Governor Wolf Announces Business Fee Exemptions for Military Veterans and Reservists

January 12, 2017

Harrisburg, PA –  Governor Tom Wolf and Secretary of State Pedro A. Cortés today advised military veterans and reservists they are now exempt from certain fees for business start-ups and professional licensure.

“Eliminating these fees for our military veterans and reservists is another way to foster the best possible business climate in Pennsylvania,” Governor Wolf said. “At the same time, we are showing veterans the gratitude they deserve for their service and sacrifices.”

The business fee exemption, which became effective January 2, is a result of Act 135 of 2016. The Act eliminates the requirement for fees to start or open a new small business if the business is veteran- or reservist-owned.

“The Department of State is proud to play a part in repaying the commonwealth’s debt to our veterans and reservists,” Secretary Cortés said. “By easing the costs of starting a new business, we can help ensure that entrepreneur veterans have every opportunity for a successful future.”

Filing fees to register a new business will be waived by the Department’s Bureau of Corporations and Charitable Organizations when the registration documents are signed by the veteran or reservist and submitted with proof of the veteran’s or reservist’s status.

In addition, Act 135 allows the Bureau of Professional and Occupational Affairs (BPOA) to waive initial application fees for certain license types for businesses regulated by various boards and commissions.

For purposes of exemption, a veteran is an individual who served in the U.S. Armed Forces, including a reserve component or the National Guard, and who was discharged or released from service under conditions other than dishonorable. A reservist is a member of a U.S. Armed Forces reserve component or National Guard.

The Act defines small business as one that is independently owned, not dominant in its field of operation and employs 100 or fewer employees.

Filings and proof of status documents submitted by a veteran or reservist seeking the fee exemption must be submitted by mail or personal delivery. Fillable online registration forms should be completed on a computer, saved to a device, printed and mailed.

Details about the business registration exemption and professional license fee exemptions can be found on the Department of State website at

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