How to Start an LLC in Indiana
Here are the 7 steps to start a limited liability company (LLC) in Indiana
For more information on how to form an LLC in any state, see the article How to Form an LLC.
Find out how to form a Indiana LLC for yourself
Learn about Indiana LLC formation, including information on Registered Agents, naming rules, business licenses, and more.
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Creating an LLC in Indiana
A limited liability company (LLC) offers many benefits to small businesses, including liability protection and tax advantages.
An Limited Liability Company LLC need to be formed in Indiana by filing the Articles of Organization with the Indiana Secretary of State Business Services Division and paying the $95-$100 filing fee.
However, you’ll first need to choose a name and registered agent for your IndianaLLC . The formation of an LLC may take up to 5-7 business days by mail and one day for online filing in Indiana. Expedited processing is also available for an additional fee.
An LLC can be easily formed in Indiana.Our step-by-step guide on How to Start an LLC in Indiana will help you get started today. Find out more about LLCs and their benefits in our What is an LLC guide.
Step 1. Choose a Name for Your LLC Indiana
Creating an LLC in Indiana requires you to choose a business name before you can file a Articles of Organization. Be sure that your business name complies with the Indiana naming requirements and can be searched by potential customers.
- Indiana law requires an LLC name to contain the words “Limited Liability Company” or “Limited Company,” or the abbreviations “Ltd.,” “LLC,” or “LC.” “Limited” may be abbreviated as “Ltd.” or “LTD,” and “Company” as “Co.”
- It is not acceptable for your Indiana LLC to have words associated with a government agency (FBI, Treasury, State Department, etc.).
- You should avoid using words or abbreviations that may make your LLC Indiana appear to be a different type of entity, such as “LP” or “corporation”.
- There may be additional documentation and licensure paperwork required for certain restricted words (bank, lawyer, attorney, credit union, etc.).
- Check the state’s business name database to ensure the name you want is not already taken(including businesses no longer in operation)
See a complete list of Indiana naming rules here.
Check URL availability: You are likely to need a web page even if you don’t think you do. Buying your domain name now will at least give you the option of having one in the future. It’s a good idea to check the URL availability before finalizing your Indiana LLC name.
All sole proprietorships, general partnerships, corporations, limited liability companies (LLCs), limited partnerships (LPs), limited liability partnerships (LLPs), and out-of-state companies that conduct business in Indiana under a name other than their legal name are required to file a DBA. To learn more about DBAs, read our "What does DBA mean"Guide.
By filing a Reservation of Business Name with the Secretary of State, you can reserve a name for up to 120 days. The reservation must be made through the internet. The cost of filing is $20.
An LLC stands for a Limited Liability Company. A simple business structure that is more flexible and offers many of the same benefits as a traditional corporation. For more information, see "What is a Limited Liability Company?".
Step 2: Appoint Your Registered Agent in Indiana
Your next step in forming an LLC in Indiana is to appoint a Registered Agent, an individual or company authorized to receive legal and state mail on your behalf.
All Indiana LLCs must have a registered agent. Please include your registered agent’s name and address on your Certificate of Formation.
Registered Agent Requirements in Indiana
To comply with Indiana law, your LLC’s registered agent need to be a resident or business entity that maintains a physical address in Indiana. The “registered address” cannot be a P.O. box. It must be a real physical address that can be visited in person.
Registered agents can be individuals (like yourself or an employee of your LLC) or entities that provide this service. They must meet the following requirements:
- A registered agent must be provided by entities (or companies).
- It must have an address in Indiana.
- Agents must be on-site during regular business hours to accept documents.
Although you do not have to submit this form to the Secretary of State, your business must record it. Learn more about Indiana Registered Agents by reading our full guide.
A Registered Agent must be an Indiana resident or a corporation authorised to conduct business in Indiana, such as a registered agent service. You have the option of electing someone from your company, including yourself.
You must complete and file a Notice of Change of Registered Agent form with the Indiana Secretary of State, Business Services Division, to change your registered agent in Indiana. There is no filing fee for the Indiana Notice of Change of Registered Agent, which must be submitted by mail or in person.
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Wise Business Plans offers a free year of registered agent service when forming an LLC in Indiana.
Step 3. Prepare and File Articles of Organization
To create a Indiana LLC, you will need to file Articles of Organization with the Indiana Secretary of State Business Services Division. You may apply online, by mail, or in person.
If you choose one of our business formation services, we can handle this step for you.
The following information is typically required to create a Articles of Organization:
- Your LLC name and principal place of business.
