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Starting A Connecticut LLC - Everything You Need to Know

Whether you own an existing Connecticut business or you are looking to form a new one, it’s a wise decision to form an LLC in Connecticut if you’re thinking about doing business in the state. Operating as a Connecticut limited liability company (LLC) provides two main advantages.

A Connecticut LLC enables the owner or owners to construct their business as a separate legal entity, shields personal possessions from lawsuits and other risks. The other major benefit of forming an LLC in Connecticut is that it also enables the LLC to pass on costs and profits to the personal tax returns of a person as opposed to being taxed as an LLC or a corporation.

The owner or owners also have the option to operate the LLC as a business, or it can be utilized to hold various property, such as real estate. Forming an LLC in Connecticut is straightforward and explained in the next 8 steps. Our team at LLC Formations is also available to assist you with any part of the process.

Forming an LLC with LLC Formations

Choose A Business Name for Your Connecticut LLC

Step 1, and perhaps the most important part of forming an LLC, is choosing an LLC name for your business. Your LLC name will most likely be the first impression a person has of your business, so it’s important that you choose something unique and creative. When you select a name for your limited liability company, you need to make sure that it’s accompanied by the abbreviation LLC or L.L.C in order to be approved as a business.

Your LLC name must also be entirely original, meaning there is no other business with the same name in the state of Connecticut. Therefore, once you have selected a name for your Connecticut LLC, you will next need to conduct a search using the Connecticut Business Entity Database through the Connecticut Secretary of State website.

Using the search tool on the Connecticut Secretary of State website ensures that your chosen name is not already in use. If the results show that the name is available, you can go ahead and form an LLC with that name. Otherwise, the Connecticut Secretary of State will return your filing, alerting you that the name is too similar to another business. In this case, you will need to come up with a different LLC name for your LLC in Connecticut.

If the search returns no available matches, then you are free to register the name and proceed to the next step of creating your limited liability company (LLC). The Connecticut Secretary of State Website is easy to navigate. Simply follow the steps that lead you to the name search tool for your Connecticut LLC.

Connecticut LLC

Appoint A Connecticut Registered Agent for Your LLC in Connecticut

As part of your Connecticut LLC filing requirements, you will also need to select an individual or a company to accept Service of Process deliveries, such as subpoenas, complaints, and summons, on behalf of your LLC. This individual or company is known as a registered agent and must be selected prior to filing the Connecticut Certificate of Organization and paying the filing fee.

In the state of Connecticut, the registered agent is also required to serve as an intermediary for accepting documents, such as tax notices, etc. Your chosen agent needs to have a valid Connecticut address, which does not include a PO box, and they must also be reachable between the hours of 9:00 AM and 5:00 PM to receive legal documents.

You could also hire a registered agent service located in Connecticut to serve as your registered agent, in which case you could use their physical address. Hiring a registered agent also enables you to keep your home address off public records, provided you receive their permission to use their address when filing your Certificate of Organization.

However, there may be a fee if you choose to use a service within the state of Connecticut when you form an LLC. Despite there being a fee for using an agent service, many business owners prefer this option for their business structure since it will make sure that their information stays private.

Who Can Be A Connecticut Registered Agent?

Anybody over the age of 18 with an office address or mailing address in Connecticut can be the registered agent for your Connecticut LLC. You may choose a member or manager from your business as long as they meet the age criteria and have an office address or mailing address in Connecticut.

You can also choose to use an LLC formation service that can assign you a registered agent service with an office address in Connecticut. This is especially helpful for people who are filing for a Connecticut LLC from another state. If you want to form your LLC in Connecticut while living in another state, the registered agent can make sure that all of the paperwork is taken care of for your Connecticut LLC.

When you choose a registered agent, you will want to be sure that your registered agent is responsible and reliable for all of the mail related to your Connecticut LLC. Any missed deadlines may lead to your business being fined, or even worse, closed. The registered agent is a crucial part of your business. This is why many business owners prefer to use a registered agent service when they form an LLC.

If you need help choosing a registered agent, contact the team at LLC Formations so we can help you find a service for your Connecticut LLC.

