The cost to start an LLC in California is $70. This cost pays for the articles of incorporation fee, but there may be other fees associated with forming your LLC that are required and optional depending on your business. Use our guide below to help you figure out how much it will cost you to form your LLC in California.
If you know how to form an LLC then you can do it yourself on the California state website or for a small fee, you can get experts from an LLC formation company to do it for you.
Recomended LLC Formation Services
Other Costs When Starting A California LLC
Along with the basic costs of filing your LLC paperwork, there may be some other expenses when getting your business up and running. We’ve detailed some of these essential and optional services and fees below.
California Biennial Report Fee ($20)
Every other year your business must file an annual report fee with the state. This “California Biennial Report Fee” is currently $20 and must be filed on the state website to keep your business legal and up-to-date with the state. There are other annual tax fees that must be filed with the state. You should consult with an expert service such a business formation service, accountant, or lawyer to figure out what annual fees and taxes your business must pay.
Registered Agent Services ($75-$150)
Every business in the state of California must have a registered agent. The registered agent for your business will receive legal and regulatory documents on your behalf and with professional services they can help you stay up-to-date with any filings your business must make.
You can appoint someone who qualifies based on the state’s guidelines or you can opt for a professional registered agent service. A professional registered agent service will not only give you an address to receive notices in the state, but it can also add privacy and professionalism to your business.
If you’re currently forming an LLC then you can opt for a professional service like ZenBusiness that will include registered agent services free for a year. If you’ve already formed your LLC, or you’re not using an LLC formation service, then you can opt for one of our recommended services like Northwest Registered Agent. You can find guidelines on who can be your registered agent on the state website along with various other legal resources.
LLC Formation Services ($39-$300)
Using an LLC formation service can make a lot of sense for business owners who don’t know the legalities of forming a company or simply want to spend their time working on other aspects of their business. Getting experts from an LLC service like ZenBusiness starts as low as $39 plus it includes extras like a free year of registered agent services.
We recommend an LLC formation service to most new business owners as they can help you make sure your company is set up the right way and avoid future headaches. It also gives you time to work on what really matters with your business all while paying just a small fee.
EIN (Employer Identification Number)
To open a bank account, hire employees, and so on you’ll need an employer identification number. You can fill out a few basic forms and get this for free on the IRS website. There are some services that will try to charge you upwards of $75 to do this for you, but it’s simple enough that most business owners can do it themselves in a matter of minutes.
Licenses And Other Fees
California is a state that has a lot of different licenses and other fees associated with starting and maintaining a business. You will want to check with both the state and local governments to see what licenses you may need to operate your business legally. These regulations and licenses will be dependent on your city and county along with your industry and more.
There are numerous services such as the previously mentioned ZenBusiness and other services like IncFile and LegalZoom that can help you navigate through this. They will give you insight into what licenses you will need when starting your business along with helping you form the actual business. Sometimes this consultation will be included with their formation plans, but in some cases, you may have to pay extra.