Missouri Foreign Qualification

Any business that wishes to operate in Missouri that is based in another state will have to foreign qualify in order to do so. The process can be confusing and complex thanks to various compliance issues. However, the right steps can get your business legal and ready to operate in Missouri quickly.

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What is Foreign Qualification?

Foreign qualification is the process that a business must go through in order to register for business operations in a state outside of the one it was formed in. For instance, a business based in Georgia that wants to conduct business in Missouri is considered a ‘foreign’ business and will be required to foreign qualify in order to legally operate within the state.

Why Does A Company Need Foreign Qualification?

Why You Need To Do It – It’s important to foreign qualify in order to stay legally compliant when doing business in Missouri. This is required when any kind of physical presence exists for your business, ranging from a storefront to a representative working alone in the state.

When Should You Do It? – As soon as you decide that your business will operate in Missouri. The sooner you begin, the less likely it is that you will be impacted by any delays that could come up. Generally, you will need to receive Missouri foreign qualification if your company falls under any of the following criteria:

  • Has a physical presence in Missouri
  • Buying a property there
  • Have remote employees
  • Accepts orders in Missouri
  • Owns a bank account in Missouri

What Happens If Your Entity Does Not Foreign Qualify?

Failure to foreign qualify in Missouri means that your business may end up facing financial fees and penalties. This can reach as much as $1,000 in some cases, along with tax related charges and fees that can add up quickly. Additionally, you won’t be able to bring legal action forward in the state at all.

Steps To Obtain Foreign Qualification

There are several steps that a business must take in order to obtain its Missouri foreign qualification. These include the following.

1. Obtain Certificates – Start by requesting a Certificate of Good Standing or Existence from your company’s home state. Then, you must complete the Application for Registration of a Foreign Limited Liability Company or the Application for a Certificate of Authority for a Foreign-For-Profit Corporation. You can download these forms from the Missouri Secretary of State website.

2. Collect And Submit Information – The document requests a wide range of information about your business.


  • LLC name
  • A different name if the original name is unavailable
  • Name of the home state
  • The date of the LLC formation
  • The purpose and nature of the business your LLC will do in Missouri
  • Name and address of LLC’s registered agent in Missouri
  • The registered or principal office street address of the LLC
  • Information about the series LLC, if applicable
  • An authorized signature


  • Corporation name
  • A different name if the original name is unavailable
  • The date of incorporation
  • The period of duration
  • Name of the home state
  • Address of principal place of business
  • Name and physical address of registered agent and office in Missouri
  • The nature of the business your company will perform in Missouri
  • Names and business addresses of board of officers and directors
  • A return address
  • An authorized signature

3. Appoint Registered Agent – Your registered agent will be responsible for handling the majority of issues related to your foreign qualification and compliance. They receive documents from the state and pass them along to the company they represent. Most businesses elect to use a third party provider like DoMyLLC for this so they can save themselves a lot of time, energy, and hassle.

4. File The Application – Once you complete the process, file the application along with the filing fee of $105 for an LLC. Corporations must pay $155.

5. Ongoing Maintenance – Missouri requires any business to complete annual reporting in order to maintain their compliance. This is due each year within 3 months of the anniversary of the initial foreign qualification. The fee for annual report filing is $45 if done by mail and $20 if done online.

What Is the Difference Between Foreign Qualification And Incorporating?

The process of incorporating actually creates an entirely new business. Foreign qualification has no impact on the structural makeup of your business and won’t create a new company. Instead, it only allows an existing LLC or corporation to do business in another state – Missouri, in this case.

How DoMyLLC Can Assist With Streamlining The Process

Our team understands that your business takes a lot of time. We do all the work involved in Missouri foreign qualification, letting you have more time to work on leading your business into the future instead of on filing more forms. We offer:

  •     Full filing and registration service
  •     Name availability checks
  •     Ongoing customer support
  •     Dedicated account managers

We’re here to help. If you’re ready to branch out into Missouri, contact us today to let us take care of foreign qualification for you.

Missouri Foreign Qualification FAQs

A certificate of good standing from your business’ home state as well as an Application for Registration of a Foreign Limited Liability Company or, for corporations, the Application for Certificate of Authority.

The filing fee is a flat $105 for LLCs, $155 for corporations.

Any business outside of Missouri that wishes to start operations within the state.

No, an attorney is not required for registration or qualification. It is still a good idea to consult with your legal team to ensure that you are fully protected and compliant, however.

All basic business information including things like:

  • Name of business
  • State of formation
  • Type of business
  • Business address
  • Registered agent information
  • Names of members and managers

You will have to file under a fictitious name and do business under it in Missouri. This has no impact on the name you operate under in other states, however.

Missouri Business Resources

Missouri Office of Secretary of State
Phone Number:
(573) 751-4153

Missouri Corporations Division
PO Box 778
Jefferson City, MO 65102-0778

If you’re interested in more info on foreign qualification, call 888-366-9552.

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