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File a Connecticut LLC Certificate of Organization With the State

Once you file a Connecticut LLC Certificate of Organization, you are well on your way to being able to form an operate your LLC in Connecticut. Also called the Articles of Organization, the Certificate of Organization means you are thereby permitted to legally operate your business as an LLC within the state of Connecticut.

The Certificate of Organization must be filed with the Connecticut Secretary of State, which can be done either online or by mail. There is also a filing fee of $120 for the Certificate of Organization made payable to the Secretary of State. Additionally, there is a filing fee of $40 for a copy of your approved Certificate of Organization if you file by mail.

We recommend filing for your Certificate of Organization online through the Secretary of State website for faster and more cost-effective services. If you file for the certificate online, you will receive your certificate to the provided email address.

Once you are approved for your certificate, you will also receive a Business ID Number, which will be included in your Certificate of Organization acceptance letter. This Business ID Number is used by the Connecticut Secretary of State to recognize you as an LLC in Connecticut.

Complete and Sign the Connecticut LLC Operating Agreement

As an LLC Connecticut, you are required to keep an LLC Operating Agreement as part of your business records whether you have one member or 100, and whether you’re managed by a member or manager-managed.

An Operating Agreement, simply put, states the names of all members of the Connecticut LLC as well as the portion of the business they each own. The Operating Agreement also explains the manner in which the LLC’s finances, as well as its functions, will be managed as agreed upon by all parties when you form an LLC. Lastly, it must also cover how tax obligations will be met and how members will share in profits and losses. The agreement must also be signed by all members when you form an LLC.

You can draft your own LLC Operating Agreement using a template for the items. However, for more complex situations, such as if your LLC has many members, it may be best to consult a professional third party who offers these services.

An Operating Agreement protects not only the business but also the owners in the case of a person leaving or having a different level of investment. Each person listed on the Operating Agreement will specifically state their share and responsibilities within the company. Should a dispute ever arise, the Operating Agreement will serve as a way to save your LLC.

If you need help creating an Operating Agreement, contact the professionals at LLC Formations so we can help you get started with this important part of the LLC formation process. The language doesn’t have to be complicated, but the Operating Agreement must address every part of the LLC formation process so you don’t have issues in the future.

Apply for an Employer Identification Number (EIN)

When you start an LLC, it’s important to get an EIN quickly. An EIN, also known as an Employer Identification Number, Federal Employer ID Number, FEIN, Federal Tax Number, is a Tax Identification Number that is issued by the IRS to help identify your limited liability company for tax purposes.

When you get an EIN from the IRS, it grants you access to the many important parts of doing business after you form your LLC. An EIN enables your business to open a separate bank account using your business name, it allows you to manage employee payroll, you can apply for permits and licenses, and you can acquire lines of credit for your LLC.

You can file for an EIN by mail or online by using Form SS-4, which is provided by the IRS. You will also need to file for a Connecticut State Tax Registration Number, which can be done by filing Form REG-1 with the Department of Revenue Services.

Once your LLC in Connecticut is approved for an EIN by the Department of Revenue Services, you will then receive an EIN Confirmation Letter which typically arrives anywhere between 1 day and 8 weeks depending on your mode of registration. If you file the form by mail it will take longer, but if you file online, you should quickly have all of the information sent to the email address provided.

Open A Bank Account for Your Connecticut LLC

For all LLCs, it’s important to keep your personal finances separate from your LLC finances or you could end up in an undesirable situation. Since opening a Connecticut state LLC protects your personal assets once you form the LLC, it’s best to keep them separate from the earnings of your LLC. You can do this by having a separate bank account for your LLC once you have your EIN. Whether you have one member or many members, you should open a bank account as soon as you form your LLC.

Each bank will have different requirements for LLCs wanting to open an account, so it’s best that you speak with a representative from the bank to see which documents they will need in order to service you. You will need to bring the following:

  • LLC Certificate of Organization
  • LLC Operating Agreement
  • Mailing address
  • Name and address along with identification
  • Employer identification number

Once you have your LLC bank account set up, you will be able to pay employees on payroll, take out loans for your LLC, and open up lines of credit so you can grow your LLC. Additionally, your business won’t be taken seriously without an EIN, so it’s important to obtain an EIN so you can grow your business.

