Kentucky Foreign LLC – Qualification and Registration

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If you already have an LLC in another state and want a Kentucky LLC, 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 Kentucky

Forming an Kentucky 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 Kentucky, you need to register it with the Kentucky Secretary of State.

Step 1: Choose Kentucky Foreign LLC Name

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

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

Step 2: Select Kentucky Foreign LLC Registered Agent

You’ll need a registered agent to form a foreign LLC in Kentucky and take note that a Kentucky registered agent must have a local address. Here are three of the best LLC services on our list that will provide you with registered agents to ease your worries: 

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Step 3: File Registration of Kentucky Foreign LLC 

Fill out and submit a Foreign LLC Application for Registration form via email through the Secretary of State page or by mail to Michael Adams Room 154, Capitol Building, Office of the Secretary of State 700 Capital Avenue, P.O. Box 718, Frankfort, KY 40602-0718.

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 Kentucky
  • Date when your LLC will start operations in Kentucky
  • Credit card information on the last page of the form for the $150 application fee. 

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

Step 4: Determine How Your Kentucky Foreign LLC is taxed

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

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 Kentucky Foreign LLC Online

Time needed: 5 minutes.

When you are registering for the foreign LLC in the State of Kentucky, you will have to submit your Application for Registration of foreign LLC with the Secretary of State which costs $90. After approval, you will receive a Verification Certificate from the State Office. The State offers offline as well as online filing options. We have explained the aspects you need to cover when you apply for Kentucky Foreign LLC.

  1. Visit the official website of the Secretary of State of Kentucky

    You must visit the website of the Secretary of State of Kentucky. The website will assist you to form an LLC in the State and in an easy manner through online mode. The Kentucky Online Gateway (KOG) portal is available on the Secretary of State website which provides a one-stop solution to different business services.

  2. Sign in to your Account

    On the following page, different sign-in options are available. If you already have an account with the Secretary of State office, click on ‘Use my Account’. On the next page, click on the ‘Sign in’ tab and proceed to enter your login credentials such as user email and password, and click “Sign In”. If you do not have an account, click on the “Create an Account” option available on the page.

  3. Create your Account

    On the Create Account page, enter the required details, such as First name, last name, Email address, password, contact details, address, verification question, and answer. Next, click on the ‘Sign up’ tab.

  4. Follow the instructions

    After your account has been created on the website, continue to log in with your username and password. Proceed to file the application for registration of your business LLC as directed on your User Account page. Fill in all the required information.

  5. Review the information

    Before proceeding to submit your application, review the information to be accurate and correct to your knowledge to avoid any future rejections.

  6. Make the payment

    After you complete all the details and thoroughly review your application, proceed to make the payment for the filing fee of your LLC Application.

    You can also submit the application offline via mail. Download the Application Form PDF. Fill in the required details. Make the check or money order of $90 payable to the Kentucky State Treasurer. Attach all the documents and mail them to the following address: Michael Adams, Secretary of State, P.O. Box 718, Frankfort, KY 40602-0718.

After Forming Kentucky Foreign LLC

Here are added things you need to accomplish after forming your Kentucky 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

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 Kentucky. 

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

To register as a foreign LLC in Kentucky, you can file through mail by paying a filing amount of $90 to the Kentucky State Treasurer.

How much does it cost to register a foreign limited liability company in Kentucky? The cost of forming a foreign limited liability company in Kentucky depends on the number of owners, and the type of LLC. An LLC registered in another state will usually have lower filing fees than a foreign LLC. You will still need to file an Annual Report, however, so you should make sure to complete the process as soon as possible.

In addition, you must make sure that the name of your business is different from the name of other businesses registered in Kentucky. An assumed name can be helpful. If you are unsure of the name of your business, contact the Secretary of State’s office. You can reserve a name for 120 days. You can also renew a name that you have reserved. The application will cost you $15.

You will also need to pay for a Certificate of Good Standing, which certifies that you’re making all of your tax payments and filings. This certificate will cost you $10. The Secretary of State will also require you to obtain certain business licenses. In Kentucky, LLCs are required to pay a $10 filing fee to maintain their status as an LLC. You can also pay a fee to change the address of your registered agent by filing a Statement of Change of Registered Agent or Change of Registered Office Address form.

The name of your foreign LLC must be unique from the names of other businesses in Kentucky. You can check whether a particular name is available online or by contacting the Secretary of State’s office. If it is, you should apply for a name reservation. You can reserve a name for 120 days and pay $15 for the filing. If you want to keep the name of your foreign limited liability company after 120 days, you can purchase it through a local bank.

After you have obtained an EIN, you should file your first Annual Report. This report must be filed with the Secretary of State’s office. In Kentucky, you must file the Annual Report every year. The filing window is between January 1 and June 30. The filing fee is $15 and can be paid online. The process is simple and quick. You can get more information from a Kentucky LLC guide.

Once your company is registered in Kentucky, you should choose a registered agent to receive important documents. Make sure your agent is available during regular business hours and has the proper address. Maintaining a registered agent in Kentucky can cost you fifty to one hundred dollars a year. Some companies choose to operate under a different name than their legal name – for example, Nike was once called Blue Ribbon Sports, and it’s safe to assume that Nike was originally a different name.

The cost of registering a foreign limited liability company in Kentucky depends on the type of business you’re operating. While the state of your home state does not levy corporate income tax, Kentucky requires that your company maintain a certificate of good standing. The certificate is issued as proof of your business’s compliance with Kentucky law. While you don’t pay taxes on the profits generated by your foreign limited liability company, you will need to pay a Limited Liability Entity Tax (LLET) after one year.


What is a foreign LLC in Kentucky?

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

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 Kentucky 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 Kentucky 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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