Tennessee LLC Cost

We’ve compiled the most common fees so you know exactly what to expect when starting your Tennessee LLC.

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Start Your LLC in Tennessee

FAQs on how to determine Tennessee LLC costs

  • To get started with your Tennessee LLC, you’ll file your Articles of Organization with the Secretary of State. Filing your LLC’s Articles of Organization with the state is what legally creates the LLC. Your Articles of Organization require certain information, including a name that is different from other LLC names in the state and a designation of a Tennessee Registered Agent. 

    We can help you form your Tennessee LLC filing.  We offer a Tennessee LLC Formation Service, which costs just $0 plus state fees.

  • The average cost to start a business in Tennessee can include costs aside from filing your formation documents with the state. The fee for filing your Tennessee LLC’s Articles of Organization is only one of several costs you may encounter when starting your LLC. We describe many of the possible Tennessee LLC costs below:

    Tennessee LLC Filing Fee

    $307 to $3,000: Tennessee’s LLC filing fee varies depending on the number of members in the LLC. A Tennessee LLC costs a $50 filing fee for each LLC member, with a minimum cost of $307. Whether you have one or six members, you must pay at least $307to file your Articles of Organization. However, if you have more than 60 members, you’ll pay only $3,000 as your Tennessee LLC filing fee.

    Tennessee LLC Name Reservation

    $20: Sometimes, a business would like to reserve its prospective name before officially filing its Articles of Organization. While not required, some LLCs include the cost of an Application for Name Reservation in their assessment of how much an LLC is in Tennessee. Paying this fee to reserve your LLC’s prospective name will ensure that no one else takes it while you compile the information you need for your Articles of Organization.

    Tennessee Business License Registration

    $15:  Tennessee LLCs must pay a business license registration fee to the city or county where they are located.

    Tennessee Business Taxes

    $22 minimum: Most LLCs in Tennessee or LLCs that do business in Tennessee have to register with the Tennessee Department of Revenue. The Tennessee LLC then must pay a minimum tax of $22 per location yearly. See the Tennessee Department of Revenue tax schedule to determine how much your LLC will have to pay.

    Tennessee Registered Agent

    Free: Tennessee requires LLCs to have a Registered Agent. A Registered Agent is a person or entity with a physical office within the state and will accept legal documents on behalf of the LLC. You can serve as your LLC’s Registered Agent if you can perform these duties. However, you should keep in mind that you must be available during regular business hours to accept legal documents for your LLC.

    When considering what it costs to start a business in Tennessee, many LLCs include the cost of hiring a professional Registered Agent in their assessment. This way, they can delegate this time-consuming task to someone outside of the LLC’s principal office.

    If you want to hire a Tennessee Registered Agent but don’t know where to start, you’re in luck. We can help match you with a Tennessee Registered Agent that will meet your Tennessee LLC requirements.

  • The average cost to start a business in Tennessee may include more than just the Tennessee LLC filing fee and taxes. Below are additional fees that your LLC may encounter when starting up in Tennessee.

    Certificate of Existence

    A Certificate of Existence is a document issued by the Tennessee Secretary of State showing that your LLC is in good standing. Sometimes you’ll need to provide this document to investors, partners, or financial institutions. You can request a Certificate of Existence from the Secretary of State online and pay a $20 fee by credit or debit card, plus a service charge. Otherwise, you can request a Certificate of Existence by preparing the request form online, mailing it in, and paying the $20 fee by check or money order.

    Tennessee Assumed Name Registration

    If your LLC would like to do business under a name other than its legal name, you’ll need to register this assumed name with the Tennessee Secretary of State. An assumed name is sometimes called a DBA name, doing business as name, or trade name. The filing fee for registering your LLC’s assumed name is $20. You can file online or by mail.

    Foreign LLC Certificate of Authority

    The cost to start a business in Tennessee may be different than starting a business in another state. However, an out-of-state or foreign LLC must still register with the Tennessee Secretary of State to do business in Tennessee. An LLC formed in a state other than Tennessee will have to obtain a Certificate of Authority to do business in Tennessee. Like with a Tennessee-formed LLC, to get a Certificate of Authority, you must pay $50 per member, with a minimum payment of $300 and a maximum of $3,000.

    Other Business Licenses

    Depending on the type of business you’ll be conducting, you may need a specific business license. The Tennessee Department of Commerce can help you find which license you may need. Plus, you can apply for the appropriate license on their website. Fees vary depending on the license you’re requesting.

    You can get help from us if you don’t know what kind of business license your LLC needs. We’ve partnered with Avalara to help you determine whether you’ll require a business license and how to apply.

    For just $0 plus state fees, we can form your Tennessee LLC for you in just minutes. No LegalZoom promo code required: Pay just $0 plus filing fees for fast LLC formation in Tennessee. 