If you have questions about which type of account is right for your LLC, contact the professionals at LLC Formations so we can help you get started.

File Your Connecticut LLC Annual Report

To ensure your contact information remains updated, the state of Connecticut requires your LLC to file an Annual Report for your LLC each year and pay a filing fee. The submission of your Annual Report is usually required by March 31st the year after the approval of your LLC. However, January 1st is the earliest you can file your Annual Report and pay the state fee.

The Annual Report must be filed online, and it also includes a $20 filing fee. Failure to file an Annual Report annually will result in a negative mark on your records. Not filing your Annual Report can lead to fines for your LLC or even having your LLC be dissolved.

Obtain the Proper Licenses and Permits for Your LLC

Conducting business in Connecticut often requires various licenses and permits for your LLC depending on the location of your business and your business industry. In fact, the more regulated your industry, the more requirements your LLC will have in terms of acquiring the proper licenses and permits.

Some common licenses and permits required to do business in Connecticut include a business license, building permit, zoning and land use permit, health permit, and signage permit. It’s important that you obtain your LLC permits before conducting business.

Failure to obtain the proper permits and licenses for your LLC can result in fines, penalties, or even the loss of rights to operate your business in Connecticut. If you have any questions about which permits are required for your specific LLC, contact the professionals at LLC Formations so we can point you in the right direction.

Meet Your Connecticut Tax Obligations

The taxes your LLC is required to pay ultimately depends on various factors. These factors can include your industry, the location of your business, and how you are classified by the IRS. However, the most common taxes include:

Connecticut Withholding Tax

If your LLC has employees, then the IRS requires you to withhold Connecticut income tax. The Connecticut Department of Revenue is where you will need to register your LLC for withholding tax, which also needs to be registered before you can file your tax return for your Connecticut state business.

You’ll also need to register for unemployment taxes as well as workers compensation with the Connecticut Department of Labor.

Connecticut Sales and Use Tax

If you are a Connecticut state business that sells goods or provides taxable services, then you are required to pay sales and use taxes. You have to pay these taxes regardless of your income, and whether you collect them from your customers or not.

However, your LLC will need to acquire a Sales Tax Permit prior to conducting business. Failure to acquire a Sales Tax Permit prior to providing services or making sales will result in a state fine upwards of four hundred dollars. It could also land you in prison, so be sure that you are aware of what information is needed from you before you start doing business in the state.

Connecticut Business Entity Tax

All Connecticut LLCs are required to file the Business Entity Tax (BET) biennially, or every two years, and by April 15th of the year in which it is due.

The Business Entity Tax can be filed online through the Taxpayer Service Center, or you can file by mail. There is also a $250 fee for filing.

Additional Taxes Due

Some other taxes your LLC may be responsible for include property taxes, surtax, state tax, motor vehicle fuels tax, franchise tax, estimated corporate business tax, and more.

How Can LLC Formations Help You?

Forming a Connecticut LLC requires various steps, orchestrated in the right order, as well as detailed information, which can be time-consuming and overwhelming. Additionally, failure to complete the required Connecticut LLC forms properly can result in your Connecticut LLC being denied.

However, working with a professional team is highly recommended. By working with the professionals at LLC Formations, you are trusting your business to someone who is knowledgeable and experienced in the formation of LLCs. Hiring someone can help make the process much easier for you since they can complete many of the tasks on your behalf, including your Connecticut LLC search, so you can feel confident that your filing is taken care of according to the state guidelines.

LLC Formations can also complete much of the paperwork online, which, in many cases, will result in you receiving your acceptance letters and certifications in as little as one day. Instead of having to wait several weeks, you can begin your exciting new endeavor as soon as possible so you can start growing your business quickly.

If you have any more questions about how to begin forming your Connecticut state LLC, contact the professionals at LLC Formations at your convenience. You can also check out our next article about how to file an LLC in Delaware.

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