Alabama offers an affordable cost of living, beautiful nature, and excellent business opportunities. When you form a corporation or a limited liability company (LLC) in Alabama, you must appoint a registered agent to receive all official business correspondence. A registered agent helps ensure your business doesn’t miss a critical deadline.
Read on to understand the responsibility of an Alabama registered agent and tips to select the best option for your business.
What Is an Alabama Registered Agent?
An Alabama registered agent is a person or entity appointed to receive official correspondence for a company. This can include legal documents and official correspondence from the state for compliance. Appointing an Alabama registered agent ensures that your company receives all compliance correspondence and service of process.
The registered agent must have an address in Alabama and be available during normal business hours. The registered agent could be the business entity’s owner, shareholder, or officer. You can also use a business attorney or a professional corporate service as the registered agent.
What Is a Registered Office in Alabama?
As the name implies, a registered office is the physical street address in Alabama where the registered agent operates during regular business hours. A registered office is the registered agent’s official location listed in the Secretary of State’s records. The registered agent will receive official government and legal documents in the registered office.
What Are the Legal Duties of an Alabama Registered Agent?
The legal duties of an Alabama registered agent center around receiving legal documents and official correspondence. An Alabama registered agent must accept the service of legal documents, government correspondence, and other official mail and forward it to the business via the Alabama LLC members or corporation owners.
Possible communications an Alabama registered agent receives include:
- Litigation documents or a process server related to a lawsuit against the entity
- Legal documents, such as a subpoena
- Government correspondence
- Business documents, such as a notice of the annual report
- Other compliance-related documents, like correspondence from an insurance company
Why Is a Registered Agent Required in Alabama?
Alabama requires a registered agent for all business entities to ensure clear communication with the business entity for state or other requirements. Every Alabama registered agent must maintain a physical office and be available during regular business hours to ensure reliable delivery of important documents.
Does Alabama Require Registered Agent Consents?
Yes, when appointing a registered agent in Alabama or changing registered agents, the registered agent must sign their consent for the role.
When Do You Need an Alabama Registered Agent?
Every business entity located in Alabama or registered to do business in the state must have a registered agent. This includes for-profit and nonprofit corporations and limited liability companies. Alabama law details registered agent requirements in 10A-1-4.01.
The registered agent must have a physical address and someone present during normal business hours. If you decide to change the registered agent or office, you must keep the agent’s contact information up-to-date with the Alabama Secretary of State.
Who Can Be a Registered Agent in Alabama?
An Alabama registered agent can be a person or a company. If the registered agent is a person, they must be over 18 years old and have a physical address in Alabama. All registered agents in Alabama must have a physical address that remains open during regular business hours.
How to Choose a Registered Agent Service in Alabama?
Choosing a registered agent service can be overwhelming. Here is what you should consider when choosing a registered agent:
The cost of a registered agent service in Alabama ranges from $49 to $300. Generally, the more costly options will offer bundled services, including LLC formation. Weigh the price of the service, additional offerings, and its value for your company.
Some registered agent services will scan and forward your mail via email or offer online account access to get real-time information on anything received. Look at the features a company offers and whether you need additional features like online LLC formation.
A reliable registered agent service should have a strong track record of exceptional service with positive online reviews. Check reviews on Google, Trustpilot, or BBB to understand the strengths and weaknesses of a particular Alabama registered agent service.
Many LLC owners also choose a registered agent service to protect their privacy. Check a registered agent’s reputation for privacy if it is important for your company.
What Happens if You Don’t Have an Alabama Registered Agent?
If you don’t have a registered agent in Alabama, your LLC or corporation filing won’t be accepted. After you set up a business in Alabama, you’re legally required to maintain a registered agent and inform the Secretary of State immediately if you change the agent.
How to Change Registered Agents in Alabama?
You may change registered agents in Alabama at any time. For example, you can change the registered agent service from yourself to a professional service, between professional services, or to anyone else.
To change the registered agent in Alabama, you need to fill out a change of registered agent form and send it to the Secretary of State.
Building Your Alabama Business
As a business owner, finding reliable support to manage additional services can free you up to focus on your core business. Alabama registered agent services are a low-cost and reliable way to ensure you receive all official correspondence and don’t miss any legal notices.
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How long does an Alabama Registered Agent’s appointment last?
An Alabama registered agent’s appointment lasts until you change the registered agent or the business moves to another state.
Can you appoint an out-of-state Registered Agent for your Alabama business?
You must appoint an Alabama registered agent that has a physical office in the state.
How much does hiring a professional Registered Agent in Alabama cost?
A registered agent in Alabama costs $49 to $300, with an average price of $100.
Are Alabama Registered Agents responsible for any fees or taxes?
No, Alabama registered agents aren’t responsible for any fees or taxes. The business entity or owners appointing the registered agent are responsible for taxes and fees.
Is a Registered Agent’s address public in Alabama?
Yes, the address of a registered agent is public record. The Alabama Secretary of State lists all registered agents’ names and addresses.