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.
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You can form a corporation or LLC with our help for as little as $0, plus state filing fees for incorporation. Filing fees vary depending on the state you incorporate in. For more information on specific states, check out our state guides on the Swyft Resource Center. You can also email us with specific questions or contact us at 877-777-0450.
Swyft Filings accepts payment through Visa, MasterCard, American Express, PayPal, checks, and money orders. You can send any questions about payment to our email address or contact us at 877-777-0450.
It depends on what you ordered. If all you did was file your corporation or LLC, the price you paid when ordering is all you pay. You will have no further fees after that.
However, if you signed up for the Swyft Filings Registered Agent Service, you will be charged its initial fee three days after you place your order. From then on, you will be charged according to the terms of your subscription until you change your registered agent with the state or dissolve your company. If you change your agent or dissolve your company on your own, let us know so we can discontinue billing.
Other potential subscription-based options include SnapMailbox, 360 Legal Forms, and ComplianceGuard. If you opt for SnapMailbox or 360 Legal Forms, you will be charged a monthly fee after their respective 30-day free trials end. ComplianceGuard has an annual fee after a 14-day free trial. All three of these services are completely optional.
Our team processes all Standard orders on a first come, first served basis. If you opt for Express or Same-Day Processing, we prioritize your order and send it to the front of the line. However, no matter how fast we get it out the door, you’ll still have to wait for your state to address your filing.
Each and every one of our customers is assigned a personal Business Specialist. You have their direct phone number and email. Have questions? Just call your personal Business Specialist. No need to wait in a pool of phone calls.
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