Your New Business Portal at the RI Department of State

Secrtary of State - Your New Business Portal at the RI Department of State Picture

by Secretary Of State Nellie M. Gorbea 

During the redesign of the Rhode Island Department of State website, we strived to create a Business Portal that would serve as an easy-to-use hub for businesses. Our mission is to engage and empower all Rhode Islanders, so we made sure we spoke with many of you in the business community about the sorts of tools and resources that you need to manage or start your business in our state. Those conversations have resulted in the Business Portal you see today at

The Business Portal is a great place to find out what deadlines are coming up and what forms need to be completed for your business. One of the more useful tools within the Business Portal is the online filing system. Online forms and accounts make it easy for you to renew your paperwork. We want Rhode Island business owners to spend less time worried about paperwork and more time managing a successful business.

Every year after your first year of incorporation, business corporations must file an annual report with our Business Services Division. The annual report filing period for Business Corporations is from January 1 to March 1. Filing fees are $50 by person or by mail and $52.50 if filing online. The additional $2.50 for filing online is for payment to the state’s private vendor for online services – RI.Gov or Interactive Rhode Island. This is not revenue for the Department of State or the state’s General Fund. Instead, the fee covers the cost of creating and maintaining the state’s online services. My office is in conversation with the Governor’s Office to address this fee disparity. All filings recorded on or after April 1 are subject to a late fee of $25.

Of the 30,224 Business Corporations on file last year, nearly two-thirds (19,133) filed electronically. Online filing is safe, easy, and available 24-hours a day. It has the same requirements as paper filings, but can save you valuable time because the forms are pre-filled on the screen with the data we already have on record for your corporation. Last year, our staff and summer fellowship intern, worked on simplifying and redesigning all of our business forms so that they are easier to use.

We also understand that managing a business takes time, and there may be many deadlines and important calendar dates to keep track of. We encourage business owners to use our Business Portal to verify whether or not they have filed their annual report. If your entity name contains the words Limited Liability Company or LLC, your annual report filing period is September 1 to November 1.

As Secretary of State I am continuously looking for ways to connect Rhode Islanders and their government. Working alongside the talented team in our Business Services and eGovernment & IT Divisions, we are dedicated to working with Rhode Island business owners to move business forward in our state.

Whether you are a new entrepreneur or an established small business, the Department of State’s Business Services Division is here to help. You can reach us by calling (401) 222-3040, emailing us at or visiting our office at 148 West River Street. Please feel free to contact me directly with any thoughts or suggestions at or visit our newly redesigned website We look forward to working with you to grow your business in Rhode Island.

Leave a comment

Avatar About the Author: The Rhode Island Small Business Journal is a printed monthly magazine and an online resource for the aspiring and start-up entrepreneur and small business owner.

previous arrow
next arrow