Pennsylvania Foreign Corporation Formation

If you are registered in a state other than Pennsylvania, but you wish to do business in Pennsylvania, you may be required to form a Foreign Corporation. Once you’ve filed, you’ll receive a Certificate of Authority to do business in the state.

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Steps to Form a Pennsylvania Foreign Corporation

Instead of Articles of Incorporation, a foreign corporation in Pennsylvania will submit an Application for a Certificate of Authority. This document will contain much the same information as the Articles.

  • Corporation: You will select the name of your corporation. If you do not have a corporate designator as part of your legal business name, you must add one. can do an initial business name search for you so that you’ll know if your business name is available for use; if it isn’t, you must pick another one.
  • Jurisdiction and Principle Office: You must provide the initial state where you formed your business, as well as the principle office location in that state.
  • Agent: You must list the address within Pennsylvania where service of process or correspondence may be delivered. This must be a physical address and not a PO Box, if you’re using a noncommercial registered agent. This can be either an individual or an already-existing business.
  • Profit: You will check a box to indicate whether you are a business corporation or a nonprofit corporation.
  • Signature: The Application for Certificate of Authority should be signed by an officer of the corporation who is authorized to sign formation documents. The name of the corporation, signature, and title of the individual will be provided in this section.

Pennsylvania Startup Quicklinks

For information on other types of businesses in Pennsylvania, please explore the links below.

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