Whenever you decide to incorporate a business, start a business, or register to do business in a new state, you need a registered agent. The basic role of a registered agent is to receive various documents on your behalf. Anyone that has an office within the state you’re doing business and is open during business hours is technically allowed to be your registered agent. But, your registered agent is much more than just a legal formality. They should be able to do so much more than just accepting your mail. They should be critical legal outposts, warning you about risks and helping you stay within the right side of the law. To ensure you get the best possible registered agent, here are a few tips and things you should consider.
Consider value with price
Pricing is important when choosing a registered agent. You probably have a budget in mind that you’re going to stick to. But what you don’t want to do is pick the first person you find, or the cheapest option in that range. The cheapest overall option is the DIY route, and if you’re choosing a registered agent service then that probably means you want someone who will handle things for you well. So don’t just go for the cheapest option you can find, because this might mean you have to do a lot more than you thought, and might as well have done it yourself.
Beyond price you should look for an agent that provides immediate document delivery, with the least amount of work possible for yourself. So you’re looking for someone with great technology and great customer service.
If you’re nationwide, go with a nationwide provider
Every year you need to reappoint your registered agent when you renew the service, in most states. If you ever forget to do so, you could risk losing your business in the state, or any good standing with the Secretary of State. This could result in being denied a loan, not being able to qualify to operate in more states, and even lose you your current customers. This will be on permanent record and could have the power to ruin your reputation forever.
So, if your business is operating in multiple states, pick a registered agent service that also does the same. You don’t want to have lots of different agents in so many states – this generates a huge amount of paperwork for you, and you could risk missing out on a minor detail, resulting in everything just listed. Having a nationwide registered agent service means all your business’ details are with one service, which makes everything much, much easier.
Choose a professional service
Too often people think that having a registered agent just means having someone that’s available during business hours to collect things for you. So, often people pick an employee or a friend. But, while it is tempting to do so there are so many reasons why you want a service instead. If your chosen employee is on holiday or unavailable at a certain time, blame falls on you, and missing something like a legal summon can have a dire effect on you and your company. If it was a subpoena and you did not appear somewhere, you can have a judgment entered against you by default.
Hiring a professional means this will never happen to you, and it als means you don’t have to worry about deadlines or anything of the sort. Anytime something about your business changes, like your address, your service should help you sort that out automatically. Given the risks it’s worth the money to invest in a professional service, that specialises in handling sensitive documents. You also want a service that gives you access to a team of specialists, like a lawyer, in case of an emergency like a lawsuit.
TRUiC has more information on whether you should use a registered agent service or not. Visit their site for more: