6 Reasons Why You Need a Registered Agent

A registered agent, sometimes called the agent of service of process or resident agent, is a person or business nominated by your company to officially receive and send important legal and tax documents on your behalf. Such documents might include service of process of legal action or state filings, like annual reports. Additionally, registered agents give the state an official contact for your company. Although you might be thinking that you can just be all of these things yourself, there are many advantages to naming a registered agent.

  • States require it

During incorporation, states require companies to name a registered agent before filing their articles of organization. The agent must be a person with a physical address in the state where your business is located or a corporation authorized to conduct business in your state. If you have an LLC, this means that a member can act as the agent of the LLC but a company cannot act as its own registered agent.

  • Flexibility

You may not want to be open from 9am – 5pm, Monday – Friday, for every week of the year. In this case, engaging professional registered agent services is ideal because they are always open during regular business hours. This ensures that important legal documents will be accepted, so that you don’t have to worry about the stress of missing any deliveries.

Registered agents also allow you to be flexible in terms of where you can form your company. For example, you can take advantage of another state’s tax laws by using the address of your registered agent’s office in that state. This also works if you are an online business without a physical location. As a side note, it might be useful to have a registered agent that is located in multiple states so you can have a physical presence in more than one state and use the same agent.

  • Privacy

Registered agent addresses are a matter of public record. You may not want your home address public because then any customer, client, or employee can easily find you. Choosing a registered agent service ensures your privacy.

  • Compliance with laws

If you are engaging a professional registered agent, you have the option to choose one that can remind you of any state filings that are due and make sure you stay in compliance. They can even help you find state-specific experts, like accountants and lawyers. Registered agents can also can keep copies of your corporate documents in case of theft, loss, or natural disaster.

On the flip side, a business that fails to select a registered agent risks falling out of “good standing” with the state in which it is registered. This carries with it certain penalties like license revocation, fines, or the inability to enter into legal contracts. Once this occurs, there are other monetary, civil, and even possible criminal sanctions associated with getting your business reinstated.

  • Protecting your business image.

If your company acts as its own agent, then your business address remains on file with the state as the address to send any correspondence. Constant deliveries that require signature can cause frequent interruptions to your busy schedule and, if clients or customers are present, the professional image you’ve worked hard to build could be jeopardized. By having a registered agent, your business’ image is protected because any lawsuits will be served to the address of your agent rather than your place of business in front of your clients and employees.

  • Time-sensitive materials require immediate attention.

Legal and tax documents are notorious for carrying strict response deadlines. A registered agent is not only available to receive the documents, but they can get them to your attention in a timely matter so you don’t miss important filing deadlines. A reliable professional agent helps you avoid the consequences of improper handling of your business’ critical paperwork.

Contact Integrated General Counsel Services.

At IGC, we understand just how important needing a registered agent is…so much so that we provide registered agent services for our clients. If you are incorporating your business and need help naming a registered agent, don’t hesitate to contact or call us at (925) 399-1529 (1LAW) today.

Share this on...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on Google+Email this to someone

Written by Integrated General Counsel

Our focus includes handling a variety of corporate matters and also includes litigation in state and federal courts. Our current practice includes providing transactional services and representing a variety of small and medium-sized companies as their outsourced general counsel.