U.S. law requires that an LLC or corporation must have a Registered Agent available during normal business hours to receive certain document, including legal notices, correspondence from the federal and state government, and tax documents from the IRS. Indeed, the state will not approve a business’s Articles of Incorporation or Articles of Organization if the business does not designate a Registered Agent. Failure to maintain a Registered Agent is equally as risky.
Putting Your Business at Risk
If your business doesn’t maintain a registered agent, it is at risk in four ways:
Lack of information. If a representative of the business is not physically present to accept certain documents, they may not be delivered. This means that your business may not receive information needed to operate successfully. For example, if your company is sued and an RA is not available to receive the summons, the plaintiff can proceed with the lawsuit without you and a default judgment – which you are required by law to pay — can be entered against your company.
Lost standing. Losing your business’s good standing with the state can result in serious repercussions. Your business can be prevented from bringing a lawsuit in the state, expanding into other states, and/or obtaining necessary financing.
Financial liability. You and your business may be hit with fines and penalties for noncompliance.
Dissolution. The state can administratively dissolve your entity, forcing you to forfeit the limited liability protection that provided under a corporation or LLC and making you personally liable to creditors.
Multi-State Businesses and Registered Agents
A company that has locations in multiple states is required to register with each state (other than the original state of formation/registration) as a foreign entity, and each of these states will require a Registered Agent for each foreign corporation or LLC. In other words, a Registered Agent is required for each state in which you do business. By hiring a professional third party RA service, you can rest easy knowing that important legal and tax-related paperwork is being properly received and will be forwarded on to you.
Legalinc. offers Registered Agents in each of the 50 United States. For more information about our national Registered Agent services, please contact one of our experienced customer service professionals today.