How to Start an LLC in Indiana | 2024 Guide

Steve Bennett
Business Formation Expert  |   Fact Checked by Editorial Team
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Start a LLC in Indiana

How to Start an LLC in Indiana: If you’re looking to launch a business in Indiana, starting a Limited Liability Company (LLC) may be the right choice for you. An LLC provides personal liability protection for its owners while giving them flexibility in managing and taxing the business. This guide provides a step-by-step process for starting an LLC in Indiana. From choosing a unique name to registering with the state and obtaining necessary licenses and permits, Webinarcare Editorial Team will walk you through setting up your new business entity. So grab a pen and paper, and let’s get started!

What is a Limited Liability Company?

A Limited Liability Company (LLC) is a type of business entity that combines a corporation’s limited liability protection with a partnership’s tax benefits. LLCs are popular among small business owners for their flexibility and ease of formation. In Indiana, an LLC must have a unique name and file Articles of Organization with the Secretary of State. Depending on their business needs, LLCs may also elect to be taxed as a corporation or an S-corp. Owners of an LLC, called members, are not personally liable for the company’s debts and losses, and the company’s profits and losses are passed through to the member’s personal tax returns. This makes an LLC an attractive option for those seeking personal liability protection and simplified taxation.

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Steps on How to Start an LLC in Indiana

To form an LLC for your business, you must follow the guidelines that include naming your LLC, hiring a Registered Agent, filing your Articles of Organization, creating your LLC operating agreement, getting an employer identification number, opening a bank account and getting business licenses and permits.

Step 1: Name your LLC in Indiana

After you have decided on the idea to form an LLC in Indiana, deciding the name for your LLC is significant. There is a complete guide on LLC name guidelines for you to have a proper LLC business name. Here are some regulations you must follow while naming your LLC,

  • The name should not be confused with a government entity.
  • The name should be unique.
  • The name should be available to use.
  • Any other business does not use the name.
  • The new name must include “LLC” if it is a limited liability company.

In Indiana, if you do not wish to file your LLC right away but want to hold the name that you have decided on, then you can reserve your LLC name for 120 days. You must file a name reservation application in Indiana Secretary of State to keep the name.

Recommended: We recommend a professional service that can offer you unlimited name search, trademark and copyright registration at a reasonable price. We recommend using –

LegalZoom($0 + State Fees for LLC Formation)

You can register your business under a different legal name if your preferred name isn’t available. Once you have chosen a name, you can submit an application for filing Indiana DBA (doing business as). In this manner, you can choose any name you desire for your business. A DBA allows a company to operate under the name of the person or entity who owns it. If you have decided to file for a DBA, you can file it in two methods, by mail and in person. However, before filing a DBA, you should know that you need to renew your DBA from up to Indefinite, which costs around $35.

Step 2: Hire a Registered Agent in Indiana

Hiring a Registered Agent in Indiana is a must since a Registered Agent is a person or business entity responsible for receiving important legal documents on behalf of your Indiana LLC. Most states require you to designate a Registered Agent when forming your LLC.

The qualifications of a Registered Agent vary depending on the jurisdiction. Still, generally, a Registered Agent must meet the following criteria:

  • Availability: A Registered Agent must be available during regular business hours to receive and process legal documents and official correspondence.
  • Physical Address: A Registered Agent must have a physical street address within the state where the LLC is registered. This address, known as the registered office, cannot be a P.O. Box.
  • Residency or Authorization: For individuals serving as Registered Agent, they must be residents of the Indiana where the LLC was formed. A business entity acting as a Registered Agent must be authorized to do business within that state.
  • Age: A Registered Agent must be at least 18 years old.
  • Good standing: A Registered Agent should not have any legal or financial issues that impede their ability to fulfill their duties.

Choosing a reliable and responsible Registered Agent is essential, as failure to receive and respond to legal documents can seriously affect your business. Some businesses use professional Registered Agent services to ensure compliance and proper handling of legal matters.

However, if you would like to have an easier process in filing the necessary documents, you can get Indiana Registered Agent Services.

Step 3: File your Articles of Organization in Indiana

The Articles of Organization for an LLC is an important document to start your limited liability company (LLC). Indiana Articles of Organization is a simple document that contains the business name and address as well as the name and address of the person who received lawsuits on behalf of the organization.

