Form a Michigan LLC

How to Create an LLC in Michigan

Here’s our informational guide on forming an Limited Liability Company (LLC) in Michigan. It contains details on the benefits of forming an LLC in the state and step-by-step instructions on how to do it.

With a proper plan, you’ll be ready to do it yourself or lean on us for help. Our seasoned team makes Michigan’s process easy and inexpensive. If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed–don’t hesitate to contact us.

We’ve included a time-saving PDF Resource List for you at the bottom of this page. It contains a list of useful resources that may come in handy before or after forming the LLC in this state.

We felt answering a few common questions may help solidify your decision. So this guide includes brief answers to those questions. Let’s get started. . .

Who can create an LLC in Michigan?

One or more people can get involved in forming an LLC in Michigan. You can create one for yourself, all by yourself, too. Organizers of an existing business can be included or excluded. This adaptable business structure is ideal for small business owners. The company’s organizers don’t need to be members of the LLC but all owners must be members.

Those now operating a sole proprietorship should consider the benefit of an LLC. Michigan provides entrepreneurs with protections not granted to sole proprietors.

What protections do Michigan LLC members get?

LLCs offer protection on three fronts: personal, financial, and managerial. Protection from debit is one reason why it’s a preferred business structure. Court judgements can’t harm owners, either. Protection from future liabilities prevents needing to incorporate. These protections start when the LLC goes into effect. Establishing an LLC company in Michigan also protects members from double taxation. LLC owners in this state file personal tax returns.

When are taxes due?

Michigan requires an annual statement by February 15th. The only exception to this rule is if you’ve formed a new LLC after September 30th. There’s no need to file a statement this year if you formed an LLC on August 1st of the preceding year, for example. You can visit https://llcformations.com/ for more information.

Are Michigan's annual reporting requirements, taxes and fees a challenge?

No. Annual statement filing fees for in Michigan are low. You’ll only need to pay $25 to file.

Michigan sends registered agents a statement three months before taxes are due. You’ll need to submit a state-issued ID number and complete the process of filing online. Michigan does not impose any separate taxes or fees on LLCs for doing business in its state.

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Are there any special breaks for US Veterans?

Yes. If you are a US Veteran, Michigan will waive fees associated with setting up an LLC. Veterans must show proof to qualify. Acceptable documentation includes a copy of your separation or discharge papers. The presentation of these documents will ensure you qualify. You can then invest this savings in professional help with forming your LLC.

What are a Michigan's LLC tax requirements?

LLCs can file like a corporation for tax purposes. Michigan applies a flat 6% corporate tax on taxable income. If you’ve elected to have the LLC taxed like a corporation, you’ll need to pay this tax. Otherwise, income tax requirements pass through the business to the individual members. If your LLC has employees, then paying employer taxes to the state is necessary. Always consult with tax professionals to ensure accurate and current information.

Why should I form an LLC in the state of Michigan, and not someplace else?

Gain the benefits of a corporation without the hassle. An LLC operates without stockholder meetings, meeting minutes, or extra tax burdens. It’s easy to keep an LLC in good standing, too. Check out our cheat sheet on the advantages, below. It’s made to be helpful if you’re left with questions on the advantages of an LLC in this state.

So let’s get down to business with instructions on how to form an LLC in Michigan. Here’s the process. . . broken down into 12 digestible steps. . .

How to Plan a Michigan LLC

Step 1: Create a Company Name

The state of Michigan requires including “LLC” or “LC,” with or without punctuation.

More requirements are available in Section 450.4204 of Michigan’s state laws. These requirements include avoiding misrepresentation of the LLC’s purpose. Inclusion of the word “corporation” or “incorporated” isn’t allowed, either. Review Section 450.4204 to ensure that you’ve chosen a good name for your LLC. http://www.legislature.mi.gov/(S(zl5edv2n0uhppji5yys51lni))/mileg.aspx?page=getobject&objectname=mcl-450-4204&query=on

Look the name you have in mind up on Michigan state’s Corporate Division website. This will ensure you don’t take another business’s name. The business name you choose must be unique. https://cofs.lara.state.mi.us/corpweb/CorpSearch/CorpSearch.aspx

Step 2: Organize Your Members

Determine the organization’s governance. You’ll need to know who your LLCs members will be to create an LLC.

