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Where Should I Incorporate My Small Business or Form My LLC?

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The best state to form an LLC or corporation is where you intend to conduct most of your business or where you have an office or business presence.


Understanding State Requirements for LLCs and Corporations

When you set up an LLC or corporation in a different state than your home state, you will likely need to file an application as a foreign LLC or foreign corporation in any other state where you conduct substantial business. For instance, filing an Application for Authority to Conduct Affairs as a foreign LLC or corporation in Illinois costs $150. This application requires a registered agent with a registered office in Illinois, leading to additional expenses for hiring an Illinois registered agent.

If you form an LLC in Delaware but your business operates primarily in Illinois, you will need to file and pay fees in Illinois as a foreign LLC in addition to those in Delaware. This added expense provides minimal benefits and results in more record-keeping, processing time, and associated fees.


Considerations for Incorporating in Delaware or Nevada

While some believe Delaware or Nevada are ideal for setting up a new LLC or corporation, this isn’t always the case. These states may offer tax or liability advantages for specific types of businesses, especially larger publicly held companies. However, for smaller businesses, the costs and complexities of foreign state filings often outweigh these advantages.


Advanced Research Required

Investigate the tax and liability laws of the state you are considering. These factors can significantly impact your business operations and financial obligations.


Options for Internet-Based Businesses

If your business provides products or services across multiple locations, such as an internet-based business, you have more choices for incorporation. However, even with an Internet business, substantial business activities in a particular state, like Illinois, may still require registration as a foreign corporation or LLC.


Where Should I Incorporate My Small Business or Form My LLC?


Business Licensing Requirements

Unless otherwise exempted by state law, all businesses must obtain a business license from the city, town, or village where they are located. This applies to all business operations, regardless of the state of incorporation.


Cape Law’s Assistance in Incorporation Decisions

Choosing the right state for incorporating your small business or forming your LLC is crucial for long-term success. At Cape Law, we help you navigate these decisions based on your specific business needs and goals. Whether you’re a sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, or limited liability company, our tailored legal services ensure you make informed choices that benefit your business.

We invite you to reach out and contact us for expert guidance on incorporating your small business or forming your LLC. Let us assist you in making strategic decisions for your business’s future.