Can I Be My Own Registered Agent?
Yes, you can be your own registered agent for your company. You may also choose to designate an officer or member of your company, or even a trusted friend, as long as the person you choose meets the following registered agent requirements:
- Is 18 years of age or older
- Have a physical address in the state in which the company is incorporated
- Be available (in person) during normal business hours.
Another option would be to hire a professional registered agent service.
A registered agent is an individual or a company that will be the LLC’s or corporation’s official point of contact in the state to receive service of process, other legal documents, and official communications from the state, and forward these documents and communications to the LLC or corporation for which it is acting as registered agent.
What is the Purpose of a Registered Agent?
In addition to receiving official mail on behalf of your company, the primary purpose of a registered agent is to help your company maintain effective compliance with corporate regulations by informing you of legal notices or sending you annual reporting reminders. Essentially, a registered agent is a watchdog for business entities, so you can take appropriate action and resolve potential problems in a timely manner.
Whether you run a small business or a large corporation, you can expect your designated registered agent to receive the following on behalf of your LLC after the business is set up:
- Tax forms
- Legal documents
- Official government correspondence (e.g., annual reports).
- Summons (Service of Process) – Notices of Claims
Should I Use a Registered Agent Service?
Appointing another person to act as the registered agent for your LLC or corporation has its advantages. In this section, we cover the top benefits of using an affordable, national registered agent service—like ZenBusiness or Incfile—including:
- Law enforcement
Visit our guide “Should I Use a Registered Agent Service?” to help you make the right decision for your company.
What is a Registered Agent Service?
Registered agent services are business entities that accept tax and legal documents on behalf of LLCs and corporations for a fee.
Registered agents help businesses keep up with state requirements by sending out periodic reminders and sometimes filing things like annual reports and other official government notifications .
Registered agent services will also keep copies of your corporate documents. In the event of theft, natural disaster, or other unexpected loss, you’ll have a backup of all your important business and legal documents.
Registered agents give you peace of mind so you can focus your time, energy, and attention on running your small business. Here’s what a professional registered agent service can do to ease your stress:
- Allow the growth of your company to be the number one priority. Important tax and legal documents for your LLC will be automatically received and held in escrow.
- Helps maintain the balance between work and private life. Professional and personal mail are kept separate, preventing work from intruding on home life.
- Offer personal guidance. You will have additional support if your company has a problem or if you have any questions.
If you choose to act as your own registered agent, you will need to be available to receive official government correspondence and process notices during standard business hours at the physical address you provide.
Designated registered agents give you the flexibility to focus on your business instead of having to watch deadlines and be available during business hours.
With a registered agent service, you will be able to do the following:
- Maintain flexible business hours. A registered agent must be available from 8 am to 5 pm every day of the week. By designating a third-party registered agent service, you can choose your own work hours.
- Create an LLC in another state. Registered agents must have a legal residence in the state in which the business is incorporated. Hiring a national registered agent service will allow you to create an LLC in any of the 50 states.
- Create a multi-state LLC. If you set up your business to have a physical location in multiple states, you will need to have a designated registered agent for each state.
We all value our privacy. It will be the physical address of your registered agent service that appears in the public record, not your personal or business address. This is especially important if you run your business out of your home. An LLC registered agent service will maintain your privacy:
- Avoid being served with a lawsuit in person. You don’t want to be summoned in front of your family, your employees, or worse yet, your clients.
- Make the registered agent’s physical address public instead of yours. As a result, you are less likely to receive spam.