Here are the guidelines and specific requirements in filing your Articles of Organization in Indiana.

1. Obtain the Necessary Forms: Visit the Indiana’s business filing office website, usually the Indiana Secretary of State’s office, to download the required forms or file online.

2. Provide the Required Information: Fill in the necessary details in the form, which typically include:

  • The name of your LLC (must include an LLC designator such as “LLC,” “L.L.C.,” or “Limited Liability Company”)
  • The purpose of your LLC (a general statement or specific business activities)
  • The address of your LLC’s principal place of business
  • The name and address of your registered agent (the person or business entity responsible for receiving legal documents on behalf of your LLC)
  • The management structure of your LLC (member-managed or manager-managed)
  • The duration of your LLC, if not perpetual
  • The names and addresses of the LLC’s organizers or members

3. Sign and File the Form: Submit the completed form in the {state} state office, either by mail, in person, or online. You may mail it at Secretary of State Business Services Division, 302 West Washington Street, Room E018, Indianapolis, IN 46204.

4. Pay the Filing Fee: When you submit your Articles of Organization, you’ll need to pay a filing fee of $95. Make sure to check and include the correct payment with your submission.

5. Receive Confirmation: After your Articles of Organization have been filed and processed, you’ll receive a confirmation from Indiana, typically a stamped and approved copy of the document or a Articles of Organization.

Recommended: Filing formation papers is easy and hassle-free if you hire a professional service. We recommend using –

LegalZoom($0 + State Fee)

Once you have successfully filed your Articles of Organization and it has been approved, your Indiana LLC is officially formed. However, remember to complete additional steps, such as creating an Operating Agreement, obtaining an EIN, and registering for any required licenses and permits.

Step 4: Create Your Indiana Operating Agreement

An operating agreement is a document that contains all of your company’s organizational details. Drafting an operating agreement in most states is not required. Yet, having one as an internal document is strongly advised. An operating agreement includes information like-

  • About Business
  • Members and management
  • Capital contribution
  • Profit Distribution
  • Change of membership
  • Dissolution

To understand how an operating agreement works, you should check out how to create an operating agreement in Indiana.

Recommended: Get oprating agreement drafts ready on your table with a help of a professional service. We recommend using –

LegalZoom($0 + State Fee for LLC formation)

Step 5: Get an EIN

After documenting the operating agreement, you should get or request an Employer Identification Number (EIN) in Indiana. An EIN will serve as the tax ID for your professional corporation. EIN can be obtained from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). It is a 9-digit number similar to Social Security Number. EIN, however, is distinct from SSN. It is only used for business-related activities, particularly for submitting general taxes. The form must be completed and uploaded to the IRS website.

The application of an EIN in Indiana can be through the following:

  • Apply Online- The online EIN application is the preferred method for customers to apply for and obtain an EIN.
  • Apply by Fax- Taxpayers can fax the completed Form SS-4 application to the appropriate fax number), after ensuring that the Form SS-4 contains all of the required information.
  • Apply by Mail- The EIN application Form SS-4 can be filed via mail. The processing time frame to receive the mail is four weeks.
  • Apply by Telephone-International Applicants – International applicants may call 267-941-1099 (not a toll-free number) from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. (Eastern Time) Monday through Friday to obtain their EIN.

In obtaining an EIN for your LLC, you should be aware to ensure that your LLC is eligible for an EIN. You need an EIN if you have employees, operate as a corporation or partnership, or meet other specific IRS criteria. Before applying, gather the required information, including your LLC’s name, mailing address, and the responsible party’s Social Security Number (SSN) or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN). Also, you can apply for an EIN through various methods, including online, by fax, mail, or telephone (for international applicants).

Recommended: Professional services have the EIN included in their LLC formation package. We recommend using –

LegalZoom($0 + State Fee for LLC formation)

Step 6: Open a Bank Account and Prepare for Taxes

After you have filed for and received your Employer Identification Number, you should open a bank account because you will use this account for yourself, your clients, and your employees.

Your business dealings in Indiana might be simpler with a US business bank account because it boosts your company’s legitimacy and liquidity. Most banks demand an EIN to create a business bank account for firms other than sole proprietorships. Also, having an EIN makes tax preparation easier. You can anticipate paying employment and corporate taxes with Indiana LLC.