- Name, address, and signature of the LLC’s registered agent
- Decide whether your Indiana LLC will be member-managed or manager-managed. Indicate the names and addresses of each member and manager.
- The reason for forming the LLC in Indiana.
- Name and address of the LLC’s organizer.
- The effective date of the certificate,
- The person forming the LLC must sign the Certificate.
Foreign LLCs: LLCs that are based in another state but intend to conduct business in Indiana must complete a form called the Qualification of Foreign LLC.
- The fee for filing online is $108 and for filing paper is $125.
Two Ways to File the Articles of Organization
The 1st option is:
Online filing through the Indiana Secretary Secretary of State Business Services Division
The 2nd option is:
Filing the Articles of Organization by Mail
There is a state filing fee of $95 online, $100 by mail payable to the Indiana Department of State. (nonrefundable)
Address to Mail
Secretary of State
Business Services Division
302 W. Washington St.
Indianapolis, IN 4620414
In a member-managed LLC, the members (owners) take on the business's daily responsibilities. Manager-managed LLCs are managed by managers who are elected by the members. Those who manage your LLC will have the authority to do a wide range of tasks-from hiring staff to opening bank accounts.
When an LLC conducts business in the state where it was formed, it is called a "domestic LLC". We normally refer to an LLC as a domestic LLC when we talk about it. When an existing LLC wishes to expand its business to another state, it must form a foreign LLC.
Step 4. Get a Certificate From the State
Upon filing your Articles of Organization, the secretary of state will review it. As soon as the Articles of Organization is approved, the LLC becomes a legal entity.
By obtaining this certificate, LLCs will be able to obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN), licenses, and business accounts.
Step 5. Write an Indiana LLC Operating Agreement
An operating agreement is a legally-binding document that sets out how your LLC will operate, from the voting process to mergers.
Operating agreements are not required in Indiana, but they are an essential part of your business.
Written operating agreements are helpful for different reasons, including resolving disputes over financial agreements and other potential litigation.
The LLC declaration can prove that your LLC is a separate entity, which can help preserve your limited liability.
An operating agreement ensures that all business owners are on the same page and reduces the possibility of future conflict.
How should an operating agreement be drafted?
The operating agreement should detail the LLC’s overall business purpose and other important matters, such as how the company will be taxed and how new members will be accepted. Legal agreements can clarify several important concerns, such as:
- Who makes decisions for the company, especially those who decide if partners disagree.
- Who is responsible for different aspects of the business as well as for strategic decisions.
- If a partner leaves the company, what will happen to their ownership interests in the corporation.
- The members and their contributions
- How profits and losses will be divided
- Procedures for admitting new members and removing outgoing members
In Indiana, you can include just about anything in your operating agreement, as long as it doesn’t violate the state law or the Articles of Organization.
No, Indiana does not require LLCs to have a legal document called an Operating Agreement in order to operate.
Although operating agreements are not required in Indiana, they are highly recommended. An operating agreement will help protect your limited liability status, prevent financial and managerial misunderstandings, and ensure that you, not state law, determine the rules that govern your business.
Step 6. Get an EIN for Your Indiana LLC
Basically, an employer identification number (EIN) is a social security number for your LLC in Indiana.
To identify your LLC for tax purposes, the Internal Revenue Service assigns a nine-digit Employer Identification Number (EIN). You can apply for your EIN either by mail or online.
An EIN is used for the following purposes:
- Manage state and federal taxes
- Create a business bank account
- Hire employees
Get an EIN Number in Indiana
Getting an EIN number is easy and free, There are two ways to get an EIN number in Indiana.
The 1st option is:
Apply online for an EIN from the IRS
The 2nd option is:
Get an EIN by Mail or Fax
Internal Revenue Service
Attn: EIN Operation
Cincinnati, OH 45999
If you form a one-member LLC, you only need to get an EIN if it will have employees or if you choose to tax it as a corporation rather than a sole proprietorship (disregarded entity). An EIN can be obtained by filling out an online application on the IRS website. There is no charge for filing.
A tax classification will be discussed with you when you obtain an EIN. In most cases, LLCs choose the default status.
Some LLCs can reduce their federal tax obligation by electing S corporation status. Consult with a local accountant to find out which option is best for you.
Step 7. File Annual Reports
Every two years, all Indiana LLCs must file a Business Entity Report with the Secretary of State. Every other year, in the month of your LLC’s formation anniversary, you must submit a report. If your LLC was formed on July 15 of an odd-numbered year, for example, your report would be due in July of each odd-numbered year after that.
