How to Start an LLC in Texas

Last Updated on February 4, 2022

Costs to Form a Texas LLC

To form a Limited Liability Company in Texas, file the Certificate of Formation with the Texas Secretary of State.  The LLC filing fee is $300.

Approval for the LLC is typically around one week.

If you have questions, contact the Texas Secretary of State.
Phone: 512-463-5555

Steps to Form a Texas LLC

Step 1: Create an Account

The LLC can be created by mail, fax, or online.  This guide shows how to create the LLC online, which is the fastest of the three ways. Begin by creating an account on the SOSDirect, which is the Secretary of State’s website to file online or download the Texas LLC Certificate of Formation (Form 205).

Step 2: Name the LLC

Enter the name you want for the LLC.  The LLC’s name also has to differ from other entity names registered with the Secretary of State.  Be sure to run a Texas LLC name search with the Secretary of State to ensure the one you want is available.

The name of the LLC must also include a designator at the end of the business name, which is one of the following words or abbreviations that describes what type of business entity it is. Available designators include:

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

Other naming guidelines include restrictions on using terms such as insurance, bail bonds, surety, bank, trust, engineer, architect, interior design, college, university, veteran, Olympic several others unless registered with the state to provides those services.

If you plan to use a different name from the legal name that you register (perhaps you want to run multiple businesses under the LLC), you can use an assumed name (sometimes referred to as a fictitious business name, trade name, DBA, or Doing Business As name).  To register the name file an Assumed Name Certificate with the county clerk in the county where the LLC is located.

If there is a name you want, but are not ready to register the LLC, you can file the Name Reservation Form (Form 501). The name reservation will hold a name for up to 120 days, at a cost of $40.

Step 3: Registered Agent

To have an LLC in Texas, a Registered Agent must be identified.  The Registered Agent can either be a Registered Agent service or provider like an accountant or attorney (Select “Organization”) or a resident of Texas (Select “Individual).  Texas law requires that the agent has a registered office with a physical street address in the state (Post Office Boxes are not allowed), is available during normal business hours, and will be the central point of contact for service of process to receive legal documents, tax notices, summons, subpoenas, etc. on behalf of the LLC.

Step 4: Governing Authority

This article is asking if the LLC is Member-Managed or Manager-Managed.

  • Manager-Managed LLCs are hired by the members to run the LLC, similar to a CEO of a corporation.  This is generally used when there are passive members in the LLC, and the members do not actively manage or operate in the affairs of the business.
  • Member-Managed LLCs have an active involvement in the management and have the authority to act on behalf of the LLC.

Enter the name of each of the governing persons.

Step 5: Purpose

This article asks for some basic information about what the business does.  Sticking with the standard language “The purpose for which the company is formed is for the transaction of any and all lawful purposes for which a limited liability company may be organized under the Texas Business Organizations Code.” keeps the business purpose open-ended and allows an LLC to operate in any type of business as long as it is legal.

Step 6: Supplemental Provisions/Information

This is an optional section and not used by most LLCs.  Here you would include additional rules for the operation of the LLC.

Step 7: Organizer Information

An LLC Organizer is someone involved with the formation of the Certificate of Formation.  The Organizer may or may not become a member, such as a mentor, attorney, or accountant, but any of the initial members can be listed as an organizer.

Step 8: Effective Date

If you want the LLC to start immediately, choose

  • A.  This document becomes effective when the document is filed by the secretary of state,” which many people choose.
  • B. This document becomes effective at a later date, which is not more than ninety (90) days from the date of signing.”
  • C. This document takes effect upon the occurrence of the future event or fact, other than the passage of time.

Step 9: Execution

Have an organizer accept the terms and conditions and sign.

Step 10: Submit and Send

Hit submit and your LLC is off!

If mailing send to:
Secretary of State
Corporations Section
PO Box 13697
Austin, TX 78705