How to form an LLC in Florida

Update: January 2, 2024

By: Tom Macken

Start an LLC in Florida

Universal Studios. Daytona beach. Sunshine and the Kennedy Space Center. Florida is known for many things including the The Everglades and also as a place where businesses of all shapes and sizes set up. 

Numerous budding entrepreneurs chose Florida to launch their LLC and tap into the state’s abundant resources to grow their business.


1. Name Your Florida LLC
2. Select an Florida Registered Agent
3. File the Articles of Organization
4. Receive a Certificate From the State
5. Create an Operating Agreement
6. Obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN)
7. File Annual Renewals
Costs and Next Steps

A limited liability company (LLC) offers liability protection and tax advantages, among other benefits for small businesses. If you’ve determined an LLC is the right business structure for your needs, follow these simple steps to get your Florida LLC up and running.

Note: You can choose to set up the LLC yourself or choose a professional company formation service to do the hard work for you.

In addition to its many other advantages, a limited liability corporation (LLC) provides small enterprises with protection from legal responsibility and favorable tax treatment. If an LLC is the proper company structure for you, take these steps to form one in Florida.

You may create an LLC yourself or use a business creation service to save time and money.

1. Identify Your Florida LLC name

In order to establish a limited liability company (LLC) in the state of Florida, you will have to submit the Articles of Organization to the Florida Division of Corporations. The charge to submit paperwork is $125. 

This may be done either using the SunBiz website’s online form or through the mail. The document known as the Articles of Organization is the one responsible for the legal establishment of your limited liability corporation in Florida.

The name you choose for your limited liability company (LLC) must be distinguishable from the names of other business organizations that are already registered with the Florida Division of Corporations. You may verify whether a name is available by browsing the names database that the state maintains for company names. Before forming your limited liability company, you won’t be able to reserve a name for it.

According to state law in Florida, the name of a limited liability company (LLC) must include one of the following words: 

  • Limited Company
  • Limited Responsibility Company, sometimes abbreviated as L.C. or L.L.C.
  • It is possible to abbreviate the term “Limited” as “Ltd.,” while the word “Company” may be simplified to “Co.”

Using a Fictitious Name

When doing business in the “real world,” it is not necessary for you to use the formal legal name of your limited liability company that is established in your Articles of Organization. You may substitute this with a fake company name, which is also known as a trade name, “DBA” (which stands for the abbreviation “doing business as”), or an assumed name.

In order to engage in such activities in the state of Florida, you are required to register your assumed name with the Florida Division of Corporations. You have the option of registering your fictitious name either online or by mailing in the Application for Registration of Fictitious Name. There is a filing cost that is $50. The registration will be active for a total of five years.

2. Choose a Registered Agent in the State of Florida

A registered agent in Florida is required of every limited liability company operating in the state. If the limited liability company (LLC) is taken to court, this refers to a person or company that has agreed to accept service of process on its behalf.

The Registered Agent might either be a person who resides in Florida or a company that is permitted to conduct operations in the state. The Registered Agent is required to provide evidence of a Florida street address where they may be reached.

What’s the role of a Registered Agent?

A Registered Agent receives tax forms, legal paperwork, lawsuit notices, and government communication on your business’s behalf. Consider the role of your registered agent as that of the point of contact for your company with the state.

Who can be a Registered Agent?

A Registered Agent is required to be either a person who lives in Florida on a permanent basis or a company that is licensed to operate inside the state of Florida and acts in the capacity of a Registered Agent service. You have the option of selecting anybody who works for the organization, including yourself.

3. Publish your company’s articles of incorporation

Your limited liability company (LLC) will be formally recognized after you have a document called the Articles of Organization that lays forth fundamental information about your business. Because this form serves as the legal registration for your company with the state, it is essential that all of the details be accurate.

What should be included in a company’s Articles of Organization?

When completing the Certificate of Formation for your Florida LLC, you are required to give the following information:

  • LLC’s name
  • LLC’s duration–perpetual or limited
  • The LLC’s registered agent’s name and address
  • Location in which the State Secretary should send notifications to the limited liability company (LLC) through mail.
  • How the Limited Liability Company (LLC) will be run: by its members or by its managers
  • Whether or whether the limited liability company will offer professional services
  • Name and address of each person who organized the limited liability company, as well as the name and contact information of at least 1 member or management who has direct knowledge of the activities of the limited liability company.

Submission of Your Organization’s Articles of Incorporation

You may establish a limited liability company (LLC) in the state of Florida by submitting articles of organization to the Florida Division of Corporations.

The articles are required to include your:

  • Street and mailing location of the main office of the limited liability company
  • The name, location, and signing of the registered agent for the limited liability company
  • Information on the names and locations of the LLC’s management
  • The beginning of the limited liability company’s operations
  • The signature of a member or a representative who is authorized to sign on their behalf.
  • The charge to submit paperwork is $125. You may submit the articles either online or via the mail.

4. Obtain a Certificate From the Government of Your State

After the formation paperwork of the LLC has been submitted and authorized, the state will send you a certificate that proves the LLC’s official existence in response to a written request for a copy together with the appropriate amount of postage.

With the help of this certificate, the limited liability company will be able to acquire an Employer Identification Number (EIN), as well as business permits and create business bank accounts at financial institutions such as Novo or Bluevine bank.

