This guide will walk you through the 7 Steps to Starting a Business in Washington State. Tips on coming up with business name, getting your website started yourself, registering your business with the Washington Secretary of State, and more! Read this guide for a simple, step-by-step process.
Creating a name for your company is the highest leverage activity you can take part in. Follow these 4 simple tips to create an excellent business name. Make use of alliteration and rhyming so your name “sticks” in the phonological loop, your subconscious mind + some time is a powerful force, and a few tips on finding the best domain name as well.
The average cost to set up an LLC is $132. This is the one-time filing fee that creates the LLC by state law. The map and the table on this page show the LLC costs in all 50 states plus Washington DC. Additional information on registered agent fees, initial filing requirements, and annual report requirements and fees.
In order to change or convert a Sole Proprietorship into an LLC (also referred to as “incorporating a Sole Proprietorship”), you first need to form an LLC, wait for it to be approved, transfer everything over, then cancel/withdrawal your Fictitious Name/DBA.
A Certificate of Organization for an LLC (Limited Liability Company) is a document that does either one of two things, depending on the state where you are forming your LLC. In most states an LLC Certificate of Organization is a legal certificate from the Secretary of State showing that your LLC was duly formed and is recognized as a legal entity in that state. Usually in these states you file an Articles of Organization (or Certificate of Formation) and the state sends you back a Certificate of Organization.
When forming an LLC, who can be an LLC Member. An LLC Member is an owner of an LLC. This Quick List explains which type of people and which types of companies can be LLC Members. US citizens, US residents, Non-US citizens, Non-US residents, US immigrants, US foreigners, Other LLCs, Other Corporations (C-Corporations and S-Corporations), Other legal entities (besides LLCs and Corporations), Trusts, Pension Plans, and Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) can be LLC Members.
An LLC Registered Agent is a person or company who agrees to receive legal and court mail (called Service or Process) on behalf of your LLC. In most states, you have 3 options for who can be your LLC’s Registered Agent. Designating a Registered Agent for your LLC is a state requirement and it ensures that the US court and legal system function properly.
An LLC helps protect your personal liability, meaning, it helps protect your personal assets (bank accounts, home, vehicles, and any valuables) from your business in the event your business gets sued. Think of the LLC as creating a legal “barrier of protection” between your business and your personal life.
When most people hear the word “Foreign LLC” they usually think this is an LLC formed outside of the United States. This is not the case. A Foreign LLC still refers to a US company. A Foreign LLC is an LLC that was formed in one state, but is now registering (also referred to as “qualifying”) to do business in a new state. A Domestic LLC is an LLC that was formed in its “home state” and that operates in this state.
The table in this article shows Foreign LLC registration fees (“qualification fees”) for all 50 states. The average Foreign LLC registration fee in the US is $186. The names of the forms required to register a Foreign LLC vary widely, but some of the most common names are “Foreign LLC Registration”, “Application for Registration of Foreign LLC”, and “Application for Certificate of Authority”.