Cost to Form an LLC in Texas

The cost to start a Texas limited liability company (LLC) online is $300. This fee is paid to the Texas Secretary of State when filing the LLC’s Certificate of Formation.

There are two options for forming your LLC:

An entrepreneur counting money with the state fee in the foreground
Have a professional service form an LLC for you:


four point six out of five ZenBusiness ($39 + State Fees)

Three out of Five Stars LegalZoom ($149 + State Fees)

How Much Does an LLC Cost in Texas?

The main cost of forming an LLC is the $300 fee to file your LLC's Certificate of Formation online with the Texas Secretary of State.

Some businesses may need business licenses and/or permits to operate. 

Texas LLC Filing Fee: $300

To form an LLC in Texas, you'll need to file the Certificate of Formation (Form 205) with the Secretary of State. The Texas Secretary of State charges a $300 fee to process and record this document online.

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You can form an LLC in Texas yourself with our free How to Start an LLC in Texas guide and pay only the $300 fee.

Or, visit our Best LLC Services review to learn more about the cost of using an LLC formation service.

Cost to Form a Foreign LLC in Texas

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

The cost for registering a Texas foreign LLC is $750. You can register a foreign LLC in Texas by filing an Application for Registration of a Foreign Limited Liability (Form 304).

Other LLC Filing Costs

There are optional fees associated with LLC formation:

LLC Name Reservation 

$40 (Form 501): Reserve your name for up to 12 months prior to LLC formation.

Foreign LLC Name Reservation

$40 (Form 502): Reserve your name for up to 12 months prior to LLC formation. 

Doing Business As (DBA) Name

$25 (Form 503): File an Assumed Name Certificate to create a name other than your legal LLC business name.

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Certificate of Status

$5: Also known as a Texas certificate of good standing. This document is often required by banks and lending institutions.

Business Permits and Licenses

Depending on your industry and geographical location, your business might need federal, state, and local permits/licenses to legally operate in Texas. This is true whether your form an LLC or any other type of business structure.

Learn more about state and local licensing with our guide to getting a Texas business license.

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Recommended: Have a professional service research business licenses for you.

Ongoing LLC Maintenance Costs

Some businesses will be required to pay ongoing maintenance costs and taxes, such as:

  • Texas Franchise Tax
  • Texas Annual Report Fee

Texas Franchise Tax: Varies

LLCs with annualized revenue below $1.13 million don't pay any tax but must file a “no tax due report.” LLCs with annualized revenue greater than $1.13 million pay a graduated tax that is calculated based on a complex formula.

Late tax payment is subject to a 5% penalty fee, which increases to 10% if you pay after 30 days.

Texas Annual Report Fee: Free

Texas requires LLCs to file an annual report and franchise tax with the Secretary of State.

You can submit this form through the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts website. It is due on May 15. Texas charges a $50 penalty for failure to file on time.

How to Register a Texas LLC Yourself

Forming an LLC yourself is easy; just follow the five steps below.

If you already have a business that is running as a sole proprietorship, visit our How to Change from a Sole Proprietorship to LLC page.

Five Basic Steps to Start an LLC in Texas

Step 1: Name Your Texas LLC
Step 2: Choose a Registered Agent
Step 3: File a Certificate of Formation
Step 4: Create an Operating Agreement
Step 5: Get an EIN

Step 1: Name Your Texas LLC

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

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

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

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.

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After registering a domain name, consider setting up a professional email account ( Google's G Suite offers a business email service that comes with other useful tools, including word processing, spreadsheets, and more. Try it for free

Step 2: Choose a Registered Agent

All LLCs in Texas must appoint a registered agent. A registered agent primarily acts as your LLC’s main point of contact with the state. But most importantly, they are responsible for accepting service of process in the event your business is sued.

Your Texas registered agent must be:

  • At least 18 years or older
  • Have a physical address in Texas
  • Available during normal business hours to accept service of process

In Texas, your registered agent must consent to appointment.

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Recommended: Get a free year of registered agent services when you hire ZenBusiness to form your LLC. $39 (plus state fees).


Step 3: File the Certificate of Formation

The Texas Form 205 - Certificate of Formation is a document that is filed with the Texas Secretary of State to form an LLC. The fee for filing a Certificate of Formation is $300 online.

