When it comes to forming a business in Michigan, there are a few different options. From a legal perspective, there are three main types of Michigan for-profit business entities: LLCs, S Corporations or C Corporations. For many entrepreneurs, we believe an LLC provides the right ratio of liability protection and ease of administration.
In order to create an LLC in the state of Michigan, there are some minimum requirements you must meet. These are a completed set of Articles of Organization, a business name and a fee you pay to the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA). We recommend taking some other steps before formally starting your LLC:
- Research your target market to make sure there’s a demand for the products and services you provide.
- Read industry guides to give you a starting point in your niche.
- Create a comprehensive business plan that defines the most important aspects of your Michigan business.
- Write an Operating Agreement that covers how you will run your LLC.
After you’ve created your Michigan LLC, you will also need to review your business license requirements, understand ongoing filing needs, set up a separate business bank account and get an accountant.
In Michigan, you register a business by completing and filing your Articles of Organization with the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs. You will need to gather information about your business, fill out the form and send it to LARA along with your filing fee. This will formally create your LLC in Michigan.
You can file your Articles of Organization on the LARA website or mail it in. Alternatively, Incfile can guide you through every step of the process by getting details from you and filing the form on your behalf — for free! There’s no additional charge for our basic LLC filing service, so all you need to do is pay the Michigan state filing fee.
And get a free Registered Agent for a year.
At the time of writing the fee charged by the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs is $50. You can always check the latest Michigan filing fees here. You can also pay anywhere from $50-$1000 in additional fees for expedited filing through Incfile, which will create your LLC faster. The amount of the expedited fee is dependent on how quickly you want your filing processed. Some LLC filing services do charge you extra to prepare and submit your filing documents, but at Incfile, we do this for free — so you only pay the state fee.
Once you’ve gathered all of your information together and filed your Articles of Organization (or had Incfile do it for you), it can take up to 2 weeks for the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs to process and legally create your LLC. If you pay an additional $50-$1000 expedited fee, your LLC can be formed within 24 hours for the lowest fee, or as little as 1 hour if you pay the highest fee.
The name of your Michigan LLC needs to be unique, so you’ll need to check if another business is already using it. You can do that via the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs website, or by using our fast and simple Business Name Search tool.
Find out using Incfile’s Business Name Search Tool.
Try Incfile’s Business Name Generator to brainstorm ideas.
There are a few ways to register your Michigan LLC name.
- If you’re creating a new business and your business name is unique in Michigan and meets state naming rules, you simply include it in your Articles of Organization.
- If you want to change the legal name of your business, file a Certificate of Amendment with the LARA Department.
- If you just want to do business under a different name, file a Certificate of Assumed Name with the Michigan LARA Department, or we can do that on your behalf.
If you want to prevent people from using your business name across the U.S., you can file a trademark for the name. We can help.
In several other states, the official documents that you file to legally form a corporation or LLC might be known as Articles of Incorporation. In Michigan, this document is called your Articles of Organization, and it performs the same functions as the Articles of Incorporation.
No, the State of Michigan does not have a Series LLC offering. A Series LLC is a special type of LLC where you create one “overall” business and then have individual, series LLCs within it, each counted as separate legal entities.
Yes, all legal business entities in Michigan, including LLCs, must have a Registered Agent at all times. Here at Incfile, we provide a free Michigan Registered Agent service for the first year if you file through us.
Or get your first year free when you incorporate your business through us.
If you wish to change your Michigan Registered/Resident Agent you can do so by filing a Certificate of Change with the LARA Department. Here at Incfile, we provide free Michigan Registered Agent service for the first year if you file through us. If you’ve been using a different Registered Agent and want to switch to us, we’ll file the Certificate of Change on your behalf.
Have Incfile file the paperwork for you.
If you need to know the Registered Agent of a specific Michigan business, you can perform a Michigan Registered Agent search within the state's business database.
As an LLC, any business profits you earn will be reported on your personal 1040 filing and reported and taxed as “pass-through” income. You will typically need to pay:
- Self-employment or payroll tax on all business profits
- Federal income tax on profits after you meet your tax-free allowance
- Sales tax for selling taxable products and services
Michigan charges a 6 percent state sales and use tax on all retail sales, leases and rentals of most goods. You will also need to pay sales tax if you provide a taxable service. You can find a full list of taxable services here.
You will need to apply for a sales tax license with the Michigan Department of Treasury. This process is easily completed online.
The base rate for Michigan sales tax is 6 percent, and there may be additional sales tax depending on your region, county or city. Once you know your overall sales tax amount, calculate the value of all your taxable products and services. Then, multiply that by your sales tax rate to understand how much you will need to pay.
Once your LLC’s sales tax application is approved, you will receive a letter with instructions on how often you must file a sales tax return and pay sales taxes. Returns and payments may be due monthly, quarterly or annually.
Some states levy a tax on companies simply for the privilege of doing business. In Michigan this is called the Michigan Business Tax (MBT). In Michigan, this tax is imposed on the business income of all taxpayers (not just corporations) with business activity in Michigan.
If you're creating an LLC in Michigan it's likely that you'll need some type of business license in order to operate. The types of business licenses you need will vary depending on your type of business, industry, location and various other factors. We can research the types of business licenses you might need for you.
We hope you’ve found this Michigan LLC FAQ useful. If you’ve used our services and have a question that isn’t answered here, let us know and we’d be happy to help.