Skip to content
Get an LLC for Free: A Step-by-Step Guide

Get an LLC for Free: A Step-by-Step Guide

Please note: This post contains affiliate links and we may receive a commission if you make a purchase using these links.



    A man with a title Start na LLC in the background

    Creating an LLC is one of the best ways to start your entrepreneurial journey and get the right legal structure in place for your new business. And luckily, getting an LLC for free is easy (outside of those pesky state fees)!

    Now, setting up an LLC yourself is a fair amount of work. If you want to streamline the process, work with Bizee and we can file for you. But if you want to go the DIY route or learn more, we've broken it down into six easy steps so you can get started as soon as you're ready.

    Still unsure of whether an LLC is the best entity for your business? We recommend that you go through everything you need to know about LLCs.

    Join the 1m+ businesses that trust Bizee


    Six Steps to Forming an LLC for Free

    Learn how to get an LLC for your business in just six steps.

    1. Get a Business Name

    You’ll need to decide on a name for your LLC that’s not used by another business in the state. Each state does have specific business naming rules, and we have a guide to choosing the right name where you can also search to see if the name you're choosing is unique. As a general rule of thumb, your LLC name needs to meet the following guidelines:

    • It must be unique (meaning it's not already taken by another business).
    • It must end with some version of "Limited Liability Company," "Limited Company," or the abbreviation "LLC" to indicate that it is indeed an LLC.
    • The name needs to be easy to understand and free of ambiguity.
    • It needs to meet the state law requirements in which you're going to operate as a business.

    Other than the name, you will also need an official address for your LLC (note that LLC requirements vary by state).

    2. Appoint a Registered Agent

    All LLCs are required to have a Registered Agent — a person or business that receives official notifications and correspondence about your business. You can choose to be a Registered Agent yourself, appoint another LLC manager as a Registered Agent or use a professional Registered Agent service. You will need to provide details of your Registered Agent in your company formation document.

    At Bizee, all of our business formation packages provide a free Registered Agent service for the first year.

    If you're uncertain about whether you should be your own Registered Agent or not, take your time to read all about registered agents before you dive deeper into business formation.

    3. Get Your Formation Document From the Secretary of State's Website

    You’ll need a copy of the official company formation document from the Secretary of State for your location. Depending on the state you’re filing in, this document is known as your “Articles of Organization,” “Certificate of Formation,” or something similar.

    We’ve got a complete guide to forming your LLC in each state, where you’ll find links to the relevant websites for states that will allow you to file online.You will need to provide certain information in your document, including your business partners (if any), your business name and address, details of your Registered Agent, the purpose of your business, and the name of the incorporator.

    4. Explore Other LLC Formation Options

    Did you know there are other options available to businesses than just a traditional LLC? Some states will allow you to file a special type of LLC, such as a Professional LLC (PLLC) or a Series LLC. Make sure to do some more research into your options so you can make the best decision for your needs.

    5. Create an LLC Operating Agreement

    While creating an LLC operating agreement isn't required in many states, it is considered a best practice, especially if you're going to start an LLC with other members. Typically, an LLC operating agreement should indicate the following:

    • Responsibilities of all LLC members
    • Interest percentage of each member
    • Distribution of any profits and losses
    • Voting rights of each member
    • Management of the LLC
    • Selling and buying of members' interests

    Operating agreements also outline how the management structure changes after a member leaves and how their profits are redistributed. If you are a single-member LLC, you can easily create an operating agreement on your own. If you're unsure of whether you need an operating agreement in the first place or not, seek the help of an attorney. It will be worth the expense, especially if you're going for a multi-member LLC.

    6. File Your Formation Document

    Once you have the formation document, you just need to fill it in, check it for accuracy, and file it with your state agency, paying the appropriate state fee.

    Once you’ve filed the formal document with the state, you’ll need to wait for a notification that your LLC has been officially formed (processing times vary by state). Your state formation agency will normally provide this by mail.

    Can I Use a Virtual Address for My EIN?

    Yes, you can use your virtual address to get your Employer Identification Number (EIN). Since your virtual address is an actual location, you can use it for correspondence and for filing important documents, such as your Articles of Organization or your EIN paperwork.

    However, it's important to ensure that your virtual address isn't a P.O. Box, as that could cause issues down the line. But, as mentioned above, Bizee only provides virtual addresses from real locations. So when you work with us, you won't have to worry about it.

    What to Do After You’ve Formed Your LLC

    Now that your LLC is a legal business entity, there are a few other areas you’ll need to take care of.

    1. Get an Employer Identification Number From the IRS

    You will need an Employer Identification Number (EIN) from the IRS. You'll use this when you’re filing and paying taxes and when you’re providing information on employees. You can get this from the IRS yourself, or we can get an EIN on your behalf.

    2. Decide If You Want to Do Business Under a Different Name

    Some businesses choose to trade under a different name from their official, legal name. This is known as an “assumed,” “fictitious,” or "doing business as" name. You need to file the relevant form with your company formation agency, or we can file your assumed name for you. If you’re happy to do business under your legal business name, you don’t need to file this form.

    3. Research and Apply for Business Licenses and Permits

    Most businesses will need official licenses and permits to operate. These requirements may come from your city, county, or other official bodies for your sector or industry. You will need to check on all the compliance and requirements you need to meet.

    The Small Business Administration has a helpful guide to federal permits, and you can contact your local and state governments to understand your local requirements. If you don’t have time to navigate the complex world of business permits and licenses, our Business License Research Package can help.

    4. File Your Annual Report

    Most state governments require you to file an annual report on your business every year, although this does vary.

    Annual reports contain high-level information on your business, and you are required to file it and pay a fee to remain in good standing. Learn more about your ongoing filing requirements and how Bizee can help.

    Other Areas to Consider

    Finally, here are a few other areas you can explore to ensure your new LLC thrives:

    • Prepare, file, and pay your self-employment, state, sales, and federal taxes.
    • Choose if you want to be taxed as an S Corporation to reduce your self-employment tax liability by filing IRS Form 2553.
    • Trademark your business or brand name to protect it from infringement.

    We hope you’ve found this guide to filing your LLC for free to be useful. If you want to set up your free LLC with Bizee, we can help. Our Silver Package won't cost you anything, aside from your state fee, and we'll even throw in free Registered Agent service for a year.

    Join the 1m+ businesses that trust Bizee

    Paul Maplesden

    Paul Maplesden

    Paul is a freelance writer, small business owner, and British expat exploring the U.S. When he’s not politely apologizing, he enjoys hats, hockey, Earl Grey Tea, mountains, and dogs.


    like what you’re reading?

    Get Fresh Monthly Tips to Start & Grow Your LLC