- An LLC in Louisiana is registered with the authorities online or offline.
- Certain counties in Louisiana are legally mandated to apply through the GeauxBIZ portal.
- The resident LLC filing process will cost less than the foreign companies, and the latter would have to give proof in good faith of their operations.
- The Articles of Association is a necessary document that should include the organization's details, its members, and the registered agents.
- The EIN is required before applying online, while it is needed after the filing is done offline mode.
What is an LLC?
LLC is a company that is established by one or more partners together. The partners in an LLC are called members. All partners have separate legal entities from the company they are the founders of. Because the LLC has a separate legal entity, it is liable separately from its owners. The independent business entity protects the members from direct liability while operating on behalf of the form. The members of an LLC thus have limited liability, and an LLC is called a Limited Liability Company.
Apart from offering its members limited liability and debts, an LLC is also advantageous because it is a hybrid entity. A hybrid entity combines the features of other entities and thus gives a business edge to its members. An LLC has certain borrowed characteristics from corporations, sole proprietorships, and partnerships. For example, one of the advantages of starting an LLC includes members enjoying flexibility in tax flow. The core limited liability feature is borrowed from the characteristics of a corporation. The procedure for starting an LLC varies in the U.S. states.
There are no regulations on who can be a member except for banks and insurance companies. There is one requirement that is standard across all states. It is filing the Articles of Association. It is a document that outlines the daily operations and functions of the organization along with the duties, obligations, and liabilities of each member. It is important to know that even if the members enjoy only liability, there are cases in which creditors can go after the members directly to recover their dues.
How to Get an LLC in Louisiana?
To start an LLC, it is better to get certain things out of the way before filing the documents. Only after the following prerequisites are complete can you move towards filing your articles of Association and getting a certificate from the concerned authorities to begin operations.
Choose the Mode of Filing
When you begin with your application to file an LLC in Louisiana, there are two options. One can either choose the online mode and complete the process remotely. Otherwise, they would have to present or mail the required documents to the registering authority. Certain counties might have to register through a designated portal in Louisiana called GeauxBIZ. The counties not on the list of GeauxBIZ can submit their applications online or offline at their convenience.
Choose a Unique Name
Finding a name that is unique to your LLC is essential so that there is no clash within the state of Louisiana. Web domains can help choose names that are not yet picked by a business entity in the state. It is legally mandatory to include LLC or L.C. in the company name.
Additionally, it might also be helpful to choose a website domain simultaneously so that when it is time to establish a website, one does not have to go through the same process again. There are two manners in which one can choose their names. One by filling out Form 398 and keeping the desired name on hold. The holding period is for 120 days which is enough time to cover the duration of offline document filing. The fee for regular registration is $25.
On the other hand, one can expedite the process by adding $5 more and getting it processed in only 24 hours. If one wants to avoid reserving the name for that long, they can pay a money order worth $50 to get their application processed in four hours. All of these money orders will be addressed to the Secretary of State. Additionally, for the counties that have to register through the GeauxBiz portal, it is mandatory first to file name reservations followed by a federal tax I.D. number.
Find a Registered Agent
A registered agent is an individual who acts on behalf of the institution. They are registered with the authority. They would send or receive all types of correspondence on behalf of the organization. An LLC can either have a third-party person representing it or can also make one of the members the registered agent. The major requirement to be an agent is that the individual should be a resident of Louisiana and not a minor. An agency can also be representative of the LLC as it can be a foreign corporation.
Receive the Employer Identification Number (EIN)
Before filing the articles of Association, the LLC would require an Employer Identification Number or EIN. In Louisiana, the majority of the LLC filing proceedings happen through GeauxBIZ. The website requires the company to have filed its registered name and the operation state. After having an official name, the LLC would need to get its Employer Identification Number to be eligible for the online submission of LLC formation documents.
The process for offline formation is different as one would not need to get their Employer Identification Number until after filing the Articles of Association. It is at the complete discretion of the members as to how to choose to complete the paperwork. There is no fee for obtaining an EIN. For LLCs that just one member would lead, filing for an EIN is not necessary. The Social Security Number (SSN) of the owner would suffice for the same. However, getting an EIN through the IRS website is recommended rather than using the SSN to safeguard the individual's privacy.
