Hawaii Foreign LLC – Qualification and Registration

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If you already have an LLC in another state and want a Hawaii LLC, then starting an LLC would be somewhat different because you have to register as a foreign LLC. We have here a guide on how you can qualify and register for a foreign LLC in Hawaii

Forming an Hawaii Foreign LLC

A foreign LLC does not need to be a company from another country but a business formed under the laws of another state. To start a foreign LLC in Hawaii, you need to register it with the Hawaii Secretary of State.

Step 1: Choose Hawaii Foreign LLC Name

Obtain a name reservation certificate and submit it with your foreign qualification requirements at the Hawaii Secretary of State. Your LLC’s legal name outside of Hawaii will be listed on the application, along with the name it will use in Hawaii. Take note of the requirements for naming your LLC

Check name availability at Hawaii’s business entity names and reserve your LLC name.

Step 2: Select Hawaii Foreign LLC Registered Agent

You’ll need a registered agent to form a foreign LLC in Hawaii and take note that a Hawaii registered agent must have a local address. Here are three of the best LLC services on our list that will provide you with registered agents to ease your worries: 

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Step 3: File Registration of Hawaii Foreign LLC 

Fill out and submit a Foreign LLC Application for Registration form via email to [email protected] or by mail to the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs. Business Registration Division, 335 Merchant Street, P.O. Box 40, Honolulu, Hawaii 96810.

Include the following:

  • LLC’s full legal name. 
  • A fictitious name or a DBA (only if your LLC’s legal name is not available); Attach a statement of adoption of the fictitious name signed by all LLC members.
  • LLC’s principal office and mailing addresses.
  • LLC formation state and date.
  • Registered agent’s name and address in Hawaii.
  • Date when your LLC will start operations in Hawaii.
  • Credit card information on the last page of the form for the $150 application fee. 

The LLC cost in Hawaii, even for foreign LLCs will differ between online filing and by mail.

Step 4: Determine How Your Hawaii Foreign LLC is taxed

Foreign LLCs are also subjected to the Hawaii Business Privilege Tax, and they must file LLC annual reports each year.

Note that forming a foreign LLC would be good for your business as you can legally operate in a different state thus reaching a larger market and opening more opportunities for higher profit.

Steps to Filing Hawaii Foreign LLC Online

Time needed: 5 minutes

When you are registering for the foreign LLC in the State of Hawaii, you will have to submit your Application for Registration of foreign LLC with the Secretary of State which costs $50. After approval, you will receive a Verification Certificate from the State Office. We have explained the aspects you need to cover when you apply for Hawaii Foreign LLC

  1. Visit the Official Hawaii Business Registration website

    Go to the Business Registration page on the Official website of the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs by the Hawaii Government. The page offers an easy solution to file business registration documents online.

  2. Scroll down to Registration forms

    On the given page, scroll down to the end of the page and click on the link “Registration Forms, fees, and information”.

  3. Select ‘Foreign LLC’

    The Registration Forms, Fees, and Information page opens up. Scroll down to the heading ‘Limited Liability Companies’ and select the option of “Foreign Limited Liability Company”.

  4. Register a new business

    The Hawaii Business Express page is displayed on the screen. Under the ‘Start’ heading, click on “Get Started” to register a New Business.

  5. Login to your account

    If you have already created an account on the page, then fill in your username and password and continue to “Log in”. If you do not have an account, then click on the “Sign up” option available on the page.

  6. Create your Account

    On the Account Services page, fill in your email address to proceed with online account formation on the Hawaii eGov website and then click on the ‘continue’ tab.

  7. Proceed to Create your Account

    On the next page of ‘Create an Account’, provide your basic details such as first and last name, email, password, and security question and answer. You can also provide your street address. Next, tick the box agreeing to the Terms of Use and then click on “Create Account”.

  8. Log in

    After your account is successfully created on the website, you will receive a notification about the same. Next, log in with your email ID and Password and proceed with the registration and business filing online. Enter all the important information.

  9. Payment

    Complete the payment: Finally, make the payment online. Once done, you will receive a notification regarding the completion of the filing of your Hawaii Foreign LLC.

Steps to Register for your Foreign LLC via Mail

The Secretary of State Office of Hawaii also provides an option to register your Foreign LLC via mail. We have explained the aspects you need to cover when you apply for Hawaii Foreign LLC.

