Great question! Set it up ASAP. Regularly freelancing outside of an LLC is risky because there's no legal protection for your personal assets. In the case where you'd find yourself getting into a sticky lawsuit situation, you don't want everything you own to be on the line. Once you find yourself accepting regular payments, it's a good idea to get your LLC set up and get a separate business bank account.
In the US, setting up an LLC is easy and affordable. Cost varies by state, but in my case (Georgia) it was $50 to fill out one form and submit it to the Secretary of State.
Woot! Will do. And just to be clear -- no need to go through the Stripe Atlas / online marketplace type setup here since we're not selling products, but services?
I'd say Stripe Atlas is overkill for getting started as a freelancer regardless of their service offering - just use the list of what they cover in their $500 fee as a guide for what you need to set up. Your main priorities are the LLC formation, EIN generation, separate business checking account, and make sure everything is set up correctly with the Secretary of State.
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