Washington State Department of Financial Institutions

Washington Escrow Agent & Officer Licensing

Below you will find licensing information for Escrow Agents and Escrow Officers doing business in Washington State.

How To Form A New Escrow Company

If you are planning to form a new corporation, limited liability company (“LLC”) or other legal entity to conduct your escrow agent business, you must file organizing documents with the Corporations Division at the Secretary of State's Office for review and approval before legal existence can begin.

If you intend to operate under a trade name (“dba”) you must register that name with the Department of Licensing, Master Business Licensing. Master Business Licensing can also assist you in obtaining other licenses you will need to conduct your business.

Contract Collections

Effective July 28, 2013, the legislature modified several definitions in the Escrow Agent Registration Act. RCW 18.44. The definition of "escrow" now includes the collection and processing of payments and the performance of related services by a third party on seller-financed loans secured by a lien on real or personal property. This definition excludes vessel transfers. In addition, the new law clarifies that entities licensed under the Escrow Agent Registration Act that process payments on seller financed loans secured by liens on real or personal property are exempt from regulation under the Consumer Loan Act.

How To Apply For A Designated Escrow Officer and Escrow Officer License

To obtain your Escrow Officer license, you must be associated with an actively licensed escrow agent. You must also have taken and passed the Escrow Officer Examination within the past year.

Escrow Agent License Amendments

Fill out the Escrow Agent Amendment Application Form (PDF)* if you are changing any of the following:

Escrow Officer License Amendment

Fill out the Escrow Officer Application Form (PDF)* if:

Limited Practice Officer (LPO) Licensing

The LPO license is issued by the LPO Board, not by the Division of Consumer Services. Visit the Washington State Bar Association for information about obtaining an LPO license. You may contact the Board by e-mail at questions@wsba.org or phone (206) 443-9722 or (800) 945-9722.

Frequently Asked Questions

See answers to frequently asked questions regarding escrow licensing.

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