How to Register an LLC in West Virginia: A Step-by-Step Guide

Forming a limited liability company (LLC) gives you personal liability protection, tax flexibility, and brand credibility. If you’re looking for the steps you need to take to start an LLC in West Virginia, you’re in the right place. From naming your business to filing formation documents, these are the steps you need to take to register an LLC in West Virginia

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West Virginia LLC Quick Facts 

  • To register an LLC in West Virginia, you must file Articles of Organization.
  • The filing fee for starting an LLC in West Virginia is $100.
  • It is mandatory for all LLCs in West Virginia to appoint an agent of process.
  • To maintain your West Virginia LLC in good standing, you must file an Annual Report.

7 Steps to Registering an LLC in West Virginia

By completing these steps, you will successfully register your LLC in West Virginia.

To register an LLC in West Virginia, follow these steps:

  1. Name Your West Virginia LLC
  2. Appoint an Agent of Process
  3. File Articles of Organization
  4. Draft an Operating Agreement
  5. Obtain an EIN and Handle Taxes
  6. Apply for a Business Registration Certificate
  7. File a Beneficial Ownership Information Report

Step 1: Name Your West Virginia LLC

To start, you need to decide on a name for your LLC. 

West Virginia requires that the LLC name:

  • Be distinguishable from any other business entity in the state
  • Include “Limited Liability Company” or an abbreviation such as “LLC” or “LC”
  • Not include terms that imply government affiliation 
  • Not include restricted words 

We recommend that you review all of West Virginia’s name requirements before settling on a name for your LLC. 

To check the availability of your chosen LLC name, you will need to conduct a name search on the West Virginia Secretary of State website

Don’t forget to check that your LLC name has a matching URL. Visit GoDaddy today to secure your domain name. 

Step 2: Appoint an Agent of Process 

In West Virginia, an agent of process, otherwise known as a registered agent, is required to be appointed when registering an LLC. The agent will be responsible for receiving important legal documents on behalf of the LLC, including tax forms and notices of lawsuits. 

The agent of process in West Virginia must meet the following criteria:

  • They must be a full-time resident or business entity 
  • They must have a physical address in West Virginia
  • The registered agent cannot be the LLC itself 

Who is Eligible to Serve as an Agent of Process in West Virginia?

In West Virginia, a registered agent or agent of process can be an individual such as the LLC owners or an employee as well as a family member or friend. Alternatively, LLCs can choose to use a professional service provider. 

Step 3: Filing the Articles of Organization

In West Virginia, the next step in registering an LLC is submitting the Articles of Organization to the Secretary of State. This can be done online or by submitting Form LLD-1 by mail, email, fax, or in person. 

The filing fee is $100

Make sure to include all required information, such as: 

  • The LLC’s name and principal office address 
  • The name and address of the agent of process 
  • The LLC’s structure (e.g. standard LLC or professional LLC) 
  • The LLC’s purpose 
  • The management structure (manager-managed vs. member-managed) 
  • The LLC effective date 

Quick Note: If you have already formed your business in another state, you are required to file as a foreign LLC in West Virginia. You can complete your filing online along with a $150 filing fee. 

Step 4: Draft an Operating Agreement 

Operating agreements are not required for LLCs in West Virginia, however, they can be beneficial. An operating agreement is a legal document that outlines the ownership and operating procedures of your LLC. It typically includes details such as management structure, member responsibilities, profit distribution, and more.

This agreement will serve as a guide for how the LLC will be managed and operated, helping to prevent potential disputes or misunderstandings in the future.

Step 5: Obtain an EIN and Handle Taxes 

The next step is to apply for an Employer Identification Number (EIN). An EIN is a unique nine-digit number assigned by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to identify your business for tax purposes. Having an EIN is necessary for opening a business bank account, hiring employees, and filing taxes for your LLC.

To obtain an EIN, you can apply online through the IRS website.

In addition to obtaining an EIN, as a business owner in West Virginia, you must also be aware of your tax obligations. This includes understanding state and federal tax laws that apply to your LLC. You can determine tax requirements for your business by visiting the West Virginia Tax Division website

Step 6: Apply for a Business Registration Certificate 

Before you can conduct business in West Virginia, you will need to apply for a Business Registration Certificate. This can be done through online the West Virginia One Stop Business Portal or by filing this form with the state Tax Commissioner by mail. 

You will not be required to renew this certificate unless you change your LLC name, location, owners, or your certificate is revoked. 

Step 7: File a Beneficial Ownership Information Report 

After registering your LLC in West Virginia, one important step to take is to file a Beneficial Ownership Information (BOI) Report with the US Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN). 

New LLCs must submit this report within 90 days of formation, while existing LLCs have a filing window between January 1st, 2024, and January 1st, 2025. 

Failure to comply with this requirement can result in a fine of $500 per day

You can conveniently file this report online for free on the FinCEN website

Next Steps 

  • Open a business bank account to separate and protect your personal assets. We recommend Lili for fast, comprehensive business banking. 
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  • Obtain any necessary licenses and permits that may be required federally or by the state. You can learn more about West Virginia business licensing requirements on the One Stop Business Portal.
  • Get business insurance to protect your LLC from liability. Next Insurance offers affordable coverage fast.
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  • File an Annual Report with the Secretary of State to maintain your LLC’s good standing. This can be filed online alongside a $25 filing fee. 

Additional Tips for Success

  • Plan for the future: Set clear goals and objectives for your West Virginia LLC to ensure its long-term success. Consider developing a business plan, establishing a marketing strategy, and regularly reviewing your financial performance to stay on track.
  • Keep track of compliance requirements: Stay informed about ongoing compliance requirements for your LLC, such as annual reports and taxes. Failure to meet these obligations can result in penalties or even the dissolution of your LLC.
  • Work on your mindset: Ensure that you are ready to take on the challenges and trials of entrepreneurship by working on your mindset. 


To successfully launch your West Virginia LLC, it is essential to follow the necessary steps for registration and then plan ahead for the future. From naming your business to obtaining a Business Registration Certificate, every step is crucial. By following these steps and planning ahead, you can successfully launch and manage your West Virginia LLC for years to come.