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Operating LLC in USA while living in Europe

Asked by: Almin - 25 June, 2011
https://d25eic0jctudgb.cloudfront.net/images/site/avatars/default.png-f1597c1da25f30f8c1a941405e8391c8 Can you please tell me exactly how I can operate a single-owner LLC in USA if I live in Europe (Sweden) , especially regarding following questions:

1. Exactly how I will be paying US taxes? I mean, how does it work in reality, who will I be paying taxes to and will the tax forms be sent to my address in Sweden?

2. If I'm selling digital info-products on the Internet, such as ebooks, videos, web graphics etc, what kind of book keeping must I have? Do I have to send some kind of annual book keeping report to someone in US? What's required regarding bookkeeping for LLC if I live in Sweden?

3. Must I have business-only bank account in US for my LLC? If yes, how can I get one? What are the negatives if I don't have it?

4. Must I have EIN number in US? If yes, how to get one? What are the negatives if I don't have it?
Answered by: Ray Albert - 11 July, 2011
https://d25eic0jctudgb.cloudfront.net/images/site/avatars/194.jpg-630c771619e92bede7e6f696b56767b9 Almin,

I broke down your questions and answered them to the best of my ability:

1. Most taxes owed/paid by your company will be collected by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). Technically, all the forms are downloadable and can be accessed on www.irs.gov website. Most business owners in the US use the help of a professional accountant to prepare and file their taxes. 

2. To be honest with you, I am not a professional accountant, so I would suggest looking for an accountant or CPA here in the United States. You can find one just about anywhere by searching on google. They would be able to assist with your book-keeping questions and needs.

3. It is generally a good idea for your business to have a bank account. One of the reasons it's important to have a separate bank account for your LLC is to separate personal funds from business funds (this is one of the conditions to maintain limited liability). 

To open the bank account in the United States, you would most likely have to physically come here. Sweden is a signatory of the Hangue Convention, which means your company's documents can be attached with an Apostille. This will allow your American company to be recognized in Sweden and in effect open your bank account in your home country instead of having to physically come to the United States.

4. Any and all functioning businesses in the U.S. are required to have an federal tax ID. If you have SSN you could use it to file taxes for a single-member LLC with no employees, however all other cases require you to obtain EIN as the business tax ID.

You need this number in order to report profits, manage employees, payroll and other tax-related points of interest for the local and federal regulatory agencies. You will also need an EIN to open the company bank account, to get a state sales tax vendor id, apply to acquire any service or property on behalf of the company or to obtain any kind of specialty licenses.

I hope you were able to find this answer helpful.

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