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Registered Agent Service

Order $89 to $99 registered agent service online for immediate access to our address and state forms. No additional charges.

How To Find the Best Registered Agent Service—Complete Guide + Reviews

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Your business must appoint a registered agent to receive documents in legal matters, including notice of lawsuit. Our reliable registered agent service fulfills this requirement. You get:

  • Same-day documents from our local offices in all 50 states.
  • Immediate online access to state forms with our address and, where required, our signature
  • Annual fees from $89Multi-Year Discount to $99 /year per state with no additional charges
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Whether you’re forming a new organization or expanding an existing one, you need a registered agent who will be your main point of contact with the secretary of state. They accept legal and government correspondence on your behalf, helping you meet your obligations timely.

While numerous individuals and organizations can act as registered agents, not every option is equally suitable for your needs. To make your search easier, this guide will show you how to find the best registered agent service for your organization and review some popular options.

Among them, we’ll introduce Harbor Compliance and our robust Registered Agent Service that ensures you never miss an important notice.

What Do Registered Agent Services Include?

The most basic service a registered agent provides is the acceptance of legal process and other official correspondence addressed to your organization. They then forward such correspondence to you so that you can take the necessary action.

Registered agents are also legally required to maintain a registered office in the state of the represented entity. The registered office cannot be a P.O. box or mail forwarding service but a physical location as service of process is always done in person.

Besides relaying official communications and maintaining a registered office, your agent might provide various ancillary services, such as:

  • Guiding you on important compliance procedures
  • Alerting you about important deadlines (e.g., annual report filing)
  • Offering support when you’re filing important documents with the secretary of state or other authorities

The available services can vary greatly between providers, but all of them should offer the aforementioned basics. It’s best to consider which add-ons you might need before you start exploring your options so that you have a solid starting point.

How To Find a Good Registered Agent

Browsing registered agents might be daunting due to the massive number of available options. Generally speaking, you can choose between two categories:

  1. Individual agents
  2. Organizations serving as registered agents (also known as commercial agents)

You have various options within each category. An individual agent can be anyone of legal age who resides in your state of operation, and there are many commercial agents promising to deliver the best service.

To avoid analysis paralysis, focus on the following three factors when comparing registered agents:

  1. Reliability
  2. Efficiency
  3. Cost


Regardless of the bells and whistles a registered agent might include in their service, responsibility and reliability should be at its core. Missing a legal notice can have significant negative consequences, so you shouldn’t leave anything to chance.

Look for a service provider that ensures someone is always available at the registered office during regular business hours. Otherwise, the agent might fail to receive your notice, which means you’re likely to miss the court date in case of litigation. The most common consequence of such a mishap is default judgment—a ruling made in the plaintiff’s favor as a result of your absence.

A registered agent should help you avoid such complications and provide peace of mind, which is why commercial agents are often considered more reliable than individuals. Like any business, they have an entire team of people who can step in if one person is absent, minimizing the risk of missed notices.


When a registered agent receives your notice, they should forward it to you as quickly as possible. This way, they leave you enough time to respond to legal action or meet other important deadlines.

An agent’s efficiency mainly depends on their process and delivery method. For instance, some agents might use certified mail, which isn’t the fastest approach. A far better option is electronic delivery, which lets you receive the notice soon after the agent accepts it.

Ideally, you’ll partner with an agent that offers same-day delivery of your correspondence, regardless of the way it’s sent.


As important as a registered agent’s role may be, it typically doesn’t involve any extensive labor or resources—and the price should reflect this. The last thing you want is to overpay for the agent’s services, especially with all the administrative and other costs involved in meeting your regulatory obligations.

That being said, frugality shouldn’t come at the expense of getting a solid service. Some organization owners avoid third-party agents altogether and appoint themselves to cut costs, which can backfire for many reasons, such as:

  • Disrupted privacy as the result of the owner’s name and address becoming publicly available
  • A complete lack of flexibility due to the need to be available at the registered office at all times during business hours
  • The risk of receiving lawsuits at home or the office in front of others

The good news is that you don’t need to deal with these issues to stay on budget. You can find a cost-effective registered agent service that won’t break the bank while still encompassing everything you need to stay on top of important notices.

Best Registered Agent Services—Four Popular Options Reviewed

Now that you have a better idea of what to look for in a registered agent, we’ll discuss four commercial providers worth checking out in the following sections:

  1. Rocket Lawyer
  2. Swyft Filings
  3. LegalZoom
  4. Harbor Compliance

Rocket Lawyer

Rocket Lawyer provides various services, such as:

  • Business formation
  • Tax filing
  • Document creation and signing
  • Legal consultations

It’s a subscription-based solution, though some services are charged separately—including the registered agent service. It costs $249.99/year, though the price drops to $124.99/year if you sign up for RocketLegal+™. As of this writing, the membership is discounted at $239.88/year, so the total cost of the registered agent service is quite high either way.

The price is somewhat justified if you intend to use Rocket Legal’s other services since you’ll get discounts on them as well. As for the registered agent service, you get some standard benefits, including:

  • Availability during regular business hours
  • Local office in your state of operation
  • Online notice organization

A notable benefit of Rocket Lawyer’s service is the same-day delivery of time-sensitive notices. However, you can find a provider that offers that without high costs.

Swyft Filings

Swyft Filings specializes in business formation and regulatory support. You can choose from various document filing services to streamline compliance and meet your obligations without delays. The company can also serve as your registered agent, thanks to local offices around the U.S.

As a bonus, Swyft Filings can notify you about upcoming government deadlines and submit the relevant reports on your behalf (though the filings are charged separately).

Your notices will be accessible online, which adds to the service’s flexibility and convenience. Unfortunately, same-day delivery isn’t guaranteed, so Swyft Filings may not be an ideal solution if you’re looking for the most efficient registered agent.

To get the fastest processing speed, you need to subscribe to the Premium package at $299 plus state fees. The registered agent service is charged separately at $199/year, and it’s available with any tier (including the free Basic plan).


LegalZoom is a reputable provider of legal services for businesses and individuals. Among many solutions tailored to organizations, the registered agent service stands out as one of the company’s most popular offerings.

If you sign up, LegalZoom will notify you whenever they receive important mail addressed to your organization. You also get access to the Compliance Calendar, where you can track tax and annual report deadlines easily. All your notices and documents are uploaded to a secure platform, and you get unlimited storage for them.

Similar to Swyft Filings, LegalZoom doesn’t guarantee same-day delivery. This is a significant drawback, especially when you consider the relatively high cost of the registered agent service. It comes at $249/year, so it might not be suitable if you’re on a budget.

Harbor Compliance

If you need a robust yet budget-friendly solution for your registered agent needs, Harbor Compliance is an excellent option. Our Registered Agent Service encompasses everything you need to stay on top of official correspondence, most notably:

  • Local offices in all U.S. states and territories
  • Constant availability during business hours
  • Same-day electronic delivery of your notices through the secure Client Portal

Our Registered Agent Service starts at $89/year, which makes it a highly cost-efficient solution. Better yet, you get access to lots of useful ancillaries at no additional cost, such as:

  • Pre-filled state forms that expedite the filing of various documents
  • A phone call in case of a lawsuit to ensure you don’t miss any important notices
  • Annual report notifications
  • Access to the Entity Manager software, which automates compliance tracking to save you a significant amount of time

Like other providers you saw here, Harbor Compliance offers a wide array of services beyond acting as a registered agent. The following table shows some of our most popular solutions:

Category Services
Fast document filing and retrieval
Beneficial ownership information reporting
Tax-related services
Entity lifecycle management
Nonprofit formation
Business licensing support

Individual Registered Agent vs. Harbor Compliance

Besides offering a more value-packed solution than many commercial agents, Harbor Compliance is a far safer option than a typical individual agent. The main reasons for this include the following:

