How Do I Get a Certificate of Good Standing in Iowa?
You can obtain your certificate of good standing, known as a certificate of existence in Iowa, by requesting it from the Secretary of State.
There are two main steps for getting your certificate of good standing:
What is a certificate of good standing? A certificate of good standing is a state document that verifies your business was legally formed and has been properly maintained.
Step 1. Make Sure Your Iowa Business is Compliant
To qualify for an Iowa certificate of existence, your business must stay up-to-date with state compliance requirements:
Licenses & Permits
To operate your business in Iowa, you must follow federal, state, and local licensing guidelines. This can include regulations like health permits and building permits.
You can find out more about state licensing requirements with the IASourceLink website.
Depending on your business activity, you will have to register for different forms of Iowa state tax. This can include sales tax, withholding tax, or Unemployment Insurance (UI) tax.
All Iowa LLCs and corporations must file a biennial report. This report verifies the business’s basic information including its principal office address and registered agent information.
You can file your biennial report online or by printing out the report and filing by mail. The filing fee is $60.
Step 2. Order Your Iowa Certificate of Good Standing
Once your business remains compliant with the state, you can request a certificate of existence from the Iowa Secretary of State. This can be done online.
Do I Need a Certificate of Good Standing in Iowa?
While you don’t necessarily need a certificate of existence to run your business in Iowa, there are several instances where you may need to get one. These include:
- Purchasing business insurance
- Applying for business loans
- Opening a business checking account
- Registering to do business in other states
Iowa Certificate of Good Standing FAQ
What is an Iowa certificate of good standing?
A certificate of good standing is a legal document that confirms that your business is compliant with state regulations.
In Iowa, a certificate of good standing is known as a certificate of existence.
Certificates of good standing are also known as certificates of status or certificates of compliance.
How do I get a certificate of good standing?
You can get an Iowa certificate of existence by remaining compliant with state regulations and ordering a certificate online.
How much does a certificate of good standing cost?
In Iowa, ordering a certificate of existence costs $5.
How soon do you need a certificate of good standing?
Because many banks and insurance companies will want a business’s certificate of good standing in order to do business, we recommend getting one as soon as possible.
How long is the certificate of good standing valid for?
An Iowa certificate of existence does not have a set expiration date. However, requesters — such as banks, creditors, and foreign business states — often have their own guidelines for a certificate's validity.
What does a certificate of good standing mean?
Obtaining an Iowa certificate of existence means that the state recognizes your business as both active and compliant.
When do you need a certificate of good standing?
Iowa businesses often need a certificate of existence in order to do business outside of Iowa, obtain business loans, open business bank accounts, or purchase business insurance.
Who is required to get a certificate of good standing?
Iowa businesses are not legally required to obtain a certificate of existence. However, your business may choose to get one if you decide to do business outside of Iowa or get a business bank account.
Where do I find a certificate of good standing?
After ordering your Iowa certificate of existence, it will be available immediately online to print.