Michigan does not impose restrictions on members. The limits include that all members are over 18 years of age. Relevant professional licenses must be current and valid.

Your organization’s members can be managers. Hiring a non-member manager is also an option. Think of members like shareholders. You may decide your LLC needs a member-managed structure that resembles a partnership. You can still appoint a non-owner as a company manager as your company grows.

The members will become part of the business’s formal operating agreement. Use form CSCL/CD700 or form BCS/CD 701 to define the roles of your LLCs members during the planning process. These required forms can guide your planning efforts.

Step 3: Select a Resident Agent

The members of your planned LLC can live within or outside of the United States. Yet, your designated Registered Agent must be a Michigan resident. Failing to meet this requirement will result in losing good standing with the state. A resident agent is essential to prevent an LLC filing rejection.

Your selected resident agent must have a physical address within the state. Post office boxes do not qualify. They must also take responsibility for accepting mail related to legal actions. The address associated with your resident agent must be available to process servers.

At no time can your LLC be without a registered agent. If you need to leave the state, a new registered agent with a physical address must be assigned. You cannot have business mail forwarded to another state by the post office, either. If need be, you can hire a professional Resident Agent to forward items to you.

Hiring a professional Resident Agent enables you to fulfill Michigan’s requirements. Many of these agents charge on an annual basis. They’re specialists in forwarding important statements, notices, documents, and legal demands to clients. Some charge handsome fees for this service. Be sure to pick a reliable support if you’re unable to appoint an agent from within your organization.

Professional resident agents can also save you money. It’s wiser to pay for an agent than risk state-related late fees and missed court appearances. They can also add a layer of privacy to your LLC.

Michigan sends legal documents to the LLC’s administrator when delivery Registered Agents fails. If this occurs you’ll be liable for applicable fees.

Step 4: Choose Expedited or Standard Service

If you elect to file on your own, you have two choices: file by mail with standard service or expedited service.

Expedited filings can cut the amount of time you must wait by approximately 5 days. But it will also increase the cost of the process. You may want to invest in getting help to ensure you’re successful the first time, instead.

A basic filing fee of $50 must be included with your filing. Expedited requests can cost as little as $50. Some rush fees cost hundreds of dollars. One-hour service, for example, costs $1000.

You’ll need to add the Expedited Service Request form to your LLC application if you go this route. Michigan provides 24-hour and same day services. Review the expedite form itself to get the latest rush frees. https://www.michigan.gov/documents/lara/272_08-15_527662_7.pdf

Step 5: Download the Michigan Limited Liability Company Formation Cheat Sheets

A Michigan LLC search in Google will lead you to hundreds of pages of useless junk. So we’ve created some cheat sheets for you. Each contains the key definitions we use to help our clients complete required forms.

Scroll down to download our cheat sheets. We’ve created one for expediting filings. The other is to help you better understand the primary form required to form an LLC in the state of Michigan.

Review of those cheat sheets before you do anything else. It can also help you decide if you’d like to let us join you on your company’s journey. We hope it isn’t too intimidating. Study of our cheat sheets can help you determine doing it yourself might be too stressful.

Step 6: Complete The Forms Required For LLC Formation

There are a few ways to go about this step. This is the point where you need to commit to getting help to ensure a successful filing. You can still change your mind after you’ve tried to complete this step and reach out for our help. We understand the most important part of this step is not only finishing–but accuracy.

You must submit the correct type of form to the state. There are two. Form CSCL/CD700 establishes a general domestic liability company. Companies that will provide specific services may need to use a different form. Some must submit form BCS/CD 701. Osteopathic physicians, doctors of divinity, surgeons, and attorneys use form BCS/CD 701, according to the state of Michigan. Consult with a professional if you have any doubt about which form to use. There are a few other form variations for specific types of situations.

Below is a list of the most common forms needed to complete establishing an LLC.

Articles of Organization Form (also known as Form CSCL/CD700)
https://www.michigan.gov/documents/lara/700_08-15_528193_7.pdf

Expedited Service Request Form (if applicable)
https://www.michigan.gov/documents/lara/272_08-15_527662_7.pdf

A Check or Money Order Payable to the “State of Michigan” (if you will not be using the state’s online payment service)

Step 7: Submit Your Documents to the State of Michigan

Now you need to send each document listed above, along with the applicable fees, to the state. You have three options to get this part of the job done. Submit your forms online, mail them in, or hand deliver the paperwork to the state’s office.

