Your Registered Agent Questions, Answered

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Posted on April 14, 2014 by James Gilmer in Business Compliance, Registered Agent.

You probably came across the term “registered agent” while filling out formation documents, or more commonly, you heard that you need one, I think…right?

Don’t worry, we get many questions about this service, and we thought it would be helpful to answer ten of your most popular registered agent FAQs:

1)   What is a registered agent? A registered agent provides a physical address for your organization, and receives important legal and government notices on your behalf.

2)   When do I need one? Always. Your state must have an address on record for this purpose. If you’re expanding into a new state, you’ll need an agent there, too. Ideally, you should have the same registered agent service for all states.

3)   Can I be my own registered agent? Yes, you can list yourself or any individual with a physical address in the state. Make sure that person knows the responsibilities of a registered agent, and consents to being listed on the state’s records. Keep reading why this isn’t necessarily the best option.

4)   Why should I use a commercial registered agent?

There are at least four reasons!

1) Reliably receive your documents.

2) Keep your address and other information private.

3) Don’t miss a delivery if you’re out of office (or taking that much needed vacation!)

4) Stay compliant. You’ll fulfill the state’s requirements, and not have to worry about changing the agent address if your business moves.


10 Registered Agent FAQs, Answered from Harbor Compliance


5)   What happens to my documents? Your registered agent signs and accepts documents on your behalf. With us, we scan them locally into your online account same day, and inform you that you’ve got a delivery.

6)   How much does the service cost? As you shop around, you’ll see prices ranging from $49 to $320 per year. Our service is $99 per year.

7)   Why such a big difference? Some companies lower their prices to gain your business, then make up the difference through additional fees. Others raise your rate annually. Registered agent service should be simple. Make sure your provider is straightforward as well!


James Bond

No, no. Not THAT kind of agent.

8)   When can I use the address? Use it for state forms only. It is neither a tax address, nor a virtual office for regular mail.

9)   What’s the difference between a registered agent and a resident agent? None. Each state calls it by a different name. In Pennsylvania, it’s a Certified Registered Officer Provider. In others, it’s a resident agent, registered agent, or statutory agent.

10)    How do I change my registered agent? You must inform the state of any change of agent, typically by an annual report or change of agent form. If you need to change, or are locked into an expensive subscription with another provider, let us know, and we can help.

Hopefully, you have a much better understanding about a registered agent. If you still have questions, I invite you ask them below!