The pro-business tax policies in Florida make it one of the best states to become your own boss. With over 2.5 million small businesses, it is an especially great place to establish an LLC. LLC or Limited Liability Company is considered the best business structure for start-ups and small businesses.
So without further ado, let’s take a detailed look at the steps it takes to start an LLC in Florida:
Name Your Business
The first step to starting an LLC in Florida includes deciding what you want to name. Florida has specific requirements for naming an LLC, such as:
It must contain LLC, L.L.C., or Limited Liability Company as part of the name.
It must be unique and distinctive in spelling and pronunciation so as not to be confused with an existing business.
It must not contain words used to describe a government agency, such as Treasury, FBI, CIA, State Department, etc. Use of terms such as union, credit, bank, etc., is also restricted and required additional licenses and paperwork.
Naming a business is not as difficult as you may believe after reading these requirements. Come up with a few good ideas and check for their availability here. Since you cannot reserve names in Florida, it is advised to hasten the process to ensure you don’t lose the name you wanted.
However, make sure that the name you decide for your business is easy to pronounce, spell, and remember. A catchy name has a higher recall value, which can prove highly beneficial in the long run.
Choose an Agent
Florida requires LLCs to name a registered agent as the person or entity to handle the business’s documentation. This person or entity must fulfill the following criteria to be named as an agent:
Must be registered to provide agent services
Must have an address in Florida
Must be available to conduct business during business hours
This agent could be you, a member of your business, or agent service. Whoever you choose, just make sure they fulfill the eligibility criteria so your business documents are not rejected. You must also note that naming an agent is a two-step process. The registered agent must also officially accept their position to complete this step.
File Articles of Organization
Articles of Organization refer to the documents covering and confirming the basic details of your business. This will include information like your business name, principal business address, name and address of the registered agent, names and addresses of all business members, management structure, the purpose of business, and signature of the person filing the Articles of Organization form.
The form may also require you to state the duration of the LLC. In most cases, it is considered indefinite. If you are starting an LLC in Florida for a specific purpose and do not require it indefinitely, you can enter a date at which it will automatically cease to exist.
You can submit the Articles of Organization online through the Florida Department of State website. Alternatively, you can also send the completed form by mail.
Obtain Certificate of Establishment
Once the articles you submit are reviewed and approved, you will receive a formal certificate from the Florida Department of State stating the confirmation of the establishment of your LLC. This step does not take long, so follow up every day after submitting the articles to obtain your certificate.
After obtaining the certificate, you can open a bank account and register your business with Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for tax reporting and obtaining an Employee Identification Number or EIN. EIN is like a social security number of businesses, without which businesses cannot hire employees. EIN also ensures easy tax reporting and filing.
Get Florida Business License
Florida requires business licenses for specific industries before they can provide customer services or products. These licenses can only be obtained after establishing the LLC. You can check if your industry or professional requires a business license on the Florida Department of State website.
Prepare an LLC Operating Agreement
An operating agreement contains the outline or framework of a business’s operations. LLC operating agreements usually include information about the articles of organization, business purpose, business members, roles and responsibilities of business members, members’ contribution to the business, business management structure, dissolution terms, liability clauses, and guidelines on ownership, voting rights, profit sharing, and admitting and eliminating members.
Due to these details, an operating agreement can prove significantly valuable for instances of unwanted claims, demands, requests, or lawsuits. Therefore, even though you don’t require an operating agreement to start an LLC in Florida, creating one can be highly beneficial.
After the above stages, you can get a logo designed and trademarked to protect your business identity. You can then move on to the most crucial post-establishment step of starting an LLC in Florida, i.e.:
Get a Website and Market Your Business
Establishing a business on paper is only half the work. The other half involves establishing an online presence for your business so you can attract customers and finally earn some money.
However, marking an online presence can be more challenging. It requires building a website which involves writing convincing copy, designing an attractive layout, adding beautiful pictures, and including keywords to make it searchable. Moreover, you will also need to market your business through various social media platforms, local websites, and traditional sources of magazines and newspapers to lead your audiences to your website.
If it all sounds overwhelming and beyond your expertise, it is best to take help from a professional service like Trady.com. Trady.com is a website-building service dedicated to trades and home services companies. Building a website with Trady.com is cheap and quick. Within minutes, you can create an attractive website with exclusive features such as booking appointments and making payments online. It also includes built-in features for scheduling, generating invoices, and following up with clients. These features ensure a satisfactory service for your customers and earn you more clients.
Trady.com provides end-to-end marketing services as well. These services include building and managing social media profiles for your business and running ads on all local platforms, including digital and traditional.
With this one-in-all solution, you can easily build and maintain a market presence and continue to gain new customers. Get started with the 14-day free trial by Trady.com.