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

File a Texas Certificate of Formation

OPTION 1: File Online With Texas SOSDirect

File Online

- OR -

OPTION 2: File Form 205 by Mail

Texas Form 205

State Filing Cost: $300, payable to the Secretary of State

Mailing Address:
Secretary of State
P.O Box 13694
Austin, TX 78711

Office Address:
James Earl Rudder Office Building
1019 Brazos
Austin, TX 78701

Fax: (512) 463-5709

Step 4: Create an Operating Agreement

An operating agreement isn't required for Texas 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 Texas 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:

  • Opening a business bank account
  • Hiring employees
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Free EIN: You can get an EIN from the IRS website (free of charge) after forming your business.

Hiring an LLC Formation Service

LLC formation services make the process of setting up your business easier, but they aren't required. Below, we cover what you can typically expect to pay to an LLC formed for you.

Online services like ZenBusiness and LegalZoom will take care of the LLC filing process on your behalf for a fraction of the cost of a business attorney.

Basic LLC Formation Service Package: $39-$79

In addition to filing your Certificate of Formation, LLC formation providers offer other services. LLC formation services will also:

Operating Agreement: $40-$99

Purchasing a custom operating agreement from an online formation service is an easy way to ensure you’ll have a thorough and legally-binding document governing your new LLC.

EIN Registration: $60-$70

After forming your LLC, you’ll need to get an EIN. If you’d prefer not to apply for your EIN directly through the IRS, you can delegate this task to your formation provider for an extra fee.

Registered Agent Service: $0-$125 per year

You'll need to designate a registered agent for your Texas LLC when you complete the Certificate of Formation.

A registered agent is an individual or business entity responsible for receiving and processing legal documents and service of process on behalf of your business.

While Texas doesn't prohibit business owners from acting as their own registered agents, many people choose to appoint a professional for the sake of privacy, convenience, and discretion.

Learn more about hiring a registered agent in our Should I Hire a Registered Agent Service guide.

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Recommended: Get a free year of registered agent services when you hire ZenBusiness to form your LLC. $39 (plus state fees).

Business License Research Service: $99

If your LLC requires several federal, state, and local permits or licenses in order to operate legally, you might want to consider hiring a professional business license research service.

If you’re looking to maximize your time in the early phases of your business, we recommend checking out Incfile's $99 business license research package.

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Set up an LLC in Texas Yourself in Five Basic Steps

Texas LLC

Texas LLC Cost FAQ

Do you have to pay for an LLC every year?

In some states, there is an annual business tax and/or annual report fee. Visit our LLC annual report guide and choose your state to learn exactly what ongoing fees might be required in your state.

Is an LLC really necessary?

An LLC provides limited liability protection. This means an LLC protects your personal assets in the event of a business loss, such as a lawsuit or unpaid debt.

We recommend any small business that carries even the smallest amount of risk or liability to form an LLC. Learn more in our Should I Start an LLC guide.

What is the cheapest way to get an LLC?

You can save money on getting an LLC by completing the formation process yourself, making your own operating agreement, being your own registered agent, and getting your own EIN.

Check out our How to Save Money Forming Your LLC guide to learn more.

Is creating an LLC free?

Each state charges a fee for LLC registration. You have the choice to file the paperwork yourself or pay someone else to do it for you.

Can I pay myself a salary from my LLC?

You can pay yourself a salary from your LLC, but it would be called a draw or distribution if your LLC is taxed in the default way by the IRS.

Visit our How to Pay Yourself from an LLC guide to learn more.

Is an S corp better than an LLC?

An S corporation (S corp) is an IRS tax status, not a type of business entity. An LLC can be taxed in the default way or as an S corp. For some businesses, being taxed as an S corp can make lots of sense.

Check out our LLC vs. S corp guide to find out if S corp status is right for your business.

Is LegalZoom worth it for an LLC?

LegalZoom creates more LLCs than any other provider. However, they also have mediocre reviews and charge more than any other service provider. We think there are better LLC formation services out there.

Check out our Best LLC Services review to learn more.

What’s better sole proprietorship or LLC?

A sole proprietorship is only good for businesses that carry very low risk of liability because sole proprietorships don’t offer any liability protection.

Learn more in our sole proprietorship vs. LLC guide.

What all can you do with an LLC?

There are many advantages to starting an LLC. Visit our guide to learn more about the benefits of an LLC.

Does having an LLC help with taxes?

An LLC can help with taxes if your business needs more options. An LLC can be taxed via pass-through taxation, as an S corp, or as a C corporation (C corp).

Visit our Choosing a Business Structure guide to learn what type of business structure would offer the most tax benefits to your unique business.

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