How to Start a Professional LLC in Maine

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Last updated February 17, 2023
Written by Dmytro Kondratiev
Editor, lawyer
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With an economy hitting midground, Maine is still one of the most business-friendly states across the nation. Straightforward regulations and a collaborative business environment make it attractive for multiple entrepreneurs-to-be.

Small businesses represent 99.2% of all enterprises in the state and an LLC structure is extremely popular among startuppers. In addition, the state allows certified specialists to operate using a special LLC type. So let’s consider how to form a PLLC in Maine.

How to Create a PLLC in Maine?

According to Maine law, you are entitled to register a professional LLC to legally back up your business in this state if you are one of the following certified professionals:

  • Attorney or lawyer;
  • Dentist;
  • Chiropractor;
  • Podiatrist;
  • Optometrist;
  • Physician, surgeon, or osteopathic physician;
  • Physician’s assistant or registered nurse;
  • Veterinarian.

Before creating a PLLC in Maine make sure that:

  • All specialists who are going to be your prospective LLC members have appropriate certifications in place;
  • You’ve got a state licensing board approval (if required).

If you qualify for PLLC formation, registering this type of entity in Maine is not something you can’t handle on your own. It’s a relatively easy five-step process and our guide will take you through it.

Select a Name for Your Maine PLLC

It’s the prime step to take since your filing application won’t be even accepted by the state regulator unless your PLLC name meets the naming requirements that are in force in Maine:

  • A business entity identifier is a must. So, a “limited liability company” should be mentioned in full or in an abbreviated form;
  • Using terms denominating another entity type as well as regulatory and government authorities is not allowed to prevent confusion;
  • Your desired name should be available in Maine. You can check it by doing a name search to make sure your chosen name version is not used by any other company;
  • While you already have a professional license, you can refer to your profession in a company name to explain what your business is about.

Notably, if the targeted moniker appears available in Maine and you really like it, you can put your projected PLLC name on hold in the state for a period of up to 120 days. It’s a great option if you are not ready to file yet and don’t want your name version to be stolen.

Appoint a Registered Agent in Maine

To initiate PLLC registration in Maine, you should find a registered agent (RA). An RA is a statutory rule for all types of incorporated entities across the US. And the state of Maine is not an exception.

The good news is that RA regulations in Maine are neither strict nor limiting. You can appoint:

  • Any adult individual older than 18 years of age, with no restrictions on education or professional background;
  • A legal entity registered and legally operating in Maine.

The key requirement is a physical address in the state and an RA’s consistent presence at that address during normal business hours to receive and process your company’s official correspondence.

With that, your RA options in Maine are quite diverse:

  • You can serve as your own RA if you start small and will be present at your workplace most of the time;
  • You can delegate this task to some of your acquaintances;
  • You can engage a third party with expertise in the associated sphere such as a lawyer, accountant, tax advisor, financial consultant, etc.;
  • You can hire a specialized service provided by professionals that will organize your mail processing in a due manner.

Our best recommendation for an RA position is a registered agent service in Maine. It won’t hit your budget too much and you can rest assured the job will be done by professionals.

File Formation Documents in Maine

At this point, you are ready to file a PLLC in Maine. Submitting formation documents to the Secretary of State is what the PLLC registration is formally about.

In Maine, the LLC statute is called a Certificate of Formation. You’ll have to complete Form MLLC-6, print it out, and mail it to the following address:

Secretary of State

Division of Corporations, UCC, and Commissions

101 State House Station

Augusta, ME 04333    

Notably, the state of Maine allows for mailed filings only. You can’t file online or bring your documents to the state office in person.

The Certificate of Formation is a sort of your company’s business card. It covers basic information and data that will appear in state records after your Maine PLLC registration. When applying, you should check that the following data is entered correctly:

  • Your PLLC name;
  • Your RA name and registered address;
  • The filing date and effective date (if applicable);
  • Make sure you’ve ticked the PLLC box to choose the proper type of entity;
  • Short description of your professional services;
  • Any other provisions or info you deem necessary;
  • Name and signature of the PLLC’s organizer.

