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Start a business in Wyoming

Wyoming is ranked right at the top of the “State Business Tax Climate Index” by the Tax Foundation and the state has maintained this spot for almost 5 years now. Many entrepreneurs prefer to start a business in Wyoming due to the many benefits and incentives the state offers. The state also boasts of strong infrastructure, which along with deep financial reserves provide business owners and entrepreneurs with a strong collaborative environment that promotes future growth and expansion.

Entrepreneur’s guide to starting a business in Wyoming

Wyoming is quite the favored state for new business formation. Although you can choose a variety of business structures; the process to form or register a business in Wyoming is different for each business. A new business also needs to be in compliance with Secretary of State annual requirements. It is never easy for new businesses to completely understand the requirements of the formation process like conducting a Wyoming business name search prior to name reservation. Hence we have created this detailed guide to provide an insight into how you can start a business in Wyoming.

The objective of this guide is to provide first time entrepreneurs or new business owners with information pertaining to important aspects of business formation like advantages of starting a business in Wyoming, preparing a business plan, registration process, tax information, annual and ongoing business requirements, and choosing the right business structure among others.

Why choose Wyoming to start a business?

Wyoming, the 10th largest state has a strong economy driven by tourism, mineral extraction, and agricultural commodities. The real GDP of Wyoming in 2019 was $39.31 billion and the economy grew at an annual rate of 1.8%. According to the 2019 small business profile by U.S. Small Business Administration, it is home to more than 66,000 small businesses. Entrepreneurs prefer to start a business in Wyoming as it offers several advantages to all forms of businesses. Some of the top benefits that businesses can enjoy are:

  • No State Taxes: When you register a business in Wyoming, one of the salient advantages is that there are no State taxes like corporate and personal income taxes. It is also important to note that property, sales, and inheritance taxes in the state are among the lowest in the nation. Wyoming also doesn’t have:
    • Inventory tax
    • Franchise tax
    • Business or “per-capita” tax
    • Gross receipts tax
    • Excise tax
  • Non-US citizens can form a business: One of the reasons why first time business owners or entrepreneurs start a business in Wyoming is that you are not required to be a U.S. citizen in order to start your company. You will require a Wyoming registered agent to help you form a business and you can live anywhere in the world and operate your Limited Liability Company (LLC) or Business Corporation. It is also important to note that there are no extra fees required for forming a new business even if you are a non-US citizen.
  • Lower startup costs: A new business has to register with the Wyoming secretary of state in order to operate their business. There are no hidden costs and the initial business formation or incorporation fee is also lower than several other states like Massachusetts or Texas. The overall startup costs as well as ongoing costs are also comparatively lower.
  • Strong Asset Protection and Privacy Laws: Whether you form a limited-liability company or a business corporation in Wyoming, you will be able to benefit from asset protection and privacy laws in the state. When you register an LLC with the Wyoming secretary of state, information pertaining to LLC members or managers are not made available through public databases as a result, businesses enjoy privacy.
  • Easy to move: This is a benefit for entrepreneurs who have formed a business in their home state and want to move the business to Wyoming. The state ensures you are able to start a business in Wyoming with ease as it is one of the few states that allow moving of an established business from another state.
  • Business Incentives: When you register a business in Wyoming, you will be able to take advantage of a variety of state incentive programs. These incentive programs can vary from grants and loan programs to tax exemptions, direct financial incentives, workforce development training incentives, and industrial development bonds among others.

Steps to start a business in Wyoming

Wyoming is one of the few states that have been consistently voted as one of the best business friendly environments in the country. The state enjoys a high rate of economic growth with the biggest contributor being mining. Some of the top industries that attract entrepreneurs to start a business in Wyoming include travel and tourism, manufacturing, real estate, logistics, consumer services, and technology. The question is, how do you start a business in the state or what is the process for registering and obtaining a Wyoming business license? The following steps will provide an insight into the important requirements towards making a business fully operational.

