Resources for Washington State Business

While Web Designs by LAO would be very happy to create a website for your new business, we also know there are other tasks involved in starting and running a business. We put together some information links pertaining to business activities in the State of Washington which we hope you find helpful. Please note that some of the published pricing may change at any time.


Starting a New Business

Starting a new business in the State of Washington? If so, here is information that might help you get started. Please keep in mind that we are providing this only to assist you and are not providing any kind of legal, financial or business advice.

Here are a few links that relate to opening or operating a business in Washington State which may help you:

  • Washington Secretary of State (http://www.secstate.wa.gov/corps/). This is the website where you find out how to register your Washington State business, such as a Corporation, an LLC, etc. It includes all of the forms necessary to register your business with the State of Washington. You can do this online or download and print the forms and mail them in. To expedite this process online, you may need to pay an additional fee. When they complete your registration, they will issue a UBI number to you. This is also the website you want to use to see if your intended business name is available for use.
  • State of Washington Business Licensing Service(http://bls.dor.wa.gov/). This website provides the online application process to apply for your Master Business License. The cost varies for a City license based upon the city. (See the License Fee sheet below.)
  • Internal Revenue Service resource guide: "What New Business Owners Need to Know About Federal Taxes". ( http://www.irs.gov/businesses/small/article/0,,id=99336,00.html
  • Washington State Department of Labor and Industries (http://www.lni.wa.gov/). This website provides you with information you need as an employer.
  • Free Washington Employee Forms and Posters. WA Forms/Publications. Provides you with information to order the employee forms and posters you are required to have located in your workplace. All of the forms and posters can be obtained from Department of Labor at no charge. You do not need to buy them through the commercial offers you might see or get through the mail.

For Existing Washington Businesses

Here are some business information links that may help you:

  • Washington Department of Financial Institutions. "Small Business Assistance". (http://www.dfi.wa.gov/sd/smallbusiness.htm)
  • Small Business Administration (http://www.sba.gov/ ). Provides a wealth of information, such as providing an outline on how to prepare a business plan, obtaining financial assistance, and directions to local resources in the area where you live in Washington.
  • Washington Small Business Development Center (http://www.wsbdc.org/). Provides a number of resources for small business owners.
  • Access Washington (http://access.wa.gov/business/start.aspx). Provides resources for existing businesses or for starting up a new business.
  • Washington Employee Forms and Posters. WA Forms/Publications. Provides you with information to order the employee forms and posters required to be located in your workplace. All of the forms and posters can be ordered free.
  • Washington State Department of Revenue. Tax Rate Lookup Tool (http://dor.wa.gov/Content/FindTaxesandRates/SalesAndUseTaxRates/LookUpATaxRate/). Provides you with the Tax Rate Lookup Tool, for Sales and Use Tax rates which went into effect in Washington State on July 1, 2008. Please keep in mind that these rates change regularly so keep checking to stay up to date. You may subscribe to the quarterly changes to automatically get the City charts by email.
  • Washington Income Tax. Income Tax. Washington State does not have personal or corporate income tax.
located in Washington State

Useful WA Business Links

Washington Master Business License

  • Before applying for your Master Business License, you may want to wait until you get your business registration information and UBI from the Secretary of State. When applying for the Master License, if they do not have a record of a UBI, they will issue one. Waiting for the Secretary of State information will prevent you from getting two different UBI numbers and having to sort it out.
  • When applying online for your business license, they will refer to license requirements for certain cities located in the State. It does allow you to apply for the city license along with the master license.
  • You will want to contact the city you are doing business in to see if they have additional requirements to meet before your city license is issued. The Master License may not be issued until the city approves your city license if one is required.
  • You will be required to file a listing with the county showing personal property used in the business for property tax purposes. Check the county you are conducting business in to see what property tax or other business requirements there are.