Hello I just turned 17, and ive been working on a project for 1 full year now, I have the website and business plan made but I want to make it official and release it to the public. How would I acquire an LLC? I heard I would need to consult a attorney. If so where can I? How much would it cost?
Go on line to Legal Zoom the day you turn 18. Then you can file the paperwork to be an LLC without your parents being partners.
If you don't know the answer to your question, you don't have a real business plan. A real business plan would lay out in detail the business entity under which you will operate. The comprehensive document would explain in detail which attorneys and accountants you're working with, and will lay out the costs.
If you took some online template and plugged in some words and figures, you don't have a real business plan. You have a toy business plan. Real business plans take months to create and are usually 100+ pages. You're nowhere near having laid out your business on paper. Your questions are some of the first steps in creating a comprehensive business plan, not some afterthought.
Why do you want to become an LLC? For one, liability protection for a small closely-held business entity is a myth. No business entity is going to protect your personal assets. Google "pierce the veil." The only thing that will protect your assets is a good business insurance policy, and they're expensive.
Lucky for you, no, you can't form an LLC ("acquire" is not the right term for what you want to do. If you "acquire" an LLC that means you bought someone else's). In every state you must be 18 to create an LLC.
The first question is why do you want to be/have an LLC
An LLC is a separate legal entity...
It has its own tax return, finances etc ...
Advantages are that it (not you personally) holds the money and liabilities - it can go bust not you.
You become a formal employee of it, and pay yourself and usually take shares in it, to take dividends...etc. If you make large amounts of income one year and much less (or zero) the next, then it can average it out. You can also use it as a 'bank' and pay yourself enough to live on, and avoid the higher tax rates (personally).
you operating "a company", and authorities (incl Tax) are generally a lot less forgiving to mistakes, and often need (costly) accountants etc.
be self employed sole trader. Your money and money earned from the business are one and the same. You can still expense against the work you do (once registered) and is a cheaper and simpler way of starting out. You can convert to a company/LLC status later. Many high street traders and service people operate this way - even when they have a 'trading name'. You can be "Marcus Websites" or whatever if you want.
You still can (and should) take out professional insurance etc incase a customer decides to make trouble / sue you (whether a genuine mistake/ justified or not...)
'You' not an separate entity, can go bust...
But in general 'you' are treated a little more personally than a standalone company entity.
So go have a think about how much work you intend to make, and if you really need an LLC.
you don't want to make an LLC, you probably don't actually know what one is, it is a state designation for a company which can be a sole proprietor, a corporation or a partnership, it means that it actually is a 'new person'--you are not the LLC, also it is not recognized by IRS which means you file a tax return of the income that relates to the method of operation, a 1065 for a partnership, a 1020 for a corporation(a Sch C for a sole proprietor)
forming the LLC doesn't make it any more official or public than you have alredy done except that locally you need a business license which will require you to advertise your dba(doing business as)
You don't need an attorney to set up an LLC, and most likely don't need an LLC anyway. A business can be a sole proprietorship, and still be official. Many people think you need an LLC to have a business. They're wrong, you don't.
You need an attorney to walk you through the paperwork and legalities of setting up an LLC. You also need an adult to represent you until you turn 18 since any contract you sign can be repudiated by you until you turn 18 (you can sign, but no one is going to sign countersign since you cannot enter into a binding contract). Figure the attorney is going to run you about $150 (or more) an hour and figure 4 - 6 hours minimum to draw up the paperwork and submit it. Also, the attorney is not going to work with you until you are either 18 (see above) or have an adult acting as your proxy/legal representative.
After you re 18 locate an attorney and get some guidance.
Assuming you are in the US, it will vary depending on the state you are in. Your state's website for Secretary of the State usually will have information necessary on how to register a business. For simple, one person businesses, you really shouldn't need a lawyer per se, but someone familiar with the process may be helpful. To form an LLC, typically you will need articles of organization to file with the proper state agency and pay a fee. Again, depends on the state. There are proforma and sample articles around, and may even be available from the SOS, that would be suitable for an organization without complex or complicated matters and will only involve you.
There may be an age limit though on who can register.
you could probably startby consulting an attorney, they also have grants for starting your own business so you might want to look into that too