Apply for LLC in Alabama (for Free)

In this article, we'll show you step-by-step how to apply for an LLC in Alabama by giving you links to all of the forms, with advice on how to save money by doing it yourself!

It's a lot easier to apply for an LLC in Alabama than you might think, and if you have the time to spend learning how to do it, you can avoid using a third-party service.

By free, we mean filing the application forms yourself without an LLC formation company. State filing fees may still apply.

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Recommended Service for Your Alabama LLC Formation

Save hours of your valuable time by using a formation service to apply for your Alabama LLC.

ZenBusiness

The best and most reliable service to apply for an LLC in Alabama, starting at $0 plus state fees.

ZenBusiness has a great track record, and offers 100% error free LLC formation in Alabama.

Try ZenBusiness

Incfile

Incfile has 16+ of experience forming LLCs and over 800,000 business owners have used their services.

Try Incfile

How to Start an LLC in Alabama

As the world is becoming more and more digital, the process of applying for an LLC in Alabama is not as daunting as it once was.

That said, we are still talking about the U.S. government so there will be a fair amount of process and paperwork to complete.

Make you that you take the time to really read this article a couple of times to fully understand everything you need to do. Any mistakes can delay your application and your company will have to wait before you can start trading.

Do I Need to Apply for an LLC?

Applying for an LLC for your business is not a requirement, and you can start trading without one as a sole proprietor if you want to.

For most businesses, though, the Limited Liability Company (LLC) company entity provides a lot of benefits that will protect you.

The most obvious one is that you have liability protection (the clue is in the name Limited Liability) against business debts, lawsuits, or other unforeseen issues.

As an LLC, your personal assets would be protected against these events, where as a sole proprietor, you could potentially lose those assets in a lawsuit or as part of a debt repayment to creditors.

Another benefit down the road might be that you can purchase assets in the business, such as real estate, which keeps them separate from your personal assets. This allows you to reduce tax liability through investment.

The bottom line is that, while you don't need to form an LLC, it's very much advised for the protections and benefits it provides you.

Choosing your Alabama LLC Name

The first step when applying for an LLC is actually having something to name your LLC. To do this, you'll need to perform something called a "business entity search".

What this means is that you need to check whether or not the name you want to use for your Alabama LLC is available and not being used by another business.

Alabama Business Entity Search

Click the button below to check your LLC name with the Alabama Secretary of State site.

Check Your LLC Name

LLC Name Designator

Once you have an LLC name for your business that you're sure isn't being used by anybody else, you need to pick a designator to be added to the end of it.

The rules vary by state, so to make sure you're covered by Alabama laws, the best option here is to pick something from the list below:

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

Make sure you do not use a designator that makes it look like your LLC is a different type of business entity. If you try to use designators like Inc, Incorporated, LP, LLP etc, your application will be rejected.

You can find out more about the specific Alabama designator rules by checking out the form Section 10A-1-5.06.

Choosing Your Registered Agent

When applying for an LLC in Alabama, you will need to have a Registered Agent listed on your Certification of Formation.

What is a Registered Agent?

Put simply, a Registered Agent is someone who can receive official state documents and legal documents on your behalf.

If you are really wanting to do this all yourself, you can name yourself as the Registered Agent. Most people don't do this, though, because your personal name and address will be publicly listed, and can be searched by customers and competitors.

For 99% of those applying for an LLC in Alabama, you should use a Registered Agent service. It's just another separation between business and professional life and keeps your personal contact information private.

Our recommended LLC formation services, Incfile and ZenBusiness, will provide you with a Registered Agent for your LLC. In most cases, this is free for the first year of service.

Alabama LLC Certificate of Formation

At this point, you're ready to actually file your Certificate of Formation form with the state of Alabama and get your LLC officially formed.

Let's take a look at the mandatory filing fees for applying for an LLC in Alabama, and the methods you can use to file your form.

Alabama LLC Filing Fees

The fees you will pay when applying for an LLC in Alabama are Filing fee of $200 and Annual fee of $100 minimum.

Filing fee
$200
Annual fee
$100 minimum

Filing Methods for a Alabama LLC

Alabama is one of 48 states that allow you to apply for an LLC online. This makes it much easier to get the necessary paperwork and fees paid, and it also makes it much quicker to get your business incorporated.

You can also file your LLC in Alabama the good old fashioned way, by completing the paperwork and mailing it in.

