How Much Does Starting an Illinois LLC Cost?
Legal business registration — and keeping your business in good standing — requires some investment. Some of these costs are due to the Illinois Secretary of State, while others are payable to the federal or other state government entity. We’ve summarized some of the most common requirements and fees in this section.
Note that Illinois business license and permit fees may need to be paid when you first form your business, on an ongoing schedule or on an ad hoc basis. Find more details below.
Initial Illinois LLC Fees
When you first start your business, you’ll need to file as an LLC with the Secretary of State and pay a fee. Here are the current Illinois LLC fees and filing times:
What are the fees and requirements to form a business in Illinois?
If you form through Incfile, we'll collect this fee from you, then forward it to the Secretary of State's office with your formation paperwork.
Employer Identification Number
Every LLC in the U.S. should get a unique Employer Identification Number (EIN) from the IRS. This number is provided by the IRS at no cost, and you’ll use it when you pay employees, file taxes and open a business bank account. You can get one yourself, or have Incfile do it for you.
When you want to do business in a state other than the one where your business is based, you must create a foreign LLC.
Illinois Foreign LLC Registration
Before you can bring an arm of your business from another state into Illinois, you must request Illinois Foreign Qualification. This means the state gives you permission to conduct business there.
To request registration of an Illinois Foreign LLC, you must complete an Application for Admission to Transact Business and pay a $150 filing fee. The state may have additional requirements so contact the Secretary of State for more information.
Foreign Qualification to Operate in Another State
If you plan to expand your Illinois LLC into another state, you’ll first need Foreign Qualification or a Certificate of Authority from that state. This is necessary if you'll have a physical presence, employees or banking in that state.
This process will likely entail completing an application and paying a filing fee, but each state has its own requirements. Before you start, compare state filing times and state filing fees so you can plan accordingly. Then contact the state government entity that administers business (usually the Secretary of State) to confirm their requirements and for specific instructions.
If you need assistance, Incfile provides complete Foreign Qualification service for all states.
Illinois Annual Report Requirements
Most states — including Illinois — require businesses to file an annual (or other periodic) report with their Secretary of State. When you file your annual report form, you’ll need to pay a fee of $78. Here are the Illinois annual report filing requirements:
Within 60 days immediately preceding first day of anniversary month.
*includes processing fee
Illinois Business License and Permit Requirements
As the owner of a business, it’s your responsibility to make sure you have the proper state, federal or local business licenses to operate your LLC. Some of the associated fees only need to be paid once, while others are ongoing charges.
Permits and licenses vary based on:
Illinois doesn’t require you to create an Operating Agreement for your LLC.
An Operating Agreement is a document that explains how the business will be run, how managers and members are chosen, rights and duties of members and several other key details of the business.
This document is beneficial in making sure you’re organized and prepared for any future events that may affect your business. We strongly recommend you create one to protect your business.
Other Potential Illinois LLC Fees or Requirements
There are several other fees or requirements that you may need to meet during the life of your LLC. These ad hoc fees will only be payable in specific circumstances, which we’ve listed below.
Reserving a Name for Your LLC
If you don’t want to form your LLC right away, you can reserve a business name for 90 days by filing a form with the Secretary of State and paying a fee of $25. First, perform an Illinois business search and learn about rules applicable to business names to ensure the one you want meets all state requirements.
Amending Certain Facts About Your LLC
Your business formation documents contain certain facts about your Illinois business when it is formed. Over time, these facts may change. If they do, you need to file Articles of Amendment with the Illinois Secretary of State and pay a $50 fee. You can do this yourself, or have Incfile file on your behalf.
Getting a Certificate of Good Standing in Illinois
Some organizations will ask that you provide evidence of your LLC’s compliance with laws and tax requirements. If you need to prove you are meeting your commitments, you’ll need a Certificate of Good Standing from the Secretary of State, which requires a $25 fee.
The fees listed above detail many of the charges a standard LLC will be required to pay. In some unusual circumstances, you may have to pay other one-off, periodic or ad hoc fees.
Of course, your LLC will also likely need to pay self-employment, payroll, federal, state and sales taxes. More information about taxes can be found on the Illinois Business Tax page.