Forming your business entity in Delaware—specifically, a corporation—gives you a lot of flexibility, but you may still need to follow local laws depending on what state you operate in.
Specifically, if you do business in Alaska, you need to register with the state. We’ll walk through the process and simplify it. But first, how can you tell whether you’re legally doing business in Alaska?
When to register as doing business in Alaska
Delaware C corps—and all other corporations formed outside of Alaska—are referred to as “foreign” corporations by the State.
Alaska statutes do not specifically define what is considered doing business in the state. However, Alaska statutes provide that the following activities would not require you to register with the State:
Defending or settling a lawsuit
Having a bank account in the state
Selling through independent contractors
Alaska sales tax
Unlike most other states, Alaska does not have a general sales tax on goods purchased in Alaska. This means that you do not need to register with the Alaska Department of Revenue to collect sales tax in the state.
How to register to do business in Alaska
- Select a name under which to do business. This doesn’t have to be the name you registered when incorporating in Delaware, but it can be.
- Fill out an application. You’ll need to file a Certificate of Authority to the Alaska Department of Commerce, Community, and Economic Development along with a Delaware Certificate of Good Standing.
- Pay the fee. Now you pay the Alaska Department of Commerce, Community, and Economic Development a $350 filing fee.
- Submit your Certificate of Authority.
- Wait. Processing typically takes two to four weeks.
Once you’re approved to operate as a qualified foreign business in Alaska, you’ll need to comply with certain requirements.
Compliance as a qualified business in Alaska
To stay in compliance and continue legally doing business in Alaska, you need to meet two requirements:
- Maintaining a registered agent
- Filing your biennial report
On top of that, you will also need to pay a corporate income tax.
Registered agent in Alaska
Your registered agent in Alaska is your point of contact with local authorities. If you don’t have a physical address for your company in Alaska, it may be advantageous to find a registered agent to receive state notices on your behalf.
Foreign corporations are required to have a registered office in Alaska. The office cannot be a P.O. box, rather it must be a physical address of your registered agent or a licensed registered agent service.
Your registered agent will forward any important information, such as business mail, to you. There are a number of firms that contract out registered agents. They typically cost $50 – $100 per year.
Biennial reporting/renewal in Alaska
Every two years, you must file a statement with the State, updating any changes to the company address or the composition of the Board and officers. You’ll include info like:
- The legal name of your business
- The name and address of your registered agent
- The names and addresses of board members, managers, and officers
The filing fee for the biennial report is $200.
Paying your corporation income and excise tax
Alaska has a corporate income tax. A corporate income tax is a direct tax imposed on the net income of your corporation. For more information on filing and paying your corporation income and excise tax, please see the following guidance from Alaska’s Department of Revenue.
Hiring and paying employees in Alaska
When you hire a new employee in Alaska, federal and state laws require that you report new hires within 20 days of the date of hire. You can report your new hires online.
Your payroll provider should be able to take care of paycheck withholdings, but it’s up to you to register as an employer with the State and set up an online employer account.
For a comprehensive guide of your responsibilities, Alaska provides the following information.
The easiest way to register your business in Alaska
To register your business in Alaska, you’ve got to keep track of a lot of moving parts. Failing to file the right forms, provide the right information, or stay on top of compliance laws can lead to serious headaches.
Capbase makes it easy. When you incorporate your Delaware corporation on Capbase, we will generate the required information needed to register to do business in Alaska and keep you up to date on any required filings.
The compliance calendar inside your Capbase account will notify you of upcoming fees, reporting, or other requirements, so you can keep your startup in good standing with Alaska state officials. Try Capbase now.
Written by Capbase Staff
Capbase is a team of designers, engineers, and business professionals spread across 6 time zones on 3 continents united by our passion for dogs, coffee, and great software.
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