Washington

LLC, Business License, Incorporation

With the 14th largest population in the United States, Washington services both large and small businesses. Washington's major industries include manufacturing, technology, and tourism. Regardless of your industry, we can help you take advantage of Washington's business services.

Forming a corporation in Washington

Each state has its own set of rules for businesses seeking to form a corporation there. If you've decided to incorporate in Washington, The Company Corporation will take care of all the details. We'll research the availability of your company name and help you prepare and file your Articles of Incorporation with the Washington Secretary of State. We can also assist with many of your follow-up needs such as amendment filings, written consents, and annual report preparation and filing.

Here are some helpful facts about Washington's incorporation requirements:

Corporate Name Requirements

Washington requires corporations to have names that can't be confused with any for-profit or not-for-profit corporate, reserved or registered corporate, limited partnership, LLC, limited liability partnership or forced fictitious names. When you incorporate with The Company Corporation's help, we'll research your company name to make sure it meets Washington's standards.

Permitted designations: Washington corporate names may be followed by several approved designations, including:

  • Co.
  • Company
  • Corp.
  • Corporation
  • Inc.
  • Incorporated
  • Limited
  • Ltd.

Restricted designations: The use of certain words and phrases in corporate names is considered "restricted" in Washington, meaning they require special approval by the state. These include:

  • Bank
  • Banker
  • Banking
  • Cooperative
  • Cpa
  • Trust
  • Combinations of the words "industrial" and "loan"
  • Combinations of the words "building","savings","loan","home","association" and "society."

Filing Requirements

Remember, when you work with The Company Corporation, we'll take care of your incorporation filing for you. This information is presented only for your reference.

Required documents: The state of Washington requires businesses to file Articles of Incorporation with the Secretary of State.

Turnaround time: In general, turnaround time for incorporating a business in Washington is 5-7 business days.

Follow-up filings: Required. Newly formed corporations must file an initial annual report 120 days after formation.

Officers/Directors Information

Minimum number: Corporations are required to have one or more directors.

Director qualifications: The articles of incorporation or bylaws may prescribe the qualifications for directors.

Appearance in articles: Not required. Directors' names and addresses do not have to appear in the Articles of Incorporation.

Written consent: Permitted. Directors may act in writing in lieu of holding a meeting.

Principal office location

Washington permits a corporation's principal office to be located outside of the state.

Annual Reports

Time to file: Corporations must file annual reports and license renewal requests with the Washington Secretary of State by the end of the month that marks the anniversary of incorporation.

Turnaround time: Turnaround time at the state is between 30 to 60 days.

Signatures: Emailed or faxed signatures are not accepted.

Ready to Incorporate in Washington? Get Started

Forming an LLC in Washington

Each state has its own set of requirements for businesses that plan on forming a Limited Liability Company (LLC) there. If you decide to form an LLC in Washington, The Company Corporation will take care of all the details. We'll research the availability of your company name and help you prepare and file your Certificate of Formation with the Washington Secretary of State. We can also take care of many of your company's follow-up needs, including annual report preparation and filing.

Here are some helpful facts about Washington's LLC requirements:

LLC Name Requirements

Washington requires Limited Liability Companies to have names that can't be confused with any other corporate, reserved or registered corporate names or any limited partnership, limited liability company, limited liability partnership, or forced fictitious names. When you form your LLC with The Company Corporation's help, we'll research your company name to make sure it meets Washington's standards.

Permitted designations: Washington LLC names may be followed by several approved designations, including:

  • L.L.C.
  • LLC
  • Limited Liability Co.
  • Limited Liability Company

Restricted words: The use of certain words in LLC names is "restricted" in Washington, meaning special approval by the state is required. These include:

  • Bank
  • Banker
  • Banking
  • CPA
  • Cooperative
  • Trust
  • Combinations of the words "industrial" and "loan"
  • Combinations of the words "building","savings","loan","home","association" and "society"

Filing Requirements

Required documents: Companies that wish to form an LLC in Washington must file a Certificate of Formation. Remember, when you work with The Company Corporation, we'll take care of this filing for you.

Turnaround time: In general, turnaround time for forming an LLC in Washington is 5-7 business days.

Follow-up filing: Required. The LLC's initial annual report is due 120 days after formation.

Managers/Members Information

Minimum number: LLCs are required to have one or more managers/members.

Principal Office Location

Washington permits an LLC's principal office to be located outside of the state.

Annual Reports

Time to file: LLCs must file their annual report and license renewal with the Washington Secretary of State by the end of the month that marks the anniversary of formation.

Turnaround time: Turnaround time at the state is 30-60 business days.

Signatures: Emailed or faxed signatures are accepted.

Ready to Incorporate in Washington? Get Started

Get Washington Business Licenses

Before your business can legally begin to operate, you must satisfy its license, permit, and tax registration requirements. Almost all state, county, and local governments require businesses to obtain one or more licenses and permits. Additionally, selling taxable goods and services or hiring employees requires that you register with tax authorities. All business license, permit, and tax registration requirements vary by your industry and location.

Examples of possible licenses required in Washington:

  • Tax Registration License
  • Watercraft License
  • Finance License

Too busy to research your licensing requirements? We can help.

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