Prepare a Wyoming business plan

A business plan is like a roadmap of a business and hence critical to its formation, operation, growth and expansion. A business plan is essential before you start a business in Wyoming as a well-written plan contains strategies and takes into consideration everything from startup costs to competition, employees, market advantages, short-term goals, and long-term objectives. A strong business plan will serve several purposes like:

  • Help in making better business decisions
  • Help in avoiding any big mistakes like underscoring competition
  • Ensure that market research is conducted in a way that provides an insight into your competitors, customers, and industry
  • Provide an insight into how to find and hire skilled employees and employ a Wyoming registered agent
  • Help in setting long-term objectives and strategy enabled benchmarks
  • Provide help in communicating these benchmarks and objectives to employees and investors
  • Help secure financing or loans from banks and other financial institutions
  • Help formulate better marketing plans along with operations, logistics and cash flow projections

Attend Entrepreneurial Training or Development Programs in Wyoming

Whether you are an entrepreneur planning to start a business in Wyoming or a business owner operating a startup, entrepreneurial training and development programs can be beneficial to you and the business in terms of creating a stable and sustainable business. The importance of these programs lies in their objective, which is to strengthen your business by focusing on key business areas like marketing, finance, strategy, and human resources. You can also find relevant information pertaining to new business or entrepreneurship development programs with the office of the Wyoming secretary of state. There are several advantages or benefits of such entrepreneurship training and development programs such as:

  • Entrepreneurial training and development programs in Wyoming play a key role in developing entrepreneurial skills in those who are interested or planning to start a new business. These skills will help you to start a business in Wyoming and run them successfully.
  • This type of programs can play the key role of a catalyst, which can help businesses achieve their social and economic development objectives, including innovation, growth, equity, and employment.
  • This type of program will help you determine the primary and secondary objectives and goals of your business
  • These programs will enhance your managerial capabilities and employee handling skills
  • The training and development programs for entrepreneurs provide knowledge and impart skills related to implementing modern technology in daily business affairs

You are probably wondering how you can be a part of any of the training events or development programs. You can look for this type of training in different Wyoming networks focusing on small businesses as they offer entrepreneurship and small business training opportunities online and offline as well. The training covers an array of topics right from how to successfully start a business in Wyoming to creating expertise in social media marketing, finding and attracting investors, and mastering day-to-day business operations among others.

Choose Business Structure for Wyoming Business

Choosing a business structure is as important as registering a business in Wyoming. A business structure is basically a legal structure of your company and has to be mentioned when filing for registration in the office of the Wyoming secretary of state. The type of business structure you choose will not only define how much tax you will pay but also highlight the personal liability you may face. The business structures you can choose to form in Wyoming are:

  • Sole Proprietorship
  • General Partnership
  • Limited Partnership
  • Corporation
  • Close Corporation
  • Limited Liability Company
  • Close Limited Liability Supplement
  • Statutory Trust
  • Limited Liability Partnerships

Generally, when you start a business in Wyoming, the business structure you choose will be governed by three primary factors, which are taxation, liability and record-keeping. Apart from these, each business structure has its own benefits and limitations.

For example: If you form a business corporation then one of the key benefits is personal liability protection. Similarly, if you form an S corporation or a partnership, you will enjoy “pass through taxation” where-in, the income or loss is passed through to your individual tax return. Some of the other factors that govern the type of business structure include cost of formation and flexibility of ownership structure like in a Limited Liability Company (LLC).

Naming Your Wyoming Business

A name is integral to a business as it plays a key role in different areas associated with the business itself like advertising and branding. A business name helps in communicating business strategy to prospective consumers, media, investors, and even employees. Even the process to register a business in Wyoming requires you to first conduct a Wyoming business name search and then reserve the name. There are some important aspects to consider when naming your business and they are

  • Think of an appropriate name: You need to ideate or think of a name that goes with your business, products, or services.
  • Follow Wyoming SOS guidelines: The Wyoming secretary of state has several guidelines pertaining to choosing a business name. There are certain words and characters that are not considered as distinguishable like Limited Liability Company, Ltd, Liability Co., LC, or LLC. It is important to note that without a proper business name, you will not be able to register a business in Wyoming.
  • Check SOS database for chosen business name availability: You need to conduct Wyoming business name search and also compare the distinguishable words and characters as mentioned in Secretary of State Guidelines.
  • Reserving/Registration of Name: Once you have chosen your business name, you will be required to apply for reservation of business name or registration of trade name.

