South Dakota Secretary of State: The Roles and Services for Businesses



The South Dakota Secretary of State (SDS) is responsible for administering state elections, registering companies, and maintaining records of corporations. The SDS is also responsible for issuing licenses to businesses and individuals who wish to engage in business activities in South Dakota.

  • Company name

The company name should consist of only letters and numbers. No punctuation marks are allowed except hyphens. If the company name contains any special characters, they need to be encoded using Unicode.

  • Registered agent address

The registered agent’s address is the physical location where documents related to the corporation may be delivered. The registered agent is the person who accepts legal service of summons and complaints on behalf of the corporation. In some states, the registered agent is also the resident agent.

  •  Registered office address

The registered office address is where the corporate officers conduct their official duties. The registered office address cannot be different from the registered agent’s.

  • Principal office address

The principal office address is where the corporation conducts its regular business operations. A corporation can have multiple offices. However, each office must have a separate street address.

  • Corporate seal

A corporate seal is a symbol that represents the authority of the corporation. The corporate seal is affixed to all corporate filings and correspondence.

  •  Date of incorporation

The date of incorporation is the day the corporation was first created under the state’s laws.

What is the South Dakota secretary of state, and what are its roles and responsibilities?

1. Secretary of State

The office of the South Dakota Secretary of State was established in 1889. Its primary responsibility is to maintain the official records of the state government, including the registration of voters, maintaining the state’s official seal, and issuing marriage licenses. The Secretary of State’s Office also maintains the state government’s official website.

2. Roles & Responsibilities

The Secretary of State’s Office serves as the central repository for all official documents of the state government. These include birth certificates, death certificates, marriage license applications, divorce decrees, adoption papers, and many others. In addition, the Secretary of State’s Office issues drivers’ licenses, vehicle registrations, and passports.

What services does the secretary of state offers for South Dakota businesses

  •  Secretary of State

The Secretary of State’s office provides many services to help business owners comply with their legal obligations. These services include filing forms, registering trademarks, obtaining licenses, and filing corporate documents.

  • Business Licenses

Businesses need to obtain a license before they can operate legally. The Secretary of State’s Office issues these licenses. A business license includes fees, renewal requirements, and other information about how long a business may remain open.

  •  Corporate Documents

Corporate documents are necessary to start a corporation or LLC. Corporations file articles of incorporation, annual reports, and other documents with the Secretary of State’s Office. An LLC files the Articles of Organization, Operating Agreement, and other documents with them.

  •  Trademarks
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A trademark is any word, phrase, symbol, design, logo, color combination, sound, smell, taste, or visual image that identifies and distinguishes a company’s products or services. Companies use trademarks to protect their brand identity and prevent others from using similar marks without permission. Companies must complete a trademark application with the Secretary of State to register a trademark.

  • Filing Forms

Filing forms is a way to make sure that a business complies with its legal obligations. The Secretary of State requires certain filings depending on the type of business entity a company wants to create.

  • Notary Public

Notaries public certify signatures on official documents. If someone signs a document as a notary public, he or she certifies that the signature was written under his or her authority.

  • Voter Registration

Voter registration helps ensure that people who want to vote are registered. People can register to vote at the Secretary of State’s office.


Create your LLC Corporation with just 3 easy steps


 The documents you will need to complete the process of filing an LLC in South Dakota Secretary of State.

  • Articles of Organization (AO)

This document is filed at the state level where the business entity is located. In order to file an AO, you will need to have a copy of the articles of organization signed by each member of the company. You may want to consult with an attorney before completing this step.

  •  Certificate of Good Standing (CGS)

In order to open a bank account, you will need to provide proof that the corporation is currently registered with the state. To do this, you will need to submit a CGS to the state. Once submitted, the state will then send you a confirmation email stating whether or not the application was approved. If approved, you will receive a letter confirming the approval.

  • Operating Agreement

An operating agreement is a written contract between members of an LLC. Members should sign the agreement and keep copies in their personal files. An operating agreement outlines how the company will operate and each member’s responsibilities.

  • Tax ID Number

You must obtain a tax identification number if you plan to sell any products or services to customers. This number will allow you to deduct taxes and fees associated with your business.

  •  Business License

If you plan to open a physical location for your business, you must apply for a business license. You will need to pay a fee in order to get a license.

  •  Resale Permit

You will need to obtain a resale permit to sell products or services to customers. This permit is only valid for certain types of businesses.

  • Sales Tax Registration

Sales tax registration is necessary if you plan on selling goods or services to customers. You will need to register with the state and pay a sales tax based on your money.

How to file for an LLC in the South Dakota Secretary of State

1. File Articles of Organization

The articles of organization should be filed at the office of the secretary of state no later than 30 days after filing the articles of organization with the county clerk. You may use either a printed application form provided by the secretary of state’s office or a pre-printed form provided by the county clerk’s office. If using a printed form, make sure to fill out the entire form before submitting it to the county clerk’s office; otherwise, you will not receive any assistance.

