Checklist: Starting a Limited Liability Company (LLC)

If you are thinking of starting a limited liability company (LLC), below is a checklist of steps to take before you open for business. Keep in mind that your LLC’s start-up requirements might vary from the list below, depending on the specific type of business you are in, and where your business is located.

1. Decide on a business name for your Limited Liability Company (LLC). In most states, “LLC,” “Limited Liability Co.,” or a similar variation must be included in the LLC’s business name.

2. Search availability of your LLC’s chosen business name, and for similarity to existing names.

3. Register your LLC name (including as a “fictitious business name”).

4. Create and sign an LLC Operating Agreement.

5. Write your LLC’s Articles of Organization.

6. File your LLC’s Articles of Organization with the Secretary of State office in your state.

7. Obtain business licenses and permits for your LLC from:

* The federal government.

* Your state government.

* Your local government.

Forming a limited liability company (LLC) can be a long-term benefit to your new business in the long run, but the process can be complicated. To ensure that your new business complies with your state’s legal requirements at all steps in the LLC formation process, you may wish to consult an experienced business attorney.