LLC query

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    Hey guys!

    New member here to MLR. Great site Art!

    Have a newb question. I’m as fresh as a daisy and i’m looking into starting an LLC as i’m seriously committed to making music my business.

    Most of the Legal websites are trying to sell you something to begin with so it’s hard to take their words at just how badly i “need” one thing or the other.

    I’m all but checking out on a popular legal website and my bill is looking close to $400. $160 of which is for their Registered Agent service annually. That seems a bit high since i see other sites offering the service for less than half of that annually.

    I guess my question is do you guys use this sort of service or do you act as your own “registered agents”? and if so is there anything else they might be trying to get me on or that i should take into consideration when forming my LLC?

    I’ve been around music for ever, never as a business. I know I’ve got a lot to learn. It’s a good thing we all have such a great resource. Any direction or insight is much appreciated.

    Thanks for your time!

    Art Munson

    Welcome aboard 13ones. Use the search box in the upper right and search on LLC. This has come up before and there are a few threads on it. I used Legal Zoom to set mine up.


    Sorry just started digging, hadn’t gotten there yet.

    Thanks Art!


    Hi 13ones,

    LLC’s are treated differently by each state. In many cases you can act as your own registered agent. The registered agent is the person who can accept service of process if your company gets sued. (so they must be over 18 years of age).

    The state that I used to live in charges $125 to form an LLC. They do not require a registered agent because your LLC must have a physical address within the state. After that, there is no annual fee (unless you are in a certain “restricted” profession, like medicine or law.

    The state where I live now charges $100 to form an LLC, but ALL LLC’s must pay a $300 annual registration fee. You can be your own registered agent, or the state can accept service on your behalf.

    I’ve had an LLC for several years in our former state. My new accountant suggested that instead of forming a new LLC here, that we form a “Sub S” corporation for tax reasons.

    I filed my own LLC papers because I’m a lawyer. But, you really don’t need to hire a lawyer to form an LLC or a Corporation. It’s really a matter of picking an available name (you can usually search your name on the state’s business database), filling out some forms, an operating agreement, etc., and paying the fee. You can usually download the forms from your state’s department of Corporations.

    You should check with your accountant to determine which business type is best for you. Find out what your state charges to from an LLC and whether or not a registered agent, other than you, is required, and that will give you an idea if the service that you contacted is charging a fair price.

    Best of luck,



    Hi 13ones

    Just thought I’d ask. WHY are you concerned about forming an LLC? That’s the more important question. If you are just starting out and you have only small income from music (a few hundred to a few thousand dollars per year), I wouldn’t even bother with this stuff. However, if you are making serious money already, that’s different.

    The reason I ask is sometimes I see folks putting the cart way before the horse and expending energy on things that are not important for where they are at this point. I have no way of knowing if that is the case here, of course.

    Anyway, as far as LLC advice… Can’t get better than from Michael since he is a lawyer. (But we like him anyway!)

    Best ๐Ÿ˜€


    @Advice….I prefer to say “recovering lawyer.” ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Advice has a point, regarding income, and your reasons for forming an LLC. There are a number of reasons to incorporate, or to form an LLC.
    What are yours?

    I was a sole proprietor for years, until I got involved in a joint venture with another company. Then, when I formed two and three publishing entities, it made sense to have them all under one business umbrella.

    You really should discuss your goals in forming an LLC or corporation with your attorney and accountant.


    Thanks so much for the replies guys!

    The more i research the more i might be doing the horse/cart thing previously mentioned ๐Ÿ™‚

    I’ve done some research about starting a small business and turns out there is something called SBDC michigan and it’s an organization (for those of you who are as ignorant or naive as i am) that formed out of the US Small Business Association and it’s specifically for lending advice to people who are starting or have started a small business.

    I’m just trying to get all my ducks in a row before i start splashing around too much. Trying to cover some bases early. For now i’m just attempting to license cues and maybe so an instructional video etc… something music related.

    Thanks again for the help guys!!


    +1 for LegalZoom.

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