How to Change a Registered Agent in Missouri

Registered agents are critical to small businesses. But as with any contractor or employee, sometimes the person in the role must be replaced. It’s therefore important to understand how to change registered agents in Missouri, especially since these professionals are overseen by the state.

Registered agents are gatekeepers who strive to keep companies in legal compliance, particularly during sensitive times of transition. They often serve as the voice of the company, handling most communications with legal and regulatory agencies.

Although registered agents are highly important — and legally required for a limited liability company (LLC) — it’s occasionally necessary to replace them.

Sometimes, it’s for personal reasons, like when an agent moves out of state. Other times, it’s for business reasons, like when a sole proprietorship converts into an LLC or is sold to new ownership.

Registered agents are included in an LLC’s Articles of Incorporation since they play a central role in maintaining legal compliance and acting as legal liaisons. When they need to be replaced for any reason, Missouri companies must follow a strictly defined action plan.

Fortunately, the steps are easy to follow, and there are a few ways to execute them.

The Process of Changing a Registered Agent in Missouri

To change a registered agent in Missouri, a small business owner simply needs to inform the Secretary of State about the desired replacement. The form required for this action is the Statement of Change of Registered Agent (aka Corp. 59). There are several ways an LLC owner in Missouri can initiate this change.

Online Business Services

The Secretary of State’s Online Business Services Portal is the most efficient way to file documentation. Simply log in or create an account with the portal and navigate to the Statement of Change e-form.

Alternatively, you can make changes to your Articles of Incorporation naming your new registered agent. After paying the required fee (see below), you’ll complete the form and wait for the change to take effect.

Paper Documents

If you’d prefer to submit a physical change form, you can print out a blank Statement of Change form and fill it out by hand. Mail the form, along with a check for the associated fee, to the following address:

   Secretary of State, Corporations Division

   P.O. Box 778

   Jefferson City, MO 65102

If you live in Jefferson City or plan to visit, you can also visit the Secretary of State’s office and fill out the necessary forms in person.

Changing the Registered Agent on Your Annual Report

Another way to indicate the change of your registered agent is to include it in your annual report.

You might want to choose this option if you’re currently preparing your annual report and would like to save on additional paperwork. However, you must use pen and paper if you decide to go this route — you can’t make the desired changes online. There’s also a higher fee associated with updating your annual report.

Hiring Someone Else

If you’re stressed for time, working with a dedicated contractor is another viable option. A registered agent service can handle the miscellaneous preparations for you and may even pay the submission fee.

What Are the Fees Associated With Changing a Registered Agent in Missouri?

The fees the State of Missouri charges for changing a registered agent are intended to cover its administrative and operational costs.

If you use the digital portal to change agents, you’ll pay $25. If you go the paper route instead, the fee is only $10. However, it’s worth noting that electronic submission is far more efficient and may be worth the extra $15.

Changing your registered agent by updating your annual report will add a $15 surcharge to your paperwork fee. Again, you cannot perform this action online.

How Long Does It Take to Change a Registered Agent in Missouri?

The biggest difference between electronic and traditional methods of changing a registered agent in Missouri is efficiency.

Electronic submissions are almost always processed within 24 hours, while mailed or in-person submissions could take between four and seven business days to process.

If money isn’t a concern and you want to get the change filed quickly, electronic submission is the way to go. But if time isn’t a factor or you’re keeping a close watch on your cash flow, the paper option may work better for you. If you’ve hired a contractor to handle the task, ask about their typical turnaround time.

Who Should You Notify About Changing Your Registered Agent in Missouri?

The only party you’re legally required to notify about the change to your registered agent is the Secretary of State’s office. However, if you want to make sure the transition goes smoothly, you should plan on informing a few other parties connected to your business.

If you have co-owners, officers, directors, or other managers at your company, they may need to know about the change to update their contact information. You should also tell your lawyer or other legal counsel, as they can guide you through the process and ensure that you complete it successfully.

Entities like banks, financial institutions, insurance companies, business partners, and suppliers often have reason to communicate with your registered agent, so informing them of the change is also beneficial. Finally, any employee in your office who corresponds with legal or official partners should be made aware of the change.

What Happens if You Fail to Change Your Registered Agent In Missouri?

Submitting a change of your registered agent isn’t a particularly time-consuming task. That said, you may face late fees and other penalties if you don’t do it promptly enough.

Additionally, if you don’t have a registered agent or take too long to report a new one, you may not receive important legal documentation or official correspondence.

Repeated failure to comply with established registered agent requirements could have detrimental effects on your business, potentially leading to the dissolution of your business and its loss of good standing with state authorities.

While it isn’t overly complex to change registered agents in Missouri, the process is governed by state law, which can change state policy on registered agents in the future. 

Make it a point to stay on top of developments regarding state regulations so you can file your change confidently. If you need guidance, talk to your lawyer or legal representative.

How Often Can You Change Your Registered Agent in Missouri?

In Missouri, you can change your registered agent anytime you like. The State doesn’t impose limits on how many changes you can file. Even so, you should try to preserve a long-term business relationship with your registered agent and limit turnover as much as possible.

Agents with lasting partnerships tend to be more experienced and reliable — they’ve built a rapport with your company, which means communication on important matters will be transparent, forthright, and earnest.

Change is inevitable, though, and in some situations, you may have no choice but to replace your current agent. This commonly occurs when a business shifts its structure, merges with another company, or reorganizes. It can also happen in times of personal change, like when an owner moves the LLC to another state.

Secure Your Future with doola

A registered agent is the cornerstone of any incorporated entity’s legal compliance. Because they handle sensitive information and must be rigorous in their efforts, registered agents are key players for LLCs and other small businesses.

Various circumstances may force businesses to change registered agents. When that happens, doola can lend a hand.

The doola team includes hundreds of registered agents who operate in all 50 states. Our agents help generate completed state forms and annual reports and catalog and store sensitive legal documentation. We offer our clients access to all our innovative solutions for business operations.

When you’re ready to transition to a new registered agent, contact us for a free consultation.

FAQs

Can I change my registered agent in Missouri at any time?

Yes, you can change your registered agent at any point throughout the year.

Can I change my registered agent myself, or do I need to hire a professional in Missouri?

You or your designee can initiate the change if you have the time and resources. If not, it may be best to outsource the process to a professional provider to ensure that it gets done correctly.

Will changing my registered agent in Missouri have any impact on my business operations or legal standing?

Only if you fail to file a Statement of Change. In that case, you may be assessed fees or penalties. Your business standing won’t change unless you repeatedly fail to comply with state filing requirements.

Can I change my registered agent if I am not physically located in Missouri?

Yes! There’s no difference in the submission process if you reside out of state.

Are there any specific qualifications or requirements for a registered agent in Missouri?

The agent must have a physical address in Missouri where they can be contacted during business hours. If the organization they represent operates as an LLC, they must be authorized to accept legal documentation.

doola's website is for general information purposes only and doesn't provide official law or tax advice. For tax or legal advice we are happy to connect you to a professional in our network! Please see our terms and privacy policy. Thank you and please don't hesitate to reach out with any questions.

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