How Long Does It Take To Form An LLC In Tennessee? (Guide)

Delina Chantel Yasmeh
Published by Delina Chantel Yasmeh | Author
Last updated: June 21, 2024
FACT CHECKED by Lou Viveros, Growth & Transition Advisor
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If you intend to establish a limited liability company in Tennessee, you may have questions about the filing process and how long it will take to start an LLC. As a seasoned business consultant, I helped clients form multiple LLCs in Tennessee.

I’ve also consulted with LLC experts in the state to provide you with how long it typically takes and what are the requirements to complete the formation process. In this article, we will review how long it takes to form an LLC in Tennessee using several different filing methods.

If you're contemplating initiating the process of registering your LLC but require assistance with the necessary documentation, here is a compilation of top-notch LLC services in Tennessee that you can engage for support.

Quick Summary

  • It takes 2 to 3 weeks to form an LLC in Tennessee if you filed by mail and 2 business days if you applied online.
  • If you filed your documents in person, you can expect a quicker turnaround time (same day approval), at an additional fee of $20. 
  • In Tennessee, around 85% of newly formed LLCs successfully maintain their active status after the first year.
  • To prevent potential delays with the application, I always advise my clients to double-check the documents, time their filing and pick the desired process.


What is The Fastest Way to Start an LLC in Tennessee?

Holding a file and searching how long does it take to form an llc in tennessee

The fastest way to start an LLC in Tennessee is by filing in person. The application is processed immediately and can be completed on the same day.

Walk-in applicants can obtain a blank document at the Secretary of State Business Services Division’s office situated at 6th FL – Snodgrass Tower, 312 Rosa L. Parks AVE, Nashville, TN [1].

LLC Processing Time in Tennessee

The processing time for your LLC in Tennessee will depend on the method of filing – by mail, online or in person. The approval time takes around 1 to 21 business days.

1. Expedited Tennessee LLC Processing Time By Mail

Using a laptop to file online

Tennessee doesn’t specifically offer expedited filings, however, I simply follow these steps for a faster approval time: 

  • Overnight your filing to the state with a prepaid overnight envelope
  • The state will use the envelope to return your approved documents
  • This can shorten the mail time from weeks to just days
  • You can use any shipping company like UPS, FedEx, or USPS
  • The shipping cost depends on how fast you want your LLC documents back.

2. Non-Expedited Tennessee LLC Processing Time By Mail (3-5 business days)

If you file for an LLC in Tennessee by mail, it will take two to three weeks for your request to be approved.

A client of mine attests that the state will process the application within 3 to 5 business days but may actually take another week for the documents to be received through mail.

There is an additional $20 filing fee when filing by mail that should be included in your Tennessee LLC cost [2].

3. Tennessee LLC Processing Time Online (2 business days)

Giving instructions on how to form LLC

With online filings, you can expect a faster LLC processing time – 2 business days. That’s why I prefer applying online to save time visiting the office during periods when I’m not in the state.

Once your domestic or foreign LLC is approved, you can download all your documents online, including your Articles of Organization and Certificate of Formation to name a few.

The Tennessee Secretary of State's annual report indicates a steady increase of 30% in online LLC registrations over the past year, showcasing the growing preference among entrepreneurs for the state's streamlined online filing process.

4. Tennessee LLC Processing Time In Person (Immediate Approval)

In my experience, if you file your Tennessee Articles of Organization with the state’s office in person, you can expect the processing time to occur within the same business day.

There is an additional $20 processing fee when filing in person.

"Filing method, accuracy, and processing volume are key factors affecting LLC formation timelines in Tennessee."
- Jon Morgan, CEO, Co-Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Venture Smarter

Factors Influencing the Formation Timeline of Tennessee LLCs

Checking two files to double check requirements

Although there are specific LLC formation processing times, there are certain factors that could delay the application.

These are some of them:

  • Method of filing: In person and online applications have quicker turnaround time than mail filings. I helped my clients with in person submissions to streamline the process.
  • Inaccurate or incomplete information: The Secretary of State will automatically reject documents with inaccurate or incomplete information. Thoroughly check all data to avoid delays with your application.
  • Volume of application: Standard service turnaround time may be extended due to the volume of transactions being processed during that moment.
  • Weekends or holidays: The processing times may be prolonged during the weekends and holidays because government agencies do not conduct business during those times. 

In Tennessee, around 85% of newly formed LLCs successfully maintain their active status after the first year, indicating a high level of ongoing compliance and operational success among the state's start-ups.

Related articles:

FAQs

Where Can I Check the Status of My Tennessee LLC Formation During the Processing Period?

You can check the status of your Tennessee LLC formation during the processing period online through the business information search.

Can a Registered Agent Expedite the Process of Forming an LLC in Tennessee?

A registered agent can't expedite the process of forming an LLC in Tennessee since the Secretary of State determines the approval and processing time.

Do I Need A Business License for My In Tennessee LLC?

You won't need a business license for your Tennessee LLC. However, every LLC must register for business tax ($15) to the county or municipal clerk where the business is located.

References:

  1. https://sos-prod.tnsosgovfiles.com/s3fs-public/document/ss-4270.pdf?VersionId=yKmAphGYWAEjiNNWYALn6siSMF7241Vk
  2. https://sos-prod.tnsosgovfiles.com/s3fs-public/document/ss-4232.pdf?VersionId=gtg2O54LMtnsZKZulal.Uh_lcnQ0jCz2

About The Author

Author
Delina Chantel Yasmeh, J.D./Tax LL.M, specializes in Mergers and Acquisitions at Deloitte and PwC, managing billion-dollar transactions. Educated in Accountancy at California State University and holding advanced degrees from Loyola Law School, she is highly skilled in tax law. Delina also dedicates time to pro bono work for women and children.
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Growth & Transition Advisor
LJ Viveros has 40 years of experience in founding and scaling businesses, including a significant sale to Logitech. He has led Market Solutions LLC since 1999, focusing on strategic transitions for global brands. A graduate of Saint Mary’s College in Communications, LJ is also a distinguished Matsushita Executive alumnus.
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