Monday, June 18, 2018
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Filing Online

Filing Online

West Virginia now provides complete new business registration in one easy process.  Your filing will meet the requirements of the four business registration agencies: Secretary of State, State Tax Department and the Unemployment Compensation Division.  Other online services include filing of LLC annual reports.

Choose a topic below for more information about online filing.

Using the Online Interview to Register a New Business

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Business4WV uses an interview format -- one question at a time -- to make online business registration easy and accurate.  Your answers to many questions help eliminate irrelevant questions and ask only those questions that apply to your business.

When you are working on a registration, your screen will look like this:

Sample interview screen

Some other important things to know:

  • Once you start the interview and answer at least the first question, the interview is saved in your personal filing cabinet.  You may return as many times as you like and find all the information you entered before.

  • If you go back and change some key answers, for example, the business type, profit or non-profit or business activity, you will have to continue through the interview again, because the questions you must answer will be different.

  • After you have answered several basic questions about your business, you will see a screen listing all the remaining information you will need to complete your registration.  You may print that report, gather any information you don't already have, and come back later to complete the interview.

  • If an answer is required, there will be an asterisk by the answer. On radio buttons, only one of choices is allowed, though all may be marked *.


Submitting Your Registration Application

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When you have finished entering all the information for your registration, you will follow these steps:

  • Review -- You may print a report that shows all the information you entered.  This report allows you to review the answers one last time before submitting the registration.  If others are involved in the business ownership, this report allows you to share the information with them before it is submitted.

  • Calculate Fees-- Clicking the Calculate Fees button will allow you to see a list of all the fees and deposits required for your business registration.  You may print this itemized list. REMEMBER!  Some fees are prorated based on the month in which you file.  For example, if you click Calculate Fees on June 30, but don't click 'Submit' until July 1, the fees will probably be different.  If you have questions about the fees, read the 'Help' and 'More Help' information first.

  • Go to Check Out -- Have your credit card ready. All of the fees and deposits required by the core registration agencies will be paid with a single payment. You will make your payment just like any other online order. Behind the scenes, these fees will be deposited to the correct agency.

  • Submit -- When you click submit, your registration application and payment goes directly to the Business4WV agencies for processing. You can no longer make changes in the information, except by authorizing an agency employee to edit the data or responding to a corrections request.

  • Print Filing Documents -- After you have submitted the online application for registration, you may print a copy of the report and receipt for your records.

Faxing Additional Documents

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IMPORTANT! If you are an out of state company, you will need to submit a certificate of existence or good standing from the domiciled (home) state to the Secretary of State by faxing the certificate to 304-558-8381 or 304-558-5758. This Certificate must be dated within one year of the date of filing this application. We do NOT require original formation documents from your home state.

  • If you are using a forced doing business as name (FDBA) in West Virginia, you will need to submit a resolution signed by an officer, allowing the use of another name to the Secretary of State by faxing the resolution to 304-558-8381 or 304-558-5758.
  • If you are a professional Corporation or PLLC, you will need to submit the appropriate approval from the West Virginia licensing board, i.e. State Bar, Engineering Board, etc. to the Secretary of State by faxing the certificate to 304-558-8381 or 304-558-5758.
  • If you do not have access to a fax machine mail applicable documents to:
    Secretary of State
    Business & Licensing Division
    1900 Kanawha Blvd. East
    Building 1, Suite 157-K
    Charleston, WV 25305
    Or email to:
  • If you are not sure if you need approval please contact the Secretary of State at 304-558-8000 for more information.

Tracking Your Registration

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As soon as your application is submitted, it will begin to move through the agency workflow processing system. This diagram shows the flow that will be followed.

Business4WV Registration Processing Workflow

  • Checking the Status -- As the agencies review your application, you can check the status of your application in your personal filing cabinet.
    • First, log in to Business4WV.
    • Your filing cabinet will list all your filings in one list, including filings you are in the process of preparing, any you have submitted, and any that are completed.  In this list, you will see which agency is currently processing a submitted application, and the status at that agency.  When all agencies have approved, your registration will be listed as 'Completed'.
    • If you are a business registration professional and are preparing these filings for businesses, the select boxes will allow you to show only pending, or submitted or completed filings, to make your job easier.

  • Checking for Messages -- Once you have logged in, click the Message Center in the My Account section of the left menu to see if you have any messages waiting.  When an agency has an additional question or a problem with your application, they will send a message and you can reply.  This messaging center keeps all of your correspondence with the agencies secure and helps avoid the problem of lost e-mail.  You should also receive a notice by email to check your personal filing cabinet for new messages.

Starting a New Business

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Your online filing will expedite your business registration and pave the way for opening your doors.

  • Receiving Approval -- Each agency will mail your official certificates as they complete their stage of the registration processing.
    • If you are starting a chartered business, the Secretary of State will email the certificate appropriate to your business type to the email address on your account. For example, a West Virginia corporation will receive a 'Certificate of Incorporation'.
    • The State Tax Department will send your 'Business Registration Certificate', which must be posted at the place you do business.
    • If you have employees, the Unemployment Compensation Division will send the forms for your first report at the appropriate time for filing.
    • Employers -- don't forget that it is your responsibility to apply for workers' compensation insurance coverage from a private carrier.
  • Starting Business -- You may legally begin to do business in West Virginia when the State Tax Department approves your application and issues your business registration certificate. Keep the copy of your registration. They will serve as proof of your registration until you receive your certificate in the mail.

    If you have employees working before you obtain workers' compensation coverage, you will be liable in case any injury occurs on the job.

Other Online Filings

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New business services will continue to be added to Business4WV as agencies expand the possible filings and new agencies join in.

  • Current Additional Applications Online at Business4WV: Annual Report Filing
    • Annual Reports can now be filed online. The normal reporting period is January 1 to June 30, but late filings will be accepted. For more information, go to Annual Reports.
    • Annual Report Filing Types Include:
      • Limited Liability Company
      • Professional Limited Liability Company
      • Corporation
      • Voluntary Association
      • Limited Partnership
      • Business Trust
      • Limited Liability Partnership
      • Insurance Company Attorney in fact
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