How to Start an LLC – Use Registered Agent Service Vs LLC DIY

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Last Updated on 2 weeks by Komolafe Bamidele

Regardless of your business’s location, having a registered agent and a registered office is a mandatory requirement when forming an LLC or corporation.

 However, you are not required to engage the services of a registered agent.

 You can designate yourself or, in several states, establish your business as its registered agent.

To ensure a comprehensive understanding of your options, we will thoroughly explore all relevant aspects of this crucial role. 

Is it worth considering the using Registered Agent Service? Is the DIY option the right choice for you? 

Let’s examine the specifics and determine the best option for your business.

Who is a Registered Agent?

This phrase describes the individual or a company that takes on the responsibility of receiving legal document delivery from your state for your business. 

Since you must provide your registered agent’s name and address in your articles of organization or incorporation, you must first have a registered agent to start your firm. 

A registered agent may receive notifications from the Secretary of State and court summons, among other paperwork.

Having a physical address in the state where your firm was created is the primary need to act as a registered agent lawfully; a P.O. Box will not do. 

Your company’s official point of contact for official state document delivery will be this street address.

Upon receiving one of these document deliveries, your registered agent notifies you immediately, scans the document to make a digital backup, and forwards it to your place of business. 

The Best LLC Registered Agent Services for Any State

if you’re either a USA or non-USA resident looking to form an LLC in any of the US states, our top recommendation is ZenBusiness, which starts at $0 plus state fees. Form your LLC in any state in less than 10 minutes.

All of our recommendations for the best LLC services can help you form your business in all 50 states:

  1. ZenBusiness – Best for Most
  2. Bizee (formerly Incfile) – Best Range of LLC services
  3. Northwest Registered Agent – Best for professional registered agent service.

Should You Be Your Own Registered Agent?

Use Registered Agent Service Vs LLC DIY

Being one’s registered agent is an option for entrepreneurs in every state. This choice comes with its ups and downs. One advantage of not hiring a third party to act as your company’s registered agent is the money you’ll save.

But that’s the only good thing about being your agent. 

Becoming your registered agent comes with many hassles; the first is ensuring you can accept document delivery throughout all regular business hours, Monday through Friday. 

Vacation, sick days, or even going out to lunch or the doctor will be impossible.

A further drawback of the do-it-yourself option for registered agents is the invasion of privacy.

 Be careful not to let your workers or customers know that you are being served with a lawsuit if you are working as your agent. It’s never a good look for any business. 

Alternatively, you can choose an employee to act as the registered agent or hire a Registered Agent Service for your business. 

However, this choice has the same issues as acting as your agent.

Why Should You Hire a Registered Agent?

Below are a few reasons for you to hire a registered agent service to handle your LLC formation;

Protection of Privacy

As a business owner, you have some privacy when you have a commercial registered agent. 

Process servers can use the name and address of your registered agent, which is publicly posted instead of your home or place of employment when serving notifications.

This can save you from awkward circumstances that could arise. Just picture being informed in front of your neighbours or clients about a lawsuit against your company! 

When using a commercial registered agent, process servers must deliver legal notifications to the designated party—not your residence or place of business.

Needs for Multiple States

Your LLC or Corporation will require a registered agent in each state if it conducts business in more than one and has to meet overseas qualifying requirements. 

You will still want assistance from someone else to manage registered agent obligations in other states, even if you choose to take on this role for your company in your home state. 

Again, there are drawbacks to choosing a single person as a registered agent; therefore, we strongly advise selecting a national commercial registered agent who can conduct business in all 50 states.

 Acquiring and renewing registered agent services dramatically streamlines the process.

Additional Requirements for Formation and Compliance

Additional Requirements for Formation and Compliance

What happens if your company requires assistance and knowledge beyond what a registered agent can provide? 

For instance, I can get an EIN, register for payroll taxes, request business permits, submit an annual report, etc.

You and no one else will have the time or expertise to handle every activity and requirement an LLC or Corporation has to fulfil for creation and compliance.

On the other hand, several registered agents offer a comprehensive array of formation and compliance filing services to simplify every facet of launching and operating a firm. 

Choose one that provides free deadline reminders, extensive ordering, service renewal, and compliance task tracking. 

Requirements for Availability

Except for state-recognized holidays, most states mandate that a registered agent be accessible from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Though it may not seem absurd, remember that you may occasionally take a sick day, go out to lunch, or take a vacation. 

According to the state’s regulations, you must be at your authorized registered agent’s address if you act as your own agent. 

Any person designated as a registered agent has the same issues.

A lawsuit against an LLC or a Corporation may proceed without the business owner’s knowledge if a registered agent neglects their responsibilities and crucial notices are missed. 

That might result in a default decision that could be better for the business. 

Additionally, a business owner needs to pay attention to essential compliance obligations, such as submitting an annual report or renewing business licenses, which might lead to fines and other consequences.

A registered agent guarantees that someone will be accessible to accept important correspondence and paperwork on your behalf.

Knowing that you have a registered agent services provider who will keep you informed and current on your duties gives you peace of mind.

To Sum Up

Using a registered agent service doesn’t make sense for numerous small businesses. 

They operate exclusively in their own state, maintain regular business hours, have a physical storefront, and don’t care about privacy. 

If so, you won’t need a registered agent, so you should be good to go. 

To ensure that a crucial document doesn’t end up in the hands of an employee, the ideal person to appoint as the registered agent for the company is the business owner. 

However, using a registered agent might be wise if any of the reasons discussed in this article resonate with you.

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