Late Filings: While there are no penalties for late filing, failing to file a business entity report could result in your Indiana LLC being dissolved.
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What to do After Forming Your Indiana LLC
Keep your personal and business assets separate
Your personal assets (such as your home, car, and other valuables) may be at risk when your Indiana LLC is sued if they are mixed with your business accounts.
Here are some steps you can take to protect your LLC in Indiana:
1. Create a Business Plan:
If you have decided that a Indiana LLC will be a good choice for your business in Indiana, your next step is to create a business plan (although it is not required), so that you have a roadmap for what you will do and how you will accomplish it.
Free: Business Plans Examples
Do you need help creating a business plan? Check out these six free, proven business plan examples from different industries to help you write your own.
2. Open a Bank Account
As soon as your LLC is officially formed, you should open a business bank account. Why? Keeping separate bank accounts will help you maintain the legal distinction between the LLC and you (the owner).
Because LLCs are limited liability companies, creditors and litigants can’t take your assets.
It is essential for small business owners to partner with the right bank. Find out which banks offer the best business checking accounts, have low or no fees, ATM accessibility, and interest-earning accounts as well as online or mobile banking tools.
Recommended: Check out our business bank account page to learn which banks offer the best business check accounts, ATM access, interest-bearing accounts, and online and mobile banking options for businesses.
3. Obtaining a business credit card:
- Allows you to separate personal and business expenses.
- Develops your company’s credit history, which can be helpful to raise capital (e.g., small business loans) later.
4. Hiring a business accountant:
- It prevents your business from overpaying taxes while preventing penalties, fines, and other costly tax mistakes.
- Gives you more time to focus on your growing business by simplifying bookkeeping and payroll.
- Manage your business’s funding more effectively. Find out where extra profit or loss can be made
Getting Business Insurance for Your LLC
You can manage risks and grow your LLC with business insurance. Here are the most common types:
- General liability insurance protects your business from lawsuits. Most small businesses purchase general liability coverage.
- Professional liability insurance protects professionals and businesses from claims of negligence from their clients or customers. Liability insurance typically covers negligence, copyright infringement, personal injury, and more.
- Workers’ compensation insurance: Covers illnesses, injuries, and deaths resulting from a worker’s work.
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Let us help you with your business insurance needs.
- General business liability insurance
- Medical insurance
- Term life insurance
- Workers’ Comp
- Surety bonds
- Commercial auto
Create Your Business Website
A website is an important step in legitimizing your business. It is essential for all businesses. You are missing out on a large percentage of potential customers and revenue if you don’t have a website, even if your business is too small or in an offline industry.
More than 90% of consumers begin their search for products and services online. If you don’t have a website that is ready to welcome your customers, then they will simply find your competitors.
Here are the main reasons why you shouldn’t delay building your website:
- Every respectable firm has a website. When it comes to getting your firm online, size or sector isn’t a concern.
- Creating a basic website has never been easier, thanks to website builder tools like the GoDaddy Website Builder. To design a website, you don’t need to hire a web designer or developer.
Recommended: If you want to enhance your conversion rates and maximize revenue in order to help expand your business and meet objectives, you should always hire a professional business website design company to build your business website.
Wise Business Plans is a leading web design company, We have created over 2000 + websites across 20 countries for our clients but we are physically based in 7 major cities in the United States including Alabama web design, Pennsylvania, Las Vegas, Colorado Springs, Iowa, Michigan and San Diego.
Indiana LLC FAQs
The cost of forming a limited liability company (LLC) in Indiana is $95-$100. When the LLC's Articles of Organization are filed with the Indiana Secretary of State, this fee is paid. To form an LLC in Indiana on your own, use our free guide.
The corporate income tax in Indiana will be reduced to 4.9 percent. The state also has a number of programmes to help new businesses get started as well as existing businesses expand and grow. In most cases, forming an Indiana limited liability company (LLC) is the quickest and most straightforward way for entrepreneurs to start a business in Indiana.
The formation of an LLC may take up to 5-7 business days by mail and one day for online filing in Indiana. Expedited processing is also available for an additional fee.
Businesses must first file a dissolution petition with the Indiana Secretary of State. Please keep in mind that closing your business in INBiz only discharges your obligations to the Secretary of State's office. You are responsible for properly closing your company with all other agencies where it is registered.
A limited liability company (LLC) owner who files Articles of Incorporation with the Indiana Secretary of State can usually change the company's name by filing an amending document with the secretary of state.