Form a Limited Liability Company in Mississpippi
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How to Form a Mississippi LLC in 10 Steps
A Limited Liability Company (LLC) is a common business structure that allows one or more persons to own a portion of a company. Profits earned by the LLC are passed through to its members, and the LLC does not file a separate tax return the way a corporation does. An LLC also reduces the owner(s) exposure to liability from company activities.
Forming a Limited Liability Company is a straightforward process, but there are several steps you'll want to follow.
1. Choose Your Company Name.
You need a company name that no other business has the rights to use. See our SunDoc article Is My Business Name Available? for help conducting your own name search, or SunDoc can run your name search for a reasonable fee. At a minimum, your preferred name must be available in the State of Mississippi. It is also wise to check for a registered trademark on your preferred name.
2. Understand Why You Need an LLC Organizer.
On your Articles of Organization form, it is imperative that you list an LLC organizer. The good news is that your organizer can be anyone, including an attorney who assists you with the organization of your business, a manager or member of your LLC, or someone else, such as a filing company like SunDoc. In fact, if you choose SunDoc to prepare your Articles, we (SunDoc) would be your LLC’s official organizer.
3. Choose a Registered Agent.
Your next step is to choose a registered agent for your LLC (a firm or a person). This will also need to be put onto your Articles of Organization form. If you are unsure what a registered agent is or why this role is important, we've created the following article: Registered Agent Service.
4. Choose Your Ownership and Management Structure.
On the Articles of Organization form, you will be asked how you want to manage your LLC — the particular question will ask whether you'd like your LLC to be manager-managed or member-managed. In particular, you may choose one or several managers (or all members) to manage your LLC in Mississippi. Need help deciding? Check out our guides for each option: Member-Managed LLC and Manager-Managed LLC.
5. Make an Operating Agreement.
Operating agreements are central to any LLC’s daily functional decisions and financial management. Many people think of the operating agreement as the legal engine that pushes your business forward.
It does things like govern your internal operations for your business’ unique needs, and it also forms provisions and regulations. It deals with critical money matters, fiduciary constraints, liability, profit payouts, voting, working capital, overall governance, and much more. It is a very important document. For a quality source of information on what the operating agreement is and why it’s important, see these SunDoc guides: Member-Managed LLC, Manager-Managed LLC.
If you like, you can also get advice from an attorney on creating your company's operating agreement.
6. File Your Articles of Organization.
It is almost certain that your state will require that you file a special form — the Articles of Organization. Once the State of Mississippi accepts your Articles, your official LLC will be formed.
For some companies, time is a problem, and these companies often ask a filing company like SunDoc to file their Articles of Organization on their behalf. We would be happy to do this for you.
Remember that with your Articles of Organization, you will have to have several things ready to go, including the name of your new company, your company's address, the management method you've chosen, and who your registered agent and LLC organizer will be. In some cases, member names will be required as well.
7. Obtain an EIN and Open a Business Bank Account.
Congratulations! You are now a registered Mississippi LLC. Any LLC with more than one member must file with the IRS for an EIN, Employer Identification Number, whether or not you have employees. You can file with the IRS yourself, or SunDoc can file for you.
The majority of banks will ask that you have your employer identification number ready in order to open a business financial account. At this time, you should organize all of your fiscal management. In many cases, this will include hiring an accountant to deal with business matters.
You should also reimburse yourself or other members of your LLC for any business expenses you paid out of your personal accounts up until now. Be sure to use your business account for business expenses and keep receipts from now on to make reimbursements easier.
8. Pay Mississippi State Taxes.
Every year, you will need to pay taxes and fees to the state of Mississippi. Generally speaking, the first year that your LLC is in operation is included in this. Other taxes may be required as well — for example, you will have to collect and pay sales tax if you sell goods within the state of Mississippi. Use the State of Mississippi’s tax web site to find out more about tax information in Mississippi.
9. Determine Necessary Licenses and Permits.
Most states like Mississippi require that all LLCs have some sort of business licenses or permits. These are required so that your LLC can operate legally at the county level and at the city level. It is essential to check the Mississippi state business website to see if you are required to have any licenses or permits — even if you think at first that you will be exempt. If you don't operate with the proper licensing and permits, you may have to pay hefty fees and fines.
10. File an Annual Report (Biennial Report or Initial List).
Within a set amount of time after the formation of your business, you will need to file an Annual Report. This may be referred to as an Initial List or a Biennial Report as well. You can find this form (and others) on the Mississippi business web site.
The Annual Report is a simple document that keeps the state updated on basic information about your LLC. Later on, in future years, if you make changes to your LLC, you’ll need to file this form again to update the state.
Again, make sure you file this form on time every year (or every two years, depending on your state’s requirements). If you file late, you'll have to pay as much is 10 times the typical fee to file. Sometimes, it's useful to have your Annual Report filed by a filing company like SunDoc. We can do this filing for you on time and reliably, and we can file other reports and forms for you as well.
Important Notice: It is beyond the scope of this article to discuss your potential employee or insurance needs. Always speak with an accountant or attorney when you have financial or legal concerns. Nothing in this article can be construed as legal, tax, or accounting advice.
For additional learning, please visit our LLC FAQs.
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