A Registered Agent is often called a “Resident Agent”, “Statutory Agent”, or “Agent for Service of Process” depending on the state you are forming your entity in. Registered Agents are required by law in almost every state. You must specify your company’s registered agent when you file your Articles of Formation.
What is a Registered Agent or Resident Agent?
A registered agent, also known as a resident agent or statutory agent, is a business or individual designated to receive service of process (SOP) when a business entity is a party in a legal action such as a lawsuit or summons. The registered agent receives legal documents on behalf of the company. Such legal documents can be lawsuit pleadings, tax information and annual report contributions. For this purpose, a post office box cannot be used. The agent must have a physical, public record address where documents can be delivered via post or courier such as FedEx.
Our agents are local and are at the office during normal business hours to accept process. To leave town or leave a jurisdiction would be in violation of the duties as an Agent. A registered agent is responsible for important legal and tax documents on behalf of incorporated companies, such as the following:
• Service of Process—sometimes called Notice of Litigation—which initiates a lawsuit
• Important state mail, such as annual reports or statements
• Tax documents sent by the state’s department of taxation
• By having a registered agent, a business owner never has to fear missing an important legal document while traveling on business or while on vacation.
• The registered agent must have a physical address (not a post office box) in the state of incorporation or qualification and must be available at that address during normal business hours.
• Having a separate address for handling legal documents allows for discreet handling in the event of litigation process serving.
Why do I need a Registered Agent?
It is required by the Secretary of State to ensure a means of communicating important filing information with your company, and to ensure an address for delivery of Service of Process.
Can I change my current agent?
Yes click the following link to learn how.
What Are the Benefits of Using a Professional Registered Agent?
A professional registered agent is always present during regular business hours to receive Service of Process on your behalf. We will not be ill or on vacation or otherwise unavailable to receive your important communication and immediately forward to your company. We will not quit or retire. These are all risks you take when designating an employee or individual within your organization as agent. Our agents have backup for these type of occurrences.
If served, the registered agent address is public information and the address where process servers will deliver processor. If you designate yourself as agent, the risk having a process server come to your home or office. If you move, you will have to file the appropriate paperwork with the Secretary of State to change your agent address as well.
Why should I choose you as my registered agent?
As the Registered Agent name and address is one of public record, generally, the registered agent legal address will be the one listed in all official public documents. An outside Registered Agent allows business entities to freely change their location at any time, without being required to file costly changes of address within the state they are registered each time they move. Designating a third-party registered agent allows the business owner to travel for business or pleasure without the risk of a default judgment because of a missed lawsuit. Commercial registered agents generally have systems to keep track of filing, notification and publishing requirements of business entities which can save businesses hundreds or even thousands of dollars in late penalties were they to miss a required government filing. These are referred to as “Compliance Managers”, “Tax Calendars” and/or “Compliance Calendars”.
Generally most commercial service providers have “Form Libraries” of forms and other documents required to file business entities in different jurisdictions – or to keep the business entity in compliance or “Good Standing”.
Some commercial registered agents provide real-time notice of any litigation, and forward all official documents directly to the companies they represent.
Having service of process delivered to a company’s primary place of business can spark rumors among customers and employees. Designating a separate address for receiving service of process avoids this issue.
Changing a Registered Agent or Resident Agent?
For a number of reasons a business entity might at some point wish to change their registered agent to another party after a registered agent has already been designated. This is accomplished by obtaining a form from the secretary of state where the business entity is registered, completing the form, and filing it with that state office along with any requisite fees which may vary from state to state. Often, the required form may simply be a dedicated change of registered agent form. Other times, such as in Delaware, an actual amendment to the articles of the business entity must be filed.
Designating a Registered Agent or Resident Agent?
In a number of cases, the registered agent for a business entity is assigned in the formation documents filed in a jurisdiction when the entity is originally created. As an example, a person forming a corporation in the State of Nevada or Delaware, would designate the registered agent along with the agent’s address on the articles of incorporation filed with the Nevada Secretary of State or Delaware Secretary of State. If the agent cannot sign the articles to be filed, some states such as Nevada provide that the registered agent may be designated using a separate “Registered Agent Acceptance” form with the appropriate acceptance and signature. An authorized representative of the business or the company accepting responsibility as registered agent must sign to accept the responsibility of acting as agent. In a number of states it is a crime to knowingly file a false document with the office of the Secretary of State, although the penalties vary widely. For example, in Nevada it is a Class “D” felony to forge this signature, but in Michigan it is only a misdemeanor.
Can You Be Your Own Registered Agent?
In most jurisdictions the entity itself is prevented from acting as agent. It must be an individual from the company itself.
Questions about Support?
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