Last Updated: February 16, 2024, 1:18 pm by TRUiC Team


How Much Does It Cost to Start an LLC in Pennsylvania?

The cost to start an LLC (limited liability company) online in Pennsylvania is $125. This fee is paid to the Pennsylvania Department of State when filing the LLC’s Certificate of Organization.

We recommend Northwest ($29 + State Fees) to help form your LLC.

An entrepreneur counting money with the state fee in the foreground

How Much Does an LLC Cost in Pennsylvania?

Pennsylvania LLC Online Filing Fee: $125

The main cost to start an LLC in Pennsylvania is the $125 fee to file your LLC's Certificate of Organization online with the Pennsylvania Department of State.

For a look at LLC cost in every state, read our other Cost to Start an LLC and How to Form an LLC guides.

Cost to Form a Foreign LLC in Pennsylvania

If you already have an LLC that is registered in another state and you’d like to expand your business into Pennsylvania, you’ll need to register your LLC as a foreign LLC in Pennsylvania.

The cost for registering a Pennsylvania foreign LLC is $250. You can register a foreign LLC in Pennsylvania by filing a Foreign Registration Statement (Form 15-412).

Optional LLC Formation Costs

There are optional fees associated with LLC formation:

LLC Name Reservation

Reserve your name for up to 120 days prior to LLC formation by filing a Name Reservation/Transfer of Reservation form (Form 15-208) and paying the $70 filing fee.

Fictitious Name

File a Registration of Fictitious Name form (Form 54-311) and pay the $70 filing fee to create a name other than your legal LLC business name.

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Ready to Start Your Pennsylvania LLC?

Explore our LLC formation services review to find the best service for you.

Annual LLC Cost in Pennsylvania

Maintaining a limited liability company (LLC) in Pennsylvania involves certain costs. The key components are as follows:

  • Annual Report: Starting in 2024, Pennsylvania LLCs must submit an annual report for $7. While there will be a grace period at first, missing this deadline down the line can result in penalties.
  • Registered Office/Commercial Registered Office Provider (CROP): Should you choose to hire a CROP service (i.e., registered agent service) for your Pennsylvania LLC, you will likely have to pay an annual fee.
  • State Licenses and/or Permits: If you work in a regulated industry, you will more than likely need to pay for professional licenses or permits to stay in operation. The fees will vary by type.

How to Register a Pennsylvania LLC Yourself

You can start an LLC in Pennsylvania all by yourself. Just follow these seven steps and you'll be all set. 

These simple instructions will help you get your Pennsylvania LLC registered, making the whole process easy and worry free.

Recommended: Using an LLC formation service like Northwest ($29 + State Fees) saves time and ensures compliance. Besides the low cost, we like their streamlined approach and excellent customer service.

Seven Basic Steps to Start an LLC in Pennsylvania

Step 1: Name Your Pennsylvania LLC
Step 2: Choose a Registered Office
Step 3: File a Certificate of Organization
Step 4: Create an Operating Agreement
Step 5: Get an EIN
Step 6: File the Annual Report
Step 7: Keep Your Company Compliant

Step 1: Name Your Pennsylvania LLC

When you name your Pennsylvania LLC, you’ll need to choose a name that:

  1. Is available for use in the state of Pennsylvania
  2. Meets Pennsylvania naming requirements
  3. Is available as a web domain

Recommended: Visit our Start an LLC in Pennsylvania guide for detailed naming rules and instructions for registering a business name in Pennsylvania.

Not sure what to name your business? Check out our How to Name a Business guide and free LLC Name Generator.

We recommend that you check online to see if your business name is available as a web domain. Even if you don't plan to create a business website today, you may want to buy the URL in order to prevent others from acquiring it.

Find a Domain Now

Step 2: Choose a Registered Office

Pennsylvania does not record registered offices, but all LLCs must choose a registered office. A registered office is the place where the state can contact your business and is where your business will receive service of process in the event your business is sued.

Your Pennsylvania registered office must be a physical address in Pennsylvania where your LLC can accept service of process during normal business hours.

Get Free Registered Agent Services

Form an LLC with Northwest Registered Agent to get one year of registered agent services free of charge.

Step 3: File the Certificate of Organization

The PA Form 15-8821 - Certificate of Organization is a document that is filed with the Pennsylvania Department of State to form an LLC. The fee for filing a Certificate of Organization is $125 online and by mail.

For detailed instructions for completing the Certificate of Organization, visit our How to File the Pennsylvania Certificate of Organization guide.

