It is essential for every LLC to file a regular annual report as per the existing laws. Based on the report filed, the state would ensure that the LLC is in compliance.
Moreover, it ensures that the LLC is in good standing and the contact information is properly updated. The due dates and fees for filing the LLC annual report varies from one state to another. While keeping that in mind, let’s deep dive and learn what an LLC annual report entails.
What exactly is the annual report of the LLC
Some people assume that the complex paperwork would end once an LLC is formed. This is far from true. In fact, post-formation is arguably the more complex period.
That’s because you will have to adhere to the ongoing requirements when managing the LLC. One of the most prominent requirements is completing and filing an annual report which comes with a separate filing fee.
This annual report has different names, such as periodic report, statement of information, and annual statement. No matter what the name is, all of them are referring to the same thing.
Keep in mind that not all of these reports are annual. There are situations where some of the reports are needed to be filed every two years. There are also situations where you will be able to file the report every 10 years.
This all depends on the state and the specific regulations of the state. However, most of the states are currently require an annual report.
Why should you file the annual report of the LLC?
The main objective is to ensure that your LLC is in good standing and in compliance. On top of that, you will be able to update the state secretary about changes have taken place within the LLC.
If you fail to file the LLC annual report in a timely manner then the state has the authority to shut down or dissolve your LLC. Of course, this is rare and you’ll usually be hit with a fine for noncompliance.
There are some basic information that you should be included in the LLC annual report. They include the name of the LLC, registered agent information, office address of the LLC, and the LLC number that you got from the Secretary of State.
Every LLC is provided with a unique identifiable number. Your state would refer to your LLC based on this number. Hence, you need to make sure that all information that you submit when filing the annual report of your LLC is accurate.
Due dates and filing fees
As mentioned earlier, the due dates and filing fees of the LLC’s annual report would vary from one state to another. Usually, the filing fees would be from $9 per year, but it can also be high as $800 per year.
You will be able to search the internet and understand the due dates and filing fees for your particular state.
Steps to file the annual report of the LLC
There are two methods available for you to follow and file the annual report of the LLC. The first method of filing the annual report of the LLC is via registered mail. Conversely, some states have digitized the process and allow you to file and pay for the annual report via an online portal.
Another option involves using a service to help you file your annual report. Some LLC incorporation platforms such as ZenBusiness, MyCorporation, LegalZoom, etc. also double as an agent that will file the report for you.
In case you are planning to file the annual report of the LLC by mail and for some reason choose to write it by hand then it should be in blue or black ink. Whatever route you choose, be sure to keep a copy for your own business records.
The other copy can be posted to the mail via registered post. You should send that along with a money order or a check for the filing fee.
If you’re filing the LLC’s annual report online, you will need to submit it via the online portal provided by the secretary of state that holds jurisdiction. Of course, you’ll also pay the fee online with a credit card or debit card.
No matter what option you select out of these, it is important to ensure that you are doing it in a timely manner. Then you can avoid the negative consequences that would come by late filing of the annual report.
When you are nearing the due date for filing the LLC’s annual report, you will usually get a reminder. Most of the states send out these reminders.
There are always hiccups so you shouldn’t only reply on the state to send you a reminder. Instead, make a note of the due date, which is the same every year, and focus on meeting it.
What would happen when you fail to file the LLC’s annual report?
When you fail to submit the LLC’s annual report on time, you will have to pay a late submission fee. This fee would vary from one state to another. However, some of the LLC’s don’t submit the annual report at all. Then the state will go ahead and dissolve your LLC.
You should not take any chances with this because some of the states are quite strict with filing the annual report. To be on the safe side, you should filing the annual report in a timely manner. If this will prove to be too cumbersome then we recommend using one of the services mentioned above.
Finding the forms to file your LLC’s annual report
All the forms that you would need to use when filing the annual report of the LLC should be available for download on the official website of your state government. You can visit the website and get all the information.
If you can’t find the forms, contact the office of the secretary of the state. There you can arrange to get the forms mailed to you.
The specific forms that you should use when filling the annual report vary from one state to another so, unfortunately, we can’t provide them.
There can also be specific forms that you have to fill, based on the nature of your LLC. For example, the forms that you have to use when you are filing the annual report of a regular LLC are quite different from the forms that you should use when you are filing the annual report of a professional LLC.
That’s because a professional LLC has been established with the objective of offering professional services.
Every LLC should file the annual report, regardless of the location and nature of the LLC. These reports will be used by the state governments and provide up to date information related to the LLCs that are registered within the state.
Moreover, the state governments can use these reports to identify that the LLCs are in good standing. It’s also good practice for you to have this information readily available. You never know what can happen and it’ll help you get out of some sticky situations.