How to start an LLC in Ohio

Want to start an LLC business in Ohio? Here’s the six-step process you need to follow.

Over the years, a Limited Liability Company (LLC) has become the most popular legal entity for small businesses looking for flexibility and dual liability protection.

The reason for this is because it offers more benefits than other business structures, such as partnerships and corporations. Notably, LLCs have a favorable pass-through tax status, flexible management, and adaptable profit distributions.

How to set up an LLC in Ohio

In this short article, we will focus on the six-step process you ned to follow to start an LLC in Ohio. We will answer questions such as what documents should be prepared and how much does a LLC cost in Ohio. We hope this guide will help you have a kickstart in starting an LLC in Ohio.

Step 1: Think of a business name

To get started you need to come up with a business name that conforms to Ohio’s rules for LLC names. The major part of the business name is generally very flexible, but each state has a list of prohibited words, such as “city,” “insurance,” “corporation,” “incorporated.”

As an LLC, your business name must end with a designator (“LLC” or “Limited Liability Company). You also need to make sure your business name is not the same as another LLC on file in Ohio. To ensure yours is unique, do a thorough search of online directories and check out Ohio Secretary of State’s website. You may also opt for a name reservation which costs $39. 

Step 2: Pick a registered agent

The registered agent is the person you assign to receive all official correspondence for the LLC. It is crucial to confirm who this person will be before you file articles of organization because Ohio requests the registered agent’s name and address on the form.

Many new Ohio entrepreneurs choose to outsource this task. If you’re forming an LLC through an attorney, they may allow you to hire them for this role. Alternatively, some business legal websites will actually act as your registered agent for free the first year and only charge a small fee in future years.

Step 3: Publish a notice in your local newspaper

Depending upon Ohio’s requirements, you may be required to publicize, through the local newspaper, your intention to establish an LLC. Currently, this step is only required in Arizona, Nebraska, and New York. But things can change, so check with Ohio’s Secretary of State to make sure.

Step 4: File articles of organization

This is the move that essentially brings your LLC into existence. States request basic information about your business, which should not be hard to provide if you’ve thought through your business plan and structure.

You need to inform them of your business name, purpose, principal office address, the registered agent for receiving any legal documents (as mentioned earlier), and the initial members’ names. 

Step 5: Submit your articles of organization form

You must send this document to the Ohio Secretary of State with the filing fee, which amounts to $99. If you want to expedite your registration, you will need to pay a fee of between $100 to $300. Some states may also have a corporate tax separate from the filing fee you need to pay as you submit your documents.

Step 6: Create an agreement

Your business’ operating agreement outlines your management structure, including the ownership breakdown, member voting rights, duties and powers of managers and members, and how you will distribute profits and losses. Depending on Ohio’s guidelines, you can have either a verbal or written agreement. Many states don’t require one, but they’re a useful thing to have.

You can usually begin registering an LLC in a few hours

The details of forming an LLC differ slightly from state to state, but starting it is a quite simple process that can usually be done in a few hours, depending on your organizational structure’s complexity. We hope this will help you prepare the documents needed when you start your own LLC and inform you on how much an LLC costs in Ohio.