How To Start An LLC In Texas
Starting a business of your own without proper planning and appropriate guidance can lead you to interact with unprecedented challenges. Like proprietorship and general partnership, a limited liability company or an LLC is another business structure that keeps your assets and resources safe. Are you looking to build an LLC startup in Texas but do not know where to begin? Your initial step should be to fully understand how evaluative and productive the market of LLC is and how efficiently you can make your company different and unique from your potential competitors. Let’s get started by learning the most basic principles of what a limited liability company is below.
What is an LLC?
A limited liability company or an LLC is a business model that exists nationally within every state to seek protection for the assets of its members. It is neither a corporation nor a sole proprietorship or partnership; instead, it is a separate hybrid institution that operates legally with its own set of instructions and regulations that offers flexibility in managing the business.
An LLC makes sure to safeguard an individual’s assets by taking responsibility for its client’s debts and liabilities in case the business is sued or goes bankrupt. An LLC’s basic principle is to provide its members with maximum support. They do this by establishing a security policy towards their valuables and providing their profits to the owners, which are eventually taxed as part of their incomes.
Due to its entrepreneurial environment and appropriate business opportunities, setting up an LLC in Texas can be hugely profitable. Texas contains one of the largest economies in the country after California, and the implemented laws within the region assure incredible stability and reliability for business owners to trust such companies to a greater extent.
It also allows the LLCs to be more flexible in dealing with the debts and liabilities of its members that require necessary modifications and regular checks and balances.
Advantages Of an LLC In Texas
As challenging as it may seem, setting up a business in Texas can be an exhilarating journey. Making up your mind initially about the type of business structure you need to establish is the most essential part. Starting an LLC in Texas can bring immense benefits, significantly increasing your reputation and approachability.
Below we will discuss the core advantages you would get from starting a limited liability company. These include liability protection, ease of maintenance, tax treatment, ownership flexibility, and increased credibility.
Entrepreneurs find limited liability companies extremely attractive mainly because of their security protocols towards their assets and valuable resources. LLCs are known to stand firm against business rivals who would deliberately create legal hindrances in the smooth flow of your business or against those customers who might try to sue your vendor. In such cases, liability companies offer great resistance for their members and keep their assets as bank accounts and real estate secured.
Easy to maintain
Establishing a limited liability company in Texas is not as complicated as in other states of the country. From an extremely low maintenance cost to incredibly handy paperwork, setting up an LLC is extremely effortless.
Now that the economic traffic is majorly shifted online, a great number of services on the internet are providing comprehensive assistance in setting up an LLC. They handle all the legal paperwork, which reduces time, and offer an affordable policy that matches your terms and conditions.
A limited liability company is an efficient investment. Being in Texas, an LLC is bound to expand and have an increased number of members. Every member would require an equal amount of attention at one certain time, and hiring new employees would become necessary.
Once the company has generated a reasonable capital sum in a year, it would want to adopt the s-corporation tax status. S-corporations or S-corp are corporations that help liability companies pass corporate taxes, incomes, losses, deductions, and credits to their shareholders. This reduces self-employment taxes and provides an incentive for business owners.
Being part of a limited liability company instead of being associated with a partnership or sole ownership is guaranteed to attract more credibility than the other business structures. People are not hesitant towards liability companies as LLCs have a more formal approach in the market, which not just attracts better partners but also is successful in gaining the trust of new members. This simultaneously ensures their loyalty toward your endeavor.
Flexibility in ownership
An additional benefit of forming your LLC in Texas is the lack of restrictions placed on how you plan the structure and management of your company. The ownership of LLCs has multiple options available for you to launch yourself in the market. This allows you to have either a single-member or a multi-member company.
Having a multi-member company further gives you two more options. You can either have your company managed by the members of its own or can be termed member-managed. You can also give the members the responsibility of appointing a manager amongst themselves as a supervisor of the LLC, which can be termed as manager-managed.
Disadvantages of an LLC in Texas
Forming a limited liability company is a career-defining adventure for small businesses and aspiring entrepreneurs. It would significantly help them overcome their naivety and give them much-needed exposure and experience, which would be essential for them to appropriately plan their business and marketing strategies for the future.
Your LLC is obliged to create a great range of opportunities and profits, but it is important to be aware of the potential downsides of establishing such an entity. Being in Texas has some distinct disadvantages of its own that might end up creating unwanted uncertainties in your day-to-day dealings.
Finding a registered agent, Texas state taxes, difficulty in raising capital, and unavailability of seeking loans are some cons that must be taken into consideration before making major decisions.
Finding a registered agent
General partnerships and other types of business structures like sole ownership find it very easy to attend to and review certain legal lawsuits and notices that a corporation might receive from its competitors. Certain types of agents are professionals who work for these enterprises as their employees.
