How To Operate a Delaware LLC in Washington, D.C.

By Devin Scott Tuesday, June 9, 2015

how to operate a delaware llc in washington dcWhen people form an LLC, Delaware is often the popular choice. Delaware is recognized by many as possessing the strongest corporate law structure in the country. What does this mean?

Generally, business owners form an LLC in order to separate their businesses and their personal assets. Delaware is recognized for establishing the strongest barrier between business structures and the individuals behind the businesses.

Delaware is also chosen as a corporate domicile state because a Delaware LLC can operate all over the world. When operating a Delaware LLC in another state, typically the next step for most clients would be to register the business as a foreign entity in that state. Your Delaware LLC will be domestic to Delaware and foreign to every other state.

We can help your Delaware LLC obtain the necessary authority to operate in all other jurisdictions, including Washington, D.C. 

The Foreign Qualification process is the way in which the District of Columbia will grant your Delaware LLC permission to operate there. Although Washington, D.C. is not a state, it requires the same paperwork that many states require: an application, a fee and a Certificate of Good Standing from Delaware.

Harvard Business Services, Inc. provides this service to many clients operating from Washington, D.C. We prepare the application, obtain the Certificate of Good Standing from Delaware and email the forms to you for signature. Your only responsibility is to sign the forms and return them to us. The typical turnaround time for this is 15 business days.

It is necessary for you to complete this step before doing business in Washington, D.C. with a Delaware LLC.

Once registered in D.C., your business is required to file a biennial report in order to remain in good standing. The notice of this report is often sent to your Registered Agent. Please keep in mind that a Delaware LLC registered as a foreign entity in D.C. will still be required to maintain a Registered Agent in Delaware, as well as pay the Delaware annual Franchise Tax, in order to remain in good standing with the state of Delaware.

If you would like us to register your Delaware LLC in the District of Columbia, or if you have any questions regarding this process, please feel free to call us at 1-800-345-2677, Ext. 6130, or email


Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

*Disclaimer*: Harvard Business Services, Inc. is neither a law firm nor an accounting firm and, even in cases where the author is an attorney, or a tax professional, nothing in this article constitutes legal or tax advice. This article provides general commentary on, and analysis of, the subject addressed. We strongly advise that you consult an attorney or tax professional to receive legal or tax guidance tailored to your specific circumstances. Any action taken or not taken based on this article is at your own risk. If an article cites or provides a link to third-party sources or websites, Harvard Business Services, Inc. is not responsible for and makes no representations regarding such source’s content or accuracy. Opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect those of Harvard Business Services, Inc.

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