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A limited liability company is born when the articles of organization are filed with the Secretary of State’s office. In some states they are called the certificate of organization or certificate of formation.  Before you file your articles of organization and formally create an LLC there are a few things to consider.

Where to Form an LLC

A Limited liability company can be created in any state. Most people choose to form their LLC in their home state.  If you register in another state you will need to register as a “foreign LLC” which can be more expensive and will require having to pay someone to serve as a registered agent. You need to have a very good reason for going out of your home state.

Choosing a Name

Although the rules can vary a little bit by state generally the name of a limited liability company will end with the words Limited Liability Company, LLC, or Ltd Liability Co.  It is permissible to use someone’s name as part of the company name but the name should not be misleading in any way or be too close to the name of an existing LLC.

It is important to do some research to see if the name that you want to use has already been taken. If you’re using a business registration service to help with registering your LLC they may also have a service available to help you check the availability of your desired name.

Members and Management

A limited liability company is managed by one or more of the members. In an LLC a member is synonymous with an owner. The members are responsible for operation of the company. The specifics of each individual member’s responsibilities are typically outlined in the articles of organization. A manager is usually a person who has been chosen by the members of the LLC to operate as a manager of the company


A limited liability company is not required to have officers. With that being said, members may choose to appoint officers to handle business operations.

Registered Agent

Every LLC is required to have a registered agent. The registered agent is the person who has been designated to receive notice if the LLC is sued. The registered agent must be an adult living in the state where the LLC is formed or a company that is registered with the Secretary of State’s office in the state of formation.

These are a number of important considerations before proceeding with filing the articles of organization or Limited Liability Company.

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