To pay fees and submit forms online, visit the state of Michigan’s Corporations Online Filing System (COFS). The address is here: https://cofs.lara.state.mi.us/corpweb/LoginSystem/ListNewFilings.aspx?FilingMethod=I

Consider registered mail to track a delivery date if you’ve elected to mail your forms. Mail the complete packet of required items to the following address:

Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs Corporations, Securities & Commercial Licensing Bureau
Corporations Division
PO Box 30054
Lansing, MI 48909

Residents of the area are welcome to hand deliver these forms as well. Take paperwork to this address: 2501 Woodlake Circle in Okemos, Michigan. Call (517) 241-6470 for information on business hours. Fees can be paid in person with a check, money order, VISA, MasterCard, or Discover card.

Step 8: Get a Michigan Banking Account

This step is optional if you already have a bank account established for this business.

Make sure your business names associated with the LLC matches bank documents. Anyone transitioning from sole proprietor to an LLC name must update their bank. Not only is this good practice, it will also help you avoid future trouble.

Step 9: Secure an EIN Number For The LLC

This step is also optional if you already have applied for an EIN number. In the event you still need one, please see our cheat sheet on this topic. We’ve included information on how to get one within it. It’s a quick and easy process.

Step 10: Apply For Any Required Business License and Permit

Here’s a critical step if you’ve never done business in the state of Michigan. It’s also important to those already doing business. Make sure your LLC’s new name appears on all relevant business licenses and permits.

Step 11: Wait for Michigan to Return Original Paperwork

The state mails original back to the registered office address indicated on the form. A copy of it is filed with the Corporations, Securities & Commercial Licensing Bureau. This copy remains in electronic format. Your form remain available there if you need it.

Step 12: Maintain Good Standing by Filing Annual Statements

After all the hard work you’ll do, the last thing a person needs is to drop the ball on filing annual statements. People overlook the importance of this step when maintaining LLCs in Michigan. Don’t be one of them. Our cheat sheet on filing annual statements familiarizes you with the entire process.

Give us a ring if you still have questions about the procedure itself. Our support is more affordable than an attorney.

Let Us Help You!

Let Us Help You!

Downloadable Cheat Sheets

We’ve worked to make these cheat sheets as simple as possible. Each one is helpful in different ways. Download one or more for later reading. Rely on them as you make key choices. Use them to get the job done. You can also share one or more of with anyone who might be assisting you. They’ll make the process of forming an LLC in this state less daunting. Also visit our Minnesota LLC guide.

Useful Related Resources

We’ve compiled a short list of the web’s most useful resources for those looking to set up an LLC in the state of Michigan. This should help save you time in the future. It’s our way of saying thanks for looking to us for support. If you need more help, contact us.

Expedited Service Request Form
https://www.michigan.gov/documents/lara/272_08-15_527662_7.pdf

Michigan Limited Liability Company Act of 1993
http://www.legislature.mi.gov/(S(kg33t0zex45rgo5zh4q3yjmb))/mileg.aspx?page=GetObject&objectname=mcl-Act-23-of-1993

Business Structure Overview: State of Michigan Entrepreneur Guide
https://www.michigan.gov/documents/lara/8011_528148_7.pdf

Business Benefits: The Many Benefits of Forming an LLC
https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/72134

Tax Information: LLC Annual Filing Requirements in Michigan
https://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/filing-requirements-llcs-michigan.html

Tax Law Insights
http://michlaw.biz/business-law-insights-advantages-of-a-limited-liability-company-in-michigan/

Limited Liability Company Forms
https://www.michigan.gov/lara/0,4601,7-154-89334_61343_35413_36736-118816–,00.html

LLC Michigan Business Name Search
http://www.legislature.mi.gov/(S(zl5edv2n0uhppji5yys51lni))/mileg.aspx?page=getobject&objectname=mcl-450-4204&query=on

Michigan Fee Waivers For US Veterans
https://www.michigan.gov/lara/0,4601,7-154-89334_61343_35413_60200-293881–,00.html