    Note: If you are submitting Articles of Incorporation or Articles of Organization then at that time, name reservation will not be required pursuant to W.S. 17-16-402(a) and W.S. 17-29-109.

Choose Your Location for Wyoming Business

If Wyoming is your chosen state for starting a business then it is important to identify the perfect location to launch the business. There are several factors that determine the location to start a business in Wyoming like transportation infrastructure, proximity to the local markets, distribution network, competition, accessibility, and security among others.

There are 23 counties in the state of Wyoming where you can start your new business after obtaining a Wyoming business license. The counties are

  • Albany
  • Big Horn
  • Campbell
  • Carbon
  • Converse
  • Crook
  • Fremont
  • Goshen
  • Hot Springs
  • Johnson
  • Laramie
  • Lincoln
  • Natrona
  • Niobrara
  • Park
  • Platte
  • Sheridan
  • Sublette
  • Sweetwater
  • Teton
  • Uinta
  • Washakie
  • Weston

Once you register a business in Wyoming, you can operate from any of the above counties although it is important to note that each county has its own local business laws, zoning laws and requirements, and licensing requirements including business license inspections.

Register Your Business with Wyoming SOS

If you are planning to register a business in Wyoming then its formation will be governed by 2015 Wyoming Code, Title 17 – Corporations, Partnerships and Associations. Depending on the type of business entity you are planning to register like Sole Proprietorship, LLC, or Corporation, you will be required to submit the corresponding application with the office of the Wyoming secretary of state.

For example: you will be required to file articles of organization for an LLC and articles of incorporation for profit corporations. It is important to remember that the articles should be in compliance with Wyoming Statutes.

You register a business in Wyoming online or by submitting the applications through mail along with the filing fee. As one of the most reputable Wyoming registered agents, we provide a wide variety of new business formation and maintenance services in all 50 states including Wyoming. We can help you to form your business in the state by assisting with services like drafting of custom incorporation articles or filing the new business formation application.

Start your new business in Wyoming today!

Get Your EIN

An Employer Identification Number (EIN) is required mostly by businesses that have employees or multiple members, partners etc. If you are planning to start a business in Wyoming, which is an LLC or a business corporation then you may be required to apply for an EIN. This is a unique nine-digit tax ID number also known as the Federal Tax Identification Number and is issued by the Internal Revenue Service(IRS).

The benefit of having an EIN number is many as it will aid a business in filing tax returns, applying for a Wyoming business license and opening a business bank account. You can apply for an EIN before or after you start a business in Wyoming. One of the most important resources for information pertaining to this Federal Tax ID number is IRS. You will find information on applying for tax ID online, eligibility requirements, Employer Tax Responsibilities, organizations exempt from EIN, and Tax Obligations of different types of businesses.

Want to apply for a new EIN for your business?

Open a Business Bank Account for Wyoming Business

One of the important elements of establishing sound business practices is opening a business bank account. Ideally, you should open a bank account before you register a business in Wyoming but you can do this after forming your business as well. The requirements for opening a business bank account can vary from one bank to another. The common general requirements are:

  • Articles of Organization/Incorporation
  • Operating Agreement or Corporate Bylaws
  • Employer Identification Number (EIN)

You can speak with the local city or county branch where you are planning to open a business bank account as they will be able to provide you with a comprehensive list of requirements.

Obtain Wyoming State Business Licenses and Permits

Once you register a business in Wyoming, you will need to apply for a business license. It is important to note that every business may not require a license but at the same time some businesses may require multiple licenses. If your business falls under any of the following categories then a Wyoming business license will be issued by concerned state agencies.

The industries are:

  • Food: If your business activity revolves around food processing, distribution, storage, and preparation for retail or wholesale then you will have to obtain a Wyoming business license from the department of agriculture.
  • Banking: If you start a business in Wyoming in the banking industry then the business license for the same will be issued by the Division of Banking, Wyoming Department of Audit.
  • Insurance: If your business activity revolves around selling insurance then the Wyoming business license will be issued by the Wyoming Insurance Department.
  • Transportation: If you are planning to start a business in Wyoming in the transportation industry like a trucking business then you may require licenses and/or permits issued by the Wyoming Department of Transportation.
  • Wildlife: According to the Wyoming State Statutes, Title 23, Game and Fish and Wyoming Game and Fish Commission Regulation: Chapter 44, a variety of Wyoming business licenses are issued by the Wyoming Game and Fish Department.

