Alabama Foreign LLC – Qualification and Registration


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If you already have an LLC in another state and want an LLC in Alabama, then starting an LLC would be somewhat different. You must register as a foreign LLC. We have here a guide on how you can qualify and register for a foreign LLC in Alabama

Forming an Alabama Foreign LLC

A foreign LLC does not need to be a company from another country but a business formed under the laws of another state. To start a foreign LLC in Alabama, you need to register it with the Alabama Secretary of State.

Step 1: Choose Alabama Foreign LLC Name

Obtain a name reservation certificate and submit it with your foreign qualification requirements at the Alabama Secretary of State. Your LLC’s legal name outside of Alabama will be listed on the application, along with the name it will use in Alabama. Take note of the requirements for naming your LLC

Check the name availability at Alabama’s business entity names and reserve your LLC name.

Step 2: Select Alabama Foreign LLC Registered Agent

You’ll need a registered agent to form a foreign LLC in Alabama and take note that an Alabama registered agent must have a local address. Here are three of the best LLC services on our list: 

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Step 3: File Registration of Alabama Foreign LLC 

Fill out and submit a Foreign LLC Application for Registration form via email to [email protected] or by mail to Alabama Secretary of State Business Services, P.O. Box 5616, Montgomery, Alabama 36103-5616.

Include the following:

  • LLC’s full legal name. 
  • A fictitious name or a DBA (only if your LLC’s legal name is not available); Attach a statement of adoption of the fictitious name signed by all LLC members.
  • LLC’s principal office and mailing addresses.
  • LLC formation state and date.
  • Registered agent’s name and address in Alabama
  • Date when your LLC will start operations in Alabama.
  • Credit card information on the last page of the form for the $150 application fee. 

The LLC cost in Alabama, even for foreign LLCs will differ between online filing and by mail.

Step 4: Determine How Your Alabama Foreign LLC is taxed

Foreign LLCs are also subjected to the Alabama Business Privilege Tax, and they must file LLC annual reports.

Note that forming a foreign LLC would be good for your business as you can legally operate in a different state thus reaching a larger market and opening more opportunities for higher profit.

Steps to Filing Alabama Foreign LLC Online

Time needed: 5 minutes.

With the help of filing a foreign LLC, it will be profitable for you to operate one business entity in different states. The prospect is pretty easy, and if you have an Employee Identification Number (EIN), it would be like a plus point for a speedy process. Let’s move on to the steps to file a foreign LLC in Alabama online.

  1. Visit the website of the Alabama Secretary of State

    The very first step that you have to do to file the foreign LLC is to get to the Alabama Secretary of State official website. Once you get to the website, you need to select the options of “services” and then the option of business entities. Click on online services in the menu that appeared, after this, you will reach the webpage of Secretary of State Online Services.
    LLC in Alabama Step 1

  2. Select the option of foreign business filing

    Now that you are filing the foreign LLC in the state of Alabama, you need to click on the option of foreign business filing.
    LLC in Alabama Step 2

  3. Click on Continue to Application

    After clicking on the “foreign business filing”, you will get to the page which shows the filing fee of different aspects. You will see that the cost to file a foreign LLC is $150 as is mentioned there. You need to scroll down and click on “Continue to Application.”
    LLC in Alabama Step 3

  4. Add the contact information

    When you click on the continue button, you will see the required contact information. You will have to fill in the contact name, phone number, email address, country, mailing address, city, state, and Zip-code. Be sure to fill in the right information. Take note that the address field is not the one for your LLC address, but the address where you live or can be contacted. Press continue to get to another page.
    LLC in Alabama Step 4

  5. Name reservation

    You have to reserve the name in the state of Alabama even if you have done that before. Qualifying the name is important because it’s possible that the name is already being used by another company. So, select the name reservation option and enter the name.
    LLC in Alabama Step 5

  6. Select the type of entity

    As we know there are two types of entities. It becomes crucial to mention the type of entity and reservation. You need to select the option of “Foreign” here. Then you need to move on to the next point and select “Limited Liability Company (LLC)” because you want a foreign LLC. Now, fill in the legal name of your business and press continue.
    LLC in Alabama Step 6

  7. Step to file online

    Lastly, file the foreign LLC by clicking on the “File of formation data” option and continue with formalities.
    LLC in Alabama Step 7

  8. Requestor Form

    As you click on the ‘Registration Formation Data,’ you will land on the Requestor page. You have to indicate who is requesting to form a Foreign LLC. Mention the details and click on Continue to go to the next page.
    LLC in Alabama Step 8