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2. Pay Fees

You will need to pay fees to the secretary of state’s and county clerks’ offices. These fees vary depending upon the type of business entity being formed. In addition, if you choose to have the corporation registered in two counties, you will need to pay additional fees to each county.

3. Register Agent

If you plan to act as the agent for the company, then you will need to register your name with the secretary of state’s Office. An agent cannot represent the company until he or she has been properly registered. Agents are responsible for paying taxes on behalf of their clients.

4. Prepare Articles of Organization

After completing the forms and paying the necessary fees, submit them to the appropriate county clerk’s office. Once they have received the completed forms, they will issue a certificate stating that the articles of organization were approved.

5. Obtain a Corporate Identification Number (CIN)

Once the articles of organization have been approved, the secretary of state’s department will assign a CIN to the newly created company. A CIN is a nine-digit number that identifies the company. You will need to obtain the CIN prior to opening bank accounts or obtaining loans.

6. Open Bank Accounts

After receiving the CIN, open bank accounts for the company. Make sure to keep track of each account’s account numbers and contact information.

7. Apply for Business License

To operate legally, you will need to apply for a business license. Depending on the nature of the business, you may need to get several licenses. You will need to provide proof of insurance and pay a fee for the license.



Frequently Asked Questions

How much is an LLC in South Dakota

1. $0

LLCs are not taxed in South Dakota. If you have any income, then you pay taxes at the federal level. You do not need to file state tax returns if you make less than $100,000 per year.

2. $0 – $10,000

If you earn between $10,001 and $50,000, you will owe 1% sales tax. If you earn over $50,000, then you will owe 2%.

3. $10,001 – $25,000

You will pay no sales tax if you earn under $25,000. If you earn between $25,001 and $75,000, then you’ll only owe 0.8% sales tax. If your income exceeds $75,000, you will pay 1.6%.

4. $25,001 – $35,000

You will owe no sales tax if you make under $35,000. If you make between $35,001 and $150,000, then you’re paying 0.8% sales. If you earn over 150k, then you will pay 1.5%.

5. $35,001 – $45,000

You will get no sales tax if you’re making under $45,000. If you’re earning between $45,001 and $200,000, then you owe 0.8% tax. If you exceed 200k, then you’ll pay 1.5%.

6. $45,001 – $55,000

You will not owe any sales tax if you earn below $55,000. If you are earning between $55,001 and $250,000, then you are paying 0.8% tax on everything you sell. If you earn above 250k, then you’ll owe 1.5%.

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7. $55,001 – $65,000

You will receive no sales tax if you are making under $65,000. If you earned between $65,001 and $300,000, you would pay 0.8% tax, and if you earned over 300k, you’d pay 1.5%. There’s no sales tax for those who earn under $65,000 and over $300,000.

 Which State is best for LLC


The state of California offers many advantages for starting a business including low taxes, no personal property tax, and no franchise fee. In addition, California does not require any type of license to start a business. However, if you want to incorporate your company, then you need to file articles of incorporation in California. If you do not have any employees yet, then you may qualify for the small business exemption. You can apply online at the Franchise Tax Board website.


Delaware is known for its corporate laws and regulations. Delaware Corporation Code Section 271 requires that corporations maintain their principal place of business in Delaware. Corporations incorporated in Delaware are subject to taxation only once per year. Businesses incorporated in Delaware pay no income tax and no corporation tax. There is no requirement to obtain a permit before incorporating. The cost of forming a Delaware corporation is $100.00.


Florida is a great state for starting a business. Florida offers several types of businesses including sole proprietorships, partnerships, general partnerships, limited liability companies (LLCs), and corporations. Sole Proprietorships are taxed based upon net income. Partnerships are taxed similarly to corporations. General Partnerships are taxed differently than Limited Liability Companies. Corporations are taxed differently than both of these entities. To incorporate, you must first open a bank account. Once opened, you can complete the application at the Division of Corporations website.


Georgia is a great state for beginning a business. Georgia offers several types of businesses. Sole Proprietorship is taxed similar to a partnership. A Partnership is taxed differently than a corporation. Corporations are taxed different than either of these entities. To form a corporation, you must first register with the Secretary of State’s office. After registration, you can complete the incorporation paperwork at the Department of Revenue website.


Hawaii is a great state for doing business. Hawaii offers several types of businesses, including sole proprietorships and corporations. Sole Proproprietorships are taxable based upon net income. Corporations are taxed based upon net profits. To incorporate, you need to go to the Department of Commerce website.


Idaho is a great state for business. Idaho offers several types of businesses; however, they are not as favorable for LLCs. Sole Proprietor is taxed based upon net income and is taxed annually. Corporations are taxed according to net profit. To incorporate, you should visit the Department of Finance website.


Illinois is a great state for businesses. Illinois offers several types of businesses: Sole Proprietorship, Limited Liability Company, and Corporation. Sole Proprietory is taxed based upon net earnings. Limited Liability Companies are taxed based upon net earnings and are taxed annually. Corporations must pay annual franchise fees. To incorporate, you can visit the Department of Commerce website to get started.

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