Corporations in Missouri need to have a registered agent. But what about LLCs? If you’re setting up an LLC in Missouri for your business, you may be wondering if your new LLC will need a registered agent.
What Is a Registered Agent?
A registered agent is a person or company that’s authorized to receive the following communications on behalf of a business:
- Service of process. If someone brings a lawsuit against your business, they must serve you with the legal paperwork. This is known as service of process.
- Government notices. These are official notifications sent to you by the government, such as tax notices or annual document filing reminders.
Registered Agent Requirements in Missouri
In Missouri, all corporations and LLCs are required to have a registered agent. So if you’re operating your new startup as an LLC, your LLC will need a registered agent.
Your registered agent must meet the following criteria:
- Individual or business. A registered agent can be either an individual over the age of 18 who’s a resident of Missouri, or a corporate entity authorized to transact business in the state.
- Physical location. A registered agent must have a physical street address where service of process and government notices can be delivered and accepted. They can’t use a retail mailing service or company, such as the UPS Store, or a PO Box as their address.
- Availability. Your registered agent must be available to accept service of process and delivery of government communications during the normal business hours of 9:00 am to 5:00 pm.
Choosing Your LLC’s Registered Agent
When selecting a registered agent, you have a number of options. Keep in mind that you can’t designate someone as your LLC’s registered agent without first obtaining their consent.
- Acting as your own registered agent. You can choose to act as your LLC’s registered agent.
- Another member of your LLC. You can appoint a member of your LLC as your registered agent.
- Friend or family member. You can designate a friend or a family member, such as your spouse, as your LLC’s registered agent.
- Commercial registered agent. You can use a business that offers registered agent services to act as your LLC’s registered agent.
There are certain advantages to hiring a commercial registered agent. For example, you can retain a measure of privacy by using your registered agent’s address in your public filings. And unlike an individual, whether it’s you, a member of your LLC, or a friend or family member, you don’t run the risk of important documents not being delivered because of illness or vacation.
Most of all, you want to have a registered agent you can rely on to accept service of process and delivery of formal government communications. There can be severe consequences for your business if, for example, a process server is unable to deliver legal paperwork related to a lawsuit against your business. Not only would you not know about the lawsuit, but you might also find your LLC on the receiving end of a default judgment because you failed to show up to defend against it.
Need an Experienced Springfield Business Lawyer?
No matter what you’re tackling as you’re setting up your new business, the Springfield business lawyers at Parks & Jones can help. We have the experience to assist you in every legal aspect of starting your business. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.
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