  9. Review Reservation

    On the next page, you will see the entire LLC details you have entered. You can review the details, and if needed, you can go back and change them. If all information is correct, check the box below. Click on the Next button to go to the next page.
    LLC in Alabama Step 9

  10. Formation and Existence

    On the next page, mention the formation and existence of your LLC. The state/country where your LLC is located, the date of formation, and the date when the foreign LLC in Alabama will start operation.
    LLC in Alabama Step 10

  11. Principal address

    This page will require information about the physical address in Alabama.
    LLC in Alabama Step 11

  12. Registered Agent

    You need to nominate your registered agent. Take note that the agent must have a registered address in Alabama.
    LLC in Alabama Step 12

  13. Review Summary

    Here, you will be shown a summary of everything you have encoded thus far. Check the details carefully before proceeding to the next step.
    LLC in Alabama Step 13

  14. Payment

    After completing the required information, you will reach the Payment page. Make the payment of $150 using your VISA, MasterCard, or American Express card. You will receive the final notification of registering the LLC and payment to confirm that your Alabama Foreign LLC has been registered successfully.
    LLC in Alabama Step 14

It is convenient plus easy to file for the foreign LLC if you are doing it online. The steps are very easy and that’s why it’s possible to go along with the steps and form the foreign LLC in Alabama. 

After Forming Alabama Foreign LLC

Here are added things you need to accomplish after forming your Alabama Foreign LLC

  1. Obtain business licenses. Find the business licenses you’ll need using the Business License Search.
  2. File LLC annual reports and Business Privilege Tax.
  3. Pay State Taxes like sales tax; you’ll need an EIN for your LLC

How Much Does It Cost to Register a Foreign LLC in Alabama

To register as a foreign LLC in Alabama, you can file through mail or online by paying a filing amount of $150 to the Alabama Secretary of State.

There are two main steps to registering a foreign limited liability company in Alabama. First, you must hire a registered agent. This person acts as a point of contact for important legal documents. He or she must be 18 years or older, and have a physical address in Alabama. In addition, you must pay a $150 processing fee. You can pay this fee online. You should note that this fee includes a convenience fee of 4%.

The second step is obtaining the Certificate of Formation. In Alabama, you can only register a foreign LLC if you are expanding your business to the state. The application fee is $150 and you can pay by check, money order, or credit card. Once you have the certificate of authority, you can begin conducting business in Alabama.

The process is easy and fast. However, it is important to keep track of tax requirements. You should pay the initial business privilege tax within 2.5 months of operating and pay it annually by April 15th. Using a service provider will help you comply with these requirements and keep your business up to date.

Foreign LLCs need to be registered with the Alabama Department of Revenue if they are going to do business in the state. However, this does not mean that the foreign LLC cannot conduct business. The foreign LLCs must file an Application for Registration of Foreign LLCs and pay $150 for the filing fees. Additionally, the foreign LLC must pay an annual report fee of $150 to the state’s Secretary of State. The annual fee will depend on the total amount of income that passes through the LLC to the members.

Once you’ve submitted the Certificate of Formation form, you must select a Registered Agent and file an Operating Agreement. These documents will protect your personal assets and the assets of your business. Once you’ve filed these documents, you can choose an LLC name. This fee will be between $200 and $300, and you can pay by check, money order, or credit card. You can also hire a legal professional to draft an operating agreement for your LLC.

Once you’ve decided on a business name, you should research whether it’s available in your area. If you want to reserve a business name for one year, you can pay a $25 fee. You should also research the requirements for business name registration in your state. If you want to make changes to the business, you must file Articles of Amendment. You can file this document yourself or with an online service such as Incfile.

When you’re finished with setting up your Alabama LLC, you’ll have to file annual reports and pay a business privilege tax. The amount of this tax depends on the net worth of your business.

F.A.Qs

What is a foreign LLC in Alabama?

If your LLC is formed under the laws of another state, it is referred to as a foreign LLC in Alabama.

Do I need a foreign LLC?

Businesses incorporated outside of the state where they operate must have “foreign qualifications” issued in the other states.

What is the main difference between domestic and foreign LLC?

A domestic LLC is a company registered in Alabama as an LLC. The entity type that has a physical presence in another state is a foreign LLC.

In Conclusion

Starting a foreign LLC in Alabama does not require a lot of documentation or tasks. However, it is always good to seek help from a professional when it comes to running your business. Get a professional registered agent and form your foreign LLC anywhere without a hassle.

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