Step 1) Name Your Tennessee LLC

Choose a Business NameBefore a Tennessee LLC can start operating as such, it has to have an official registered name that will distinguish it from the rest of the operating businesses in the area. In line with this, you are required to come up with a unique name.

To ensure that this name is not in use, before filing a Tennessee LLC, check the name you’ve chosen in the name search. Be sure that the name of your Tennessee business should have any of the following: ‘LLC’, ‘L.L.C.’, or ‘Limited Liability Company’.


Step 2) Choose a Registered Agent

Choose a Registered AgentWhen starting an LLC in Tennessee, a Registered Agent is a must.  A Registered Agent is state mandated to be officially registered as a TN LLC and for your company to stay compliant.

This position should be filled in by someone who has an address in Tennessee and must be present during office hours at all times at that address to receive legal documents from the Secretary of State as a representative of your business.

That said, you can hire a Registered Agent service and pay up to $160/year, or get an Tennessee Registered Agent free of charge when you incorporate your LLC with IncFile – which is $100 less than other online incorporation services.


Step 3) File the Articles of Incorporation

Register an LLCTo register an LLC in Tennessee, one has to file the Articles of Incorporation to the Secretary of State. When filling out your Tennessee LLC filing form, make sure to answer everything correctly, legibly, and accurately. Failure to do so many result to your form being rejected.

There are several ways to file the LLC: online application, print and mail, paper submission, or walk-in. To file online, you can visit the Tennessee Secretary of State website. Also, you can have the online form printed, filled out, and mailed to the following address:

Corporate Filing, 6th FL – Snodgrass Tower, 312 Rosa L. Parks Ave, Nashville, TN 37243

Filing Fee: $50 per member fee. Minimum fee of $300 and maximum of $3,000. Filing fee should be payable to the Secretary of State of Tennessee.


Step 4) Get an EIN for Your LLC

Get an EIN for Your LLCEIN stands for Employer Identification Number, and an LLC EIN is necessary if you want to operate a Tennessee LLC. An EIN is your business’ special identifying number that will be needed for all your operations and transactions.

To obtain a Tennessee EIN, you can check out the Internal Revenue website. Apply directly there, and after the entire process, you will already have your EIN.


Step 5) Open a Business Bank Account

Best Business Bank AccountThe next step to starting a Tennessee  business is to start a separate bank account. This is important because you will be able to keep your personal and business finances separate in the eyes of the law.

Plus, when tax time rolls around, you will be able to organize your obligations and handle everything with minimal stress. For the best business bank accounts, check out this roundup.


To-Do After Starting a Tennessee LLC

You’re almost there! Just a few more steps to follow, and you’ll finally be able to operate as an official LLC in the state of Tennessee. You need these few additional steps so you can be compliant.

1) Plan Your Business for Success

Write a Business PlanA business plan is a document that summarizes the whole operations of your business, your future goals, and how those goals can be achieved.

When you’re starting a Tennessee business, a business plan can also be instrumental in attracting investors. A good business plan for a Tennessee LLC is one where your business goals are clearly outlined and explain why it will be successful.

Writing a Business Plan Quick-Links


2) Take Care of Your Taxes, Licenses, and Regulations

Business LicensesIncorporating an LLC in Tennessee means that you have to adhere to Tennessee LLC taxes and business licenses.

Regardless of the nature of your business, you must strictly observe these requirement to avoid getting in serious trouble with the State and the IRS. There are a multitude of requirements when processing your business tax, so you can refer to our Tennessee business taxes and licensing guides to walk you through your Tennessee LLC tax requirements.


3) File Annual Reports for Your LLC in Tennessee

File Annual Reports & Publication RequirementsAs part of maintaining an LLC in Tennessee, the state requires that you submit an annual report of your business.

As long as your business is in operations, this report should be submitted every year. As a Tennessee LLC, you can go to the state’s website, and file the report online or through the usual print and mail method.


4) Create an Operating Agreement

Create an Operating AgreementAn LLC Operating Agreement outlines your business’ operations, and it protects your legal rights as an official operating business in Tennessee. Although this is not a state mandated requirement, it is highly recommended because it can really shield your business even in the long run.

Here is s a free LLC Operating Agreement that you can edit and customize to fit your business’ specific requirements. You can also sign it online.


5) Build a Business Website

Build a Business WebsiteAs you start an LLC in Tennessee it’s important to have a business website. This will give you a solid online presence and credibility aspect. Thankfully you don’t have to be tech savvy to start a website since there are platforms like WordPress that are easy to get started.

Learn how to build a business website through this walkthrough guide.

This article is not a legal advice as it is only an information guide. As such, for questions and inquiries about starting an LLC in Tennessee or specifics on the Tennessee LLC incorporation, or startups in general – this should be taken up with your lawyer.

Need Help Forming Your LLC?

Have a reliable LLC filing service like IncFile or LegalZoom do the work for you. Just answer a few questions about your business and they’ll take care of the paperwork.

Although both offer virtually the same service, IncFile is $100 less and our top pick. Enjoy!

Visit IncFile Or Visit LegalZoom