Make the Document Submission
The LLC document submission includes a critical document called the Articles of Association. It is necessary because it outlines the firm's daily operations and delineates responsibility to each member. The Articles of Organization are required for all domestic LLCs, and the filing fee they have to pay is $100. On the other hand, any entity based out of state or in a foreign country is required to file their Application for Authority in place of the Articles of Organization.
The foreign companies will also have to prove their good standing and provide evidence that they have not been functioning for more than 90 days at the time of registration. The filing fee for out-of-state and foreign companies is $150. Since offline applications take longer to process, there are options to expedite the process. One can pay a fee of $30 to get their documents processed within 24 hours. If you want the papers processed in a few hours, the cost would be $50. Without expedition fees, the processing time for standard offline applications is anywhere between one to three weeks. If you are using the Geaux Biz portal, the website offers the option of converting the previous name registration to an LLC filing.
Key Considerations While Filing for an LLC in Louisiana
There are certain aspects of document filing that need to be looked at closely before document submission can be computed. Additionally, one also needs to complete formalities a left after the document submission process is over.
Make the Correct Articles of Organization
It is essential the Articles of Organization are as per the standard and help your organization function properly in case of a future dispute. One must fill out Form 365 to fill out their Articles of Organization for an LLC. Louisiana asks for online filing from many counties, and they should include the following details:
- The tax treatment you want for the LLC, i., like that of a partnership, sole proprietorship, or corporation
- Name of the LLC
- The business activity of the LLC
- The official address of the LLC, i.e., the street address
- The mailing address of the LLC
- The contact information of the registered agent/s
- The type of management of the LLC, i.e., manager or member
- The name and contact information of the manager or the members of the LLC
- The electronic signatures of the members or managers
- The details of the business as per the NAICS Code
- The Employer Identification Number
For the hard copy of the Articles of Organization, the following details are required:
- The name of the LLC
- The business activity
- The duration of the business
- The names of the members
- The initial report, i.e., Form 973
The Initial Report would include the name of the organization, the contact information of the members and the registered agents, and the signature of the registered agent/s and everyone who signed the Articles of Organization.
Before Submitting Online
While submitting online, it is essential to look for any errors that may get the application rejected. It is best to double-check everything before hitting Submit. It is better to check everything beforehand because updating the information after the submission has a fee of $100. If members or registered agents need to be added to the documents, one would have to pay a cost of $25.
Regular Submission of Annual Reports
It is essential to submit annual reports regarding the business to the required authorities. There Is no need to mail all the files, as the online process costs about $30. The files are to be sent to the Secretary of State.
Make an LLC Operating Agreement
It is highly recommended to create an LLC Operating Agreement. Louisiana does not ask for it; hence, they are not legally required. However, an operating agreement comes in handy in case of legal disputes and other issues that can potentially arise during the organization's daily operations. They are legally binding and thus can help solve many problems that can slow down business if not resolved correctly.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Does an LLC need a Business Licence?
No, an LLC in Louisiana does not need a business license. Members only have to file to register their LLC and then get an Employer Identification Number. Ann LLC does not require a business license to operate in Louisiana.
2. Does an LLC provide tax flexibility?
Yes, an LLC provides a great extent of tax flexibility. The members can choose between the tax structure of a corporation, partnership, or sole proprietorship.
3. How much does a Louisiana resident pay to register an LLC in the state?
The processing fee for residents of Louisiana is $100, while non-residents have to pay more. If one wants to expedite the process, one would have to pay more. One can get the processing done in a day with $30 extra, while $50 is the fee for document processing in about 4 hours.
An LLC is a company that offers multiple benefits to its member/s. It has tax flexibility and limited liability. Additionally, the Articles of Organization and Operating Agreement help outline job responsibilities and resolves many potential disputes concerning the company's regular operations. In Louisiana, most of the process is done online, given the state's preference for the GeauxBIZ domain. The online fees are cheaper, and the expedited costs make the process faster and more feasible for all owners.
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