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What Does it Cost to Form an LLC in Maine?

cost to form an llc in Maine
(Last Updated On: November 29, 2023)

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Considering the financial aspects of forming an LLC in Maine? Beyond the paperwork, there’s a financial dimension to consider. But here’s the good news: the expense might be less daunting than you anticipate. 

Our expertise lies in demystifying the array of initial and ongoing costs associated with a Maine LLC. Moreover, we’re well-equipped to provide you with astute resources of LLC services, such as ZenBusiness, that can pave the way for prudent cost savings.

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What Is the Cost of Forming an LLC in Maine?

The primary cost to form an LLC in Maine is the filing fee of $175. This fee covers the submission of your LLC’s Certificate of Formation through mail or in-person processing with the Maine Secretary of State.

Here’s the LLC Cost Guide for all US States:

Maine Foreign LLC Formation Costs

If your existing LLC is already registered in a different state and you aim to extend your business operations into Maine, it’s necessary to establish your LLC as a foreign entity in Maine.

The expense associated with registering a foreign LLC in Maine amounts to $250. This registration process involves submitting a Statement of Foreign Qualification to Conduct Activities (Form MLLC-12).

Annual Cost for LLCs in Maine

When contemplating the establishment of an LLC in Maine, it’s crucial to grasp the continuous expenses linked with its upkeep, enabling you to anticipate the overall costs. These ongoing expenses comprise the Annual Report, necessitating a fee of $85, which must be submitted to the Secretary of State. 

Additionally, a registered agent, often termed a “clerk,” is mandated for each Maine LLC, with the option of self-representation or hiring a commercial agent, typically costing between $100 to $300 annually.

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How Much Does It Cost to Start an LLC in Maine With the Best LLC Service?

ZenBusiness LLC Formation Cost

The initial fee for the establishment of an LLC in Maine amounts to $175, with variations possible depending on additional services. Regarding processing duration, the standard timeframe stands at 4 to 5 weeks. There exists an option to accelerate processing, wherein an expedited track of 18 to 19 days is attainable for a supplementary fee of $50. Alternatively, a more rapid processing period of 15 to 17 days can be availed by remitting an expedited fee of $100.

ZenBusiness presents a range of three pricing plans catering to business formation services: Starter, Pro, and Premium. 

  • Starter plan: For those with fundamental requirements, this comes at no cost, requiring only state fees. 
  • Pro plan: The, priced at $199 plus state fees, encompasses extra perks and registered agent service. 
  • Premium plan: This stands as the most extensive choice, encompassing all Pro plan features alongside unlimited Worry-Free Compliance designed to assist businesses in adhering to state and federal regulations. This comprehensive package is available for $349 plus state fees. 

In addition to these offerings, any plan purchase comes with a complimentary year of Worry-Free Compliance.

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Additional Costs When Starting an LLC in Maine

Maine LLC Name Costs

Selecting a name for your Limited Liability Company (LLC) doesn’t come with a price tag. The approval of your Maine LLC Name, which happens alongside the acceptance of your Certificate of Formation filing by the state, doesn’t involve any additional charges.

Contrary to what you might have come across online, the necessity of LLC Name Reservations isn’t a widespread requirement. In the majority of states, there’s no mandate for a Name Reservation when establishing an LLC. Instead, you simply include your business name within the Articles of Organization.

If you choose to ensure your chosen name is preserved for up to a year before officially forming the LLC, you can do so by submitting Form MLLC-1 and covering the $20 filing fee.

Maine Registered Agent Costs

When establishing your LLC in Maine, you encounter the Maine registered agent Fee, which stands at either $0 or $125 per year. The regulations in Maine mandate the appointment of a registered agent for your LLC.

A Maine registered agent takes on the responsibility of receiving legal documents and state notifications on behalf of your LLC. This individual or entity must possess a physical address within the state and should generally be accessible during regular business hours.

Should you opt to serve as your own registered agent or designate someone you know, there won’t be any supplementary charges. However, the alternative exists to engage a professional registered agent service, incurring an annual cost ranging from $100 to $300. These service providers often extend additional beneficial business services and contribute to safeguarding your privacy.

The advantageous aspect is that including a registered agent’s details on your Certificate of Formation doesn’t attract extra filing fees.

Engaging a registered agent service is especially advisable if:

  • You lack a physical address within the state (as Maine law necessitates registered agents to possess a state-based address)
  • You wish to shield your personal address from public records (certain service providers might offer their address for this purpose)

Maine Operating Agreement Costs

There’s no cost associated with the LLC Operating Agreement ($0 fee). 

The Maine LLC Operating Agreement represents a documented agreement among the members of the LLC. Within this agreement, comprehensive particulars about LLC ownership, managerial processes, and the distribution of profits are elucidated.

Both Single-Member LLCs and Multi-Member LLCs are advised to formulate an Operating Agreement, retaining it within their business documentation and providing each member with a copy. Possessing a robust Operating Agreement is crucial, irrespective of whether the LLC consists of a single Member or multiple members.

Commonly, online platforms typically charge between $50 and $200 for the creation of LLC Operating Agreements.

Maine EIN Cost

The fee for obtaining an LLC EIN Number is $0. 

An EIN, which stands for Employer Identification Number, is alternately referred to as a Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN). This particular identification number holds significance in filing income taxes, establishing an LLC bank account, and hiring employees when applicable.

While numerous online platforms impose service charges for securing an EIN for your LLC, it’s important to note that obtaining an EIN can actually be accomplished without any expense.

You have the option to acquire an EIN for your LLC directly from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) at no charge. This process can be easily completed online within a matter of minutes.

