The organizer of a limited liability company (LLC) is responsible for correctly filing articles of organization – the document that officially creates the LLC with the state.
An organizer ensures everything is filed correctly and in compliance with state regulations. If you’re starting an LLC, you might have questions about the organizer’s role and the organization’s articles. This guide will make you knowledgeable about both.
Who Can Be an LLC Organizer?
Many businesses assign the role of LLC organizer to one of the owners or members. Still, some companies appoint an attorney, the LLC’s registered agent, or another individual to serve as an organizer.
If you use a business formation service, you could hire that company to take on the role of organizer. Aside from being 18 or older, there are few restrictions on who can serve as an organizer. But you might want to check your state’s website for specific rules.
Articles of Organization
When you officially form your LLC, you’ll file articles of organization documents with your state. It’s also called a certificate of organization or formation, depending on your state.
This document establishes your business as an LLC and provides key details about your company, similar to the articles of incorporation document filed to form a corporation. The articles of organization typically include the following elements:
- Company Name: Before you choose your company’s name, you’ll first need to confirm the name you’ve selected is available. Your state’s website should have a place where you can confirm the name is not already used. You’ll also have to check your state’s business name regulations. For example, for an LLC, you must use “LLC,” “limited liability company,” or “limited liability” in the company’s officially registered name. Each state has rules around naming a business, so refer to your state guidelines.
- Business Address: Your official business address needs to be an actual address, not a P.O. Box. If you operate your business from home but don’t want to use your home address, you can hire a virtual address service instead.
- Company Purpose: Your company purpose should outline the nature of your business and your products or services. In this section, some states require more detail than others, so check your state’s rules.
- Registered Agent Name: Most states require LLCs to have a registered agent. A registered agent receives and responds to government documents sent to your LLC. The agent can be a member of the LLC or a third party, such as an attorney or registered agent service. The agent must be a resident of the state where you do business or a corporation authorized to do business in your state.
- Member Name(s): The owners of an LLC are referred to as members. Each member’s name is required on the articles of organization.
- Manager Name(s): An LLC can have one of two management structures: a member-managed LLC is managed by the LLC owners, and smaller LLCs typically choose the option. Larger companies usually decide to be manager-managed LLCs, run not by the owners but by employees of the business.
- Start Date: Your LLC start date is when the state officially approves your LLC. If you wish to choose a different date, most states allow you to choose a date within 90 days of the approval.
- Duration: Most LLCs are considered perpetual, meaning they will exist forever unless dissolved. You could also form an indefinite LLC that’s dissolved after a particular event or specific date.
The articles of organization are the foundational document of an LLC, and if it’s not filed correctly, the state will not register the creation of that LLC. This means that LLC organizers have a crucial role because if they fail to do their part, there will be no LLC.
As a business owner, you can choose to be your LLC’s organizer or appoint someone else. In addition, you might consider hiring an attorney or business formation service to ensure your business formation is done right.