What Is a Registered Agent, and Why You Need a Registered Agent for Your Business?
14 January, 2021
In case you form a company that is a corporation or a limited liability company (LLC), it is mandatory that you have a registered agent. There are numerous ways in which you can comply with the legal requirement. You can select from multiple ways to satisfy that requirement.
Suppose you have decided that a Limited liability company is the right business structure for your company. By the moment you start preparing your formation papers and Article of organization, you know that you are in need of a registered agent.
But the question that arises now is what a registered agent is? And how do you decide who to designate as your LLC's registered agent? To get answers for all your questions related to a registered agent, keep on reading the article and know all about a registered agent.
What is a Registered Agent?
In simple words, a person who receives legal and other documents on your behalf is a registered agent. A registered agent receives items such as subpoenas, tax notices, and regulatory. There are many states wherein a person must serve the lawsuits. Registered agents make this a more transparent and orderly process. The name and address of your registered agent is publicly available so that even strangers know whom to deliver papers to. The other benefit of having a public address and name is that you can feel confident that there is only one contact point for any legal notices your business might receive.
As discussed above, any business entities like LLCs and corporations are required to designate a registered agent. They need to appoint the registered agent the moment they form and to have a local registered agent in every state where they transact business. This requirement for a registered agent or registered service came about as an aspect of due process.
Business entities like LLCs and corporations are required to appoint a registered agent when they form - and to have a local registered agent in every state where they transact business. This requirement for a registered agent or registered agent service came about as an aspect of due process. Due process states that before a lawsuit or other legal action can move forward in the courts, and must adequately notify all parties. A registered agent's most basic function is to ensure your business is properly notified when involved in a lawsuit.
Other than self-employed individuals, all companies must register as legal entities, like partnerships, LLCs, corporations. Your company will likely need a registered agent as a part of that process. The registered agent acts as your business's point of contact for all the legal correspondence. In case any former employee tries to sue your business, you will easily find out about it through your registered agent. A registered agent must be:
- above the age of 18 years.
- must have a street address within the state.
- must be physically present at that address during the business hours.
Need of a registered agent.
It would be best if you had a registered agent for an LLC, corporation, or other formal business entity. The registered agent is not needed by Sole proprietorships and general partnerships.
Whenever you file for business formation paperwork with your state, the registered agent must be named. In case of any changes in the name or the address of your registered agent, a file must be filled as an additional form to update the records of the state. A registered agent is someone you must-have in every state where your company is registered to do business.
How Does a Registered Agent Work?
Now that you have an idea about what a registered agent is, it is essential to understand how a registered agent works. Registered agents help in assuring that businesses receive the due process promised to them under the Constitution. One part of the due process is the constitutional right to be officially notified of a lawsuit or any other legal matter against you or your business. Registered agents are the ones who get this warning, and they are liable for guaranteeing that the business entity knows about the procedures against it.
Anyone serving process must typically do so in person, whether the legal documents pertaining to an individual or a business entity. Serving notice against a business typically means going to an office and presenting the document to the registered agent, but this can take place wherever the registered agent has established that they will be during the workweek. Registered agents are required to be open for business - meaning they can accept service of process - during business hours: 9 am to 5 pm, Monday through Friday, except holidays.
Anybody serving process should ordinarily do as much in face to face, regardless of whether the authoritative reports pertaining to an individual or a business entity. Serving notice against a business implies going to an office and introducing the document to the enrolled specialist. However, this can occur in any place the enlisted specialist has set up that they will be during the week's worth of work. Registered agents are required to accept service of process throughout the business hours 9 am to 5 pm. They work from Monday to Friday except for the holidays. When the registered agent has obtained authoritative documents, they will email them to the business. Furthermore, registered agents are required to tell the organization of any new reports they get right away.
On the off chance that the underlying email isn't recognized, the enrolled specialist ought to follow up with more emails or a call. At times, similar to when somebody at the business needs to sign a report, it will also be sent via mail. Some registered agents offer extra assistance, for example, filling the documents or telling organizations of different approaching occasions such as significant tax filing dates.
Serving as Your Own Registered Agent
Lawfully, it is allowed to work as your own registered agent. However, you will be thinking about it twice. In case you register as your own registered agent, you have to be available at one work location during all business hours. You will be effectively attached to your desk when you serve as a registered agent. Depending on what other jobs you do in your business, it may be difficult or even impossible in order to be available at the same location during all business hours.
Working as your own registered agent could also risk embarrassment. You could get served right as you were about to close a significant deal, including a potential client. Obtaining a lawsuit in front of employees, customers, or anyone else could negatively affect your business. In case you use a third-party registered agent, you will indeed receive this information in the most discreet way possible.
Another drawback of serving as a registered agent is that the name and address of your registered agent will appear in public records. That means in case you are a registered agent; your information will be publically available. In the case where you don't want your name and location during business hours be publicly available, you will surely need to find another person to serve as your registered agent
Hire A Registered Agent
It is lawfully approved that you can be your own registered agent. But in case you do not want to be a registered agent, you can definitely hire a third party. Above all being a registered agent requires you to be at the same place during all the working hours. This is something many business owners won't be able to do. Young business owners are busy developing their business and often have to travel from one location to another. There are jobs that can be forgotten, which a registered agent performs, such as paying tax and tracking annual reports. All this can cost a business operator in the long run. There is immense freedom that hiring a registered agent would provide. Therefore, hiring a third-party registered agent would be the best option for you.
Now, the next question that arises is finding a reliable registered agent service. There are many registered agent services available online, but before finalizing one, make sure that you ask the company about any additional services. Make sure and ask them about the extra fees and make sure they are situated at a premium business location. In case there is difficulty learning the details of registered agent service, be aware and consider this as a red flag. Early communication will let you decide whether they are a bad fit for business or not. The best-registered agent could help your company grow; therefore, choose wisely.
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