Register a Foreign Corporation in Washington
To register a foreign corporation in Washington, you must file a Washington Certificate of Authority with the Washington Secretary of State. You can submit this document by mail, by fax, in person, or online. The Certificate of Authority for a foreign Washington corporation costs $200 to file online, by fax, or in person and $180 for normal processing. Below, you’ll find answers to frequently asked questions about how to file the Certificate of Authority and register a foreign corporation in Washington. Or, sign up for our Washington Foreign Corporation service, and we’ll handle your filing instead!
Free PDF Download
Download the Washington Certificate of Authority. Fill out the form and submit it to the state.
Do It Yourself Online
Our free account and tools will walk you through registering your Foreign Corporation in Washington. All for free.
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Free Guide to Registering a Foreign Corporation in Washington
What does it cost to register a foreign corporation in Washington?
$200 for online, fax and in person filing (for profit corporation).
$180 for normal processing (for profit corporation).
$50 for non-profit online, fax and in person filing.
$30 for non-profit.
$20 additional for mailed expedited processing (you must write “EXPEDITE” on the envelope when requesting this service).
How long does it take for the state to process the Washington Certificate of Authority?
Online Processing: 2 business days.
Normal Processing: 2-3 business weeks, plus additional time for mailing.
Fax Processing: 1 business week, plus additional time for mailing.
In Person Processing: while you wait.
The fastest way to register your foreign corporation in Washington is to file in person. Don’t have time to drive to Olympia? Hire Northwest and choose 1-day filing. For an additional courier fee, we’ll have a courier service deliver your paperwork to the Office of the Secretary of State.
*NOTICE: Washington Secretary of State is temporarily closed to the public, so walk-in filings are unavailable. This includes our 1-day filing option. Online filings, including our 2-day option, are still in service.
How will I get verification of qualification back from Washington?
You will receive a certificate by mail no matter which way you file. If filing online, you will also receive an email.
What forms do I file with Washington to qualify my out of State Corporation?
The Certificate of Authority form, a list of all current officers and directors including the address for each person, a Certificate of Existence, and the filing fee is required. Fax filing requires the additional fee and Payment Authorization form.
What do I need from my home state?
A Certificate of Existence is required.
Does it need to be an original copy?
Yes, if filing by mail or in person.
How current does the certificate need to be?
Within 60 days of filing.
Will I need an Washington registered agent for my corporation?
Yes, when you hire Northwest as your registered agent, it’s the same price every year, and there are no weird fees or cancellation fees.
You’ll also see all the pre-populated forms and specific filing instructions on the thank you page, in your online account, and they are emailed to you immediately upon signing up for 1 year of registered agent service.
Does the Washington registered agent need to sign the filing?
How can I file the Washington Certificate of Authority?
By mail, fax, in person or online.
What is the state agency that accepts the out of state registration?
Washington Secretary of State
801 Capitol Way S
PO Box 40234
Olympia WA 98504-0234
Fax: (360)664-8781 or (360)664-0055
Do the signatures on the Washington corporation application need to be original?
Who has to sign the foreign corporation filing?
An officer or chairman must sign the form.
Are there any weird things about registering in Washington?
If your nonprofit corporation is, or plans to do fundraising from the public, it may also be required to register with the Charities Program by filing a form with the Secretary of State.
County filing or publication is not necessary for foreign corporations, unless specifically required by the county in which your registered agent resides.
Are there ongoing Washington annual report and/or initial reporting requirements?
WA annual reports are due at the end of the month you initially filed.
What are your fees?
You’ll need to have an Washington registered agent. We charge $125 a year for registered agent service. It’s a flat rate, once a year fee, and includes more than other registered agents. .
We charge a $100 one-time filing service fee if you would like us to obtain the certificates needed from your home state, and register your company in any state you choose. We have offices in every state and can act as your registered agent and make your filings for you in any state. If you would like to register with multiple states at once, we can usually drop our filing service fee down.