The short answer is yes, you will need to register with the Franchise Tax Board (FTB) and obtain an FTB number.
Classification of LLCs
For California income and franchise tax purposes, generally the FTB classifies:
• A single-member LLC as disregarded from its owner, and treat it as a sole proprietorship, or a branch or division of its owner.
• An LLC with more than one member as a partnership.
• An LLC that files an election to classify as an "association," for federal tax purposes, as a corporation.
Importantly - an LLC must have the SAME classification for both California and federal tax purposes.
LLCs classified as disregarded generally do not report their own income separately from their owners. However, the FTB treats them as separate entities for purposes of the annual tax, LLC fee, tax return requirements, and credit limitations. If certain items of income/loss or payments attributable to a disregarded LLC's activity exceed certain levels, the disregarded LLC must separately report its
income on its tax return.
LLCs classified as partnerships generally determine and report their California income, deductions, and credits separately under the personal income tax law. These items pass through to their owners for purposes of taxation. LLCs classified as corporations generally determine their California income under the corporation tax law.
Refer to FTB Publication 1060, Guide for Corporations Starting Business in California, for these types of LLCs.
LLCs classified as disregarded or as partnerships are subject to an $800 annual tax. This applies if they do business in California or the SOS accepts their Articles of Organization (LLC-1) or Application for Registration as a Foreign Limited Liability Company (LLC-5). LLCs organized or registered in California are subject to the annual tax even if they conduct no business in California.
Best of luck.
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