Do you want to know which business licenses your business requires?

Apply for Unemployment & Workers Compensation Wyoming

Once you have registered your business with the Wyoming secretary of state, you need to apply for Unemployment & Workers Compensation. The Wyoming Workers Compensation Insurance provides protection to employers as well as employees especially in cases related to work injury, disability benefits, or illness. It is administered by the Workers Safety and Compensation Division of the Wyoming Department of Employment. The Wyoming Department of Workforce Services collects unemployment tax from businesses or employers in order to provide unemployment insurance to employees or individuals qualifying for the benefits. You can apply for unemployment and workers compensation insurance online or by submitting an application for the same.

You can download the application or file online at the Wyoming Department of Workforce Services website. You will be able to access information, find other related forms & documents from the website. You can contact for report of injury directly at the:

  • Wyoming Department of Workforce Services, Workers’ Compensation Division
    5221 Yellowstone Road, Cheyenne, WY 82002Map
    Send mail to this address: P.O. Box 20207, Cheyenne WY 82003
    Phone -(307) 777-7441
    Fax -(307) 777-6552
    Fraud Hotline -(888) 996-9226

Some of the other important office locations & contacts are:

  • CASPER Field Office
    851 Werner Court, #120, Casper, WY 82601
    Phone -(307) 235-3664
    Fax – (307) 235-3699
  • CASPER Safety & Risk
    851 Werner Court, #121, Casper, WY 82601
    Mailing address: P.O. Box 2760, Casper, WY 82601
    Phone -(307) 212-2222, Robert C. Salinas, Jr., Safety Specialist
    Phone -(307) 235-3265, Todd Condelario, Safety Specialist
    Fax -(307) 235-3688
  • CHEYENNE Employer Services
    5221 Yellowstone Road, Cheyenne, WY 82002
    Phone -(307) 777-6763
    Fax -(307) 777-5298
    Fraud Hotline – (888) 996-9226
  • CHEYENNE Claims
    5221 Yellowstone Road, Cheyenne, WY 82002
    Mailing address: P.O. Box 20207, Cheyenne WY 82003
    Phone -(307) 777-7441
    Fax -(307) 777-6552
    Fraud Hotline -(888) 996-9226

Register with Wyoming Department of Revenue

Although there are no corporate or income taxes in the state of Wyoming, most businesses are required to register with the Wyoming secretary of state as well as the Department of Revenue. The state of Wyoming has excise and sales taxes and these have to be paid through the revenue department. Once you start a business in Wyoming, you can download the excise (sales & use) tax forms/applications including the Sales/Use Tax License Application directly from the website of the Wyoming Department of Revenue.

You can mail forms or applications to:

  • Wyoming Department of Revenue
    122 West 25th Street, Suite E301
    Herschler Building East
    Cheyenne, Wyoming 82002
    Telephone: (307) 777-5200
    Fax: (307) 777-3632
    Website: http://revenue.wyo.gov
    Email: dor@wyo.gov

It is important to note that Wyoming counties are categorized under 4 Excise Regions and you will be required to coordinate with the office in the region where your business has been formed. This means that if you register a business in Wyoming in Lincoln then it will fall under Excise Region #4 and if you have formed a business in Campbell County then it will fall under Excise Region #2.

Annual and Ongoing Requirements

If you register a business in Wyoming there are some annual and ongoing requirements that you or your business will be required to fulfill. Although businesses are not required to file any annual franchise tax they are required to file an annual report and this is especially true for LLC’s and business corporations. The annual report can be filed online or submitted through mail to the Wyoming secretary of state along with the fee.

Some Important Quick Resources for Wyoming Business

When you start a business in Wyoming, there are several aspects that you will have to consider right from hiring a Wyoming registered agent to filing a variety of business documents. Here is a list of some of the most important resources for Wyoming startups that will aid in setting up your business in the state.

