While registering for a Limited Liability Company with the US government, it is mandatory for every business to work closely with a registered agent. This individual can either represent a government body or can be hired from the legal LLC corporations. Except, what is a registered agent?
This individual will become your first point of contact whenever you need help with the entire LLC registration and formation process. He will represent your LLC design in front of various government bodies and carry on with different legal and judicial procedures. Choosing an LLC registered agent is essential, especially when you are planning to file for the LLC Operating Agreement and the Articles of Formation with the Secretary of State.
On this page, you’ll learn about the following:
- What is a registered agent?
- What does the job of a registered agent entail?
- Can I be my own LLC registered agent?
- Why should I use an LLC registered agent?
- What is the best registered agent service?
- How to choose a registered agent in the US?
- How to change the registered agent for LLC?
What is a registered agent?
To concise the definition, a registered agent is a third-party individual who will represent your business and will receive the government correspondences, compliance reports and documents, and the service of process agreement at the time of forming the LLC with a particular US state government.
What is a Service of Process?
Service of Process can be considered as a notifying document where one party prepares a formal notice to inform another part or corporation about a pending lawsuit that has been filed recently.
What does the job of a registered agent entail?
A registered agent’s job isn’t limited only to the receiving of certain documents and then handing them over to the LLC members for further actions. Rather, the primary job of the individual entails him to manage everything related to the business’s operations, be it informing the members about newly filed or pending lawsuits to preparing the annual reports, making reminders, and so on.
At the time of LLC formation and registration, an agent is required to handle all the legal works, starting from obtaining the Name Registration certificate to the submission of files for the Articles of Formation certificate. It is also the registered agent’s duty to obtain the EIN number on your behalf.
Once the LLC is formed, the agent will be entitled on receiving and processing several essential documents, like:
- Tax forms, files, and reports
- Any kind of legal documents, including license renewal statements, subpoenas, and so on
- Any kind of official government-issued correspondence
- Legal summons for pending lawsuits filed by another party
Can I be my own LLC registered agent?
If you are not willing to choose a registered state agent from another LLC agent corporation, you will have two options:
- Appointing yourself as the registered acting agent
- Nominating a member of the LLC to take on the role of the agent
No matter which steps you are choosing, there are certain prerequisites that you need to fulfill to step in the shoes of an LLC state registered agent.
- The nominated person must be 18 years or above.
- The person should have a legal, physical address in the state where the LLC will be operating.
- The person must be available during normal working hours in a physical state.
Disadvantages of a registered agent
- You need to be available in person during normal business hours in anticipation of receiving a legal document.
- You will have to have an existing physical address in the state of the business.
- For changing the LLC location, you need to first obtain permission from the government.
Why should I use an LLC registered agent?
It is mandatory for every LLC business to appoint a registered agent, be it a third-party individual or yourself, or a member of your company. Without the registered agent services, you wouldn’t be able to carry on with the legal procedures, filing of documents, and other such functions relatable with the LLC business registration and operation.
Advantages of having a registered agent
Compliance with the law
One of the major purposes of assigning a professional registered agent to your LLC business entity is to have a hundred percent compliance with the changing state laws. The agent will notify you about the recent changes in the state laws, set reminders for the annual report filings, process the license renewal and member transference documents, deal with a registered office address change, and so on. This way, you can avoid any delay or misinterpretation of the legal terms and hence, avoid lawsuits, or worse, losing the entire LLC business.
With a registered agent for service doing all the tax-related and legal works, you will be able to focus on your part of the job, i.e., supervising the LLC operations, working on designing annual reports, notices, business expansion plans, and others. A professional LLC resident agent will help you:
- Maintain a balance between different parts of the LLC
- Offer solutions to any tax and law-related problems
- Preserve the legal notices and financial documents for future referrals
Since an LLC agent should always be present to receive the Service of Process service and the government correspondences, it can become a little bit difficult for you to manage your job as an LLC member and an agent at the same time. This is why hiring a third-party registered LLC agent will provide you more flexibility in the proper operations of the businesses.
- The third-party registered agent service will be able to present physically to receive the legal and government documents and keep track of reminders.
- The resident agent service will help you in conducting with more people as customers of your business in the physical location.
- You can even establish a foreign business entity in more than one state with the help of a registered agent.
What is the best registered agent service?
Rather than being your own registered agent, it is better to hire a third-party LLC agent corporation from where you can get the best individual to be the face of your business. Several such corporations are present but, these four are the topmost names in the industry.
How to choose a registered agent in the US?
The hiring process of the registered agent will depend on the state where you want to establish the LLC. For example, in California, you can choose the agent after submitting the application for the Articles of Organizations to the California State of Secretary. But in Connecticut, the choice of the registered agent should be made prior to the submission of the Articles of Organization.
How to change the registered agent for LLC?
Yes, it is possible to change your registered agent for the LLC in the meantime. For this, you need to submit an application with the Secretary of State along with a nominal fee that varies from one state to the other. Also, you need to submit a form signed by your new agent.