Virginia Annual Reporting

You did it. Your Virginia LLC is officially up and running, ready to take on challenges, roll in the profits, and change the world.

There’s no doubt that this is an exciting time in your business journey. After starting your LLC, it’s easy to get carried away in all the excitement and expectations. After all, as a new business owner, you’ve got a lot on your plate.

But the state does too. They need to keep updated records on thousands of businesses so that they can effectively reach out with any important tax or legal communications down the road. How do they do it? With your cooperation, of course.

In Virginia, LLCs are not required to file annual reports but they still must pay an annual registration fee. This fee keeps your LLC in good standing and helps keep the state’s records up-to-date regarding commercial activity within its borders. Unsure how to go about it? Never even heard of it? No worries at all. That’s why we’re here. Keep reading for everything you need to know.

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What Is the Virginia Annual Registration Fee? Why Is It Important?

Consider an annual registration fee the Commonwealth’s yearly checkup on your LLC. It’s similar to a census in that its purpose is to collect the necessary contact and structural information about each Virginia business.

Each state has its own annual reporting requirements, and some don’t even require them. But in most states, you’re required to submit one per year that includes your LLC name, principal office address, registered agent information, and member/manager names and addresses. While Virginia technically does not require LLCs to file annual reports, whether you run a domestic or foreign LLC, you should plan on submitting an annual registration fee.

Don’t be intimidated, but it’s not something you want to take lightly. This is how the Commonwealth updates your LLC’s record with the most recent information. They need to know how to reach you with important information about your business status, upcoming filings, taxes, and service of process.

In addition, if you change your registered agent, or your current agent resigns, you’ll need to keep the Commonwealth informed so they can update their contact information. Miss one of their communications and your LLC in Virginia might end up falling out of good standing or, even worse, being administratively dissolved.

Moreover, keeping your information current will help other businesses and potential customers find you. Anyone, including future partners or clients, can contact your LLC by searching for your business name on the State Corporation Commission website, so it’s important to maintain updated data by filing annual registration fees.

How Much Does the Virginia LLC Annual Registration Fee Cost?

If you’re putting together a budget for all your LLC’s costs – like formation costs, name reservation fees, and initial operating expenses – it’s important to include annual filings like this one, just so that there are no surprises.

Costs vary from state to state. Some are free while others can be several hundred dollars. Domestic and foreign LLCs only need to pay $50 per annual registration fee in Virginia. Corporations have to file a full annual report with much more information than an LLC’s annual registration fee, and they also pay more ($100+), although this depends on the number of authorized shares they have.

Due Date and Frequency for an Annual Registration Fee in Virginia

You will file one annual registration fee per year, and it’s due on the last day of your LLC’s anniversary month (the month in which you initially formed it). So, if the Commonwealth approved your LLC’s Articles of Organization on December 10, 2021, your annual registration fee would be due each year by December 31st.

What Happens if You Don’t File?

You might be thinking, “that sounds like a pain. How bad could it be if I just fly under the radar?” The short answer: don’t try it. Failing to pay your annual registration fee can yield some serious consequences.

If you miss your annual registration fee due date, the state will immediately assess a $25 late fee. If you still haven’t paid by the last day of the third month following your due date, the state will automatically terminate your LLC. At that point, you would need to file a reinstatement for your business.

 

Required Information

We’ve covered all the basics, but you might be wondering what the form itself looks like. As it is not an annual report, there is very little information required for the Virginia LLC annual registration fee. When you go to file, you’ll need to provide the following information:

  • LLC name or state entity ID number
  • Email address and contact phone number

Filing Options

Now is the moment you’ve been waiting for – your anniversary month has arrived and it’s time to file. You have a couple of options. The quickest and easiest route is online filing, but you can also submit it by mail or in person.

Online Filing: You can complete your annual registration fee filing entirely through the SCC Clerk’s Information System. If you don’t have an account, you’ll need to create one first. Once you’re signed in, you can select Pay Registration Fees and enter the necessary information, then pay using a credit or debit card.