  • Reliability—Our team is constantly available during business hours at the registered office to receive your correspondence. Even if one member is absent, someone can step in to ensure your notice isn’t missed.
  • Privacy—Appointing Harbor Compliance means our information is given to the secretary of state instead of yours (which would happen if you appointed yourself). You won’t need to deal with unwanted mail or worry about process servers showing up at your home or office.
  • Nationwide coverage—You can’t appoint yourself in multiple states at once, and designating a different individual in each jurisdiction can lead to unnecessary complications. With Harbor Compliance, you can expand freely and access notices from multiple states in a centralized hub.
  • Data security—Harbor Compliance protects your information with industry-standard security measures unavailable to a typical individual, such as strong encryption, cloud monitoring, and strict access controls.
  • Comprehensive support—Our Help Center is always available if you have any questions or run into issues. You can also reach out to us for additional guidance, and our experts will answer all your questions.

How To Appoint Harbor Compliance as Your Registered Agent

Our Registered Agent Service is available in the following three scenarios:

  1. Forming a new legal entity
  2. Expanding into another state
  3. Changing your existing agent

The appointment steps differ between these situations, so refer to the below breakdowns for details.

Registering a New Legal Entity

If you’re forming a new organization, you must appoint an agent in your registration documents (Articles of Incorporation for profit and nonprofit corporations or Articles of Organization for LLCs.). In most states, your formation filings won’t be accepted without an agent, so it’s best to find one before you start the process.

Partnering with us gives you two ways to appoint Harbor Compliance as your agent—a fully managed and a DIY method. If you opt for the former, you can sign up for one of our three formation services, depending on your business structure:

  1. Incorporation
  2. Nonprofit formation
  3. LLC formation

Select the appropriate service, and we’ll complete the entire registration process for you—including the agent appointment.

If you prefer the DIY approach and wish to register on your own, you can order our Registered Agent Service separately and take the following steps to appoint us:

  1. Sign up for the service.
  2. Find the address of our local office in the Client Portal.
  3. Complete and submit our pre-filled registration forms.

Expanding Into Another State

To obtain the right to operate in another state, you need a certificate of authority. Most states won’t issue one if you don’t have a registered agent, and you must meet various additional requirements. To make the process quick and effortless, you can sign up for our Foreign Qualification Service package.

Once you complete the signup wizard, we’ll gather and submit all the necessary documents on your behalf. We’ll also appoint Harbor Compliance as your registered agent and provide the service at no additional cost for a year.

Changing Your Agent

If you’re browsing registered agents because your current one doesn’t meet your needs, Harbor Compliance has a solution. We can complete the agent change without your involvement if you opt for the Registered Agent Service.

Before checking out, you’ll see the Add Change of Agent Service option. Select it, and we’ll name ourselves your new agent and update the secretary of state.

Registered Agent Services FAQs

Here, you’ll see some of the most commonly asked questions about registered agent services. If you need more information, explore our Information Center.

The main factors to consider when choosing a registered agent service are reliability, efficiency, and cost.

Most registered agents charge a fixed annual fee, which renews automatically at the end of each billing cycle.

Some providers advertise their solutions as free but charge hidden fees. Worse yet, they might sell information to third parties for profit, exposing your organization to security risks.

The cost of hiring a registered agent includes the service fee and any applicable state fees if the agent doesn’t cover them.

Enjoy Freedom and Flexibility With Our Registered Agent Service

Your chosen registered agent can make a world of difference to the risk of legal escalations. Sign up for our Registered Agent Service, and we’ll bring that risk to the absolute minimum.

If you need additional support to meet all the necessary regulations, you can also do the following:

Before you appoint a registered agent, you should familiarize yourself with state-specific regulations affecting them. To get all the necessary information, refer to the following table:

Continue reading “What Is a Registered Agent for LLC”

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