How to start a Wisconsin LLC

By Bazal Razzaq

Chief Editor

Updated: September 26, 2023, 12:30pm

Editorial Note: We earn a commission if you use the services recommended on this page. Commissions do not affect our opinions or recommendations.

Wisconsin LLC

Wisconsin became a member of the Union of States in the United States of America on May 29, 1848. It was the 30th state to join the United States. The Badger State has the motto: ‘Forward’. America’s Dairyland is not just the biggest dairy producer but also one of the largest LLC creators in the country. If you live in Wisconsin or want to start an LLC there, then you need to follow some processes and procedures to register your LLC and start your business. In such a situation, you have to go ahead and file some documents with the respective state authorities, and you can start instantly.

Do you think this is all you need? Well, not enough. You need to have clear and concise information about how to process your business details and the respective places where this information will be processed. So, without further ado, let’s dive right into the information that you would need for your business to be successfully registered as an LLC in the State of Wisconsin:

#1 Pick A Name For Your Wisconsin LLC

Let’s start with the basics. You need to pick a name for your Wisconsin LLC. Your business name must have the text Limited Liability Company, L.L.C., or LLC in it. As a business owner, you are required to check that your business name does not contain any text that depicts or makes it look like a Federal, State, or Local Authority.

While these are the basics, one must understand that if there are additional things that you would want to add to your business skillset, like an attorney, bank, university, or doctor, then you would need to showcase documents that substantiate your claim.

Wisconsin has a policy that is different from other states in the United States. Unlike other states where you would have to check that your business name doesn’t match with another LLC, Wisconsin requires you to check that your business name shouldn’t match with another corporation, LLP, or LP.

Now that you have checked this information up, the next thing to do is to perform a name search against the State of Wisconsin’s Business Entity Search. After performing the name search, you need to check if your business has an online presence possible.

#2 Pick a Registered Agent For Your Wisconsin LLC

A Wisonsin LLC’s registered agent will be a person or a business entity registered in the state of Wisconsin who will be the single point of contact (SPOC) for your business. The person or business will take any legal documents, tax filing, or any such federal, state, or local requests on your behalf.

The major criterion for being a registered agent in Wisconsin is that the person should be a resident of the state. A business should be registered in the state where the LLC is going to conduct its day-to-day transactions. You are required to select someone for your business, and it can be someone from your team who can be the SPOC.

#3 Submit The Articles Of Organization For Your Wisconsin LLC

Articles of Organization need to be filed with the Department of Financial Institutions in the state of Wisconsin. The same can be applied online or over postal mail. It is at this time that you would have to make a decision whether your business will be manager-managed or member-managed.

You can file online or offline with the Department of Financial Institutions by paying the price of $130 and $170, respectively. This fee is non-refundable. In case you want to file the details via postal mail, please share the information at: 

State of WI – Dept. of Financial Institutions

P.O. Box 93348

Milwaukee, WI 53293

In case you plan on expanding your business beyond the state of Wisconsin, then you are required to submit your Wisconsin LLC form as a foreign LLC. It will help you expand your business beyond the state boundaries.

#4 Generate An Operating Agreement For Your Wisconsin LLC

The State of Wisconsin doesn’t require an Operating Agreement, but having one is always a good idea. It helps everyone be on the same page in terms of business requirements and avoids any future clashes.

The Operating Agreement serves as the foundation for running your business smoothly. A law-abiding Wisconsin LLC would definitely create one to avoid any hassles in the near future.

#5 Apply For An EIN For Your Wisconsin LLC

The Employer Identification Number, briefly called EIN, serves as the Social Security Number for your LLC in the State of Wisconsin. It will help keep track of your business’ tax proceedings and set you apart from others in the State of Wisconsin.

The EIN helps you open a business bank account for your Wisconsin LLC. It also helps keep track of your LLC’s federal and state tax information. You are able to hire employees for your business as you have an EIN and are a registered business. You can apply online and offline. The address to send the details of your Wisconsin LLC is:

Internal Revenue Service

Attn: EIN Operation

Cincinnati, OH 45999

Fax: (855) 641-6935

#6 File Your Wisconsin LLC's Annual Report

As a Wisconsin LLC, you are required to file your Wisconsin LLC annual report online. You need to file it with the Wisconsin Department of Financial Institutions. The annual report is due by the quarter by which it was formed. The filing fee for the same is $25.

In case you are unable to file your annual report, the state will dissolve your LLC within a year of the failure to file your annual report with the state. It is, therefore, important that you file your annual report in time.

#7 Comply With The Norms For Your Wisconsin LLC

Every business in the State of Wisconsin needs to comply with the local laws, as well as the State and Federal laws. Failing to comply with the same can impact your business differently. Here are some norms that your LLC needs to follow at all times:

Sales Tax in the State of Wisconsin

To sell a physical product in the State of Wisconsin, you would require a seller’s permit through the website of Wisconsin’s Department of Revenue. This needs to be done before you start selling.

The State of Wisconsin has a state sales tax rate of 5%, and most counties may impose an additional 0.50% local sales tax. The counties that are exempt from this are Manitowoc, Racine, Waukesha, and Winnebago Counties.

Employer Tax in the State of Wisconsin

If you have employees in the State of Wisconsin, then you would need to register for Unemployment Insurance Tax by visiting the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development.

Along with the aforementioned, you are required to sign up for Employee Withholding Tax by visiting the Wisconsin Department of Revenue. It would keep you in good standing with the state.

Income Tax in the State of Wisconsin


The State of Wisconsin has four individual income tax brackets from 3.54% to 7.65%. The state tax returns are due by April 18 yearly, and the rate will depend on your LLC’s income for the fiscal year. You would need to visit the Wisconsin Department of Revenue website to perform this action.


Your Federal Income Tax must be reported using Form 1065 and Form 1040 Schedule C for a multi-member LLC and a single-member LLC, respectively. This will help you in hiring employees for your LLC.

#8 Hiring Employees For Your Wisconsin LLC

Are you planning to hire new employees? If so, you would need to ensure that the people are eligible to work in the US. You would also need to report employees as ‘new hires’ to the state and provide Workers’ Compensation Insurance.

Withhold the Employee Taxes and print workplace compliance posters to display them in different locations of your workspace. In case you are looking for more information, then you can visit the ‘Employer Online Services’ section at the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development website.

Frequently Asked Questions​

It takes five business days over mail and is instant after filing the Articles of Organization in both circumstances.

It requires $130 to open an LLC online and $170 to open an LLC in Wisconsin over postal mail.

Kindly fill out the IRS Form SS-4 and leave section 7b blank. After you have done this, just call the IRS at (267) 941-1099 to complete your application.

The minimum wage in Wisconsin is $7.25 per hour, and employers are required to pay the employees on a monthly basis.

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