Opening a bank account is necessary for Indiana business. If you are still wondering where to open an account in your Indiana, you should check the Best Bank for Small Business in Indiana.

Step 7: Get a Business and License Permit

You must get a business license in Indiana before establishing your LLC. A business license is a legal document granted by a state government body that permits you to conduct business within the area under its jurisdiction. The price of business licenses and permits in Indiana ranges from $50 – $300. If there is a requirement for a specific license or city-based permit, you must inquire with the Indiana Secretary of State.

Cost to Form an LLC in Indiana

Even if you have a business name and structure in mind, you should consider whether you can afford the costs of forming an LLC in Indiana. Articles of Organization costs around $95. The initial filing fee is $100 (by mail and $95 online), and the annual fee is $0 because it is not mandatory.

If you forget to pay the annual fee for your Indiana LLC, you will have a penalty of $50. However, you can check the Indiana LLC Cost for additional information.

Advantages of Creating Indiana LLC

Even though some people decide on what to do with their businesses, some choose to put it in their own individual name, while others still choose to set it up via LLC in Indiana. Important benefits will help you set up an LLC in Indiana.

  • Pass-Through Taxation: The pass-through structure will make the company not pay twice the tax. Most start-ups and entrepreneurs in Indiana apply for an LLC because of this structure. Pass-through taxation refers to how income and losses from an LLC (Limited Liability Company) are passed through to its members (owners) for tax purposes rather than being taxed at the business entity level. This means the LLC does not pay federal income taxes; the members’ profits and losses are allocated based on their interests. Each member then reports their share of the LLC’s income or losses on their personal tax returns and pays taxes at their individual tax rates.
  • Ownership Flexibility: If you need sole and primary control over your company’s operations, a sole proprietorship will allow you to do so. If you apply for an LLC in Indiana with flexibility, you will have default rules set by law and need an operating agreement.
  • Personal Liability Protection: Personal Liability Protection protects your business from damage, debts, or legal obligations. In personal liability protection, the company’s profits and earnings will stay as is even if your company is about to be sued. This protection of having an LLC in Indiana can also be extended to the company’s properties and assets. Many start-up companies will benefit from this since most are starting to build a company. Even if liability exists, the LLC in Indiana will protect its assets.

