1. Select the name of your LLC
First, find out if the name that you are considering for your business is already available. You cannot file for a limited liability corporation (LLC), using an existing name. A name that is too similar to an established brand can lead to costly problems down the line.
You can avoid any unforeseeable problems by doing a search for Georgia businesses. If you find the name you are looking for, you can file your LLC paperwork. You can still apply to reserve the name for a period of 30 days if you are not yet ready to file. You can renew your name reservation for $25.
2. Submit Your Georgia LLC Forms
You will choose to file as either a foreign or domestic entity when you reach this stage. Foreign entities are businesses that have been established in another state and wish to legalize their operations in Georgia. They will need to file a new application and pay additional fees.
Articles of Organization can be submitted online, or by mail to the Georgia Secretary of State. Online filings are free; physical filings cost $10 more.
3. Choose a representative
A registered agent can be a person or an organization that is authorized to accept legal documents on behalf of your LLC. The registered agent may be either a Georgia resident or a corporation/LLC authorized to do business here. The agent must be located in Georgia at a street address.
Georgia doesn’t require you to appoint a third party as your registered agent. You can represent yourself. You can also ask an employee, trusted friend or family member to take over the role.
You can also use a registered agents service to do the job for you.
The Key Tasks Following the Establishment of Your Georgia LLC
You don’t need to file all the paperwork required to create an LLC. To maintain good standing and comply with tax requirements, you should take several steps after filing.
Make an Operating Agreement
A operating agreement does not have to be a prerequisite for setting up a Georgia LLC. Operating agreements can be useful tools, even though they are not required. It will give your LLC a professional foundation.
A document called an operating agreement has a few key functions.
- This document outlines the financial and functional decisions made by the LLC
- Regulates internal operations and assigns responsibilities
- The details of how to meet the needs and wants of business owners
A written agreement is required for Georgia LLCs that have multiple members. This will help to avoid confusion and disagreements regarding policies and roles. An operating agreement can provide additional protection against liability. An operating agreement also separates your business from your personal finances.
Register for an EIN
Georgia LLCs need an EIN (or Employer Identification Number) to operate. The LLC’s tax identification number is the EIN. Although LLCs are subject to tax on their members’ individual tax returns, the EIN allows them to open bank accounts and create payroll for their employees. If your LLC has more than one member or employs employees, an EIN is necessary. You can obtain an EIN online at , the official website of the IRS.
Separate personal and business assets
You may not feel the need for a bank account if you are operating a single member LLC in Georgia. However, as an LLC’s purpose is to protect you from any legal ramifications directly affecting your business and personal property, seperating your personal and business assets will strengthen this separation in the case of legal proceedings. To open a bank account for your business, you can use your EIN. To make it easier to transfer funds between your personal and business accounts, you can use the same bank. However, if there are multiple members of your family, you should consider an online or centrally located bank.
Georgia LLC Tax Requirements Fulfilled
Your LLC’s tax structure will determine how you file and pay income taxes. You will report income and loss on your personal tax returns if you are a single member LLC with sole proprietorship tax structure. Multi-member LLCs that are taxed under partnerships will operate in the same manner. Your tax filing requirements for LLCs that elect to be taxed like corporations will be different.
If your business sells taxable products, you may need to file state sales tax. You will need to collect the sales tax from your business. In Georgia, a Sales and Use Tax Number is required. This identification number can be applied online at Georgia’s Department of Revenue webpage. The current sales tax rate is 4% at the state and additional local sales taxes are 3% to 4.4% depending on where you live.
Important Information about LLCs in Georgia
Although the devil may have made it to Georgia, they still can’t do business there unless they understand basic information about LLC filings, taxation, and classification.
What is the Georgia Classification of LLCs?
Georgia’s limited liability companies and foreign limited liabilities companies are considered sole proprietors, also known as “disregarded entities” or partnerships. Federal income tax purposes may not allow them to be classified differently. Georgia uses the federal “Check-the-Box” classification system. Therefore, limited liability companies and foreign restricted liability companies are treated the same for Georgia income tax purposes.
Georgia-owned businesses must fill out the standard Georgia LLC forms. They also have to pay the applicable fees. If you’re not a Georgian and want to form an LLC in Georgia, you must fill out the standard Georgia LLC forms and pay the applicable fees.
Georgia is not among the states that allow LLC domestication. The process of moving your LLC from another state to Georgia is more complex than simply filling out a few forms. You may also have several options as to how to structure the transaction. If you are a foreign LLC that you wish to make Georgia your home, you should seek legal advice.
