Top 8 Reasons Why Your Business Needs a Registered Agent Service
In the State of Illinois, one of the requirements of forming a corporation or LLC is to provide the contact information of a registered agent. A registered agent is the person or company who is empowered to receive official communications on behalf of an entity. Here are eight reasons why your business might need a registered agent service:
1. Your Business Does Not Have a Physical Address
The State of Illinois requires that a Registered Agent be named and listed on the public record for each entity registered with the state. If you serve as your own Registered Agent, you would have to provide your own address because the state does not accept P.O. Boxes. To preserve your privacy and to keep your business professional, you can use a Registered Agent Service to serve as your physical business address.
2. Your Company Operates Outside of Normal Business Hours
Because your Registered Agent should be available to receive mail, such as communications from the state and federal government, as well as be available for legal service of a lawsuit, you will likely need to use a Registered Agent Service if your business does not have regular business hours. A Registered Agent should be available to receive mail and service of process from 9 to 5 Monday through Friday.
3. You Travel a Lot for Work
If your business keeps you out of the office, traveling frequently, or out of state for long periods of time, it is necessary that you hire a Registered Agent Service. Many of the official documents that are sent to Registered Agents, such as annual filings, reports, and tax documents, are time sensitive. If it is likely that you will miss important mail or will not be present in your office regularly, a Registered Agent Service is highly recommended.
4. You Often Struggle to Keep Paperwork Straight
Again, this paperwork is important stuff. It’s not the kind of documentation that can be shoved in a drawer and forgotten about. Businesses that fail to file annual reports, compliance filings, and tax documents run some serious risks, including losing corporate entity “good standing” status, fines, penalties, and even personal liability. If you fail to file necessary paperwork and end up losing your corporate “good standing,” you may lose the liability protection afforded by a registered entities and end up personally liable for your businesses obligations. Some Registered Agent Services include compliance notification as a part of their service. This means that your Registered Agent will remind you about important filings and ensure your business is kept up to date.
5. You Tend to Miss Deadlines
Every business owner has his or her own strengths. If remembering deadlines and filing paperwork on time is not one of yours, a good Registered Agent Service can be a real help. Some Registered Agent Services will providing filing date reminders and follow up to make sure that you are always in compliance.
6. You Don’t Want to Be Served with a Lawsuit in Front of Your Customers
Aside from the receipt of important tax and business filing documents, a Registered Agent also serves a second important function. If your business is sued or it being subpoenaed into court, there needs to be a person empowered to be served on behalf of the business. Service of process can be done by either a Sheriff or a private process server. Either way, it would likely be embarrassing to be served with a lawsuit in front of your customers or employees. One way to avoid this kind of situation is to work with a Registered Agent Service, which will keep legal matters away from your place of business.
7. You Do Business in Multiple States
If your business operates in multiple states, it is likely you will need to register in each one. Each time you register a corporate entity in a state, you will need to provide contact information for your Registered Agent. If your business operates in Illinois, but you are located outside of the state, you will need to work with an Illinois Registered Agent Service to have an in-state location to receive government communications and legal service.
8. You are Planning on Moving,Expanding,or Upgrading Your Business Location
Throughout the lifetime of your business, your Registered Agent information provided to the state must remain accurate. Registered Agent information can be changed, but there is a filing fee and more paperwork involved. If you expect that your business will move, expand, or upgrade its business location in the future, it may be in your best interest to use a Registered Agent Service that will remain steady and does not need to be updated whenever your business grows.
If one or more of the above reasons applies to you and your business, it may be time to look into a Registered Agent Service. There are many to choose from, but did you know that Enterprise Esquire offers Registered Agent Services as an add-on to our legal service packages? Click here to read about this add-on service and all that’s included: use our physical address in Chicago, receive compliance notifications and annual report reminders, and integrate your business documents with your business attorney. We work hard to make running your business simple -- you focus on profits and let us take care of the paperwork!