Should you form your LLC in Tennessee? We've collected the relevant information that will help you make this decision.

Pros

  • Reasonable cost of living
  • No state income tax
  • View of beautiful Smoky Mountains

Cons

  • High sales taxes
  • Corporate income tax of 6.5%
  • High unemployment insurance taxes

Cost of doing business

  • $305 filing fee / $308 annual statement

Privacy

  • No disclosure of owners

Forming a LLC in Tennessee

The name
In order to communicate to the public that your new business is an LLC, its official name will need to end with one of the following signifiers (or abbreviation of): “Limited liability company”, “LLC”, or “L.L.C.” In addition, it is required that the name of your business is not intentionally misleading to consumers, for any reason. Your company’s new name must also be completely unique, and not deceptively similar to any other organizations name or trademarks. There are also restrictions placed on the use of terms common to the financial services industry. Do a FREE name search now.

Ownership
The owners of an LLC are called “members.” The following information must be required regarding your LLCs members:

  • Required number of members
    Tennessee LLCs must have at least one member or manager listed in their incorporation documents.
  • Age restrictions
    LLC members in Tennessee may be of any age.
  • Residence restrictions
    There are no residence restrictions imposed on LLC members in Tennessee.
  • What information needs to be included in the Articles of Organization?
    Outside of the principal member, LLC Members in Tennessee are not required to list their name or addresses in their Articles of Organization.

Requirements for the Articles of Organization

The Articles of Organization is a document that must be filed during the LLC formation process in every state. Here is the information that must be included in this document when filing in Tennessee:

Registered agent information
All Tennessee LLCs must have a registered agent on file, and submit their name and address (which cannot be a PO box). This agent is required to be accessible during standard business hours and acts as the state’s point of contact with the company. Learn more about registered agents.

Additional Tennessee filing requirements

Many states have steps in the LLC formation process that are unique to that state. These can also vary at the municipality or county level as well. Here are the steps required throughout all of Tennessee:

County level filing
LLCs with principal offices in the state must file a copy of their Articles of Organization with their county. However, if the company has “foreign qualified” to operate in Tennessee, this is not required.

If your business is a professional practice
Professional service companies are permitted to form under the professional limited liability company (PLLC) structure.

Tennessee LLC taxation and fee requirements

There are several tax and fee requirements that must be addressed by LLCs in Tennessee. They are as follows:

Taxation
All states have complex taxation requirements. For more information regarding taxes in Tennessee, it is advised that you visit the state’s official business related website. 

Annual report requirements
LLCs in Tennessee are required to file an annual report and pay a franchise tax every year. These are due on the 1st and 15th of the 4th month of the close of the LLC’s fiscal year. The cost of filing an annual report is $50 per member, with a $300 minimum and $3,000 maximum. The franchise tax is dependent on the LLC’s net worth, but with a minimum of $100. Learn more about annual reports.

Tax identification numbers
Tennessee requires an EIN (employee identification number) for all LLCs that will have employees, and most banks will require one to open accounts. Tennessee also requires LLCs to obtain state tax ID numbers. Learn more about EINs.

Business license requirements

The business licenses and permits required in Tennessee vary wildly depending on the county or municipality in which your new LLC is located. If you would like to see more in-depth information on licenses and permits, please feel free to visit the content in our learning library that covers business licenses and permits.

Need a Tennessee corporation instead? Click here.