Managing Your Business

Certified Copies

Updated January 24, 2023
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During the life of your business, there will likely be a time when you will be required to provide an official copy of your company’s formation or qualification documents. In order to ensure that the document you are providing is legitimate (and is identical to the copy on file with the state), you must follow the steps to secure a certified copy. While the most common reason to need a certified copy of your formation documents is in order to register your company to conduct business in other states, there are a number of other reasons as well. Read ahead for more information on what a certified copy is, when you may need one, and where to get one.

What exactly is a certified copy?

A certified copy is an official version of a document on file with a governmental agency. A certified copy includes a stamp or certification from the government agency that confirms that the version included with the stamp or certification is a true and correct copy of the official governmental record.

When would you need a certified copy?

A certified copy may be required for a number of purposes:

  • You need to open a financial account. Most financial institutions require you to provide a certified copy of your company’s formation documents before you can open an account with them.

  • You are attempting to foreign qualify. In order to successfully register your company to conduct business in another state, you will need to present a certified copy of your formation documents or a Certificate of Good Standing.

  • You want peace of mind. Some business owners prefer to obtain a certified copy of their formation documents simply to verify that they have not overlooked any necessary filings. This is increasingly common now that electronic filing has become the norm.

  • You need to replace a lost or destroyed original. It is highly recommended that all businesses keep an official copy of their formation documents on hand at all times. Should these papers ever become lost or damaged beyond recognition, it is advisable that they are replaced with a certified copy.

A note on international business

If you are a foreign-based owner of a business in the United States, simply obtaining a certified copy of your US-filed documents will not be enough to use them outside of the country. If this is the case, you will need to obtain an apostille, or relevant gold seal, on these documents to be able to use them outside of the US. Read more about apostilles here.  

Swyft can help!

Whenever your business needs a certified copy of any state-filed documentation, we can help. Since we have tons of experience with every state’s ordering system, we can streamline this process. Don’t hesitate to contact us today!You focus on your business, and we’ll do the leg work.

Originally published on October 21, 2022, and last edited on January 24, 2023.

Frequently Asked Questions

Looking for answers? You came to the right place. To learn more about our company mission and culture, click the link below.

How much does it cost to form a Corporation or LLC?

Swyft Filings charges only $49 + state filing fees to incorporate your business. Filing fees vary from state to state. If you have a question about a specific state, feel free to email or contact us at 877-777-0450.

After completing my order, will I have to pay additional fees to your company?

No. For business filings, you paid the total price for your order at the time you placed it. 

However, if you signed up for the Swyft Filings Registered Agent Service, you will be charged for this service when the state grants your company a Certificate of Formation. This recurring fee will be automatically charged to your account for each period the service is active unless you change your Registered Agent with the State or dissolve your company.

When will my order be processed?

Orders are processed as they are received. However, clients that select Express Processing or Same Day Processing will have their orders processed before Standard Processing orders.

How long does the incorporation process take?

Incorporation times vary from state to state. Feel free to contact us by email or at 877-777-0450 for information on specific state processing times.

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