They can easily be trusted to maintain the confidentiality of their services and, at the same time, are effortlessly held responsible for responding to such official documents in the most suitable manner that favors their business.
In the case of an LLC, finding a registered professional can become a hurdle because the company’s employees or members may not have the same level of expertise to deal with such kinds of formal issues. If you successfully find a specialist, you will have to face extra expenses to fulfill your agent’s demands.
Cost of registration
Being able to form a business structure other than LLC, like a sole proprietorship or general partnership, is going to cost you less money. The primary fee for filing an LLC in the State is $300. Maintaining such a company is far more complex than its counterparts, as the owner is solely responsible for satisfying all the members simultaneously.
The more time you spend in the market, the more opportunity you will have to create for the potential members to get attracted and invest in your newly acquired venture. This would create a great burden for you to simultaneously fulfill the overall expenses.
Texas state taxes
In Texas, all sorts of businesses are subjected to two different types of taxes: sales tax and franchise tax. Partnerships and sole business owners are exempted from fulfilling the Texas franchise tax as none of the structures contains members or employees that act separately as a corporation, just like in an LLC.
Apart from this, the federal self-employment tax is another burden that a member of a limited liability company is supposed to bear. The self-employment tax is implied in Texas, just like in every other state of the country. In this taxation system, the company’s members would be responsible for keeping away a certain amount of their received profits to pay the self-employment tax.
The share of the profit would not be considered a concern as this tax would be applicable to all the members even if they don’t receive any profits from the company.
Lack of funding
To become independent in terms of financial stability, limited liability companies must overcome the major issue of gathering funds from their members. Unlike a cooperative organization where the investors offer huge capital inputs, an LLC is considered a jeopardizing market with no noticeable benefits.
Apart from that, limited liability companies are not capable of issuing shares of the stock market to raise their capital gains. Texas is not a state which lacks goodwill ambassadors and is extraordinarily successful in residing with fortunate investors that can support all types of businesses financially. However, for an individual to invest capital in an LLC, it is a must for them to become a member of the company, which is another process of its own.
Lack of bank loans
Banks and lenders find it more difficult to loan to liability companies than to lend to corporations. This happens mainly because of the sophisticated nature of how an LLC is crafted. The banks are often hesitant to financially support new and inexperienced businesses and liability company that does not have enough insurance.
The guarantee of the loaned sum of money is shared among the company members, which significantly reduces the valuation of the capital. This might negatively impact the company and its members if the loan is not returned within a specific period. The salaries and bonuses of the employees would also be sacrificed to fulfill the terms and conditions of the bank.
How to Form an LLC in Texas
A limited liability company would provide you with a sustainable way of keeping your assets protected and help your LLC members stay engaged with their valuables at any time.
Looking forward to starting a limited liability company of your own in Texas? Without proper guidance and preparation, initiating any kind of business structure within the economy of Texas can bring entrepreneurs unprecedented consequences where there are high risks of ending up bankrupt and getting legally involved.
Let’s take an overview of all the steps involved in forming an LLC in Texas and getting your business up and running.
- Name your LLC
- Hire a Registered Agent
- File the Texas LLC Formation Form with the State
- Create an LLC Operating Agreement
- Obtain a Texas LLC Employer Identification Number
Name your LLC
Branding your business which distinguishes your company from others, is an important factor, as the uniqueness of your company’s name will signify your credibility among investors and members. The basic principles of naming your business differ in every state, and Texas is no different. It is extremely important to note that your company’s name must include one of the following terms.
- Limited Liability Company
- Limited Company
- Ltd. Co.
As outstanding as it should be, it should also be able to pass the business entity search test on the Secretary of State’s website in Texas. Crafting a brand’s name should also be dealt with care. You should not come up with a name that already exists and is registered with the state.
Names that sound or even look similar to other brands should also be avoided since it may increase the chances of trademark issues. One should also be considerate of completely neglecting the inclusion of official terms like treasury or state department as it may create confusion among the public.
Hiring a registered agent
As mentioned earlier, forming an LLC is going to require a highly professional agent. This agent should be approachable and have a reputable stance and physical address in the state of Texas. Trusting these individuals is mandatory as they represent your company on your behalf and act as a source of communication between the firm and the state.
Filing the Texas LLC formation form with the state
Once the agent is hired, you may officially register your company by filling out the form known as Certificate of Formation for a Limited Liability Company or Form (205). This paperwork is the major key for establishing your business as this document gives you recognition and identity from the Secretary of State.
The documents must consist of all the specific details about your startup. This includes the name of your limited liability company, your name and address, the name and address of your registered agent, a purpose clause, and the certificate’s effective date.
All this data must be acknowledged by your signatures. You can find this certificate on the Secretary of State’s website, where you can either file it online or mail it physically. Filing this certificate in Texas costs no more than $300.
Create an LLC operating agreement
A Texas operating agreement is an internal document crafted to highlight your existence as a Texas-based LLC and the specific details of your certain management. It is a comprehensive document that specifically focuses on the duties and responsibilities of every member and how they are supposed to work by following a significant set of protocols.
Apart from these details, the operating agreement also outlines the important factors of your firm that may include profits and losses, the share percentage of the owner and the members, membership credentials, voting rights, and a set of requirements that must be reached before entering a new member.
The operating agreement gives the Secretary of State a coherent perspective of how you conduct your business and how rightfully the members are treated by exposing such details in an elaborate manner. Once the agreement is prepared, it could be filed to the State without cost.
Obtain a Texas LLC employer identification number (EIN)
The fifth and final step of this process is to obtain a Texas LLC Employer identification number or EIN. The employer identification number is issued to a business by the internal revenue service (IRS) in order to establish a taxation front for your business.
It is essential for you to file for a Texas LLC employer identification number as this number is going to act like a social security number for your cooperation and would permit your business to get bank accounts, credit accounts, and file taxes.
Once your company is going to expand, you are going to require more employees to maintain a smooth track of your business. Obtaining the employer identification number is a fundamental task if you are looking to hire more employees, as it would make the entire process efficient and flexible.
Types of LLC
Which type of LLC is ideal for me?
In California, there are mainly two types of Limited Liability Companies (LLCs) that can be formed:
- Domestic LLC: A domestic LLC is an LLC that is formed and operates within the state of California. It is governed by the California Revised Uniform Limited Liability Company Act. To form a domestic LLC in California, you need to file Articles of Organization with the California Secretary of State and comply with other state-specific requirements.
- Foreign LLC: A foreign LLC is an LLC that is formed under the laws of another state or country but wants to conduct business in California. Foreign LLCs must register with the California Secretary of State by filing an Application to Register a Foreign Limited Liability Company, along with the required documents and fees. A foreign LLC must also appoint an agent for the service of process within the state.
Additionally, LLCs can choose their tax classification based on their management structure and the number of members. This can affect how the LLC is taxed at the federal level. The main tax classifications for LLCs are:
- Single-member LLC: A single-member LLC has only one owner or member. By default, it is considered a disregarded entity for federal tax purposes and is taxed as a sole proprietorship. However, a single-member LLC can also elect to be taxed as a corporation.
- Multi-member LLC: A multi-member LLC has two or more owners or members. By default, it is taxed as a partnership for federal tax purposes. However, a multi-member LLC can also elect to be taxed as a corporation.
Always consult with a legal or tax professional to determine the best type of LLC and tax classification for your specific situation.
Applicable LLC taxes in Texas
With the completion of the steps mentioned above, as the owner of the limited liability company, you should start taking into account the tax you would need to pay annually while operating in Texas. The state of Texas charges local businesses with a franchise tax, which is occasionally just 1% of some proportion of your total annual income. Texas allows smaller businesses to file for a computation form that reduces their franchise tax to just 0.575%, but it would cost the filer a deduction in their credit.
If your company is in the market of buying and selling products and services, then you would be eligible to gather use tax from your customers and to pay the use tax of your business entity to the Tax Comptroller. In the state of Texas, the rate of sales and use tax is 6.25%.
The applicable federal tax depends largely on how your LLC is crafted and filed with the state. If the limited liability company is registered with all the members taking a certain share of the profits, then each member of the company must be eligible to pay self-employment tax. This is the amount needed to be paid to the federal government at the current rate of 15.3% of the profits.
If you are able to meet a certain set of requirements successfully, then with the assurance of the IRS, your LLC would be treated as an S-corporation only for tax purposes. This helps you in reducing your self-employment tax by declaring some proportion of your income as your salary.
In terms of state, the Secretary of Texas does not demand any income tax. However, the federal government requires every business in the state to pay a certain amount annually. This amount is your remaining income after deducting allowances and bonuses like healthcare and retirement plans.
Having monthly paid employees will make you eligible for employer and employee tax. You would have to bear this amount depending on the number of employees, their salaries, and the size of your firm.
Cost of forming an LLC in Texas
Despite being one of the country’s biggest states, the cost of inaugurating a limited liability company is comparatively less than other states of the region. The filing procedure for the Certificate of Formation of Texas limited liability company from the Secretary of State will cost $300.
If you are planning to reserve a particular name for your entity for a period of at least 120 days, then you will need to fill out the form (501) called Renewal of Reservation of an Entity name which will cost an additional fee of $40.
To file a limited liability company in Texas already established in another state, the Secretary of State will register you as a foreign LLC. The foreign limited liability company application must be filled out and submitted to the State with a total fee of $750.
The secondary tasks and procedures include hiring a registered agent, occupying the copies of official documents, obtaining a certificate of status, and maintenance fees may increase your total cost by between $85 to $535.
Registered agent fee (starts at)
Foreign limited liability company application
Franchise tax (starts at)
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