To form an LLC in Indiana, you will have to file an Articles of Organization with the Secretary of State Business Services Division, and the state of Indiana charges a $95 fee (or $100 if filed by mail or in person) to process and record this document. Here is a simple breakdown of the startup costs associated with launching an LLC in Indiana.

Other Cost You Will Incur When Registering an LLC in Indiana

1. LLC Name Reservation Fee – $10

Although this is not necessary and you are welcome to skip this step, but if you are not immediately ready to start your business, then this step can be helpful. $10 gives you exclusive name rights for 120 days, from then you can renew the hold by paying another fee. But if there’s nothing stopping you from filing your Articles of Organization, do that instead, as it will officially register your name.

2. Articles of Organization Fee – $97.14

In the State of Indiana, your business doesn’t exist until you’ve successfully filed your Articles of Organization. Note that this cost about $97.14 (for online filings) or $100 (for paper ones), but as long as your filing is accepted, you’ll never have to pay this fee again.

3. LLC Formation Service

Meeting all necessary requirements needed to start an LLC in Indiana can be complicated and time-consuming. However, if you want to spend less time on paperwork and more time planning your business, you might opt for an LLC formation company. These services handle the registration process for you, so you don’t have to spend the time on research, paperwork, and filings. But they cost money.

4. Attorney Fees: $500 – $2000

Once you have questions or concerns about the LLC formation process, you are advised to consult an attorney. Although not cheap, but they can offer very useful business advice, professional filing assistance, and peace of mind. Some attorneys offer free consultations (usually 30-60 minutes) but will charge by the hour after that. On average, business attorneys charge between $150-350 per hour. Some will offer a flat rate for setting up an LLC, which can range from $500-2000.

5. Business Licenses

Have it in mind that not all LLCs will need extra business licenses, but depending on the type of business you run and where it’s located, you may have to apply for licensure before commencing operations. Note that athletic trainers in Indiana are expected to apply for a license through the Indiana Athletic Trainers Board. In addition, each city in the State maintains its own licensure requirements, so your business may also need to be licensed locally. Costs vary for these licenses depending on the type.

6. LLC Biennial Fees – $32

In Indiana, the “Business Entity Report” Is expected to be filed every other year by the end of the month in which you formed your LLC. Filing online will cost you $32, and filing a hard copy costs $50. Expect to pay this every two years.

7. Taxes

The state of Indiana doesn’t charge LLCs with a specific “franchise” or “privilege” tax either. However, there are a number of circumstances that would cause your LLC to pay business-related state taxes. Your business will need to pay a specialized tax if it:

  • If you sell products (sales tax)
  • Have employees (withholding tax)
  • Sell food and beverages (sales tax and food-and-beverage tax)
  • Rent accommodations for less than 30 days (innkeeper’s tax)
  • Rent motor vehicles (motor vehicle rental tax)
  • Distribute gasoline or special fuel (prepaid fuel tax)
  • Sell tires (tire fee)
  • Sell fireworks (sales tax and safety fee)
  • Sell prepaid wireless cards (911 fee)

How to Form an LLC in Indiana in 7 Steps

Just like it was stated above, the cost to form an Indiana limited liability company (LLC) is $95 online or $100 by mail. This fee is paid to the Indiana Secretary of State Business Services Division when filing the LLC’s Articles of Organization. The steps you need to take to form an LLC in Indiana include:

1. Choose a Name for Your LLC

According to Indiana law, an LLC name is expected to contain as the last words, “Limited Liability Company,” “L.L.C.,” or “LLC.” The name may (but need not) contain the name of a member or manager. Also, the name of the LLC must be recognizably different from the names of other business entities already on file with the Indiana Secretary of State.

In addition, names can checked for availability by searching the Indiana Secretary of State business name database. You may reserve a name for up to 120 days by filing a Reservation of Business Name with the Secretary of State. The reservation must be filed online. The filing fee is $20.

2. File Articles of Organization

To form an Indiana LLC, you must complete and file the Articles of Organization with the Business Services Division. The article is expected to include:

  • The LLC’s name
  • The LLC’s address
  • The name and address of LLC’s registered agent
  • Whether the LLC’s duration will be perpetual or for a specified period
  • Whether the LLC will be manager-managed or member-managed, and
  • Signature of the LLC’s organizer.

3. Appoint a Registered Agent

Every Indiana LLC must have an agent for service of process in the state. A registered agent is the individual or business entity responsible for receiving and processing legal documents on behalf of your business. While Indiana doesn’t prohibit business owners from acting as their own registered agents, many people choose to appoint a professional for the sake of privacy, convenience, and discretion.

Also note that if you assume this role, you’ll be responsible for maintaining normal business hours at the address provided on your formation documents, and receiving service of process notices in the event that your LLC is sued.

4. Prepare an Operating Agreement

An LLC operating agreement is not required in Indiana, but is highly advisable. Your operating agreement spells out how your business functions: how much each member invested, how profits and losses will be allocated, when distributions will be made, and what happens if the business goes belly up. In the absence of an operating agreement, state LLC law will govern how your LLC operates.

5. Obtain an EIN

In the State of Indiana, you are required to have a federal tax ID if you’re hiring employees or filing federal excise taxes like Alcohol/Tobacco/Firearms returns. Your bank will almost certainly ask for your EIN when you go to open a business account.

You can get an EIN for free by filling out an application with the IRS. Even if you don’t need an EIN right away, it’s advisable to have one ready. You may need one in situations you don’t anticipate, like when you’re establishing credit with a vendor or filling out local tax forms.

6. File Biennial Reports

Every LLC doing business in Indiana is expected to file a Business Entity Report with the Secretary of State every two years. The report is due every other year in the anniversary month of your LLC’s formation. For instance, if your LLC was formed on November 20 of an odd-numbered year, then your report would be due in November of each subsequent odd-numbered year. The report can be filed online or by mail. The filing fee is $50 for filings by mail and $32 for online filings.

Conclusion

A limited liability company (LLC for short) is a way to legally structure a business in Indiana. This business structure combines the limited liability of a corporation with the flexibility and lack of formalities provided by a partnership or sole proprietorship. Any business owner looking to limit his or her personal liability for business debts and lawsuits in Indiana should consider forming an LLC.

Joy Nwokoro