For anyone starting a business, the question of hiring a registered agent versus doing it on their own arises, and it’s a valid question.
The simple answer is that you should hire a registered agent.
Doing it yourself may seem like a good option. Still, it’s highly recommended that you hire a professional registered agent to handle matters for you.
You must understand that a registered agent’s task is an ongoing one and involves a lot of work. Even though it can be costly to hire a registered agent, you should still consider hiring one. It should be noted that many services help you incorporate your business and throw in registered agent services for free for six months to a year. Check out these options as well.
Nevertheless, this article will explain why it’s suggested that you hire a professional registered rather than doing the job yourself. Read on to understand why.
What is the Purpose of a Registered Agent?
In its simplest form, a registered agent is required to receive legal notices and official correspondence on behalf of your corporation. However, there is much more to what a registered agent does.
Registered agents keep track of all your official documents. They will carefully sift through your mail and keep only the essential official documents. They also track documents and permissions that need renewal. Accordingly, they will alert you and help you with filing the documents.
Then they are always present at their official address during business hours to receive a legal summons on behalf of your corporation. In case you need legal help, your registered agent can help by suggesting options.
Suppose you have business interests across states, in all probability. In that case, they will have offices in all states so that they can represent your corporation.
Do I Need to Hire a Registered Agent?
By law, every corporation needs to have a registered agent. You could try and do the job yourself, but that is fraught with many problems.
The Disadvantages of Being a DIY Registered Agent
You Have to Wear Many Hats
If you decide to handle your registered agent’s duties while running a company, you will need to be very organized.
Even if you are well organized, chances are you will be bogged down with handling the incoming state documents and legal notices, juggling and struggling with ensuring you do not miss compliance and filing dates, and much more.
Instead of this added burden, it may well be worth the extra money you will need to spend to hire a professional registered agent.
You Will Be Tied Down
A registered agent needs to be at the official address to receive a legal summons whenever it may come.
This would mean that you would not be able to step out of the office or take a day off if you miss the person serving the notice.
This ties you down and reduces the flexibility and freedom you have. Once again, you would be better off hiring a registered agent to do the job for you.
Besides this, if you change your address, you will have to do all the paperwork to register your new address. Because of this, it is improbable that a registered agent will change their official address.
Third, suppose you have business interests in different states. In that case, you will have to have a physical address in each state where you have a business.
You would also have to be physically present at these addresses every day during office hours. This is impossible for you but easily handled with a registered agent with reps and offices in all states.
You Risk Losing your Privacy
If you handle registered agent duties for your business, you will have to provide a business address. This could be your address or an official one.
Either way, your privacy is compromised. You will start receiving a lot of unsolicited mail besides official and legal documents. It is easy to lose important documents in the process, which could affect your business in a bad way.
If you value your privacy, you may be better served by hiring a professional service to handle registered agent duties.
Advantages of Hiring a Registered Agent
Some of the benefits of hiring a registered agent are as follows.
A registered agent will ensure that your business is always compliant with state government requirements.
They will warn you when you have to file necessary documents and help you with the filing. With a registered agent, you will not have to worry about penalties due to non-compliance.
A registered agent needs to be at the official address at all times during business hours to receive legal documents. Failure to receive legal notices could be detrimental to the business.
So, having a registered agent to receive a summons or other legal papers on behalf of the company keeps you free to focus on other essential aspects of your newly incorporated business.
A registered agent must provide an address so that official and legal documents can be delivered or served. Imagine the embarrassment of receiving a summons at your doorstep? Or in front of your clients at the office?
It is far more beneficial to have a registered agent with an official address to receive these summons and documents on your behalf.
Peace of Mind
If you do not have a registered agent and decide to be your own could be stressful. By hiring a professional to do the job, the stress is taken off your shoulders, and you have peace of mind.
When you are ready to incorporate your business, you will require a registered agent. Initially, you may feel that you could do the job yourself. However, it’s strongly advised to avoid going the DIY path. Instead, you should hire a professional to handle the task for you. Using careful analysis, you will understand that this is the best option for you and your business.