The limited liability company, or LLC, combines the limited liability benefits of a Hawaii corporation with the pass-through taxation and simpler filing requirements of a Hawaii partnership. These benefits make forming a Hawaii LLC attractive for people looking to start a business in Hawaii. Forming a Hawaii LLC requires filing your Articles of Organization with the Hawaii Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, which can be done online.
Find a name for your Hawaii LLC that contains the phrase "limited liability company" or the abbreviation "L.L.C." or "LLC." You may choose to abbreviate “limited” as “Ltd.” and company as “Co.”, but the name of your LLC may only consist of letters in the English alphabet. Furthermore, the name of your company must be distinguishable from the name of any business registered with the Hawaii Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs.
Choose a registered agent who will be the individual or organization that, if your company is sued or subpoenaed, will receive service of process. If you live in Hawaii and are a Hawaii citizen, you may serve as the registered agent of your company.
Choose a method of filing. The Hawaii Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs accepts LLC filings by Internet or mail. If filing by Internet, you must sign up for a free account with the Hawaii Business Express. If filing by mail, download a copy of the Articles of Organization form.
Fill out the Articles of Organization. Provide the name of your company and the street address of its initial principal office. Provide the name and address of your registered agent. Provide the name and address of all persons responsible for organizing the LLC. Specify a period of duration of your company. Indicate whether the day-to-day management of your company will be vested in managers, who are persons without an ownership stake, or members, who have an ownership stake. List the names and addresses of all members or managers. Indicate whether the members of your company will be personally liable for the debts, obligations and liabilities of your company. Sign and date the Articles of Organization.
File the Articles of Organization. As of 2010, the filing fee is $50. If filing online, you must pay by credit card and follow the on-screen directions to file and pay. If filing by mail, you must pay by check made payable to the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs.
- While starting a Hawaii LLC can be done online, check with an attorney about the financial implications of operating a business as an LLC.
- If you do not live in Hawaii or do not wish to publicly associate your name and address with your business, you may hire a registered agent service, which is a business that will receive service of process on behalf of your business.