Registered Agent in California
A registered agent in California can be an individual or a firm, which is hired or designated by a business entity for the purpose of receiving service of process documents and notices, government correspondence, and different types of compliance-related documents on behalf of the said business entity. Some of the best California registered agents also provide a wide variety of services focused on business requirements like assisting with new business formation or existing business amendments, filing of Statements of Information, and helping obtain California certificate of good standing and federal tax ID among others. Whether you are hiring a new registered agent or planning to change a California registered agent, it is important to understand in detail the responsibilities and benefits you can derive by designating a registered agent.
What is a registered agent in California?
If you are thinking of forming a business corporation or a limited liability company in California, you will be required to designate a registered agent according to the California Business Codes. In fact, according to law, you will have to provide specific information pertaining to your chosen registered agent when filing the articles e.g., according to CA Corp Code § 17702.09 (2019), you have to provide the name and street address of the agent in this state pursuant to Section 17701.13. If you change a California registered agent, you will be required to notify the office of the California Secretary of state of the same.
If you are planning to change your California registered agent then you can opt for a firm, agency or even an individual to whom the office of the California Secretary of State can send business related documents including notices for tax and annual submissions.
Who can be a California registered agent?
The California Business Code dictates that one of the primary California registered agent requirements is that they should maintain a registered office, which should be a physical address in the state and not a PO box number. A California registered agent would also need to keep regular business hours so that they can accept service of process as well as any other legal correspondence on behalf of their clients or entities they are representing. If you had to choose the best California registered agent then who would it be or how would you choose? In reality, there are two scenarios –
- An individual as a Registered Agent where-in you or your company becomes a registered agent but this unfortunately is not an option in California. The state doesn’t allow entities like LLC or owners to serve as their own registered agents.
- A Commercial Registered Agent is the second option and applicable in California. If you are starting a new business in California, you will need to hire and maintain an RA. If you have an existing business and are not satisfied with the services of your current RA then you can apply to change a California registered agent. So, who is a Commercial Registered Agent? It is an individual or firm or third party that is compliant with the statutory requirements as specified in the California Code-CA Corp Code § 17701.13. A commercial agent is someone who should have represented a minimum of 50 or more domestic and foreign business entities and should have the experience of handling service of process for a period of one year. IncParadise is one of the best California registered agents with experience of handling and representing more than 10,000 business entities across the US including California. We are also fully compliant with the California Corporations Code requirements.
What does a registered agent do?
It is important to note that different states may have different California registered agent requirements as well as processes but the purpose of a California RA will be the same as an RA of any other state. So, what is the purpose of the best California registered agent?
- The primary purpose of the best California registered agent is facilitating service of process. Service of process is basically a procedure where a party (individual, business, or government) to a lawsuit gives notice of legal action to another party (business entity like an LLC or INC.), so that the said entity can respond to the proceedings before the court. A registered agent can accept the notice or legal documents on behalf of the party being served the notice pursuant to 416.10 of the California Code of Civil Procedure (CCCP).
- When you change a California registered agent then they will fulfill certain secondary purposes as well such as providing the business with a legal or physical address in the state. This is quite beneficial for non-US residents or those running a business in California while being based in another state. A physical address also means that notices and government or business documents can be received by the agent’s office during normal business hours as specified by the California Corporations Code.
- The type of services the best California registered agent provides can vary from one agent to another but some of the top agents like IncParadise provide a multitude of services depending on the requirement of a business entity. Most commonly, a top California registered agent provides new business formation including that of LLC and corporation apart from ensuring businesses are able to maintain their annual operating compliance with the state.