  • If you don’t pay your Tennessee LLC filing fee, you won’t have an LLC. The Tennessee Secretary of State won’t accept your LLC’s Articles of Organization for filing if you don’t pay your fee. This means that your business won’t be an LLC and will likely be treated as a sole proprietorship or general partnership. 

  • If you can’t pay your Tennessee Articles of Organization filing fee to the Tennessee government, the Secretary of State will reject your Articles of Organization. Your LLC won’t exist, and you won’t enjoy the benefits of personal asset protection of an LLC.

  • The Secretary of State of Tennessee receives your LLC filing fees.

  • The largest fee you’ll pay when you form your Tennessee LLC is the filing fee for the Articles of Organization. This fee can range from a minimum of $307 to a maximum of $3,000.

  • If you file your Articles of Organization online, you can pay your Tennessee LLC filing fees by credit card or debit card, and you’ll have to pay a service fee. If, however, you file your Tennessee Articles of Organization by mail or in person, you can pay the filing fee by check or money order.

How do I form my LLC in Tennessee?

The process of starting your LLC in Tennessee involves several steps.

1. Select a Name for Your Tennessee LLC

The first step in forming your Tennessee LLC is to select a business name. You can select any name you’d like, so long as it isn’t easily confused with other business names in Tennessee. Plus, your Tennessee LLC’s name must include something indicating that it is a limited liability company, such as:

  • LLC
  • L.L.C.
  • Limited Liability Company

When you have selected your LLC’s name, you can reserve it with the Tennessee Secretary of State so that other businesses don’t take it while you’re completing your formation documents. 

2. Appoint a Registered Agent

Your prospective Tennessee LLC will also need to select a Registered Agent. A Registered Agent can be a person or entity with a physical presence and a physical office in Tennessee. 

Although you can serve as your LLC’s registered agent, many businesses choose to hire a professional Registered Agent. With the help of our Tennessee Registered Agent Service, we can match you with an appropriate Tennessee Registered Agent. 

3. File Your Articles of Organization

The next step for forming your Tennessee LLC is filing your Articles of Organization. Filing your Articles of Organization with the Secretary of State officially brings your LLC into existence. 

You can file your Articles of Organization online and pay the filing fee by credit card or debit card. An additional service fee may be added for the use of this option. 

You can also file your Articles of Organization by mail or in person and provide a check or money order for the filing fee. The address to submit your Articles of Organization by mail or in person is:

Tennessee Secretary of State

6th FL – Snodgrass Tower

ATTN: Corporate Filing, 

312 Rosa L. Parks Ave., 

Nashville, TN 37243

4. Create an Operating Agreement

An Operating Agreement will help keep your LLC running smoothly. An Operating Agreement is a document that sets forth the policies and procedures of your LLC, including how to resolve conflicts. Some issues addressed in an LLC Operating Agreement are:

  • Member voting procedures
  • How profits and losses are distributed 
  • The duties of the officers
  • How to add or remove a member
  • Tax elections

An Operating Agreement can be beneficial if there is a conflict between the members or difficult decisions ahead.

Tennessee doesn’t require LLCs to have Operating Agreements, but many businesses find them helpful. If you don’t know where to start when creating an Operating Agreement, we can help. We have an Operating Agreement Template that will get you started creating your unique Operating Agreement.

5. Obtain an Employee Identification Number

An Employee Identification Number (EIN) is a number assigned to your business by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Banks often require LLCs to provide an EIN when opening a bank account or applying for a loan. You can apply for an EIN with the IRS. We can make applying for an EIN easier with our EIN Service.

Stay Compliant

You’ll need to fulfill additional reporting requirements throughout the year for your Tennessee LLC. For example, Tennessee requires LLCs to file Annual Reports. Failure to file your LLC’s Annual Report could result in financial penalties or even the dissolution of your LLC. Your Tennessee LLC will also need to file annual taxes and pay a business tax.

Luckily, we can help you with these ongoing requirements. We offer a Tennessee Annual Report Filing service to take this burden off your shoulders. We also have a Worry-Free Compliance service that can take care of your business’s other compliance issues. Plus, it includes two amendments each year if you need to change your LLC formation documents. 

We Can Help

Getting your Tennessee LLC started can be difficult. Fortunately, we are here to help you navigate all of the ins and outs of forming your Tennessee LLC with our Tennessee LLC Formation service. Plus, we can help keep your business compliant with ongoing state requirements. Delegate these tasks to us so that you can focus on your business.

Disclaimer: The content on this page is for information purposes only, and does not constitute legal, tax, or accounting advice. If you have specific questions about any of these topics, seek the counsel of a licensed professional.


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