How To Start an LLC in Texas

Kaitlin Edwards | Feb 20, 2024

How To Start an LLC in Texas

Whether you’re a startup founder in Austin or a small business owner in Dallas, understanding the intricacies of setting up an LLC in Texas is crucial for your business’s legal and financial health.

We invite you to join us as we discuss how you can navigate the process of creating an LLC in Texas efficiently and effectively.

What Is an LLC?

An LLC, or limited liability company, is a flexible business entity that blends elements of partnerships and corporate structures. It’s a popular choice for small to medium-sized businesses due to its simplicity and flexibility.

In an LLC, owners are referred to as “members,” and there can be one or multiple members. The key feature of an LLC is the limited liability protection it offers, meaning members are typically not personally liable for the debts and liabilities of the business.

What Are the Pros and Cons of Starting an LLC in Texas?

When considering forming an LLC in Texas, it’s essential to weigh the benefits and potential challenges. By knowing the pros and cons of starting an LLC in the Lone Star State, you gain a balanced perspective for making informed decisions.


Some advantages of starting a Texas LLC are:

  • Limited Liability Protection: Members’ personal assets, like homes and savings, are protected from business debts and lawsuits.
  • Flexibility in Taxation: LLCs enjoy flexibility in how they are taxed, which can be advantageous.
  • Enhanced Credibility: Operating as an LLC can boost your business’s credibility with customers and partners.
  • Ease of Ownership Transfer: Transferring ownership is generally simpler than with other business structure types.
  • No Double Taxation: Unlike corporations, LLCs are not subject to double taxation.


With that in mind, there can also be certain downsides. These include:

  • Administrative Tasks: Running an LLC requires adhering to certain regulations and paperwork, like Articles of Organization and operating agreements.
  • Formation and Ongoing Costs: There are costs associated with forming and maintaining an LLC, including state fees.
  • Self-Employment Taxes: Members may be subject to self-employment taxes on their share of the profits.
  • Limited Capital Raising Options: LLCs cannot issue stocks, which could limit capital-raising options.
  • Personal Liability in Some Cases: In certain situations, like fraud or failure to maintain corporate formalities, members could be held personally liable.

Creating an LLC in Texas can be a smart move for many business owners, offering a blend of liability protection, taxation flexibility, and credibility. However, it’s crucial to weigh these advantages against the responsibilities and costs involved.

How To Start an LLC in Texas

Establishing an LLC in Texas involves a few critical steps that you’ll need to take. Here, we walk you through each of them to ensure you’re well-equipped for a smooth start.

1. File a Certificate of Formation

Step 1 of filing the Certificate of Formation is critical in establishing your Texas LLC, marking your entry into the official business realm. Filing can be done online through SOSDirect or via mail, with a standard filing fee.

Here’s what this process involves:

  • Texas LLC Name: Select a unique name for your LLC that complies with Texas state requirements, including the mandatory inclusion of “LLC” or similar designations. Ensure it’s distinguishable from existing business names by checking the Texas Secretary of State’s database.
  • Business Address and Legal Name: Provide a business address for your LLC, which will become part of the public record. This could be your physical business location or a mailing address. Accurately list your LLC’s legal name as you’ve chosen.
  • Domain Name: Consider securing a domain name matching your LLC’s name to strengthen your online presence.
  • DBA Names: If operating under a different name than your registered LLC name, file a DBA or “assumed name certificate” in Texas for branding flexibility.
  • Existing Businesses: For those transitioning to an LLC, update all business references, including contracts and bank accounts, to reflect the new legal name.
  • LLC Formation Services: Utilize these services for assistance with paperwork and compliance, ensuring a smooth formation process.
  • Entity Name Registration: Register your LLC’s name with the Texas Secretary of State to solidify its identity and prevent others from using it.
  • New Business Essentials: For new entities, this step lays the foundational structure and strategy for your business.

The filing fee is a standard $300, a worthwhile investment for establishing a legal and credible business entity in Texas. Addressing these aspects ensures a well-structured LLC that’s positioned for success in the dynamic Texas business environment.

2. Choose a Registered Agent

Selecting a registered agent is not just a formality; it’s a strategic business decision. A registered agent is the designated receiver of important legal and government documents on behalf of your Texas business.

This role is pivotal for ensuring you stay on top of compliance and legal obligations. The agent must have a physical address in Texas (not a P.O. box) and be available during standard business hours.

A registered agent is crucial for:

  • Government Correspondence: Acting as the primary contact for the Secretary of State, the agent receives federal tax and compliance-related communications.
  • Legal Documents: In case of legal actions, your registered agent will receive summons, subpoenas, or complaints.
  • Forwarding Communications: They ensure all vital communications reach you or the appropriate person in your business.

