Benefits of a Registered Agent Service

Written by: Mary Gerardine

Last updated:

Since there are so few registered agent requirements, you can choose to do it yourself, have someone you know do it, or hire a registered agent service. While doing it yourself or asking a friend to do it might save money, in our experience hiring a service is generally the best way to go.

Continue reading to discover the benefits of a registered agent service and why we believe hiring one is the right choice for most small businesses in our detailed and comprehensive article.

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What is a Registered Agent Service

For a yearly fee, these professional services maintain an agent at a physical address in the state during normal business hours to receive service of process and other important documents.

Registered agent services are staffed by experts who understand legal and compliance requirements and know how to handle legal documents accurately and promptly. Upon receipt, the service scans the documents and uploads them to a secure online account for your business to review.

Some even offer added benefits on top of this, such as additional mail forwarding, business entity guides, and other features that can help business owners.

In contrast to this, an individual who doesn’t work as a registered agent may lack the necessary expertise and experience, which increases the risk of your business’s important documents being mishandled and deadlines being missed.

Do You Need To Use a Registered Agent Service

While it is true that you need a registered agent in each state you do business, there is no requirement mandating that you must appoint a professional service for this role.

In fact, it’s possible to serve as your own registered agent or even elect another member of your LLC, friend, or family member. However, we generally recommend against any of these options as using a professional service is far more convenient and reliable.

Additionally, it also frees you up to be able to focus on running your business, instead of waiting around for documents and ensuring you keep your business compliant.

Registered Agent Service Cost

A professional registered agent service typically costs between $150 and $300 by itself, though you’ll normally also be expected to pay your LLC formation fees as well.

The less expensive services tend to be basic — they receive documents, scan them, and upload them for you to read. Once the price goes up, the service is likely to offer additional features like forwarding other business mail, access to business experts, and other useful additions.

On top of the above, it’s important to note that the fees of a registered agent service (including any optional extras you add) are tax-deductible. This gives a financial incentive to hiring a registered agent service as it can reduce your overall tax bill.

Reasons to Use a Registered Agent Service

You aren’t required to use a registered agent service; however, we think that the benefits more than justify the cost – especially if you choose a reasonably-priced service provider.

Some of the main benefits include:

Privacy

When you use a registered agent service, it will be their business address that becomes part of the public record, and not yours. This provides a layer of privacy that you don’t get if you serve as your own registered agent.

If you work from home, the extra privacy prevents solicitations to your home (including a lot of junk mail), and if you work from an office, the extra privacy means that service of process won’t be presented to you in front of everyone if you’re sued.

Compliance

A registered agent service is always there to receive important documents and notify your business of their receipt promptly. It also keeps everything organized and available so that you’ll never struggle to find an important document again.

All of this makes it much easier to comply with any legal requirements your business may face, like state communications, lawsuits, or subpoenas.

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Availability

One of the more inconvenient parts of being your own registered agent is the demands it makes on your time — you’ll have to be always available to receive documents from Monday to Friday during normal business hours (8 am to 5 pm).

That does not give you a lot of flexibility to set your own schedule or enjoy your freedom as a small business owner. But if you use a service, you don’t have to worry about any of this as they will take care of it for you — freeing you up to focus on what matters.

Multiple Locations

Another key benefit of hiring a registered agent service is how convenient it is for any businesses that plan to operate in multiple states. This is because you’re legally required to appoint a registered agent in each state you’ll be operating in, which can be quite a logistical challenge.

By contrast, you can avoid spending all this time trying to find multiple different registered agents by hiring a national registered agent service. These are available in all 50 states and will provide your business with as many agents as it needs in any state you want to operate.

How to Choose a Registered Agent Service

There are plenty of national registered agent services out there, which can make it hard to know which to choose.

When making your decision, it’s important to evaluate the different options available to you using the following criteria:

  • Cost: Do you get your money’s worth when you use the service?
  • Features: Are the included features the ones you need, including receiving and scanning important documents and uploading them in a timely manner?
  • Customer Service: Is there a competent, friendly support team that is accessible to answer your questions?
  • User Reviews: How do other customers feel about the service?
  • Accessibility and Transparency: Are the services clearly explained? Does the service provider try to charge hidden fees?

Taking all these factors into consideration should help you quickly and easily find the registered agent service provider that best aligns with your business’s unique needs and budget.

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Benefits of a Registered Agent Service FAQ

What is the purpose of a registered agent service?

registered agent service meets state requirements for your registered agent, scans important documents, and makes sure you see them as soon as possible.

This kind of service can improve privacy, ensure legal compliance, and add flexibility to your life as a small business owner.

What services do registered agents provide?

Primarily, registered agents make themselves available during regular business hours to receive service of process and other vital documents. They then scan those documents and upload them so you can read them and take action as necessary.

Why do you need a registered agent for your LLC?

You need a registered agent because you are required by state law to have one. While hiring a professional service as your company’s registered agent isn’t a legal requirement, it’s actually quite beneficial.

This is because these services are experts in handling your business’s important documents and keeping you compliant, which oftentimes makes them more reliable and efficient than any non-professional registered agent.

Can a registered agent service serve in all 50 states?

Yes, many professional registered agent services offer agents to business entities that are operating in all 50 states (though they may be called a resident agent or statutory agent).

To find out more about their many other advantages, check out our Benefits of a Registered Agent Service article.

Why should I hire a registered agent service?

You should hire a registered agent service to ensure your business remains legally compliant and to make certain you don’t miss important state or legal communications.

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