  1. Download the Application Form PDF (Form FLLC-1) on your system.
  2. Read the instructions carefully and fill out the application form. You can either type or print in black ink.
  3. Review the information provided by you in the form thoroughly to avoid any future rejections.
  4. Make the payment of $50.00 payable to the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, State of Hawaii.
  5. Mail the application form along with the filing fee to the following address: Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, Business Registration Division, 335 Merchant St., P.O. Box 40, Honolulu, HI 96810.

After Forming Hawaii Foreign LLC

Here are added things you need to accomplish after forming your Hawaii Foreign LLC

  1. Obtain Business Licenses. Find the business licenses you’ll need using the Business License Search.
  2. File LLC annual reports and Business Privilege Tax.
  3. Pay State Taxes like sales tax; you’ll need an EIN for your LLC

It is convenient plus easy to file for the foreign LLC if you are doing it online. The steps are very easy and that’s why it’s possible to go along with the steps and form a foreign LLC in Hawaii. 

How Much Does It Cost to Register a Foreign LLC in Hawaii

To register as a foreign LLC in Hawaii, you can file through mail or online by paying a filing amount of $50 to the Hawaii Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs.

One of the key aspects to consider when venturing into a new business territory is the cost associated with registration. While it is not possible to present specifics due to the generic nature of this comment, it is essential to highlight that expenses associated with establishing a foreign LLC in Hawaii may vary depending on a multitude of factors like legal requirements, administrative fees, and professional service charges, among others.

As with any venture, it is prudent to consult with legal and financial experts who have the required expertise in Hawaii’s corporate law landscape. Engaging professionals can help navigate through the complexities of registration, saving valuable time and helping entrepreneurs focus on their core business ideas. These experts can offer sound advice tailored to individual requirements, ensuring compliance with all regulatory frameworks and maximizing the chances of success while minimizing the cost implications.

Another critical aspect to consider is the administrative fees applicable during the registration process. Successfully gauging these charges beforehand can help entrepreneurs budget accordingly. Timely fee payment at various stages of the registration process is essential to complete the procedure smoothly.

Professional services can play an indispensable role in the successful registration of a foreign LLC, especially in a land as unique as Hawaii. While some may choose to attempt the registration process independently, many find it beneficial to have experts adequately handle the intricate administrative, legal, and financial aspects. Relying on professionals who possess familiarity with the local business environment can be highly advantageous in terms of efficiency and timeliness.

Moreover, it is important to note that beyond the initial costs associated with registration, business owners must consider ongoing expenses such as maintaining a registered agent and fulfilling annual reporting requirements. Thus, it is imperative to proactively evaluate financial requirements both for the initial setup and for sustenance in the long run.

Alongside costs, understanding the procedural elements involved in registering a foreign LLC in Hawaii is equally crucial. While the exact steps may vary depending on unique requirements, there are general processes to consider. Documentation, such as registering the foreign LLC with the Hawaii Secretary of State or appointing a registered agent within the state, must be correctly completed in adherence to local legislation. Navigating through these procedures can sometimes become slightly convoluted on unfamiliar terrain, underscoring the need for expert guidance.

In conclusion, exploring the possibility of establishing a foreign LLC in Hawaii can offer a wealth of opportunities. However, careful attention must be given to the costs, administrative requirements, and procedural elements involved. Engaging a team of experts who are familiar with local regulations is often the most astute course of action. Ultimately, while the challenges of starting a foreign LLC in Hawaii should be acknowledged, the potential rewards are significant for those who take the appropriate steps at the outset.


What is a foreign LLC in Hawaii?

If your LLC is formed under the laws of another state, it is referred to as a foreign LLC in Hawaii.

Do I need a foreign LLC?

Businesses incorporated outside of the state where they operate must have “foreign qualifications” issued in the other states.

What is the main difference between domestic and foreign LLC?

A domestic LLC is a company registered in Hawaii as an LLC. The entity type that has a physical presence in another state is a foreign LLC.

In Conclusion

Starting a foreign LLC in Hawaii does not require a lot of documentation or tasks. However, it is always good to seek help from a professional when it comes to running your business. Get a professional registered agent and form your foreign LLC anywhere without a hassle.

About Author & Editorial Staff

Steve Goldstein, founder of LLCBuddy, is a specialist in corporate formations, dedicated to guiding entrepreneurs and small business owners through the LLC process. LLCBuddy provides a wealth of streamlined resources such as guides, articles, and FAQs, making LLC establishment seamless. The diligent editorial staff makes sure content is accurate, up-to-date information on topics like state-specific requirements, registered agents, and compliance. Steve's enthusiasm for entrepreneurship makes LLCBuddy an essential and trustworthy resource for launching and running an LLC.

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