Required Licenses, Fees and Filing for Your Alabama LLC
Depending on the specifics of your Alabama business, you’ll be required to pay certain fees and fulfill different filing requirements. Some of these costs are payable to the Alabama Secretary of State, while others are due to the federal or Alabama government. We’ve summarized the most common requirements and fees here.
Note that Alabama business licenses and permits might need to be paid when you first form your business, on an ongoing schedule or on an ad hoc basis. Find more details below.
Alabama LLC Formation Filing and Costs
When you first incorporate your business in Alabama, you’ll need to file an LLC with the AL Secretary of State and pay an Alabama filing fee. Here are the current fees and filing times for Alabama:
||State Filing Time
||Expedited Filing Time
||15 Business Days
When you form your AL LLC through Incfile, we automatically forward this fee to the Alabama Secretary of State when we file your incorporation paperwork.
Some states allow you to form your LLC more quickly by paying a rush fee. You can compare state filing times and fees here, including expedited fees for Alabama.
Incorporate your Alabama LLC through Incfile today
Getting an Employer Identification Number for Your AL LLC
Every Alabama LLC should have a unique employer identification number (EIN). These are provided by the Internal Revenue Service, and you use them when filing taxes, opening a business bank account and paying employees. You can get one yourself at no cost from the IRS or have Incfile obtain one on your behalf.
Get an EIN for your Alabama LLC through Incfile
Foreign Qualification to Operate in a State Outside Alabama
If you’re expanding your Alabama LLC beyond the borders of the state, you will need a Foreign Qualification or Certificate of Authority to operate in another state. These are typically necessary if you have a physical presence, employees or banking in a different state than Alabama. Fees and requirements for foreign qualifications depend on each state’s rules. Incfile provides a complete Foreign Qualification service for any state.
Get a Foreign Qualification/Certificate of Authority through Incfile
Annual Reports and Fees for Your Alabama LLC
Most states need you to file an annual (or other periodic) report with their secretary of state. When you file your AL LLC annual report, you may need to pay a fee. Here are the annual filing requirements for Alabama:
Due: Annual Year: April 15th Fiscal Year: 3½ months after beginning of tax year
Note: LLCs elected to be taxed as corporations follow corporation rules.
Learn about your ongoing Alabama LLC filing requirements and business filing deadlines with our helpful Alabama filing lookup tool.
Incfile can also complete and file your Alabama Annual Report on your behalf.
Incfile’s Alabama Annual Report filing service
Alabama Business Licenses and Permits
Your Alabama LLC may need certain licenses and permits to comply with specific requirements. These business permits and licenses might be issued by Alabama, regional or federal organizations. Some of the associated fees only need to be paid once, while others have ongoing charges.
Permits and licenses vary based on:
The industry your Alabama LLC operates in (e.g., restaurants will need health permits)
The location of your Alabama LLC (state, county or city) (e.g., a license to conduct business from the city of Birmingham)
The type of business that you run (e.g., healthcare providers must meet HIPAA requirements)
You can research these permits and licenses yourself or use Incfile’s Business License Research Package, which includes:
A complete report on all the licenses, permits and tax registrations your Alabama LLC will need
The application forms you will need to file with the Alabama, regional and federal licensing authorities
Remember that operating your business without the required licenses can expose you to risks and fines from federal, Alabama and local governments.
Incfile’s Alabama Business License Research Package
An Operating Agreement for Your Alabama LLC
An Operating Agreement is a business document that covers how the business will be run, how managers and members are chosen, rights and duties of members and several other key areas.
An Operating Agreement is extremely useful for several reasons (learn about them here). If you’re interested in having your Operating Agreement created for you, Incfile can draft a general Operating Agreement template when you choose to form your Alabama business. You can choose to make changes to the template based on your unique requirements.
Ad Hoc Alabama Fees or Requirements for Your AL LLC
There are several other fees or requirements that you may need to meet during the life of your Alabama LLC. These ad hoc fees will only be payable in specific circumstances, which we’ve listed below.
To Obtain a Trade Name for Your Alabama LLC
If you want your AL business to trade under a different name, you can file a form with the Alabama Secretary of State. You will need to pay an Alabama filing fee. Incfile can file this form on your behalf.
Incfile’s Alabama Fictitious Name service
To Change the Alabama Registered Agent for Your AL LLC
Your Alabama LLC needs a Registered Agent, which must be appointed when you first incorporate your LLC. You can also switch to a new AL Registered Agent later. Incfile provides a complete Alabama Registered Agent service.
Incfile’s Alabama Registered Agent service
To Reserve a Name for Your Alabama LLC
If you don’t want to form your AL business right away, you can reserve a name with the Alabama Secretary of State. You will need to pay a small fee to do this.
To Amend Certain Facts About Your Alabama LLC
Your business formation documents state certain facts about your Alabama business when it was originally formed. Over time, these facts might change — if they do, you need to file “Articles of Amendment” with the Alabama Secretary of State. You can do this yourself or have Incfile complete the filing on your behalf.
Areas you might want to file Alabama Articles of Amendment for include:
Adding, removing or changing an Alabama LLC member or manager
Changing the business address of your LLC
Altering the stated business activities of your Alabama LLC
Incfile’s Alabama Articles of Amendment service
To Get a Certificate of Good Standing for Your Alabama LLC
Some organizations will request that you prove your Alabama LLC’s compliance with laws and tax requirements. If you need to prove you have met your commitments, you will need a “Certificate of Good Standing” from the Alabama Secretary of State. Incfile can obtain a certificate on your behalf.
Incfile’s Alabama Certificate of Good Standing service
The fees listed above detail all the charges that a standard AL LLC will be required to pay. In some unusual circumstances, there may be other one-off, periodic or ad hoc fees not listed above.
Of course, your Alabama LLC will also probably need to pay self-employment, payroll, federal, state and sales taxes, but we will cover that when we talk about taxes for AL LLCs.
FAQs About Alabama LLC Costs
What Happens to the State Fees That I Am Charged When Forming My Alabama LLC?
We charge you for this fee at cost and then pay the fee to the secretary of state on your behalf when forming your Alabama business.
Do I Need to Pay an Annual Report Fee Every Year?
Yes, Alabama requires you to file a report for your LLC every year.
Who Will I Get Business Licenses and Permits from for My Alabama LLC?
It depends on various factors including:
The type of business you run
Where you are located
Governing organizations in your industry
Federal, state and local regulations
That’s why our Business License Research Package is so useful. It explores all of these areas for you and provides a comprehensive overview of exactly what your Alabama LLC needs to be compliant.