FAQs

What is an LLC?
LLC stands for Limited Liability Company. It is a business entity that combines the liability protection of a corporation with the tax benefits of a partnership.
What is the procedure to start an LLC in Indiana?
To start an LLC in Indiana, you need to file Articles of Organization with the Indiana Secretary of State. You will also need to appoint a registered agent and pay the appropriate filing fee.
How much does it cost to start an LLC in Indiana?
The filing fee to start an LLC in Indiana is $95. You may also want to pay for additional services such as expedited processing or registered agent services.
What taxes must I pay as an LLC in Indiana?
As an LLC in Indiana, you may be subject to state taxes such as the Corporate Income Tax, Sales and Use Tax, and any applicable county and city taxes.
Are there any ongoing fees for maintaining an LLC in Indiana?
Yes, LLCs in Indiana are required to file an annual report and pay a $50 fee.
Can I file the Articles of Organization for my LLC online in Indiana?
Yes, you can file the Articles of Organization online through the Indiana Secretary of State’s website.
Are there any residency requirements to start an LLC in Indiana?
No, there are no residency requirements to start an LLC in Indiana.
How long does it take to start an LLC in Indiana?
The processing time for LLC filings in Indiana varies depending on the workload of the Secretary of State’s office. Routine filings typically take 5-7 business days.
Can I operate my LLC out of my home in Indiana?
Yes, you can operate your LLC out of your home in Indiana as long as it complies with local zoning ordinances and regulations.
Is it required to have an operating agreement for my LLC in Indiana?
While not required by state law, it is highly recommended to have an operating agreement for your LLC in Indiana.
Can I change the name of my LLC in Indiana?
Yes, a name change for your LLC can be done by filing articles of amendment with the Indiana Secretary of State and paying a fee.
Can another company have the same name as my LLC in Indiana?
No, you cannot register an LLC with a name that is already taken in Indiana.
Can I have a single-member LLC in Indiana?
Yes, Indiana allows for single-member LLCs.
What is a registered agent and do I need one for my LLC in Indiana?
A registered agent is a person or company designated to receive legal documents on behalf of the LLC. Yes, you need to appoint a registered agent for your LLC in Indiana.
Can I be the registered agent for my own LLC in Indiana?
Yes, you can be the registered agent for your own LLC in Indiana as long as you have a physical street address in Indiana.
Is there a difference between an LLC and a corporation in Indiana?
Yes, LLCs have more flexibility with management and are generally easier to set up and maintain compared to corporations in Indiana.
Must I have an Indiana address to start an LLC in Indiana?
No, you can have an out-of-state address while starting an LLC in Indiana.
Can an LLC in Indiana be managed by its members?
Yes, an LLC in Indiana can be managed by its members.
Is personal liability protection included in an Indiana LLC?
Yes, personal liability protection is included in an Indiana LLC.
Is it mandatory to file an annual report for my LLC in Indiana?
Yes, LLCs in Indiana are required to file an annual report.
What happens if I don’t pay the annual report fee for my LLC in Indiana?
Failure to file an annual report or pay the appropriate fee can result in penalties and your LLC being revoked.
Can my LLC have multiple owners in Indiana?
Yes, your LLC can have multiple owners in Indiana.
How long does an Indiana LLC last?
An Indiana LLC lasts until it is officially dissolved by the state or by the members of the LLC.
Can I convert my existing business to an LLC in Indiana?
Yes, an existing business in Indiana can be converted to an LLC.
Can I add members to my LLC in Indiana after it has been formed?
Yes, you can add members to your LLC in Indiana by amending your Articles of Organization.
Is an Indiana LLC recognized in other states?
Yes, an Indiana LLC does have legal recognition in other states through the process of Foreign Qualification.
Which form of payment is accepted for filing articles of organization in Indiana for an LLC?
Articles of Organization can be filed online with a credit card/debit card or through mail with Check/Money Order in Indiana.
Can an Indiana LLC have a sole member that is also the single manager of the LLC?
Yes, an Indiana LLC can have a sole member who is also the single manager.
Are there any restrictions on the type of business can be started as an LLC in Indiana?
No, there are no restrictions on the type of business that can be started as an LLC in Indiana as long as it is lawful.
Can I form an LLC in Indiana if I don’t live there?
Yes, you can form an LLC in Indiana even if you don’t live in the state.
How long does it take to form an LLC in Indiana?
It usually takes about 7-10 business days for LLC formation documents to be processed by the Secretary of State’s office in Indiana.
Do I need a lawyer to start an LLC in Indiana?
No, you can file the necessary paperwork to start an LLC in Indiana without a lawyer.
Can I reserve a name for my LLC in Indiana before I file paperwork?
Yes, you can reserve a name for your LLC in Indiana for a fee of $20.
How many members can an Indiana LLC have?
An Indiana LLC may have one or more members.
Do I need an operating agreement for my Indiana LLC?
It is not legally required in Indiana, but it is recommended that LLCs create an operating agreement.
Can an Indiana LLC have more than one manager?
Yes, an Indiana LLC may have more than one manager.
Do I need to register my Indiana LLC with the state tax department?
Yes, you will need to register your Indiana LLC with the Department of Revenue for state tax purposes.
Can a foreign entity form an LLC in Indiana?
Yes, a foreign entity can form an LLC in Indiana and do business in the state.
How do I obtain an Employer Identification Number for my Indiana LLC?
You can obtain an EIN for your Indiana LLC by completing an online application through the IRS website.
Are there annual reporting requirements for Indiana LLCs?
Yes, Indiana LLCs must file a biennial report with the state every two years.
Can an Indiana LLC be taxed as an S corporation?
Yes, an Indiana LLC can elect to be taxed as an S corporation if it meets the eligibility requirements.
Can an Indiana LLC change its legal name?
Yes, an Indiana LLC can change its legal name by filing an Articles of Amendment.
Are there residency requirements for Indiana LLC members or managers?
No, there are no residency requirements for LLC members or managers in Indiana.
Can I file Articles of Organization online for my Indiana LLC?
Yes, you can file Articles of Organization online for your Indiana LLC.
How do I dissolve an Indiana LLC?
You will need to file Articles of Dissolution with the Indiana Secretary of State to dissolve your LLC.
Can one person be the sole member and manager of an Indiana LLC?
Yes, one person can be the sole member and manager of an Indiana LLC.
How do I add additional members to my Indiana LLC?
You will need to file an Amendment to the Articles of Organization to add additional members to your LLC.
Is it mandatory to publish formation documents of Indiana LLC?
No, it’s no longer required to publish formation documents of Indiana LLCs.
Can Indiana LLCs have non-US members?
Yes, Indiana LLCs can have non-US members.
Is there a fee for expanding the scope of business of Indiana LLC?
No, there is no fee specifically for expanding the scope of business of an Indiana LLC.
Can Indiana LLC have any business purpose?
Yes, Indiana LLCs can be used for any lawful business purpose.
Can I legally work in my Indiana LLC?
Yes, as a member of an LLC in Indiana, you can legally work in your own company.
Will Indiana businesses outside Indiana LLC be taxed in Indiana?
Yes, non-residents and out-of-state LLCs will be taxed under Indiana rules if they have income sourced in Indiana.
Does Indiana LLC expire?
No, there is no expiration period for Indiana LLCs.
Does Indiana have a franchise tax?
Yes, Indiana has a corporate franchise tax imposed on LLCs doing business in the state.
Do I have to file annual reports in Indiana?
Yes, Indiana LLCs are required to file biennial reports every other year.
What is a registered agent, and do I need one for my Indiana LLC?
A registered agent is a person or company who accepts legal papers on behalf of your LLC, and yes, your Indiana LLC will need a registered agent.