5. Draft an Operating Agreement for Your Company

Although establishing a complete operating agreement for an LLC is not a legally required stage in the process of incorporating a limited liability company in the state of Florida, it is highly suggested for all new limited liability firms.

The following items should be included in the operating agreement:

  • Describe the business structure of the limited liability company.
  • Determine the specific duties and commitments that each member of the limited liability company (LLC) has
  • Lay out the operational structure of the LLC.

Significant legal and logistical challenges might await a limited liability company (LLC) in the absence of an operating agreement that defines the precise responsibilities of its members.

6. Obtain a number that identifies you as an employer (EIN)

A number of limited liability companies (LLCs) will be required to get a Federal Employer Identification Number (EIN), often known as a tax ID number. An Employer Identification Number (EIN) is a nine-digit number that identifies your company to the Internal Revenue Service

You need an EIN in order to pay federal employer taxes, open a bank account (in most situations), or recruit staff.

On the website of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), which is accessible without charge, you may check to see whether you need an EIN and submit an application for one online. 

Single-member limited liability companies, which are an exemption to the rule that most firms are required to acquire an EIN, may instead use the owner’s Social Security number.

Business Licenses

Depending on the nature of the business they conduct and the location of their operations in Florida, some limited liability companies (LLCs) may be needed to get one or more licensing or permits from the state or from their respective municipal governments.

Consult the Florida Start a Company Guide, which is made available by the Secretary of State, for advice on how to satisfy the prerequisites for obtaining a state license to operate a business. The Florida Licensing Directory allows for the search and retrieval of specific license information.

Contact the municipal or county clerk where your LLC is situated for local licensing requirements.

7. Register Annual Renewals

In the state of Florida, limited liability companies (LLCs) are obliged to submit an annual report to the Florida Department of State. You will be charged a cost of $138.75 to complete this task if you choose to do it online

The first of May serves as the day by which the yearly report must be submitted to the state of Florida.

Your limited liability company is required to submit its first annual report within the next calendar year after it was formed. For an LLC that was formed in 2019, the first annual report must be submitted between January 1st and May 1st of the following year, and then before May 1st of each year thereafter.

In the event that you miss the filing date of May 1st in Florida, you will be subject to a penalty of $400. In addition, if you do not submit your yearly accounts by the middle of the third week in September, your limited liability company will be dissolved.

What are the costs and the next steps?


The filing of the Articles of Organization for a domestic or international limited liability company in Florida costs a minimum of $125. This fee does not include the annual report filing expenses, which come to a total of $138.75.

Consider the following additional fees that may be incurred by an LLC:

  • DBA name is short for “doing business as.”
  • Certified document copies
  • Next Steps After Receiving Your Certificate of Existence

Next steps to complete

When you register a limited liability company (LLC), you establish a legal basis upon which to operate your firm. Companies should make it a priority to maintain their limited liability company in compliance with state regulations and in an active position on the state’s website.

In addition, having a registered limited liability company enables you to perform the following:

  • Obtain any permissions or licenses that are required to run your business, such as those issued by the health department, the zoning department, the department of home occupations, the department of professional licensing, and so on. Some states need a seller’s permission to conduct sales
  • Register your company with the department of revenue in your state.
  • Establishment of a bank account for a business
  • Create a credit card account for your company.
  • Invest in insurance coverage for your company.
  • Create a trademark to protect both your company’s name and its logo.

LLC solo formation or via a company formations provider?

To establish a limited liability company (LLC), you are not required by law to consult a lawyer. The majority of states enable the establishment of LLCs via the process of registering the business entity on the website of the secretary of state and the IRS.

If you are not acquainted with the process of forming an LLC, your best bet may be to find a professional LLC formation provider so that you can be certain that the creation will go smoothly and quickly.

When entrepreneurs start a new firm, they may save startup costs and save valuable time by using a professional agency that specializes in company forms. They can take care of various items and paperwork for a price ranging from $50 to over $500, and some examples of such things are as follows:

  • Developing an operating agreement for an LLC that details your company’s setup info and putting it into writing (required in some states).
  • putting together articles of incorporation that identify the management of the LLC, the registration agent, and the date the company was formed.
  • Taking up the role of registered agent for your firm.
  • Keeping careful records in the event that there are investigations or litigation.
  • payment of filing fees and registration with the appropriate parties.
  • Registering the name of your firm and ensuring that the name you choose for your limited liability company is accessible.
  • Finishing up and turning in all of the necessary legal and formation documentation.


How much does it cost to set up a new LLC in the state of Florida?

The filing of the Articles of Organization for a new limited liability company in Florida costs $125, and registering a fake business name with the Florida Division of Corporations costs $50. These costs do not include the yearly report fees, which total $138.75.

How long is required to set up a Florida LLC?

Mail filings for an LLC approval in Florida take between three and four weeks to complete, which includes the five to seven working day processing period as well as the amount of time your paperwork is in transit. The processing time for online filings is one to two business days.

How can I get started with an LLC in the state of Florida?

You will need the registration cost, a name for your limited liability company (LLC), a Registered Agent, Articles of Organization, an Operating Agreement, and an EIN number from the IRS in order to start an LLC in the state of Florida.

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