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4 Easy Steps to Change Registered Agents

Disclosure: This content is reader-supported, which means if you click on some of our links that we may earn a commission.

You’re required to appoint a registered agent to act as the point of contact between your company and the state when starting an LLC. But as time goes by, you may want to change your registered agent.

Changing registered agents is a very simple process—provided you do it correctly and remain in compliance. Read on as we discuss how to change your LLC’s registered agent hassle-free.

Why Changing Your Registered Agent Is Worth It

There are several reasons why you may want to change registered agents.

You may be planning to expand to another state. Or you’re unhappy with your current registered agent. Maybe you realized getting a third-party registered agent service is better than being your own registered agent.

The point is that you have a reason why you want to change registered agents. The fact you can remove your pain point makes changing your registered agent worth it. 

You can hire someone who offers registered agent services in the state you plan to expand to, has better assistant agent services, or will take the extra responsibility of being your own registered agent off your shoulders.

For instance, if you’re your own registered agent, you obviously cannot be in two places at once. And you know the company’s registered agent is required to be local and available during regular business hours. This presents a problem when you plan on expanding your business to other states. To avoid this problem, you’ll need a national registered agent service with offices in multiple states, particularly in the state you want to expand to.

Moreover, third-party services also have more knowledge of each state’s requirements, making it easier for you to stay compliant. As a result, you won’t have to deal with paying hefty penalties and fines—or worse, losing your business.

Being your only listed agent is a tedious job. So it makes sense you’re looking for someone else to do the job.

Many businesses designate their attorney or accountant as their LLC’s registered agent. But what happens when they are no longer around? You’ll have to change your registered agent in such cases. Otherwise, you might find yourself in trouble with the law.

The Investment Needed to Change Registered Agents

Depending on the number of states your LLC is registered to do business in, changing agents can cost anywhere between $0 and $50. For example, if you want to change registered agents in Alabama, you’ll have to pay $25—or $100 if you want to expedite the process.

On the other hand, it costs only $5 in Arizona. Arkansas takes it a step further by allowing Arkansas LLCs to change their registered agents free of cost.

Here’s a breakdown of how much you’ll have to pay when changing your LLC’s registered agent in all 50 states:

Alabama

Fee: $100

How to file: Download PDF

Alaska

Fee: $25

How to file: Download PDF

Arizona

LLC fee: $5

How to file: Download PDF

Corporation fee: None

How to file: Download PDF

Arkansas

Fee: None

How to file: Online

California

LLC fee: $20

How to file: Download PDF

Colorado

Fee: $10

How to file: Online

Connecticut

Fee (Excluding nonprofits): $50

Nonprofit fee: $20

How to file (Domestic): Download PDF

How to file (Foreign): Download PDF

Delaware

LLC fee: $50

How to file: Download PDF

Corporation fee: $50

How to file: Download PDF

District of Columbia

Fee: $50

Important detail: The District of Columbia lets you file online or download and sign the Change of Agent paperwork. If you download the PDF, you still have to hand sign the original copies of your documents.

How to file: Online or Download PDF

Florida

LLC fee: $25

How to file: Download PDF

Corporation fee: $35

How to file: Download PDF

Georgia

Corporation & LLC fee: $50

Nonprofit fee: $30

How to file: Complete an Annual Registration Online

Hawaii

Fee: $25

How to file: Download PDF

Idaho

Fee: None

How to file: Download PDF

Illinois

Fee: $25

Important detail: Illinois requires your documents to be signed by hand, not an e-signature.

How to file (LLC): Download PDF

How to file (Corporation): Download PDF

Indiana

Fee: None

How to file: Online

Iowa

Fee: None

How to file: Download PDF

Kansas

Fee: $30

How to file: Online

Kentucky

Fee: $10

How to file: Online

Louisiana

Fee: $25

How to file: Online

Maine

Fee: $35

Important detail: Maine also requires your documents to be signed by hand, not an e-signature.

How to file: Download PDF

Maryland

Fee: $25

How to file: Download PDF

Massachusetts

Fee: $25

How to file: Download PDF

Michigan

Fee: $5

How to file: Download PDF

Minnesota

Fee: $35

How to file: Download PDF

Mississippi

Fee: $10

How to file: Online

Missouri

Fee: $10

How to file: Download PDF

Montana

Fee: $15

How to file: Online

Nebraska

LLC fee: $15

How to file: Download PDF

Corporation fee: $30

How to file: Download PDF

Nevada

Fee: $60

How to file: Download PDF

New Hampshire

Fee: $15

Important detail: New Hampshire requires your documents to be signed by hand. You cannot use an e-signature for this.

How to file: Download PDF

New Jersey

LLC fee: $25

How to file: Download PDF

Corporation fee: $25

How to file: Download PDF

New Mexico

LLC fee: $20 

Corporation fee: $25

How to file: Online

New York

LLC fee: $30

How to file: Download PDF

Corporation fee: $30

How to file: Download PDF

North Carolina

Fee: $5

How to file: Download PDF

North Dakota

Fee: $10

How to file: Online

Ohio

Fee: $25

How to file: Download PDF

Oklahoma

LLC fee: $25

How to file: Download PDF

Corporation fee: $25

How to file: Download PDF

Oregon

Fee: None

How to file: Download PDF

Pennsylvania

Fee: $5

How to file: Download PDF

Rhode Island

LLC fee: $20

How to file: Download PDF

Corporation fee: $20

How to file: Download PDF

South Carolina

LLC fee: $10

How to file: Download PDF

Corporation fee: $10

How to file: Download PDF

South Dakota

Fee: $10

How to file: Download PDF

Tennessee

Fee: $20

How to file: Online

Texas

Fee: $15

How to file: Download PDF

Utah

LLC fee: $15

How to file: Download PDF

Corporation fee: $15

How to file: Download PDF

Vermont

Fee: None

How to file: Online

Virginia

Fee: None

How to file: Online

Washington

Fee: None

How to file: Online

West Virginia

Fee: $15

How to file: Online

Wisconsin

Fee: $10

How to file: Online

Wyoming

Fee: $5

Important detail: The state of Wyoming also requires your documents to be signed by hand, so you can’t use an e-signature.