Also Read

How Fast Can I Form an LLC in Indiana

The process of forming an LLC in Indiana is relatively straightforward and can be completed in a timely manner if all the necessary steps are followed efficiently. To begin with, the first step is to choose a name for the LLC and make sure it is available for use. Indiana law requires all LLC names to be distinguishable from those of existing businesses, so it is important to conduct a name search through the Indiana Secretary of State’s online database to ensure the desired name is not already taken.

Once a name has been selected, the next step is to file Articles of Organization with the Indiana Secretary of State. This can be done online through the Secretary of State’s website, or by submitting a paper application by mail. The Articles of Organization typically require basic information about the LLC, such as its name, principal place of business, registered agent, and management structure.

After the Articles of Organization have been filed and approved, the next step is to create an operating agreement for the LLC. While not required by Indiana law, an operating agreement is a crucial document that outlines the rights, responsibilities, and ownership interests of the LLC’s members. Having a comprehensive operating agreement can help prevent misunderstandings and disputes among members, and is therefore strongly recommended for all LLCs.

The final step in forming an LLC in Indiana is to obtain any necessary business licenses and permits. Depending on the nature of the business, certain industries may require specific licenses or permits to operate legally in Indiana. It is important to research the licensing requirements relevant to the LLC’s industry and comply with all applicable regulations to avoid any potential legal issues down the line.

Overall, forming an LLC in Indiana can be a relatively quick and straightforward process if the necessary steps are taken in a timely manner. By carefully selecting a distinct name, filing the Articles of Organization, drafting an operating agreement, and obtaining any required licenses or permits, aspiring business owners can establish their LLC in Indiana in a timely manner and focus on growing their business.

In conclusion, while the exact timeline for forming an LLC in Indiana may vary depending on individual circumstances, following these steps diligently can help aspiring business owners navigate the process efficiently and establish their LLC in a timely manner. By prioritizing the necessary legal requirements and adhering to Indiana’s business laws, entrepreneurs can start their new venture with confidence and set themselves up for success in the competitive business landscape.

Conclusion

In conclusion, starting an LLC in Indiana is a strategic choice for entrepreneurs seeking a flexible, straightforward business structure with limited liability protection. By following the essential steps, including choosing a business name, filing Articles of Organization, appointing a Registered Agent, creating an Operating Agreement, obtaining an EIN, and securing the necessary licenses and permits, you can successfully establish your LLC. This business structure offers numerous advantages, such as pass-through taxation and ownership flexibility, making it an attractive option for small business owners looking to grow and protect their ventures. As always, consult legal and business professionals for guidance specific to your situation and state requirements.

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