Congratulations. You're taking your first steps on the way to enjoying your LLC's benefits. However, you'll have heard the term "articles of organization" thrown around. What are they? How do you file them? Are there costs associated with the process?
Here you'll learn all that and more. Let's take a look at Florida's laws and needs to establish yourself.
We're starting from the beginning. Your private company has grown, become something that needs to be its own entity, and you're very excited for the transformation to start. We are, too.
You'll need to begin by naming your company, complete with LLC at the end of it (or PLLC for professional LLC groups). This stands for "limited liability company" and serves to cover you as a person as well as your company as a business, separating the two of you for any legal reasons.
Run a quick search via Florida's LLC search engines to make certain that your chosen name is available for use. This should only take a few moments. If it isn't, consider alternate names. Once you find one that is available, it's time to move on.
Using the name that is available, fill out the LLC form with your complete business address. If it is the same as your home address, include it anyway. Florida's Division of Corporations must know where the business will be located. A PO Box does not count as the address must be a brick and mortar establishment with a permanent mailing address.
If you choose to use a registered agent, this is when you find them and fill in their information. They will instruct you further from here based on exact county needs and so forth. Florida requires the use of a registered agent in the creation of LLCs, corporations, and other business industry registrations. If you do not desire to use a registered agent, you must move the LLC into a different state which does not require a registered agent.
After you are finished with your registered agent, it is time to submit your documents and get your LLC registered. But what kind of costs are you looking at? Do you require any sort of business insurance to file these documents? Or not? As we continue, we'll answer these questions and more.
Beyond those needed by your registered agent (which vary greatly), the filing fee for your new LLC is $125.00 as of this writing. Though this may change in the future, we will update this figure if it comes to our attention that this information is out of date.
Registered agents often have fees ranging from $25 to several hundred depending on the depth of the information and time they must spend with you in assisting your business. Other costs may include faxing, documentation work, or notary justice seal charges. Though notaries are not required on paperwork, some choose to have notarized documentation for the peace of mind they provide.
While business insurance is likely a good idea for most young businesses, it is not necessary or required to have prior to registration. The only costs you should be worried about are that of your registered agent and the nominal $125 fee mentioned earlier in this section.
LLC documents can largely be sent through online submission or via standard postal service (USPS). For those submitting online, payment may be available online as well. If not, payment may be made through money order or certified check. The listing on the official site states that they prefer money order or certified check for their purposes, however, and we suggest complying with that if it is possible.
You may also choose to hand deliver your LLC paperwork to the Florida Division of Corporations. Their sole office is located in Tallahassee as of this writing, though their website recommends an appointment if possible.
If any of the documentation has you lost or confused, don't worry! You aren't the first who has gotten lost in a state's document filing system. Your registered agent should be able to help you sort out the mess. However, if they can't, simply emailing the Florida State Business Department should get you an answer within 2-4 business days.
With such a booming economy and a busy business life, especially in the Central Florida area, Florida's Division of Corporations is quick to respond and knows that each day is a loss for you. Your Articles must be filed even if you are a Single Member LLC.
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