File a Pennsylvania Certificate of Organization

OPTION 1: File Online With Pennsylvania Business One-Stop Shop

File Online

- OR -

OPTION 2: File Form 15-8821 by Mail

Form 15-8821

State Filing Cost: $125, payable to the Department of State

Mailing Address:
Pennsylvania Department of State
Bureau of Corporations and Charitable Organizations
P.O. Box 8722
Harrisburg, PA 17105

Note: You must include a Docketing Statement when filing by mail.

Step 4: Create an Operating Agreement

An operating agreement isn't required for Pennsylvania LLCs, but it's a good practice to have one.

What is an operating agreement? An operating agreement is a legal document outlining the ownership and operating procedures of an LLC.

Why are operating agreements important? A comprehensive operating agreement ensures that all business owners are on the same page and reduces the risk of future conflict.

For more information on operating agreements, read our Pennsylvania LLC operating agreement guide.

Step 5: Get an EIN

What is an EIN? An EIN or Employer Identification Number is a nine-digit number issued by the Internal Revenue System (IRS) to identify a business for tax reporting purposes. An EIN is essentially a Social Security number (SSN) for your company.

Why do I need an EIN? An EIN number is required for the following:

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Free EIN: You can get an EIN from the IRS website (free of charge) after forming your business.

Step 6: File the Annual Report

The previous decennial report requirements for Pennsylvania business entities were repealed in November 2022. Starting in 2024, LLCs will be required to submit an annual report to the Department of State along with a $7 filing fee. 

Step 7: Keep Your Company Compliant

Meeting federal, state, and local legal requirements is essential for running an LLC in Pennsylvania. Below are the important considerations:

  • Licenses & Permits: Acquire all necessary licenses and permits according to your business operations. The Pennsylvania Business License guide can help outline your specific needs.
  • Tax Filing: Ensure proper tax registration. Pennsylvania imposes a state sales tax of 6%, with a flat-rate individual income tax of 3.07%. Annual state tax returns are due by April 15. Federal tax obligations also exist.
  • Hiring Employees: Verify employees' eligibility to work, report new hires to the state, offer workers' compensation insurance, withhold employee taxes, and post compliance posters in visible workplace areas.

Adhering to these points will assist in maintaining your Pennsylvania LLC's compliance with all required regulations.

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Steps After LLC Formation

Read all the steps you’ll need to maintain your LLC’s personal liability protection, open a business bank account, get business insurance, and stay up to date with state reporting requirements.

Visit our After Forming an LLC guide to learn more.

Pennsylvania LLC Cost FAQ

In Pennsylvania, an LLC must designate a registered office or Commercial Registered Office Provider (CROP), known more colloquially as a registered agent service. This is the physical location within the state where official documents and legal notices can be served on your LLC. Pennsylvania doesn’t record individual registered agents.

Yes, an LLC in Pennsylvania can operate under a different name, referred to as a fictitious name. This can be advantageous for branding or marketing purposes, but it's essential to register this name with the state.

Starting in 2024, Pennsylvania will require LLCs to file an annual report. The fee associated with this report is just $7. This replaces the prior decennial report requirements.

Utilizing an LLC formation service in Pennsylvania can save significant time and streamline the LLC setup process. These services handle your paperwork and ensure your LLC is set up correctly, adhering to all Pennsylvania requirements. Some of these services might also offer benefits such as registered office or CROP services, assistance with registering a fictitious name, and other ongoing compliance support.

You can confirm if your proposed LLC name is available in Pennsylvania by using the Business Entity Search tool offered by the state. This will indicate whether your desired name is already being used by another business entity in Pennsylvania.

A Certificate of Subsistence in Pennsylvania is akin to a Certificate of Good Standing in other states. It is an official document issued by the state confirming that your LLC is legally formed and has met all state compliance requirements. It can be useful when you're looking to secure financing, enter into contracts, or register to do business in another state.

Article Sources

Department of State - PENN File:
https://file.dos.pa.gov

IRS - Employer ID Numbers:
https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/employer-id-numbers

Pennsylvania Department of State:
https://www.dos.pa.gov/BusinessCharities/Business/Pages/default.aspx

SBA - Apply for licenses and permits:
https://www.sba.gov/business-guide/launch-your-business/apply-licenses-permits

Chamber of Commerce - Pennsylvania Chamber of Commerce List:
http://www.officialusa.com/stateguides/chambers/Pennsylvania.html