank account, ensure you have a copy of your Arkansas Certificate of Organization and your operating agreement (in written form), as most banks will require these documents in the state.

Lastly, if you want your business entity to work properly, you will have to keep the finances of each Protected Series isolated from your parent company. Moving on, let’s find out how to open a series LLC in Arkansas and consider the main fees you will need to pay.

Arkanasas LLC Cost: How Much Does It Cost to Start a Series LLC in AR

Here's a list of your main fees to consider when registering a series LLC in Arkansas:

Domestic Series LLC Application (state filing fee) $50 (paper fee)
Domestic Protected Series Application (the fee is payable to the Arkansas Secretary of State in person or by mail, separately for each sub-company)$50
Annual Franchise Tax / Report fee (due May 1st of each year). Note that in case of failure to submit your report on time, your Arkansas LLC will be charged a $25 late fee$150/year
Registered Agent fee (depending on the chosen RA service)from $45 to $300 per year 
Foreign Series LLC Application$300
Foreign Protected Series Application$300
Business licenses and permitsOptional, depending on your business specifics, location, and local requirements

Note that all the above-mentioned documents (excluding an EIN and business licenses/permits) must be submitted in person or by mail.

To find out the Arkansas Series LLC cost in full, though, you will need to clarify if you need any special business licenses/permits.

All registration documents are typically processed within 3-4 days of being received. Thus, the whole filing process takes around 1 or 2 weeks. To see the full fee schedule for Arkansas LLCs, visit this page.

First Things to Do After Creating a Series LLC in Arkansas

Now that once your series LLC is officially established, the formation process is not yet over. That said, make sure you don’t need any specialized business licenses or permits to legally run your business in Arkansas.

Even though the "Bear State" does not have a state-wide business license requirement, your venture may still need a certain license, certificate, or permit to operate in the state. This mainly depends on the following:

  • Type of your business;
  • Its location;
  • If you’re going to be responsible for any environmental impacts (e.g. pollution or waste production).

Thus, most cities in Arkansas require series LLCs to obtain a general business operating license.

That said, every series LLC in Arkansas that intends to sell tangible products or taxable services, which are subject to sales and use tax, must have a sales tax permit so it may collect the appropriate tax on its sales.

So if you’re wondering how to create a Series LLC in Arkansas to be in the healthcare, food, or construction-related business, you need to check with your local licensing board. Such agencies will help you find out how to get a Series LLC in Arkansas faster.

Also, always make sure your company remains compliant will all the necessary state requirements and regulations, pay your taxes and file your franchise tax report on time, and remain in good standing with the state.