LLC Dos and Don’ts for Traveling Nomads
Can You Still Run an LLC As a Nomad, Non-resident, or Traveler?
By Andrew Pierce
The life of a nomad is often one that feels free from the typical trappings of normal life. When you live a more nomadic existence, you lack the same ties and holds that can limit where you go in life – and what you get to do. However, one potential challenge of being a nomad is being able to run your own company. A company has to be based somewhere, so where is it based if you are a nomad?
Let us take an American business, for example. Running a business, especially a Limited Liability Company (LLC) – a company without shareholders – can seem complex. However, did you know that you do not have to be a US resident to open an LLC in America?
This means that it is possible to run an LLC for nomads, non-residents, and travelers. To do this, it would be intelligent to bring in the right legal expertise. If you are not from the US, you might not know the various company formation laws and regulations. These can be quite confusing sometimes, and it pays to have some legal advice.
Nomads can open their LLCs within the USA without being a resident. You do not need a green card; you do not need citizenship; you do not need to be present in the country. However, while that sounds fantastic in practice, running an LLC as a nomad can still be challenging for some people.
For tax purposes or any other purpose, you can still run an LLC when you are a nomad. This is not the case for every country – many nations expect LLC owners to at least be present in the country – but for American business opportunities, you can run an LLC as a nomad.
What kind of nomad business would need to be an LLC?
Any kind of nomad business could benefit from an LLC. Typically, though, the most common nomad businesses looking into creating an LLC are providing freelance or eCommerce functions. For example, you could start a nomad business providing digital services such as logo design, article writing, etc. Running it as an LLC is easy as it means you can essentially operate a sole trader without having a shareholders agreement or other issues.
Many people run small drop shipping and eCommerce companies as a nomad. These allow you to easily manage your business from afar, especially if you are using drop shipping. Dropshipping allows you to operate a business where you simply buy stock on-demand as needed. As a nomad, you do not need to have a warehouse or a base of operations – you can simply run your business online, order goods as needed, and have the dropshipping company deliver them to your clientele.
Any kind of business could be justifiably run as an LLC. So long as you do not need to have shareholders involved, you could operate an LLC. For nomads, though, the main reason to set up a US LLC would be for a few reasons:
- Creating a stable business that is seen as reputable abroad as it is based in the United States
- Building a business in a country that has a reputation as being a good place to do business with
- Tax purposes, where you settle in as an American business to benefit from their tax system
- Reputational reasons, where you wish to represent yourself as an American business
So long as you do not want to have a shareholding in your business, you can easily run an LLC as a nomad. LLCs are a useful way to ensure that you can have a solid business holding that is respected, reputable, and researchable for your potential clientele. As a nomad, having that kind of reputation can kill off doubts about your business’s validity.
Why should you run an LLC in America?
For one, if you are a nomad, you are not tied to brick-and-mortar business needs. This means that you can get a lot of work done remotely. You can pick up clients from everywhere. That is great. However, you might find that choosing the right place of formation for your business matters greatly. Why is America typically favored when setting up an LLC for nomads?
The first and most clear reason is reputation. America is arguably the largest nation in the world, so having your company running from America exudes trust. You can also find that having an American bank account – which you will need to run an LLC – is very useful. This can make it easier to deal with transactions outside your ‘home’ country (wherever that may be), and it can be easier to set up other bank accounts and payment methods with a US bank account.
When you set up a US LLC, you will need a bank account to be formed. A US-based LLC is generally more reputable worldwide, and having access to these banking facilities can be very useful. So, if you are serious about running an LLC as a nomad, you might want to consider America for the reputational and transactional gains.
You do not need to live here to form your LLC, which means America arguably makes this easier than anywhere else. This can work in your favor for nomads looking for business ownership without being in a fixed place.
Andrew Pierce is a passionate travel blogger with a love for exploring new cultures and experiencing the beauty of the world. With a background in tourism and hospitality, he has a wealth of knowledge and insights to share with his readers. Whether he is writing about his adventures in far-flung destinations or sharing practical travel tips, Andrew’s writing is always engaging and informative. When he’s not on the road, you can find him planning his next trip or catching up with friends and family.”