Registered Agent in Delaware - Explained
When is a Delaware Registered Agent Required?
- Marketing, Advertising, Sales & PR
- Accounting, Taxation, and Reporting
- Professionalism & Career Development
Law, Transactions, & Risk Management
Government, Legal System, Administrative Law, & Constitutional Law Legal Disputes - Civil & Criminal Law Agency Law HR, Employment, Labor, & Discrimination Business Entities, Corporate Governance & Ownership Business Transactions, Antitrust, & Securities Law Real Estate, Personal, & Intellectual Property Commercial Law: Contract, Payments, Security Interests, & Bankruptcy Consumer Protection Insurance & Risk Management Immigration Law Environmental Protection Law Inheritance, Estates, and Trusts
- Business Management & Operations
- Economics, Finance, & Analytics
Why Does a Business Need to Have a Registered Agent in Delaware?
In every state in which a business organizes or registers to do business, the company must designate a registered agent in that state. For example, the Delaware Code states that "every corporation shall have and maintain in Delaware a Registered Agent," per section 132(a) of the Delaware Corporations Law and section 18-104 of the Delaware LLC Act. This rule applies equally to startups as to other businesses. The company organizer or incorporator will list the registered agent’s name, address, and other contact information at the time of filing articles of formation.
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What is the Role of the Registered Agent?
The registered agent, as the name implies, is an agent of the company to interact with the state. She will be the intermediary or go-between on all communications or transactions between the state and the company. The primary responsibilities of the registered agent entails receiving service of any legal documents or official correspondence form the state’s business entities division. Some of the most common documents dealt with by the registered agent includes: annual reports and filings, paying franchise taxes, and receiving service of process for legal actions against the company and served through the secretary of state’s office. Many business owners are not aware that the secretary of state’s office can be used to perfect service of process in many states.
What are the Benefits of Using a Registered Agent?
The registered agent can be a useful individual for the company. Most notably, the registered agent saves time and takes something off of the plate of the company founders. Rather than manage these affairs personally, a startup founder can rest assured that any notices or important correspondences will be received and forwarded to the appropriate individual to take action in a timely manner. Of course, it is ultimately the responsibility of the startup founder to take any actions required. Nonetheless, feeling secure that you will not miss an important deadline because of not keeping up with your mail is less of a concern.
How Can I Find a Registered Agent in Delaware?
Most companies organizing in Delaware do not have significant operations there. As such, it is necessary to find an individual who can perform the registered agent services for you. Finding a registered agent in any state, particularly Delaware, is relatively easy. In every state, there are many businesses who provide registered agent services. In Delaware, there are dozens, if not hundreds, of companies that offer incorporation services, registered agent services, etc. The prevailing rate for registered agent services in Delaware is approximately $50 per year.