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Filing Texas LLC Annual Reports: What You Need to Know

How to Start an LLC

LLCs are business structures in the United States that provide asset protection for their owners, among other benefits. This business structure ensures that owners cannot be held personally liable for the company's debts or liabilities. When you look into the structure of an LLC, you will see that they are hybrid entities. They combine both the characteristics of a corporation, and the characteristics of a partnership or sole proprietorship.

Forming an LLC is a great option for many businesses, despite this, it does come with responsibilities, such as conducting a business search, understanding the requirements for taxes, and the drafting of an operating agreement. In the state of Texas, instead of an annual report, there is a Texas Franchise Tax. This fee is levied annually by the Texas Comptroller on all taxable entities that do business in Texas, including single member LLC and anonymous LLC structures. It is calculated in a few different ways and paid on May 15 each year.

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What Is an LLC Annual Report?

Each year an LLC is required to file the annual report and pay a filing fee. The annual report provides details regarding all the company’s activities throughout the prior year. These reports provide information to the state regarding profits, as well as the manager’s and member’s roles in the business. You should include the names and addresses of directors or managing members, as well as the company and registered agent address.

What Information Do You Need to Include in Your LLC Annual Report?

  • Company Address: Your LLC should have a local Texas address. This should be where your LLC does business.
  • Managers: Your managers are the people who run your LLC on a day-to-day basis. They should be listed in the annual report.
  • Purpose of Business: If your business operates in a specific industry it needs to be explained and listed on the Annual report. This can be a service or product your LLC provides, if it is a holding company, define it as that.
  • Business ID numbers: Typically your business ID number includes an EIN, but if you do not have any employees, it might be your SSN.
  • Registered Agents: In many situations, the registered agent is a member or manager. You can also hire a third party registered agent service. They must have a legal address in Texas, and be able to accept mail during regular business hours.

How to File an Annual Report?

Unlike most states, Texas does not require LLCs to file annual reports. Despite this, LLCs in the state of Texas are required to file annual franchise tax reports. In other states, the fees for filing an annual report range between $50 and $400. These are paid each year on a specific date but sometimes are paid every two years.

Who Pays Franchise Tax?

More than just LLCs are required to pay the franchise tax in the state of Texas. Instead, all businesses doing business in the state are required to. Including:

  • Corporations
  • LLCs & Series LLCs
  • Banks
  • State Limited Banking Associations
  • Savings and Loan Associations
  • S-Corporations
  • Professional Corporations
  • All Partnerships
  • Trusts
  • Professional Associations
  • Business Associations
  • Joint Ventures
  • Other Legal Entities

Excluded Entities

  • Sole Proprietorships (Except Single Member LLCs)
  • General Partnerships Owned Directly by a Single Natural Person
  • Entities Exempt Under Tax Code Chapter 171, Subchapter B
  • Certain Unincorporated Passive Entities
  • Certain Grantor Trusts, Estates of Natural Persons & Escrows
  • Real Estate Mortgage Investment Conduits
  • Certain Qualified Real Estate Investment Trusts
  • Non Profit Self-Insurance Trust (Insurance Code Chapter 2212)
  • Trusts Qualified Under IRS Code Section 401(a)
  • Trusts Exempt Except Under IRS Code Section 501(c)(9)
  • Unincorporated Political Committees

How to File the Annual Franchise Tax Report

There are three main methods of filing an annual franchise tax report. The first is “no tax due”. If your business makes less than $1,110,000 in revenue, then you will not owe any franchise tax. If you are above that amount, you will need to fill out a different method, the “EZ Computation form”. The third method is the “long form”.

The Franchise Tax Report forms can be downloaded from the Comptroller. Then submit them to the following address:

Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts
PO Box 149348
Austin, TX 78714-9348

Annual Franchise Tax Report Cost

The Texas Franchise Tax is calculated based on a company’s margin, as long as you are making revenue above $1,110,000. Your total revenue is considered all revenue amounts reported for federal income tax, and then subtracting statutory exclusions.

Statutory exclusions include:

  • Dividends and interest from all federal obligations
  • Schedule C dividends
  • Foreign royalties and dividends (from IRS Code Sections 78 & 951-964)
  • Flow-through funds
  • Industry-specific exclusions

The franchise tax can be calculated by a few methods with gross revenue

  • Multiplied by 70 percent
  • Minus the cost of goods sold
  • Minus compensation
  • Minus $1,000,000

What Happens if You Don’t File an Annual Report?

If you need more time in order to file your Texas Franchise Tax Report, then you can submit an extension. Typically, this will only be granted if you have already paid 90% of your tax owed by May 15.

Otherwise, if you do not file and pay your annual franchise tax report by May 15, there will be a $50 penalty for each report. Additionally, there will be a 5% penalty on franchise tax paid up to 30 days after May 15.