How to file: Download PDF

4 Steps to Change Registered Agents

As mentioned, changing registered agents doesn’t have to be complicated. Below, we’ve compiled a step-by-step rundown to guide you through the process. Let’s take a look.

Step 1: Understand Why You Want to Change Registered Agents

The first step in the process is to identify why you want to change your registered agent. No, this isn’t a state requirement, and neither do you have to tell your current registered agent the reason.

But knowing why will make it easier for you to find someone that can meet your new requirements and eliminate your pain point. It’ll give you a sense of direction about what to look for when vetting options. 

To help you understand your predicament, here are a few reasons (in detail) why LLC owners usually change registered agents.

Reason #1: You Don’t Want to Be Your LLC’s Registered Agent Anymore

Many agency owners are strapped for cash and don’t have the budget to hire a registered agent service when starting. So they end up appointing themselves as the registered agent when filing business formation paperwork with the state.

If you’ve appointed yourself as your LLC’s registered agent, whether to cut costs or get through the registration process quickly, you might want to change that. It isn’t possible to be available at all times during normal business hours to receive government correspondence and service of process.

Reason #2: You’re Expanding to the Other States

You chose the best registered agent in your current state. But now, you want to expand across state lines. The only problem is your current agent doesn’t extend their services there.

This is particularly common for LLCs that have appointed the founder, an associate, or a local business entity as their registered agent. Most states require a registered agent to be an individual or a business entity with a physical address in the state. 

The best solution here is to enlist the services of a nationwide registered agent service, such as ZenBusiness that offers registered agent services in all 50 states.

Reason #3: Things Didn’t Work Out With Your Current Registered Agent

Here, things can go two ways:

  • Your existing registered agent ended the relationship with you
  • You’re unsatisfied with your current registered agent’s service

Either way, you need to look for someone new, who meets all the state registered agent requirements, to replace them.

Step 2: Evaluate Different Registered Agent Services

At this stage, you know exactly what you want in your next registered agent. Next, it’s time to narrow down your options.

The first thing you want in a registered agent is someone that helps you stay compliant. For this, you’ll have to familiarize yourself with the state laws concerning registered agents. Find out who can be your registered agent (age, address, and so on) and what responsibilities they will have.

This is particularly crucial if you plan on naming a person or local LLC as a registered agent. Opting for a registered agent service that offers service in the state—and any other states—as you plan on expanding is a much better option.

You should also consider the benefits and features each option brings to the table.

Registered agents have the same basic duties—receiving government correspondence, notifying you about it, being present in the office at the allotted time, and so on. But the best registered agents offer additional services and add-ons.

For instance, ZenBusiness not only handles all correspondence with the Secretary of State—or any other agency overseeing business formations—but it also keeps you organized. It stores all your important legal documents on your dashboard, allowing you to view, download, print them any time you want.

You want a registered agent who makes things convenient for you while simultaneously offering reliable and prompt registered agent services.

Step 3: Finalize Your New Registered Agent

Here, you have three general options:

  • Being your own registered agent
  • Appointing a local registered agent
  • Using a registered agent service

We wouldn’t recommend being your own registered agent or appointing a local registered agent for obvious reasons. 

Being your own registered agent means you have to be available in person during all normal business hours, plus it can be very embarrassing to get served with a lawsuit in front of customers and employees.

On the other hand, if you appoint a local registered agent, also known as a non-commercial registered agent, you could run into problems if you plan on expanding into new states in the future.

In comparison to the above two options, using a registered agent service is better. They can simplify state filings and give you an at-a-glance view of all your important documents.

Step 4: File the Necessary Paperwork

Once you’ve decided on your new registered agent, you’ll have to notify your state, which involves some paperwork.

Depending on your state and entity type, you’ll have to fill out specific forms to make the change official. Common names for this form are:

  • Notice of Change of Registered Agent
  • Statutory Agent Acceptance
  • Statement of Information
  • Domestic LLC Change of Agent
  • Change of Registered Office
  • Commercial or Noncommercial Registered Agent/Office Statement of Change
  • Designation of Registered Agent
  • Foreign LLC Change of Agent
  • Domestic Corporation Change of Agent
  • Foreign Corporation Change of Agent

You may also have to file a cover letter if you decide to mail or fax your change of agent form. If you use a registered agent service, they will take care of the whole process for you.

Be sure to update your registered agent information when filing annual reports, too. While these forms aren’t required in all 50 states, most states do have this requirement.

Next Steps

Once you sorted everything out, the only thing left is to inform your old registered agent of the change. Although this isn’t a requirement, it’s common courtesy to let them know you’ve decided to move on. Terminate the relationship officially and clear out all pending dues to prevent any compliance issues. 


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