Last updated: May 19, 2023

Washington is one of the best places to do business, so it is no surprise that business owners would like to know how to set up an LLC and how long it would take them to do so in the state.

Forming an LLC in Washington is simple once you follow the legal process and understand how long the Secretary of State takes to approve your registration documents.

As a legal expert with years of experience, I will explain in detail how long it will take you to form an LLC in Washington and the options available.

Quick Summary

  • Forming an LLC in Washington takes two business days if you file online.
  • You can select a future date to complete your LLC filing, but it must not be more than 90 days after the filing date.
  • You must specify the duration of your LLC in Washington when filing your certificate of formation.

How Long Does It Take To Form An LLC In Washington?

Reaching out pen to write signature on LLC form

It takes two business days to form an LLC in Washington if you are filing online.

However, if you decide to form an LLC by filing through the mail, it would be processed in the order it is received, although you could pay an additional $50 for two-day processing.

This duration applies to Washington LLCs, foreign LLCs, and professional LLCs.

Washington LLC Processing Time

Clock and laptop

The Washington Secretary of State offers several ways to file for forming an LLC. They include the following:

1. Online Filings

You will pay a $200 fee if you want to file online, and your LLC processing time should take no longer than two business days.

2. Mail Filings

You will pay a $180 fee if you want to file through mail, and it will be processed in the order received.

Although your registration form can be processed within two days, it can also take a few weeks.

3. In-Person Filings

Comparing files to a tablet

You will pay $180 if you want to file in person.

To do this, you must complete the certificate of formation form online [1].

Once you are done, you send it to the physical address of the Corporations and Charities Division.

4. Expedited Filings

The fee for expedited filings is $50 per entity. If you want to receive expedited filings via mail, all you need to do is enclose the $50 per entity in addition to the filing fee and write "EXPEDITE" in bold letters on the outside of the envelope [2].

Mailed expedited filings are generally processed within two to three business days.

However, if you want the fastest service, you must request an in-person expedited service.

If you pay the $50 fee and your request is received before 3:30 p.m., it will be processed the same day, usually within one hour.

Remember that the fees are non-refundable, and you can pay them through multiple payment methods such as cash, check, money order, and American Express.

Learn more about the cost of an LLC in Washington.

Steps To Start An LLC In Washington

Comparing two different files

These are the steps you need to take to start an LLC in Washington:

  • Get an LLC Name: Look up for an LLC in Washington and get an LLC name that is unique and hasn't been used by other existing businesses, and make sure it has the tag "LLC" at the end of it.
  • Appoint a Washington Registered Agent: Get a Washington registered agent and ensure that the agent satisfies all the requirements issued by the state.
  • File a Washington Certificate of Formation: The certificate of formation proves that you have officially created your LLC in Washington state. Get it done and pay the necessary fees involved.
  • Sign Your Washington LLC Operating Agreement: The Washington LLC operating agreement is a contract that directs how the affairs of the LLC will be run between the owner and its members. Sign yours, keep it in your business records, and give each member a copy.
  • Get an EIN for Your LLC: The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) gives you an employer identification number (EIN) for tax purposes. So make sure you have one for your limited liability company.
  • Open an LLC Business Bank Account: You need an LLC account for business expenses, tax payments, financial record-keeping, and maintaining personal liability protection.


Do LLCs Pay Tax in Washington?

Yes, LLCs pay tax in Washington. This is why they are assigned an EIN by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

Is Washington a Good State to Form a Foreign LLC?

Yes, Washington is a good state to form a foreign LLC. It offers you limited liability protection, even though it may take some time to form your LLC.

How Can I Reserve My LLC Name When Forming an LLC in Washington?

You can reserve your LLC name when forming an LLC in Washington by submitting a name reservation form to the Washington Secretary of State and paying a $30 fee, after which you will be given a name reservation number.

Should You Hire An LLC Service In Washington?

You should hire the best LLC service in Washington because they can help you file the documents needed to form your LLC in Washington.

Having the best registered agent service in Washington is vital to the compliance and success of your limited liability company.

They can provide great services, such as helping you prepare your annual report at an affordable price, and are more efficient at handling the service process on behalf of your LLC than individual registered agents.



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