How to expand your business to other states. How do you do that?

A Corporation or LLC can be incorporated in any state, however, the company is only authorized to do business in the state in which it is formed.

To authorize your company to do business in a state other than where the company was formed, you need to file paperwork in each state you intend to do business.

“Doing business” can have different meanings in each state, but typically includes:

  • Opening an office or getting a business license.
  • Hiring employees or conducting meetings.
  • Having any kind of physical presence in that state.

The process of obtaining authorization to do business in another state is called “Foreign Qualification”. This is also sometimes called obtaining a “Certificate of Authority” that is issued by the state once the process is completed.

For example, if you are incorporated as a Delaware LLC and are physically located and doing business in New York, then you will need to “Foreign Qualify” your Delaware LLC in New York which authorizes your LLC to do business in that state.

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