When it comes to choosing a registered agent for your business, it is imperative that you select someone you trust. After all, the person you designate as your company’s registered agent is responsible for accepting service of process, receiving communication from the government, and serving as the contact person for your business.
For many business owners, their spouse may seem like an ideal choice. However, before officially designating your spouse as your company’s registered agent, consider the following points.
Age & Residence
If you are considering having your spouse as your business’s registered agent, he or she must meet specific requirements. Luckily, these are fairly easy to meet.
A registered agent must be:
- a legal adult who is 18 years or older
- must reside in the state of your business
- must have a physical address (a post office box will not work)
Though these are really the only hard and fast rules about being a registered agent, there is certainly more to consider.
Keep in mind that your registered agent has to be, put simply, registered! His or her name and address will need to be published. Though it might seem convenient, your spouse cannot simply step in to accept service on behalf of your business or act as a corporate liaison between your business and the government. He or she must be registered. Will your spouse be comfortable having the official, public designation? This leads to the next important point to evaluate when thinking about designating your spouse as a registered agent: will he or she be available?
The registered agent designed for your company needs to be available during business hours during a normal work week.
If your spouse is your registered agent, he or she will need to be present at the physical location of your office during business hours — which means that vacations, time off, and sick time really are not going to be possible. If a process server attempts to serve your business, but your spouse is out running an errand, he or she is not fulfilling the duties of a registered agent. It is imperative that a registered agent is available during business hours.
‘Til Death Do You Part?
You love your spouse — that’s why you married them. No one gets married intending to divorce, but unfortunately, it still happens. It is important to consider that if you designate your spouse as your registered agent, but your relationship turns sour, he or she will still be responsible for handling your company’s registered agent duties. Would you want your spouse to know when your business is sued? Would you still want to give them access to information about your business? Would you want that person to be the representative for your business? These are hard questions to ponder but important nonetheless if you are considering using your spouse as a registered agent.
Make It Easy: Choose Universal Registered Agents
If all of the above has led you to the conclusion that it would likely be wise to not choose your spouse to be your company’s registered agent, you can easily find a company who can serve as your registered agent. Contact us at Universal Registered Agents to get started.