What Is an Annual Report?
An annual report is a filing that provides details of your company's business activities over the previous year. Some states call annual reports for LLCs “Statements of Information.”
Annual reports give state governing authorities important information, including the names and addresses of directors or managing members of a corporation or LLC, as well as the company and Registered Agent address.
As a business manager, director or owner, you’re obliged to follow state regulations and meet certain requirements, one of which is to file an annual report for your LLC or corporation.
Some states only require you to file a report every two years, called a “biennial report.”
A formal annual report is required to be filed with your Secretary of State. Learn more about filing an annual report in our ultimate guide.
You may also need to create additional yearly reports for your investors, shareholders or stakeholders, but these business or financial reports are not the same as LLC or corporation annual reports.
Who Needs to File an Annual Report?
If you’ve incorporated a business — as an LLC, LLP, S Corp or C Corp — you must file an annual report (or equivalent report based on your state's schedule), normally with your Secretary of State. This applies no matter how big or small your business is.
Annual reports can be daunting and filing incorrectly (or not at all) can cause serious headaches and consequences later, such as late penalties, dissolution and loss of liability protection.
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Who Doesn’t Need to File an Annual Report?
Generally, sole proprietors and partnerships don’t have to file an annual report because the business is not a separate entity from the business owner.
What Does an LLC or Corporate Annual Report Contain?
Annual reports vary in complexity and typically include the following:
What’s the Purpose of an Annual Report?
The purpose of an annual report is to keep your state informed of your business’s activities throughout the previous year and declare any changes to the details or ownership of your business — for example, if the business has changed locations or has new directors or managers.
Annual reports also provide shareholders and any other interested people with information about your business’s financial performance.
Need to make changes to your business outside of the usual annual reporting time? No problem! You can file an Articles of Amendment form or have Incfile take care of it for you.
What Happens If I Don't File an Annual Report or Miss the Deadline?
If you don’t file your annual report or miss the deadline, you put your business at risk. Your state could impose a late penalty fine and your business could lose its “good standing.”
Further delaying filing means your business could be dissolved by your state agency and struck off the register. If this happens, you’ll no longer have liability protection and can’t continue as an LLC or corporation.
How to File Your Annual Report
If you need to file an annual report for your LLC or corporation, you can normally do so online through your state’s website.
In addition to filing your annual report, you’ll also need to pay a fee — these fees vary from state to state and could range between $50 and $400.
Some states will also require you to file other business documentation if important details of your business have changed.
When Is Your Annual Report Due?
In some states, annual reports need to be filed on a predetermined date for all entities regardless of the date of formation. Other states require the annual report to be filed on the anniversary date of formation.
The due dates for LLC and corporation annual reports vary from state to state. You can find your filing date on your state’s website.
Business and Financial Annual Reports
In addition to formally filing a corporate annual report, you may also need to produce business and financial reports for investors, directors, managers and other stakeholders.
Although there aren’t any “legal” requirements for what these reports should contain, there are certain conventions for what’s included.
Businesses exist to make a profit, so finances are usually at the forefront of business annual reports.
Annual business reports can be presented as:
An annual business report can also include several other areas:
Whether you’re filing a formal annual report for your LLC, S Corp or C Corp, or you’re creating other business and financial reports, it’s important to ensure that you understand exactly what’s required from you.
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