If you’re wondering why you need a registered agent in Texas, it’s a state requirement for LLCs to have one. This ensures your business stays in compliance and receives crucial legal and government notices.

Here’s who can be your registered agent:

  • Business Owner or Employee: You or an employee can serve as the agent, provided there’s a consistent physical presence in Texas.
  • Mosey: As an integrated solution, Mosey can serve as your registered agent, included in your existing platform subscription. This offers cost-effectiveness and convenience, with immediate online access to important documents.
  • Use a Third-Party Service: You can also opt to use a third-party registered agent service to set up your registered agent. Just keep in mind that this comes at a cost, which can vary depending on the service you choose.

Changing your registered agent is flexible and can be done anytime by filing the necessary change statements with the Secretary of State.

3. Generate an LLC Operating Agreement

The LLC Operating Agreement is the backbone of your business’s internal structure. It’s not legally required in Texas, but it’s crucial for outlining the operational and financial decision-making processes.

This document sets the rules for ownership and management structures, such as manager-managed or member-managed, as well as profit distribution and conflict resolution mechanisms.

4. Obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN)

An EIN, or employer identification number, is your LLC’s Social Security number from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). It’s necessary for income tax purposes, hiring employees, and opening a business bank account. The good news is it’s free and can be obtained online directly from the IRS.

5. Apply for the Necessary Business Licenses and Tax Permits

Depending on your industry and location, your LLC might need specific business licenses and tax permits. Step 5 is critical for legal operation and compliance with local and state laws.

6. Open a Business Bank Account

Keeping your personal and business finances separate is vital. Opening a business bank account requires your EIN and other documentation. This move not only protects your personal assets but also enhances your business’s professional image.

7. Procure Business Insurance

Insurance is a safeguard for your business. From general liability insurance to workers’ compensation, getting the right coverage is a proactive step in protecting your enterprise.

8. Pay Sales Taxes

If your LLC sells goods or services, you’ll need to register for sales taxes in Texas. Timely tax payments are key to avoiding penalties and maintaining good standing.

9. File Annual Reports

Your LLC’s annual report keeps the state updated with essential information like contact details and significant business activities. In Texas, the filing process and frequency vary, but staying current is vital for maintaining your LLC’s legal status. Failure to comply can result in fines and the loss of liability protection.

While the process involves several stages, from filing the Certificate of Formation to choosing a registered agent and beyond, each step brings you closer to establishing a solid foundation for your business.

Mosey is here to simplify these steps, offering an integrated solution for your LLC’s compliance needs — all on one platform.

How Much Does It Cost To Establish an LLC in Texas?

Before forming your Texas LLC, you need to have a good understanding of the financial commitment required.

The costs vary depending on various factors but primarily include the following:

  • Certificate of Formation: A non-negotiable fee of $300 is required to file your Certificate of Formation with the Texas Secretary of State.
  • Registered Agent Service: While you can appoint a business owner or employee as your registered agent at no cost, professional services typically range around $150 per year. Mosey, however, includes this service in your platform subscription, offering a cost-effective solution.
  • Employer Identification Number (EIN): Thankfully, this is free of charge when obtained directly from the IRS.
  • Business Licenses and Permits: Costs vary based on your specific industry and location within Texas. Research is key to understanding these expenses.
  • Business Bank Account: There may be associated costs depending on the bank you choose.
  • Business Insurance: Premiums depend on the type of insurance and coverage needed.
  • Sales Taxes: Registration is typically free, but taxes must be paid on sales as required by law.
  • Annual Reports and Franchise Tax: Texas LLCs don’t file annual reports but are subject to a state franchise tax, the calculation of which is detailed on the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts website.
  • Miscellaneous Expenses: These can include costs for legal consultations, accounting services, and any other professional services you might need.

As you navigate this process, remember that Mosey is here to streamline your journey. From acting as your own registered agent to assisting with compliance and paperwork, Mosey simplifies the complexities of LLC formation.

Our comprehensive platform integrates seamlessly with your business needs, ensuring you remain focused on growth and success.

Starting Your LLC in Texas

Are you ready to start your Texas LLC with ease and confidence? Let Mosey be your guide through the intricate landscape from LLC formation into the great big world of compliance. With Mosey’s expert assistance, you can focus on what you do best — running your business.

We invite you to book a demo today to discover how we can make your LLC formation in Texas a seamless and stress-free experience. Start your journey with Mosey and watch your business thrive.

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