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Related: Get an Alabama Registered Agent
If your company was not incorporated in Alabama, but you intend to do business there, you need to apply for an Alabama Certificate of Authority.
Known as Foreign Qualification, this process allows a company formed in Delaware (or any other state) to legally transact business in Alabama.
Please note: information on this page is accurate to the best of our knowledge. However, requirements and costs can be changed by states at any time and Harvard Business Services cannot guarantee the accuracy of this information.
Unlike many states, Alabama requires foreign entities to reserve their name prior to applying for the Certificate of Authority. This is confirm the company name is actually available before the application is processed. The fee for the name reservation is $28.
You must appoint and maintain an Alabama Registered Agent at all times and include your agent’s information on the application for registration for your foreign entity. We can provide this service for just $99 per year.
Next, an application must be submitted along with a fee of $150 (or $250 for expedited processing) for both LLCs and corporations. Foreign LLCs and corporations are typically not required to provide any documentation from the home state to Alabama during this process.
In addition, we typically see additional fees of $10-$15 applied to the total by the state of Alabama for processing and additional copies of your certificate.
Harvard Business Services can assist with your application so you don’t have to deal with the Alabama Secretary of State directly. We do charge our own fee for this service, in addition to the state fees. The exact fee can vary based upon whether your company is already filed and whether you need us to obtain additional documents to meet the state’s requirements. Contact us for an exact quote.
All business entities, foreign or domestic to Alabama, are required to file an Alabama Business Privilege Tax return. This is comparable to the fee known as the Franchise Tax is Delaware and some other states.
After obtaining a Certificate of Authority, all foreign entities in Alabama must file an “initial” return within the first two or three months (depending on the company type and fiscal calendar). The company will also file an annual return in all subsequent years.
The calculations for these fees can be confusing and are based on the company’s capital, among other factors. Additional information can be found here.
Harvard can provide assistance throughout the life of your company. These custom services are the most popular with our clients: