How to Start an LLC in Delaware

How to Start an LLC in Delaware: A Step-by-Step Guide

Updated on
Jan 23, 2024
min read
Starting a Company
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LLC in Delaware:

Delaware is famous for its business-friendly environment, and forming an LLC in the state comes with several advantages:

Favorable Taxation: Delaware has no sales tax, and LLCs benefit from tax advantages.

Asset Protection: LLCs offer limited liability protection to owners, safeguarding personal assets.

Efficient Business Court: Delaware's Court of Chancery specializes in business cases, providing quicker resolutions.

However, it's essential to consider the size and scope of your business because Delaware might be more cost-effective for larger corporations than smaller businesses from out of state.

LLC in Delaware Benefits

A Limited Liability Company (LLC) in Delaware combines elements of both corporations and sole proprietorships, offering several benefits:

Limited Liability: Personal assets of LLC owners are usually protected from business-related liabilities.

Pass-Through Taxation: LLC profits are typically not taxed at the business level, avoiding double taxation.

Flexibility: LLCs have fewer administrative requirements and offer flexibility in management.

Now that you're aware of the advantages, let's dive into the steps to form your LLC in Delaware.

Steps to Form an LLC in Delaware

Step 1: Name Your Delaware LLC

Choosing a suitable name for your Delaware LLC is the first crucial step:

Delaware LLC Name Availability:

  • Ensure your name is unique and not in use by another Delaware business.
  • Use the Delaware Division of Corporations' online entity search to check name availability.
  • Avoid rejection by complying with Delaware's naming guidelines, which prohibit confusingly similar names.

Choose a Designator

Your LLC's name must end with "Limited Liability Company," "LLC," or "L.L.C."

Other Naming Regulations

  • Avoid using "bank" or variations of it.
  • Consider using a member or manager's name in the business name.
  • Delaware allows specific words or their abbreviations in LLC names.

Check Domain Name Availability

  • Ensure your desired business name is available as a web domain.
  • Use a domain name search tool to secure a matching URL.

Register a Domain Name

  • Secure a matching domain name to establish an online presence.
  • Consider using domain name services for assistance.

Check for Existing Trademark Registrations

  • Ensure your chosen name isn't already trademarked.
  • Check both federal and state trademark databases.
  • Consider registering your own state trademark if needed.

Filing a DBA in Delaware

  • If your LLC plans to operate under a different name, file a "Doing Business As" (DBA) in Delaware.
  • Complete the Registration of Trade, Business, and Fictitious Name Certificate and submit it in each county where you'll operate.

Step 2: Appoint a Registered Agent in Delaware

Designate a registered agent for your Delaware LLC:

  • Your registered agent must be a Delaware resident or an authorized business entity with a physical address in the state.
  • They should be available during normal business hours to receive legal documents on behalf of your LLC.

Consider Using a Registered Agent Service:

  • Using a registered agent service can help you avoid complications associated with self-appointment.
  • Stellar offers registered agent services to ensure compliance with Delaware's requirements.

Step 3: File a Delaware Certificate of Formation

Complete and file the Certificate of Formation to officially register your Delaware LLC:

  • File online with the Delaware Division of Corporations or submit via fax or mail.
  • The filing fee is $90 at the time of writing.

Consider Professional Assistance:

Stellar offers business formation services, including handling the filing process for you.

Step 4: Create an Operating Agreement

Draft an operating agreement for your Delaware LLC:

  • An operating agreement outlines rules, management, ownership, profit distribution, and more.
  • Even single-member LLCs should consider having an operating agreement.

Step 5: Apply for an EIN

Obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN):

  • An EIN, also known as a Employer Identification Number, is necessary for tax purposes.
  • You can apply for an EIN through the IRS website, by mail, or by fax. Stellar offers an EIN service for convenience.

Register with the Delaware Division of Revenue

If your LLC operates in Delaware, you must register with the Delaware Division of Revenue:

  • Register for a business license, pay the required fee, and complete the process online.
  • Comply with additional state requirements for employers, including workers' compensation, unemployment insurance, and new hire reporting.

Delaware LLC Business Banking

Open a business bank account for your Delaware LLC:

  • Separate business and personal finances to ease tax reporting and maintain liability protection.
  • Stellar offers discounted business bank accounts with various features.


Starting an LLC in Delaware offers numerous benefits, but it's essential to follow the steps outlined in this guide to ensure a smooth and legally compliant process. Remember to consult professionals for tax and legal advice specific to your business needs. Stellar can assist you with forming and maintaining your Delaware LLC, simplifying the process so you can focus on growing your dream business.

Disclaimer: The content on this page is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal, tax, or accounting advice. Seek the counsel of a licensed professional for specific questions related to these topics.

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