Draft an Operating Agreement for Your Maine PLLC

While this document is optional in many other US states, it’s mandatory in Maine. Under the Revised Statutes Section 1531.1.B of the state legal code, you should compile this document after your PLLC registration and store it with your other business docs.

Since an Operating Agreement is the company’s bylaw, state filing is not required. However, the importance of this instrument shouldn’t be underestimated. It will serve to:

  • Set up clear and accurate management guidance;
  • Help you efficiently manage your business on a day-to-day basis;
  • Control your assets and profits in the best manner;
  • Prevent any conflicts and misunderstandings between the company members transacting business activity and making some key operational decisions.

Unlike a Certificate of Formation, an Operating Agreement is a comprehensive document customized to an individual business scenario and situation. It should reflect agreements and covenants between your Maine PLLC members regarding the following points:

  • Split of ownership shares in percentage;
  • Voting powers and authorities;
  • Member and manager rights and responsibilities;
  • Profits and losses distribution;
  • PLLC operational rules and procedures;
  • Ownership transfer;
  • PLLC dissolution scheme.

Get an EIN for Your Maine PLLC

An EIN is an Employer Identification Number or a Federal Tax ID. It’s issued by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for free to make your business visible to tax authorities and other official bodies and agencies.

By function, the EIN works as a Social Security Number for a person. You’ll need it to identify your company as a taxpayer and it’s a requirement in the following situations:

  • When operating a multi-member PLLC;
  • When opening a bank account for your entity;
  • When paying an excise tax and some other types of federal and state levies;
  • When hiring employees and paying wages to them.

Maine PLLC Cost

As stated above, in Maine, you can file your PLLC formation documents only by mail. The state filing fee to pay for the entity registration is $175.

While a state fee is a bare Maine PLLC cost, there might be some other expenses that will pop up on your final cheque:

An expedited filing fee for the same-day processing$100
A name reservation fee to keep your desired name version intact until you are ready to file$20
DBA registration fee to use a different company name for marketing purposes$125
The RA service for an annual subscriptionbetween $50 and $300

First Steps to Take After Your Maine PLLC Registration

When forming a PLLC in Maine, state registration is only a part of the whole affair. To get your business off the ground and operate it on the right foot, there are a few important post-formation steps you should complete.

Set up a Business Checking Account

Avoid a typical mistake of many beginner businessmen who choose to use their personal bank accounts for business. Mixed funds will put your corporate veil protections at risk and your personal assets could be claimed to settle business commitments.

By opening a dedicated account for your newly formed entity, you’ll split personal and business cash flows from the start to prevent any confusion and make accounting a lot easier.

Register Appropriate Licenses and Permits

Similar to multiple other states, Maine doesn’t require a state-level license. It means you won’t have to pay for operating a business in its jurisdiction.

However, most likely than not, you’ll have to get some types of permissive documents under local requirements. Check with your municipal office for local licenses and permits pertaining to your business.

Besides, professional LLCs in Maine might be called to get some specific business certifications depending on the type of service you provide and the industry you work in. You can find appropriate licensing resources and info on the Maine government website.

Purchase Business Insurance for Your Maine PLLC

Business comes not only with opportunities but also with risks. And you can manage those risks and minimize the damage by maintaining proper insurance for your business.

The most common types of insurance policies for PLLCs include:

  • General liability insurance for protection against lawsuits;
  • Professional liability insurance to handle malpractice claims;
  • Worker’s compensation insurance for employers. 

Keeping Your Maine PLLC in Good Standing With the State

By creating a PLLC in Maine, you’ll get a number of benefits both for yourself and for your business. On the other hand, you’ll also have certain commitments. Thus, to maintain your business’s lawful status in Maine, you need to:

  • Have an active registered agent in the state for as long as your PLLC exists;
  • Maintain valid permissive documents required for you to provide professional service in the state;
  • Timely pay business taxes;

Match annual reporting requirements and file your report before June 1 each year and pay an $85 fee.