If you want to start and run a Utah limited liability company (LLC), you'll need to prepare and file various documents with the state. This article covers the most important ongoing reporting and state tax filing requirements for Utah LLCs.
The State of Utah requires you to file an annual report (also known as a renewal) for your LLC. The DOC should send you a renewal notice approximately 60 days before the annual report is due. You can file the report online or access a blank report/renewal form from the DOC website. To complete the annual report you primarily need to provide your LLC's name and state-issued entity number.
The report is due each year on the anniversary of the date of your LLC's creation. The filing fee is $15. If you file after the due date there is also a penalty fee.
When it comes to income taxes, most LLCs are so-called pass-through tax entities. In other words, the responsibility for paying federal income taxes passes through the LLC itself and falls on the individual LLC members. By default, LLCs themselves do not pay income taxes, only their members do. Some states do impose a separate tax or fee on LLCs for the privilege of doing business in the state. Utah, though, is not one of those states.
However, in some cases, the owners of an LLC choose to have their business treated like a corporation for tax purposes. This choice is made by filing IRS Form 2553 with the IRS. (See the IRS website for the form.) Unlike the default pass-through tax situation, when an LLC elects to be taxed as a corporation, the company itself must file a separate tax return. The State of Utah, like almost every other state, has a corporate income tax (more specifically called the corporation franchise and income tax). In Utah, the corporate income tax generally is calculated at a flat 5% of Utah taxable income with a minimum tax of $100. If your LLC is taxed as a corporation you'll need to pay this tax. The state's corporate income tax return (Form TC-20) is filed with the Utah State Tax Commission (TC). For more details, check Nolo's article, 50-State Guide to Business Income Tax, or the TC website.
Does your LLC have employees? If so, you'll need to pay employer taxes. Some of these taxes are paid to the federal government (the IRS) and are not covered here. (But note that federal employer tax obligations start with obtaining a federal employer identification number (EIN).) However, Utah employers also must pay taxes to the state.
Firsts, you'll need to withhold and pay employee income taxes to the Utah State Tax Commission (TC). Begin by registering your business with the TC either online or on paper (TC-69, Utah State Business and Tax Registration). Once you've registered, you'll need to file withholding taxes on a periodic basis (for example monthly or quarterly) using some version of Form TC-941. You'll also need to use Form TC-941R each year to reconcile your LLC's tax withholding. For more details, check the Tax Commission website.
In addition, you'll probably need to register to pay state unemployment insurance (UI) taxes. These taxes are handled through the Utah Department of Workforce Services (DWS). You can register for these taxes online or by using DWS-UI Form 1. Then, each quarter, use DWS-UIC Form 33H to report on wages and pay the UI taxes. For more information , check the DWS website.
If your LLC will sell goods to customers in Utah, you will need to collect and pay sales tax. You'll have to register for this purpose with Tax Commission and then make periodic sales tax payments for goods sold. You can register on paper (Form TC-69) or online. After you've registered, you'll be issued a sales tax number and a sales tax license. Then, on a periodic basis (for example quarterly or monthly), you must submit sales tax returns to the Tax Commission (some version of Form TC-62). For more information, including about online filing, check the Tax Commission website.
If you will be doing business in states other than Utah, you may need to register your LLC in some or all of those states. Whether you're required to register will depend on the specific states involved: each state has its own rules for what constitutes doing business and whether registration is necessary. Often activities such as having a physical presence (a business location) in a state, hiring employees in a state, or soliciting business in a state (such as by telephone, print ads, mail, or the Internet) will be considered doing business for registration purposes. Registration usually involves obtaining a certificate of authority or similar document.
For more information on the requirements for forming and operating an LLC in Utah, see Nolo's article, 50-State Guide to Forming an LLC, and other articles on LLCs in the LLC section of the Nolo website.