Filing by Mail: This process is a bit trickier. Annual registration fee hard copies aren’t readily available for download, but the SCC will send you one if you request it. Use the Online Forms Request page to obtain a Notice of Assessment of Annual Registration Fee form. Fill it out with the appropriate information, then mail it (along with a check for your payment) to:

State Corporation Commission Clerk’s Office

P.O. Box 1197

Richmond, VA 23218-1197

Filing In Person: If you live in or near Richmond, you can also hand-deliver a completed paper form to:

State Corporation Commission Clerk’s Office, First Floor

1300 E. Main St.

Richmond, VA 23219

If you request a hard copy annual registration fee, the SCC will send it via mail. Because there can be delays in the mailing process, it’s important that you request a form well in advance of your due date.

Does the Commonwealth Send Reminders?

Reminders are always nice. They help you stay on top of your business requirements and ensure that you won’t fall out of good standing.

The State Corporation Commission won’t send a reminder to let you know when your annual registration fee due date is coming up, so you’ll need to keep track of it yourself. We recommend establishing a series of your own reminders – on a calendar, phone, planner, etc. – to make sure that you don’t miss the deadline.

Conclusion

There you have it, everything you need to know about Virginia’s reporting requirements. Follow this guide to a T and your LLC will be prepared to operate smoothly and in good standing long into the future.

And remember, if at any point it seems overwhelming, you’re not alone. A good LLC service like ZenBusiness (or LegalZoom) can be a valuable resource, taking care of all the little details, so you can focus on growing your business.


Frequently Asked Questions

About Filing the Virginia LLC Annual Registration Fee

Should I use an annual report service, hire an attorney, or prepare and file my own reports?

This question largely comes down to personal preferences, but we do have some general insights. The DIY route can be quite a bit of work, as you’ll need to keep track of your due dates and complete the entire report on your own with no assistance. As for hiring an attorney, this can be prohibitively expensive for many businesses, as a lawyer can charge hundreds or even thousands of dollars to prepare and file your annual registrations.

You can think of business services companies as a middle ground between these options. While most of these companies charge a fee to prepare and file your annual registrations, that fee will be significantly less expensive than an attorney’s fee. At the same time, you still aren’t going it alone. Instead, you have an experienced professional guiding you through the entire process.

I’ve heard the most about LegalZoom. Are they the best annual report service?

LegalZoom is the most well-known of all business services companies, thanks to its long track record and extensive advertising campaigns. That said, all of that brand power comes at a cost, as LegalZoom’s pricing and features don’t always compare advantageously to its competitors. While we do appreciate LegalZoom’s annual report filing service, it isn’t our top choice.

When is my annual registration fee due each year?

The answer to this question depends on when you formed your LLC in Virginia, as each LLC’s annual registration fee due date is the last day of its anniversary month. Therefore, if you formed your LLC on July 7th, you will need to pay your annual registration fees no later than July 31 of each subsequent year.

Does Virginia require LLCs to file initial reports?

In some states, LLCs are also required to file initial reports. These reports are typically quite similar to annual reports, with the difference being that an initial report either accompanies your formation documents or follows their filing within a couple of months.

As you might expect, Virginia LLCs don’t file initial reports, much like they don’t file annual reports.

What if I need more time to pay my annual registration fee?

If you fail to pay your LLC’s annual registration fee by its due date, the state will immediately assess a $25 late fee. If you still haven’t paid by the last day of the third month following your due date, the state will automatically terminate your LLC. At that point, you would need to file a reinstatement for your business.

Where can I find more official information about Virginia’s LLC annual registration requirements?

There are two great online resources for official info about annual registration fees for Virginia LLCs. The State Corporation Commission has an excellent FAQ page about annual registrations, and it also offers a helpful step-by-step guide for paying annual registration fees online.

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