Annual Business Registration
Georgia requires LLCs go through the annual business registration process. It costs $50. You will be charged $25 late fees if you fail to submit your registration on time.
The following are required for annual registration:
- The control number of the business name
- Name of the person who filed the annual registration
- An email address
- The principal office’s mailing address
- Name and address of the registered agent
- Acceptable forms of payment
Georgia currently accepts checks, money orders and credit cards. When paying with a credit card, make sure you include the three- to four-digit security code. For more information , visit the official website.
Georgia Business License Requirements
Georgia does not require a state-level business license, but all Georgia LLCs must have a business license or operating license from their county or city. For more information about local requirements, contact the government offices of your county or city.
If your business is subject to state, federal, or local regulations, you may require additional permits or licenses. Bars, daycare centers, plumbers and home inspectors are just a few examples of businesses that might require additional licenses.
What is an LLC?
A Limited Liability Company is what “LLC” stands for. It is one of the many legal entities that business owners can create. LLCs can be more flexible than corporations, and offer better liability coverage than sole proprietorships. LLCs protect your personal assets and allow you to choose from several tax options.
What is the cost of forming an LLC in Georgia?
To file your Articles of Organization, the initial cost of forming an LLC in Georgia is $100. The Georgia Secretary of State will require you to file an annual registration. This filing costs $50. There may be additional costs associated with forming an LLC, such as hiring a registered agent or filing for a “Doing Business As”, name reservation, and various permits and licenses. You can find more information in our guide How Much Does it Cost to Start an LLC.
Is it possible to form an LLC with only one member in Georgia?
Georgia permits single-member LLC formation. A single-member LLC must follow the same procedures as other LLCs. This includes having an Operating Agreement and keeping personal and business finances separate.
How can I dissolve my LLC Georgia?
It is very easy to dissolve an LLC in Georgia. The Georgia Secretary of State will require you to file Form CD-415 (the Certificate of Termination) with them. You will need to ensure that your final year of taxes is paid and that creditors are notified.
How can I add a DBA for a Georgia LLC?
You can add a DBA (or “doing business under” to your Georgia LLC by submitting a request to the Clerk of the Superior Court of the county in which you are located. The clerk’s office will allow you to search the county trade name records. The state’s business name standards should be adhered to by the proposed name. A trade name registration must be posted in your local newspaper at least once per week for two consecutive weeks.
What are the various types of LLCs you can set up?
There are many types of LLCs available when you’re trying to decide how to start one. It is important to understand the different types of LLCs available so that you can choose the best business model for your company. These LLC structures include:
- A single-member LLC: The LLC is owned by one person. Although it is similar to a sole proprietorship this LLC offers additional tax benefits as well as liability protection.
- Multimember LLC: Standard LLCs that have more than one member are often divided into member-managed and manager-managed entities.
- L3C These entities are also known as “low-profit liability companies” and act as a bridge between nonprofit LLCs (for-profit LLCs) where the business case is the main focus, rather than the earnings.
- Series LLC: Series LLC’s tiered business structures allow the top-tier LLC to own a series of lower-tiered LLCs via unlimited segregation. Each LLC operates independently from the others; their assets are also primarily separate.
- PLLC This type of business formation is available only to licensed professionals.
- Restricted LLC – Limited LLCs are exempt from tax for the first ten years of their formation. They cannot also make distributions to members. The articles of organization must state that the LLC is restricted.
What is the average time it takes for an LLC to be processed in Georgia?
An online LLC filing with the Georgia Secretary of State takes 7 business days. Paper filings can take up to 15 days. The processing time can be reduced by $100 to take only two business days. Processing same-day is $250 more
Is Georgia allowed to allow LLC domestication?
Domestication refers to the conversion of a foreign LLC into one. Although many states allow the transfer of LLCs from one state to the next, Georgia is not allowed.
How can I dissolve my LLC in Georgia?
To disband an LLC, a member, manager, or attorney can sign Form CD 415 and file it with the Secretary of State. The $10 filing fee is payable by mail. However, online submissions are free.
Is it possible to reinstate an LLC that has been dissolved in Georgia?
Georgia allows administratively dissolved LLCs to apply for reinstatement up to five years after the date of administrative dissolution.
Business808, a renowned consulting organization that aids startups in scaling and growing, is led by Andy Brooks as Editor-in-Chief.
Andy has over 12 years of consulting experience and is a pro at creating and managing profitable businesses. He has experience working with several LLCs and Registered Agent services and has a degree in business management. Andy enjoys providing useful information for Business808.
In addition to writing for Business808, Andy is a well-known author and speaker, and an active contributor to several online business publications, imparting his knowledge on how to grow an LLC.