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Maine LLC Taxes

The range of Maine LLC taxes that proprietors are obligated to pay results in a significant fluctuation in annual expenses. A selection of these taxes encompasses:

Federal Income Taxes

When it comes to federal income taxes, the IRS offers different treatment options for LLCs. 

Single-Member LLC Taxes (Default Status)

Single-member LLCs are treated as Disregarded Entities by the IRS, meaning they don’t need to file their own federal income tax return. Instead, the owner handles tax filing and payment. The tax approach varies based on the owner’s type: individual owners are taxed as Sole Proprietorships, while corporate owners see the LLC as a division of the parent company.

Multi-Member LLC Taxes (Default Status)

For LLCs with multiple owners, the default tax treatment is that of a Partnership. The LLC files a Partnership Return (Form 1065) and supplies a Schedule K-1 to each owner. The K-1 indicates each owner’s share of profits, which they report on their individual tax returns (Form 1040).

Husband and Wife LLC Taxes

In certain states, a husband and wife LLC can choose to file taxes as a Single-Member LLC or a Multi-Member LLC. Community property states allow this option, but it’s not available in others like Maine.

Electing Corporate Taxation

LLCs can opt for corporate taxation instead of the default statuses. This requires filing specific forms with the IRS. Two types of corporate taxation are S-Corporation and C-Corporation. S-Corporation status can help established businesses save on self-employment taxes, but careful consideration and possibly consulting an accountant are recommended.

  • LLC Taxed as S-Corporation (Elective Status): Filing Form 2553 with the IRS enables an LLC to be taxed as an S-Corporation, potentially reducing the self-employment tax burden. However, it’s usually best for businesses with stable profits and a certain income threshold.
  • LLC Taxed as a C-Corporation (Elective Status): An LLC can choose C-Corporation taxation by submitting Form 8832 to the IRS. This can be advantageous for larger employers aiming to save on healthcare fringe benefits, but it’s not commonly chosen.

Maine State Income Tax for Maine LLCs

In Maine, the tax approach depends on whether the LLC is single-member or multi-member. Single-member LLCs don’t typically file a state-level return; the owner reports LLC profits or losses on their personal state return. Multi-member LLCs might need to file a state-level Partnership return while owners report profits/losses on personal state returns.

Local Income Tax for Maine LLCs

Local income taxes might be applicable for both LLCs and owners. Consulting an accountant is recommended, and contacting the local municipality can clarify specific requirements.

Maine Sales Tax

Selling products to consumers in Maine could necessitate collecting sales tax with a Seller’s Permit from Maine Revenue Services. This permit allows sales tax collection for retail sales and might be referred to as a resale, wholesale, or sales tax permit/license.

Maine LLC Payroll Taxes

Maine LLCs with employees must manage payroll taxes, including federal and state income tax withholding, Social Security and Medicare taxes, federal and state unemployment taxes, and more. Accurate and compliant handling is crucial, often necessitating professional assistance like a payroll company or an accountant.

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Maine LLC Cost FAQs

How Much Does It Cost to Open an LLC in Maine?

To establish a Maine LLC, there’s a one-time filing fee of $175 for the Certificate of Formation. Depending on your LLC’s industry and location, you might also require a local business license, the cost of which can vary for different business permits.

How Much Does an LLC in Maine Cost Per Year?

Maine LLCs are required to pay an Annual Report fee of $85 per year to the Secretary of State, serving as the sole state-mandated annual fee to maintain the LLC’s active status. Additionally, if you’ve enlisted a registered agent service, you’ll encounter an annual subscription fee, typically around $125.

Depending on the industry and location of your LLC, a business license might be necessary, prompting the need to verify with your municipality for potential annual renewal charges related to the business permit.

Should I Hire an LLC Formation Service?

Utilizing the services of a professional provider is not a requirement when it comes to setting up your Maine LLC. Entrepreneurs have the freedom to independently manage the process of forming an LLC. However, for individuals aiming for a streamlined and precise filing experience, considering the assistance of ZenBusiness is recommended. 

ZenBusiness is well-known for its exceptional customer support and even offers free registered agent services for the first year. Additionally, they provide extra benefits, including an Operating Agreement and guidance with the submission of the Annual Report.

Conclusion

In conclusion, navigating the process of forming an LLC in Maine requires careful consideration of the financial aspects involved. Maine’s business-friendly environment and clear regulatory framework can be enticing for entrepreneurs looking to establish a company. 

However, it’s paramount to factor in various expenses such as filing fees, registered agent costs, and the potential need for expert guidance. Opting for the support of established LLC service providers like ZenBusiness can streamline the incorporation journey. 

It’s imperative for individuals to conduct a comprehensive evaluation of these costs in the context of Maine’s favorable business ecosystem, legal structure, and overall standing. This approach will ensure that the chosen path aligns cohesively with their business goals and financial capabilities.

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About the author

Dr. Gabriel O'Neill, Esq., a distinguished legal scholar with a business law degree and a Doctor of Juridical Science, is a leading expert in business registration and diverse business departments. Renowned for his academic excellence and practical insights, Dr. O'Neill guides businesses through legal complexities, offering invaluable expertise in compliance, corporate governance, and registration processes.

As an accomplished author, his forthcoming book is anticipated to be a comprehensive guide for navigating the dynamic intersection of law and business, providing clarity and practical wisdom for entrepreneurs and legal professionals alike. With a commitment to legal excellence, Dr. Gabriel O'Neill, Esq., is a trusted authority dedicated to empowering businesses within the ever-evolving legal landscape.

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