Moving Your Small Business to a Different State

One of the perks of being a small business owner is relocating your business to another state if you choose. The steps to successfully moving the company depend upon the organizational structure.

Moving a Sole Proprietorship

Moving a sole proprietorship to another state is generally straightforward:

1. You’ll register your new business as DBA (doing business as) in your new location.

2. Depending on the site, you’ll register with the local county clerk or the state.

3. Once you’ve registered in your new area, you’ll cancel your registration in your old state.

Moving an LLC

When moving an LLC, you’ll have several options. The first is to continue your registration in your old state but register as a foreign LLC in your old state. Registration as a foreign company may make sense if you plan to move back to your old state in the future. However, you’ll likely have to file annual reports and name a representative in both states. Your taxes also may become more complicated.

The second option is to dissolve your LLC in the old state and start fresh in your new state. You can do this by liquidating the old one, merging the two, or having members of the old LLC contribute their membership interests to the new one.  The last option generally requires an attorney to accomplish correctly.

A third option is to transfer an LLC from one state to another. The process is called redomestication. While this is a relatively easy way to handle a permanent move, not all states allow this. If you can do this, you’ll generally need a certificate of good standing from your old state and articles of domestication.

Moving a Corporation

Moving a corporation is similar to moving an LLC, and, in general, talking with an attorney can help you understand the tax consequences of each type of move. In general, you have an option to continue as a foreign corporation in your new state, transfer the corporation, or dissolve it.

Post-Move Steps

Regardless of whether you’re moving a sole proprietorship, LLC, or corporation, you’ll have some post-move tasks to complete. First, you must apply for all the necessary professional and business licenses and permits in your state. You may also have to file a sales tax registration. The permit, licensing, and registration requirements will differ in each state.

Secondly, check the local zoning laws that may apply to your business. Thirdly, take care of any tax obligations. If you’re closing out your business in your previous state, you may need to file a “Final Return.”  Talking with a tax adviser is essential because you might deduct or capitalize relocation expenses such as moving costs, trips to find a new site, or travel and meeting costs. 

Finally, you may need to find a new bank and other professional service providers, such as CPAs or attorneys, in your new location. You can find these providers through referrals, reading ads in local publications, or through professional associations.

Business On the Move

If your business is relocating, let us help — as a full-service moving company, we can assist with your company’s move. Contact us today to get things started.

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