Self-Directed IRA LLC Setup Process

Our team at Safeguard Advisors will have your Self-Directed IRA LLC setup and funded in about 3-4 weeks, depending on the state of LLC formation and how responsive your current retirement plan administrator is to the request for transfer.

Our full-service plan setup process includes:

  • Consultation to help design your plan specific to your situation and investment goals
  • Assistance with the establishment and funding of your new self-directed IRA account
  • All state and federal filings necessary to implement the LLC entity in the most appropriate state
  • Specially tailored, custodian-approved, and IRS-compliant LLC operating agreement prepared by our legal team
  • Assistance with the establishment of a bank or brokerage account at the institution of your choosing to house the LLC funds
  • Coordination of the funding transaction from the IRA to the new LLC account
  • Ongoing access to high quality support at no additional charge

Laying the Right Foundation

Before we even get started, your dedicated self-directed IRA consultant will work with you to determine the optimal format for your IRA LLC structure. The LLC needs to be formed in the most appropriate state, which depends more upon how you will invest than where you live.

We’ll also help you plan the initial funding of your new Checkbook IRA LLC. The IRA LLC can accept funds from a variety of retirement plans such as former employer 401k, pension or other qualified employer plans, and all types of IRA plans such as Traditional IRA, Rollover IRA, Roth IRA, SEP IRA and SIMPLE IRA. You can also setup a plan using an inherited IRA. Not all types of IRA plans are compatible with each other however, and may not be able to be consolidated into a single IRA LLC.

How the IRA LLC Process Works

There are two components of the IRA LLC program:

  • A self-directed IRA held by a registered IRA custodian
  • The specially formed LLC created by Safeguard Advisors

When establishing a plan, we start work on both components simultaneously.



1 – Establishing and funding the IRA

Our team at Safeguard will assist you with the establishment of your new self-directed IRA account with one of the IRS approved custodians we work with.

The funding of the IRA will be initiated at this time, and may occur via rollover from a qualified plan, transfer from one or more IRA accounts, new contributions to the IRA, or some combination of the above.

You do not have to move all of your funds at once, and we’ll help you determine what initial funding level makes sense based on your investment goals and current plan structure.

2 – Creating Your Special-Purpose LLC

While the IRA is being established and funded – a process that typically takes about two weeks – our legal team at Safeguard Advisors will establish the LLC entity.

We will perform all necessary state filings, obtain a tax ID (EIN) for the LLC that communicates to the IRS the IRA tax status of the entity, and have our tax attorney draft your custom IRS compliant LLC operating agreement.

3 – Opening a Bank Account for the LLC

Once the LLC has been established, we’ll provide you with the legal documents necessary to do your first job as the manager of the LLC, which is selecting an institution to hold the funds of the LLC. You can choose to work with your favorite bank or credit union, and/or open an account with a brokerage trading house.

4 – Bringing it all Together

With the LLC banking arrangement in place, the setup of the plan can be finalized.

We’ll help prepare the proper paperwork to instruct the IRA custodian to invest your IRA into the LLC.

They will perform the necessary compliance review, then wire the IRA capital to the operating account you have established for the LLC.

Your IRA LLC is now funded and ready to begin investing.


Keeping your IRA Funds Safe

During this entire process, your retirement savings is secure. The self-directed IRA custodians we work with are all licensed and regulated in the same fashion as any other bank or brokerage that holds IRA accounts. They just have a different business model that allows for investments such as the special purpose LLC we are creating.

While your funds are with the custodian, which is generally only for a few days, they will be fully FDIC insured up to $250,000, just as with any other IRA account. Once the IRA has been invested into the LLC, the funds are under your control and will continue to be afforded FDIC or equivalent insurance while in cash by the institution you have chosen to work with.

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