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Franchise Registration States

Knowing which states require Franchise Disclosure Document registration and which don’t will help you plan and budget for effective expansion.

Some states, but not all, require franchisors to register or file their Franchise Disclosure Document (FDD) before moving forward with franchise expansion. It is important to understand that states fall into three categories when it comes to registration requirements: non-registration states, filing states and registration states. Below, you will find a detailed explanation of what these requirements mean and which states are impacted by each category.

Registration States

In registration states, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) requires the franchisor’s FDD be registered with that state before a franchise can expand within that state. The FDD will be reviewed by the state and edits will be provided to the franchisor. In addition to the FDD registration, franchisors will be required to pay a registration fee and an annual renewal fee. It is helpful to consult a franchise lawyer during the registration process because failure to abide by state laws can result in penalties and fines.

Current registration states and fees:

  • California - Initial Fee: $675
  • Connecticut - Initial Fee: $400
  • Hawaii - Initial Fee: $125
  • Illinois - Initial Fee: $500
  • Indiana - Initial Fee: $500
  • Maine - Initial Fee: $25
  • Maryland - Initial Fee: $500
  • Michigan (Only Notice) - Initial Fee: $250
  • Minnesota - Initial Fee: $400
  • New York - Initial Fee: $750
  • North Carolina - Initial Fee: $250
  • North Dakota - Initial Fee: $250
  • Rhode Island - Initial Fee: $500
  • South Carolina - Initial Fee: $100
  • Virginia - Initial Fee: $500
  • Washington - Initial Fee: $600
  • Wisconsin - Initial Fee: $400

Non-Registration States

Non-registration states simply require all franchisors to have an FDD with a registered trademark. Once this step is complete, franchisors are able to sell their franchise without state intervention.

Current non-registration states:

  • Alabama
  • Alaska
  • Arizona
  • Arkansas
  • Colorado
  • Delaware
  • District of Columbia
  • Georgia
  • Idaho
  • Iowa
  • Kansas
  • Louisiana
  • Massachusetts
  • Mississippi
  • Missouri
  • Montana
  • Nevada
  • New Hampshire
  • New Jersey
  • New Mexico
  • Ohio
  • Oklahoma
  • Oregon
  • Pennsylvania
  • Tennessee
  • Vermont
  • West Virginia
  • Wyoming

Franchise Filing States

Filing states require franchisors to pay a fee and file their FDD with the state. Once the FDD is filed and fees are paid, the franchise is welcome to expand into that state. There is typically no FDD review process in filing states.

Current filing states and fees:

  • Connecticut - Initial Filing Fee: $400
  • Florida - Initial Filing Fee: $125
  • Kentucky  - Initial Filing Fee: No Fee
  • Nebraska - Initial Filing Fee: $100
  • North Carolina- Initial Filing Fee: $10
  • South Carolina - Initial Filing Fee: No Fee
  • South Dakota - Initial Fee: $250
  • Texas - Initial Filing Fee: $25
  • Utah - Initial Filing Fee: $100

Once you have decided which state you would like to expand to, you should contact that state’s government agency (ideally, through a franchise lawyer) to move forward.