What is a Connecticut Registered Agent?
A Connecticut registered agent serves as an intermediary between a Connecticut corporation, Limited Liability Company (LLC), or Limited Partnership (LP) and the state, to receive service of process and other official notices and documents. If your business ever gets sued, your Connecticut registered agent is supposed to notify your business in a timely manner.
We will go over what the registered agent is, their job duties, the requirements to be one, and more.
Registered Agent Overview
A registered agent (also referred to as a resident agent or statutory agent in some states) is a person or company that is designated to be the official point of contact between the government and your business entity.
Duties of a Registered Agent
The primary responsibility of a registered agent in Connecticut is to accept important legal notices and tax documents and then forward them to the appropriate person in the business.
The requirements for an entity to have a registered agent are formed under Connecticut Statutes Section 34-243n (LLC) and Section 33-660 (corporation), which mandate registered entities will have and continuously maintain a registered agent and registered office within the state. The agent must also be available during normal business hours to accept service of process and otherwise perform the functions of a registered agent.
Not only is a registered agent required when forming an LLC or corporation, but you must maintain a registered agent to keep the entity in compliance. Besides the requirement of designating a registered agent at the time of formation, there are several reasons to have:
- Not Receiving Legal Notices – If the listed registered agent cannot receive legal notices, this lawsuit will still proceed. If a process server is unsuccessful in reaching the company’s registered agent, the court can proceed with the case. This could result in a judgment being placed against the business without the owners knowing.
- Penalties and Fees – By not maintaining a current registered agent, penalties and state fees can be levied against the entity and, in some cases, the owners too. Once an entity is no longer in good standing with the state, the owners may lose their liability protection and are at risk personally.
- Entity Closure – Waiting too long to remedy the lack of a registered agent may result in the administrative closure or dissolving the entity.
Common Questions About Connecticut Registered Agents
Is a registered agent required in Connecticut?
A registered agent is required by the Connecticut Secretary of State when filing a business entity such as a corporation, Limited Liability Company, and Limited Partnership.
Sole proprietorships and general partnerships do not need a registered agent.
What are the requirements for a registered agent in Connecticut?
A registered agent in Connecticut can be any resident of the state who is 18 years or older, a registered Connecticut domestic business entity, or a foreign business entity authorized to do business in the state. An entity may not be its own agent.
The registered agent needs to have a physical street address (often referred to as a registered office or principal office) in the state of Connecticut. This can be your home address, the address of a family member, an accountant or attorney, the address of the business, or a professional registered agent service. Any physical address in the state may be used, but PO Boxes and mail drop services are not acceptable since someone has to be available to sign for documents.
The agent will also need to be available to receive Service of Process on behalf of the business during normal business hours. Service of process refers to the delivery of legal documents, often a summons, subpoena, or lawsuit filed against a business entity.
Should you be your own Connecticut registered agent?
While any individual, business owner, LLC member, officer, director, etc., that lives in Connecticut can be the registered agent, hiring a registered agent service.
Privacy – The address of the registered agent becomes public record and is available for anybody to see. This can be especially concerning if someone is doing business on the side, and they don’t want their employer to know about the business. Also, if the business is sued, the notice will be delivered to the address on file. This could mean employees, customers, or even neighbors witnessing the event. There is always the remote possibility of a vindictive litigant or upset customer showing up at your house.
Availability – Connecticut requires the registered agent to be available at the principal address during regular business hours. The biggest issue with availability, especially if a home address is used, is if the agent goes on vacation or is otherwise away for some period of time and can’t be reached.
If the Business Expands to Additional Locations – If the business has a physical presence in multiple states (offices, warehouses, employees, etc.), a foreign entity registration will often need to be filed with those states. A registered agent will need to be appointed with a physical address in each state.
Due Date Reminders – Registered agent services provide annual report reminders and updates on any state requirements.
Can the Secretary of State be your Connecticut registered agent?
The Connecticut Secretary of State can’t be appointed as a registered agent. It will have to be an individual or registered agent service.
How much does a Connecticut registered agent service cost?
Depending on the services provided, a commercial registered agent service typically costs between $100-$150 per year. Northwest Registered Agent is a popular service that charges $125 per year and offers several extras such as document scanning and mail forwarding and Harbor Compliance has a basic service starting at $99.
Some entity formation companies, like IncFile, includes registered agent service at no cost for the first year when you register your corporation or LLC with them.
How does an owner select a registered agent in Connecticut?
Appointing a registered agent is first made in the entity formation documents (Certificate of Organization or Articles of Incorporation).
The registered agent can be later changed by filing a form with the Secretary of State.
Can a registered agent be changed in Connecticut?
If the registered agent changes, the entity is required to file a change of registered agent.
A Registered Agent can be changed by submitting the Change of Agent Form along with the filing fee to the Connecticut Secretary of State – Commercial Recording Division.
After filing the form, don’t forget to change the agent’s information in the LLC operating agreement or corporation bylaws if you have them.