Alabama LLC Filing Methods

File Online

You can file your LLC online with the Alabama Secretary of State. This is a great way to speed up the process and avoid any long waiting times.

File Your LLC Online

File by Mail

You can file your LLC by mail with the Alabama Secretary of State. This is the traditional way to apply for an LLC in Alabama.

File Your LLC by Mail

Approval times when applying for your LLC vary by state and the method you use to file. For Alabama, the approval time is 4-7 days.

Recommended Service for Your Alabama LLC Formation

Save hours of your valuable time by using a formation service to apply for your Alabama LLC.

ZenBusiness

The best and most reliable service to apply for an LLC in Alabama, starting at $0 plus state fees.

ZenBusiness has a great track record, and offers 100% error free LLC formation in Alabama.

Try ZenBusiness

Incfile

Incfile has 16+ of experience forming LLCs and over 800,000 business owners have used their services.

Try Incfile

Creating your Alabama LLC Operating Agreement

An Operating Agreement is a legal document that sets out the rules and regulations for a business, including who owns it, how much each member owns, how profits are split, and more.

When you apply for an LLC in Alabama, an Operating Agreement is required as part of your application.

There are many free Operating Agreement templates you can use, and if you use an LLC formation service like Incfile or ZenBusiness, one will be provided for you.

Bottom line, you need an Operating Agreement to apply for an LLC in Alabama. You can use a template, or have one provided by an LLC formation service.

Apply for an EIN

At this point, you should have your new LLC formed in the state of Alabama. You can now apply for an Employer Identification Number (EIN) for your business.

This is sometimes known as a Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN), and it's what your business will use to file taxes with the IRS. You also need this EIN in order to open a bank account for your LLC.

To get your EIN in Alabama, you will need to complete an application with the state. This can be done either online, or by mailing in form S3-4 to the IRS.

Alabama EIN Application

Apply Online

You can apply for your EIN online with the IRS. This is a great way to speed up the process and avoid any long waiting times.

File Your EIN Online

Apply by Mail

You can also apply for your EIN by mail with the IRS. This is the traditional way to apply for an EIN in Alabama.

File Your EIN by Mail

Filing Your Annual Report in Alabama

You have a legal requirement to file your annual report with the state of Alabama.

Each state has their own rules, and for Alabama, the deadline for filing the Annual (Periodic) Report is: April 15th.

In order to file your Annual Report, you'll need to download the correct forms from this page.

How to Contact Alabama State Agencies

If you need to get in touch with any Alabama state agencies, for help with applying for your LLC, you can use the details below:

Alabama Department of Revenue

Address: Alabama Department of Revenue, Business Privilege Tax Section, PO Box 327320, Montgomery, AL 36132-7320
Phone: 334-353-7923
Hours: 8am to 5pm, Monday – Friday (Eastern), except holidays
Website: https://revenue.alabama.gov/

You Successfully Applied for an LLC in Alabama

If you made it this far down the tutorial and followed all of the previous steps...

Congratulations! You successfully applied for your LLC in Alabama.

At this point, you are now completely ready to start trading through your shiny new company.

Hopefully this article has been able to help you make the application process as smooth and painless as possible.

If you need more help with your LLC (like choosing a Registered Agent), don't forget to check out Incfile and ZenBusiness.

These are the companies we recommend to our clients who need high-quality, easy-to-use business services from a reputable business with a solid track record.

Recommended Service for Your Alabama LLC Formation

Save hours of your valuable time by using a formation service to apply for your Alabama LLC.

ZenBusiness

The best and most reliable service to apply for an LLC in Alabama, starting at $0 plus state fees.

ZenBusiness has a great track record, and offers 100% error free LLC formation in Alabama.

Try ZenBusiness

Incfile

Incfile has 16+ of experience forming LLCs and over 800,000 business owners have used their services.

Try Incfile

Referencing Apply for LLC

We spent a lot of time compiling the data in this post to make it as useful as we can for you.

If you use any of the data or figures in your own article or research, don't forget to reference or link to Apply for LLC as the source. Thanks!

  • "Apply for LLC in Alabama (for Free)". Apply for LLC. Accessed on December 4, 2022. https://applyforllc.net/state/alabama/.

  • "Apply for LLC in Alabama (for Free)". Apply for LLC, https://applyforllc.net/state/alabama/. Accessed 4 December, 2022

  • Apply for LLC in Alabama (for Free). Apply for LLC. Retrieved from https://applyforllc.net/state/alabama/.