TUSCUMBIA — Colbert County is now one of eight counties in the state that will allow the creation of a limited liability company online, a process that used to take months to complete, Probate Judge Daniel Rosser said.
Other counties offering the service are Baldwin, Elmore, Jackson, Madison, Montgomery, Morgan and Tuscaloosa counties.
Before Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill took office, there had been an excessive wait time for businesses to complete the paperwork to start a new LLC, which Rosser said is the most common type of business structure.
"Five years ago, if you wanted to start an LLC, it took over six months to get the paperwork certified by the secretary of state's office," Rosser said. "Today, if you want to start a business entity in Colbert County, you can do it in one day."
That's good for business," Rosser said. "What's good for business is good for Colbert County."
“This service is offered at no cost to Alabama’s 67 counties as a courtesy of the Secretary of State’s Office," Merrill said. "I encourage other counties across the state to begin offering this opportunity to residents. My office is eager and willing to create more opportunities for business owners in Alabama."
Rosser said Merrill has a catchphrase: "Not at the speed of government, but at the speed of business."
"That's how he operates his department," Rosser said. "When he took office, he saw how backed up the system was. He made it a priority to get that wait time down."
Rosser said the online filing system reduces the processing time from months to days.
Instead of filing paperwork in his office, which he would then be sent to the secretary of state's office through mail, he said individuals can file the paperwork directly with the Secretary of State's Office online.
Rosser said eventually there will be a link to the Secretary of State's office on the Colbert County Probate Judge's website.
“Judge Daniel Rosser is one of the leaders of innovative solutions throughout the state, and I commend him for his hard work,” Merrill said of Colbert County's decision to offer the service.
Rosser said his office wants to take advantage of any technological advances it can that will improve the services it provides.
He said the traditional filing method is still available through his office.
A goal of Merrill's since taking office has been to eliminate obstacles slowing down the business-filing process.
In June, the Office of the Secretary of State celebrated three consecutive years of same-day business filings, according to a news release issued by the secretary of state's office.
"I am proud of the results that have been consistently produced by our office," Merrill said in a press release. "At the Office of the Secretary of State, we will continue to do all that we can to help families and businesses grow and be successful."