Massachusetts Foreign LLC – Qualification and Registration

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If you already have an LLC in another state and want a Massachusetts LLC, then starting an LLC would be somewhat different. You must register as a foreign LLC. We have here a guide on how you can qualify and register for a foreign LLC in Massachusetts

Forming a Massachusetts Foreign LLC

A foreign LLC does not need to be a company from another country but a business formed under the laws of another state. To start a foreign LLC in Massachusetts, you need to register it with the Massachusetts Secretary of State.

Step 1: Choose Massachusetts Foreign LLC Name

Obtain a name reservation certificate and submit it with your foreign qualification requirements at the Massachusetts Secretary of State. Your LLC’s legal name outside of Massachusetts will be listed on the application, along with the name it will use in Massachusetts. Take note of the requirements for naming your LLC

Check name availability at Massachusetts’s business entity names and reserve your LLC name.

Step 2: Select Massachusetts Foreign LLC Registered Agent

You’ll need a registered agent to form a foreign LLC in Massachusetts and take note that a Massachusetts registered agent must have a local address. Here are three of the best LLC services on our list that will provide you with registered agents to ease your worries: 

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Step 3: File Registration of Massachusetts Foreign LLC 

Fill out and submit a Foreign LLC Application for Registration form via email to [email protected] or by mail to Secretary of the Commonwealth One Ashburton Place, Room 1717, Boston, Massachusetts 02108-1512.

Include the following:

  • LLC’s full legal name. 
  • A fictitious name or a DBA (only if your LLC’s legal name is not available); Attach a statement of adoption of the fictitious name signed by all LLC members.
  • LLC’s principal office and mailing addresses.
  • LLC formation state and date.
  • Registered agent’s name and address in Massachusetts
  • Date when your LLC will start operations in Massachusetts.
  • Credit card information on the last page of the form for the $150 application fee. 

The LLC cost in Massachusetts, even for foreign LLCs will differ between online filing and by mail.

Step 4: Determine How Your Massachusetts Foreign LLC is taxed

Foreign LLCs are also subjected to the Massachusetts Business Privilege Tax, and they must file LLC annual reports each year.

Note that forming a foreign LLC would be good for your business as you can legally operate in a different state thus reaching a larger market and opening more opportunities for higher profit.

Steps to Filing Massachusetts Foreign LLC Online

When you are registering for the foreign LLC in the State of Massachusetts, you will have to submit your Application for Registration of foreign LLC with the Secretary of the Commonwealth which costs $500. After approval, you will receive a Verification Certificate from the State Office. The State does not offer online filing options for foreign LLC. We have explained the aspects you need to cover when you apply for Massachusetts Foreign LLC.

  1. Download the Application Form PDF on your system.
  2.  Read the instructions provided in the form carefully and fill the form accordingly.
  3. Before making the payment, thoroughly review the information provided in the form to be correct and accurate.
  4. Make sure to fill the form by typing. The State office does not accept the form filled in ink or any other form of handwritten form.
  5. Attach your name reservation application along with the reservation fee.
  6. You are also required to attach the ‘Cover Sheet’, which is provided on the third page of the application form PDF.
  7. The State mandates the filing of the Certificate of Existence or Good Standing issued by an officer or an agency properly authorized by the State of Original Jurisdiction.
  8. Make the payment of $500 to the ‘Secretary of the Commonwealth’ via check or by card for the faxed forms.
  9. If you are filing the application by fax, you are also required to attach the Fax Voucher Cover Sheet. For additional instructions about fax filings, you can read the fax filing guidelines issued by the Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts office.
  10. Attach all the documents, i.e., the application form, cover sheet, Certificate of Existence or Good Standing, Filing fee, name reservation form and fee, and Fax Voucher Cover Sheet in case of faxed filing together.
  11. For mail or in-person filing, submit the documents to the following address: Secretary of the Commonwealth One Ashburton Place, Room 1717, Boston, Massachusetts 02108-1512
  12. To fax your documents, place the fax voucher coversheet, as the first and only cover sheet, on top of your fax filing and fax it to 617-624-3891.

After Forming Massachusetts Foreign LLC

Here are added things you need to accomplish after forming your Massachusetts Foreign LLC

  1. Obtain Business Licenses. Find the business licenses you’ll need using the Business License Search.
  2. File LLC annual reports and Business Privilege Tax.
  3. Pay State Taxes like sales tax; you’ll need an EIN for your LLC

It is convenient plus easy to file for the foreign LLC if you are doing it online. The steps are very easy and that’s why it’s possible to go along with the steps and form a foreign LLC in Massachusetts. 

How Much Does It Cost to Register a Foreign LLC in Massachusetts

To register as a foreign LLC in Massachusetts, you can file through mail, fax, in-person or online by paying $500 to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

If you are looking to start a foreign limited liability company in Massachusetts, you need to complete an application. The cost of filing an application is $500. You may be required to fill out additional forms, such as a cover letter. In addition, there is a processing fee of $20. Filing your application by mail or fax can take up to two weeks.

To register an LLC in Massachusetts, you must file a document called an annual report. Domestic LLCs and foreign LLCs both have to file these reports by the end of the month following their first anniversary of registration. Nonprofit corporations, however, must file their reports on Nov. 1. Depending on the type of foreign company you have, the cost of filing an annual report can be as low as $520. You will also need to pay a separate tax.

There are several ways to save on this expense. One way is to contact a business attorney. Business attorneys are familiar with the intricacies of foreign qualification requirements and may be able to help you save money. However, this option may be costly for a small business. Thankfully, there are a few service providers that offer foreign qualification for less than $100. These companies are rated highly by customers and have a proven track record for success.

Another important step in the registration process is to choose a registered agent. The registered agent acts as your company’s representative in Massachusetts. They accept service of process on your behalf and notify you of important filing deadlines. This service can cost between $100 and $300 per year, depending on the level of service you need. It is important to understand how much it costs to register a foreign LLC in Massachusetts before you start the process.

If your company is headquartered in another state, you may need to register a foreign LLC in Massachusetts. To do this, you must have a Certificate of Authority. This document is similar to the documents that you need to set up a business in your home state.

If you decide to register your foreign limited liability company in Massachusetts, you’ll also need to pay a fee for the registration of your agent. If you’re going to have a registered agent in Massachusetts, you’ll need to file a yearly report with them. This document is necessary for the Secretary of State to register your foreign limited liability company.

Once you’ve chosen your registered agent, you’ll need to appoint a resident agent. This person will be responsible for receiving important documents, such as tax notices and a Certificate of Authority. While you can choose to be your own resident agent, most businesses hire a third party organization to handle this paperwork so that they can focus on other aspects of their business.

While a Massachusetts-based limited liability company may not be required to register a certificate of incorporation, it may need a certificate of legal existence. This certificate must be issued by an agency or officer in the jurisdiction where the foreign limited liability company is organized. It must also be translated under oath.


What is a foreign LLC in Massachusetts?

If your LLC is formed under the laws of another state, it is referred to as a foreign LLC in Massachusetts.

Do I need a foreign LLC?

Businesses incorporated outside of the state where they operate must have “foreign qualifications” issued in the other states.

What is the main difference between domestic and foreign LLC?

A domestic LLC is a company registered in Massachusetts as an LLC. The entity type that has a physical presence in another state is a foreign LLC.

In Conclusion

Starting a foreign LLC in Massachusetts does not require a lot of documentation or tasks. However, it is always good to seek help from a professional when it comes to running your business. Get a professional registered agent and form your foreign LLC anywhere without a hassle.

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