LLC Cost in North Carolina – How Much to Pay for an LLC


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Perhaps you are hoping to form an LLC in NC. People assume that starting an LLC is difficult and costly. However, it’s generally not difficult, and the cost would vary across states. We have all the info you need to know about the cost of forming an LLC, particularly the LLC cost in North Carolina.

North Carolina LLC Cost of Filing

Here are the costs involved in forming an LLC in North Carolina.

Cost of Filing Formation Certificates

The North Carolina Certificate of Formation is responsible for the majority of the cost, which could also vary depending on whether you’re forming a domestic LLC or a foreign LLC. Still, you can file both at the North Carolina Secretary of State

North Carolina Domestic LLC

  • Online Filing costs $125.
  • Annual Report filing costs $200
  • Name Reservation fee costs $30
  • By Mail: Fill out the application form, and send it to NC Secretary of State Business Registration, P.O. Box 29622, Raleigh, North Carolina 27626-0622. Costs $125.

North Carolina Foreign LLC

  • Online Filing costs $250.
  • Annual Report filing costs $200
  • Name Reservation fee costs $20
  • By Mail: Fill out the application form, and send it to NC Secretary of State Business Registration, P.O. Box 29622, Raleigh, North Carolina 27626-0622. Costs $250.

Note that filing online is ideal, not only because you need to go to the Secretary of State office, but also it would be faster. You won’t have to wait in a queue in doing so.

North Carolina LLC Formation Service or Registered Agent Fee

You need a registered agent to form an LLC in North Carolina, hence, added costs for service fees. Here are three of the best LLC services on our list that will provide you with registered agents to ease your worries.

LLC Service

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$99 per year

  • Standalone registered agent service

  • Take you through all steps

  • LLC formation package available

$125 per year

  • 1 year free service along with LLC formation package

  • Fast service

  • Flat rate, no hidden cost

Business Permits and Licenses 

The business licenses depend on your business’s activity and location and are renewed yearly. As such, the cost will vary. Check the North Carolina Department of Revenue for regulatory boards or agencies requiring licensing. 

Taxes payable to North Carolina Department of Revenue

An LLC in North Carolina has to pay several State as well as Federal Taxes at the stage of formation & during its operation. Read this article to know more about these taxes. The North Carolina State Department of Revenue charges several taxes on an LLC. The two main State Taxes are:

State Income Tax

An LLC owner has to pay state tax on any amount he draws via his LLC. The earnings are taxed through the personal tax return. The standard income tax rate in North Carolina is 5.25%. One can apply for all the standard allowances and deductions.  

State Sales & Use Tax 

Every LLC which is a service provider or is a seller of tangible goods is bound to the sales & use tax in North Carolina. The LLC has to collect taxes & then pay those to the North Carolina Department of Revenue. The Sales & Use Tax is different in different regions, counties, & cities.

The current state sales & use tax rate on LLC in North Carolina is 4.75%

Federal Self-Employment Tax

As the name suggests, Federal Self-Employment Tax is paid by all the LLC Business members or managers. This kind of tax applies to all the earnings a member withdraws from the business. 

The Federal self-employment tax rate in North Carolina is 15.3 percent. 

Federal Income Tax

The Federal Income Tax is calculated on the basis of the earnings, the income tax bracket your LLC falls, the deductions, & the manner/ mode of filing.

Federal Income Tax is levied on all the profits your LLC makes minus the deductions & allowances such as Healthcare or Retirement Plans.

Employee & Employer Taxes

If you have several employees who draw monthly salaries, there will be some added Employee-Employer taxes. These tax implications vary, depending on various factors, e.g., the amount, number of employees, etc.

Cost Comparison Between States

North Carolina is surrounded by many states, namely Virginia, South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, etc. Each of these states has a different rate of taxes levied on LLCs. Let us take a look at this comparative chart.

StatesFiling FeeAnnual/Biennial FeeSales Tax
North Carolina$125$2004.75%
Virginia$104$505.3%
South Carolina$110$106%
Georgia$100$254%
Tennessee$520$5007%

Based on the kind of industry you LLC operated in, your LLC will be liable to some other taxes & duties. For Example, if your LLC is in the sector of import & export, you have to pay the import-export duty.

You should consult with a professional to verify the tax rates or business costs of registering an LLC in North Carolina.

Other Costs

How Much Does It Cost to Maintain an LLC in North Carolina

To maintain an LLC in North Carolina you will need to pay an annual fee of $200 along with state sales & use tax at 4.75%, state income tax at 5.25% and federal taxes.

Choosing the name of your business is an important step to creating a successful LLC. Then you will need to pay annual fees for a registered agent. While serving as the registered agent is a big responsibility, a reputable registered agent service can help you with this task. Make sure to choose a registered agent who will be able to handle all of the paperwork and fees for you.

There are several fees associated with the startup of an LLC. Among them are the filing fees for the Articles of Organization and the Annual Report. The annual report is necessary for ensuring the state has up-to-date information on your business. This document costs about $200 and must be filed by Apr. 15. Filing it properly includes providing information on the business’ official name, the type of business it is, the names and addresses of managers and members, and any special circumstances.

The cost of filing the Articles of Incorporation in North Carolina is roughly the same as that for the Articles of Organization. These papers cost around $125 each and can be filed with the Secretary of State within six to fourteen business days. For an additional $100, you can obtain expedited processing or a guarantee same-day turnaround. In addition to these fees, LLCs must also pay state and federal business taxes.

An LLC’s operating agreement is crucial. The operating agreement must define how the business will run and assign financial responsibilities to the members. This operating agreement can be amended to reflect future changes. It is important to keep detailed records of financial transactions. You must also keep information on employees and contractors. Keeping records of all business transactions will ensure the business’ legality. This document will ensure that your business will be protected in the future.

In addition to the annual filing fee, LLC owners in North Carolina must pay taxes and file annual reports with the Secretary of State. While most states have a standardized regulatory system, some may charge additional fees to cover costs. Filing the annual reports will cost you approximately $200 and is required every year after the first year of existence. If you fail to file the report on time, you may have to pay additional fees, which could lead to a costly restart of the process.

Once you’ve selected a name for your business, you can file Articles of Organization with the NC Secretary of State. In North Carolina, the filing process will take approximately three to five business days. If you file your documents in the mail, you will have to pay a fee of $125. You can also pay a fee to expedite the processing of your documents. Regardless of whether you choose a business name for your LLC, it is crucial to know what you are getting yourself into.

F.A.Qs

Can I start an LLC for free?

It is possible to form an LLC without professional help, but forms still have associated costs, regardless of where your LLC is formed.

Is an LLC expensive?

It is difficult to say whether forming an LLC is expensive. Nevertheless, the cost could be anywhere from $40 to $500. If you refuse to hire professionals, you’ll still have expenses like form fees to cover.

Does an LLC need a bank account?

The need to separate personal money from business funds, thus necessitating the creation of a business bank account for your LLC.

In Conclusion

The cost of North Carolina is much lower compared to other forms of business. Apart from the state filing fees and annual taxes, you might bear the cost of the registered agent. Compare the price of professional LLC services and choose the most affordable one.

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