Georgia LLC Formation Guide

This guide will help you set up an LLC in Georgia. It includes step-by-step instructions for obtaining tax IDs and filing documents.

Overview

Because they are affordable to set up, offer flexibility for the owners and are simple to manage, LLCs are the most preferred business structure. Your LLC legalizes your business and limits your personal liability. It also allows you to have tax flexibility. As you go through this process, the following steps will guide you.

Step-by-Step Georgia LLC Instructions

  1. Check Name Availability

    Your LLC’s legal name may not be in conflict with any registered name. You can search for the name you want to check availability.

    Name Search: Georgia Secretary of State

    Name Search

    Name Reservation: Optional
    Suffix: The words “limited liability company” and “limited company” must be included (it being permissible to abbreviate “limited” as ‘ltd., and “company” as ‘co.”) or use the abbreviation?L.L.C. “, “LLC”, “L.C.” or “LC”.

    O.C.G.A. SS14-11-207

  2. Register an Agent

    Before you can file to officially create your Georgia LLC, it is necessary to determine who your Georgia registered agent will actually be. Register agents are the legal representative of a business that receives notices about lawsuits and other legal notices.

    Every LLC must have a registered agent as required by state law. When you file Georgia articles or organization with the Georgia Secretary Of State, the registered agent will be designated.

  3. Georgia Certificate of Formation

    To create a limited liability company, file the articles of organization

    Agency: Georgia Secretary of State
    Form:
    TRANSMITTAL FORM GEORGIA LIMITED LIABILITY COMPANY
    Filing Method Online or Mail.
    Agency Fee: $100
    Turnaround: ~5-12 business days
    Law:
    Official Code of Georgia Annotated. (O.C.G.A. Title 14: Corporations, Partnerships, and Associations. Chapter 11: Limited Liability Companies
    Notes: Send GA data transmittal form 231 and the original and one-copy of the articles to . Also, $100 filing fee.
  4. Establish Company Records

    Your LLC must maintain accurate and complete records. Your LLC’s first records will be your filed articles of organization. Other official records that your LLC may produce include:

    • Minutes of meetings
    • Operating agreement
    • EIN verification letter
    • The LLC may be amended or filed with other entities throughout its life.

     

  5. Make the Operating Agreement

    An Operating Agreement is the governing document of the LLC. This document outlines the rules and procedures for how the LLC will operate, such as holding an annual meeting. The agreement will be reviewed and approved at your organization meeting.

  6. Organise the Organizational Meeting

    The organizational meeting is the first meeting of members of an LLC. To conduct this meeting, you will need to have your operating agreement and the filed articles of organization. Keep a record of the meeting and keep it in your company records book.

  7. Register for a Federal Employer Identification Number.

    An EIN is required for any LLC that has more than one member, or hires employees. A bank account opening requires an EIN.

    Agency: Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
    Form:
    IRS Form S-4
    Filing Method You can send mail, phone, or fax to online.
    IRS fee $0
    Turnaround: Online or over the phone, immediately. 4 business days via fax. 4-5 weeks via mail
    Notes: Only certain hours are available for the IRS website. Before closing your session, print your EIN. For more information, please refer to IRS Pub 1635 Understanding Your EIN.
  8. Georgia State Tax Identification Numbers/Accounts

    Georgia has a single application for tax registration.

    Send your submission to:
    Georgia Department of Revenue

    http://dor.georgia.gov//

    Filing Method

    Online
    Fee:
    $0
  9. Consider Electing C-Corp Taxation or S-Corp Fiscal

    Your LLC will automatically be subject to pass-through taxation. However, the majority of LLCs maintain this tax classification. Some LLCs can choose to elect S-Corp and C-Corp tax treatment.

    • S-Corp is a tax-saving tool that can be used by owner-employees earning more than $75,000 annually.
    • Double taxation is a problem for C-Corps: members pay taxes on distributions and the corporation pays taxes. You may be eligible for C-Corp tax treatment if your profits exceed $250,000 or you offer employee benefits.
  10. Get Business Licenses and Permits

    You must have the appropriate licenses and permits to run your business legally. It is easy to find the right licenses and permits for your state and federal business.

    Georgia Business License

    NOT REQUIRED

     

    Georgia does not require licensure for general business licenses at the state level.

    Georgia’s city-level licensing system allows for business licenses.

  11. You must continue to file for your LLC

    You are required to file both federal and state tax returns.

    To maintain good standing with the secretary-of-state, many states require that business entities file an annual report. The table below shows the requirements for LLCs in Georgia to file an annual report.

    Georgia Corporation Annual Report Requirements

    Agency: Georgia Secretary of State
    Form: Online filing is possible. You can also print and mail the Annual Registration Form. Log in to access the “Reports” column and locate the Business Filing tab. Or, use the business lookup page.
    Filing Method Mail or online.
    Agency Fee: Online filing fees of $50 and paper filing fees of $60 are available.
    Due: Each year, April 1. May be filed as soon as January 1.
    Law: Georgia Code SS 14-2-1622
    Penalties: $25 late fee, administrative dissolution.
    Notes:
    • Anybody with authority can file.
    • Annual registration filings prior to January 1 won’t be applied to the next year’s registration period.
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