Wyoming Secretary of state

The Wyoming secretary of state is a constitutional office that consists of several divisions like the Administrative Services Division, Business Division, and Compliance Division etc. When you start a business in Wyoming, you will be dealing with the Business Division as it is responsible for filing information regarding businesses and includes charters of business corporations and other entities. This division is also responsible for registering trademarks as well as trade names. The contact information for Wyoming secretary of state, Business Division is:

Wyoming Business Council

Founded in 1998, the Wyoming Business Council is tasked with the responsibility of providing a variety of business resources and builds a strong job creation platform in the state. The primary function of the Business Council is acting as an economic development agency for the state of Wyoming. The Wyoming Business Council also administers a Community Development Block Grant Program along with Planning Only Grants, Job Training Grants, Convertible Loans, Technical Assistance Grants, Section 108 Loans and Float Loans, which will be helpful if you start a business in Wyoming. The contact information for the Wyoming Business Council is:

Wyoming Department of Workforce Services

The Wyoming Department of Workforce Services (DWS) plays a key role in ensuring fair and legal employment and assists businesses through their three divisions, which are Standards and Compliance, Workforce Programs, and Research, Policy, and Communications. The department also facilitates the growth of businesses and employers by providing several resources in areas like Workforce Development Training, Workers’ Compensation, and Unemployment Insurance among others. They have branch offices situated in more than 30 cities. Important contact information for this department is:

  • Wyoming Department of Workforce Services
    851 Werner Court, #120, Casper, WY 82601
    Phone: (307) 235-3664 – Workers’ Compensation, (307) 234-4591 – Employment & Training (Workforce Center)
    Website – http://wyomingworkforce.org

Wyoming Department of Revenue

The primary objective of the Wyoming Department of Revenue is administration and collection of minerals as well as excise tax along with valuation of property and enforcement of liquor control laws. After you register your business with the Wyoming secretary of state, you will be required to register with the state department of revenue. The contact information for the Wyoming Department of Revenue is:

  • Wyoming Department of Revenue
    122 West 25th Street, Suite E301
    Herschler Building East
    Cheyenne, Wyoming 82002
    Phone: (307) 777-5200
    Fax: (307) 777-3632
    Email – dor@wyo.gov
    Website – http://revenue.wyo.gov

Wyoming Small Business Development Network

The Wyoming Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Network is a partnership formed between the Wyoming Business Council, the University of Wyoming, and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). The primary objective of SBDC is to offer technical assistance as well as business expertise. If you start a business in Wyoming, SBDC can provide the tools and expertise necessary to help your business achieve growth. The contact information for Wyoming SBDC is:

Wyoming Technology Business Center

The Wyoming Technology Business Center (WTBC) is an innovation-driven business development program or incubator system that is situated in Laramie, Casper, and Sheridan. The programs will be beneficial after you register a business in Wyoming as it provides expertise, coaching as well as shared resources to start-ups to foster an environment for growth. The contact information for Wyoming WTBC is:

Wyoming Women’s Business Center

Founded in 1999, the Wyoming Women’s Business Center (WWBC) offers current and prospective women entrepreneurs or business owners with a variety of business assistance. WWBC has several programs that you can benefit from if you are planning to start a business in Wyoming. The assistance includes professional business counseling, start-up or expansion advice, access to training, and micro-loan or microfinance programs. The contact information for Wyoming WTBC is:

  • Wyoming Women’s Business Center
    13th & Lewis Streets, Education Annex Building,
    Rooms 155 &158
    Bosler, WY 82051
    Phone: (307) 460-3943
    Website – hhttps://www.wyomingwomen.org

Ready to start business in Wyoming?

Every business needs a good platform and a pro business environment to start and this is where the state of Wyoming provides an advantage. If you have wanted to register a business in Wyoming and are wondering how to go about it then IncParadise can provide you with valuable assistance. We are a reputable Wyoming registered agent with experience and expertise in new business formation. IncParadise has helped thousands of businesses in Wyoming to successfully form an LLC or a business corporation.

We are not only one of the top incorporation service providers in Wyoming but can also provide additional services to help start a business in Wyoming like EIN assistance, foreign qualification, Certificate of Good Standing (Certificate of Existence) in Wyoming etc.

Start a business in Wyoming with all its benefits!