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“You can get past the dead end. You can break through the ceiling. I did and so have countless others.”

Registered Agents For Your LLC

Filing for your LLC is simple. Most people just go through a service like Legal Zoom or another LLC formation company when they are starting their business. Others just do it themselves (myself included, for the most part) on their states Secretary of States website. Check out the step by step guide on starting a business. Regardless of how you do it, you need to assign a registered agent for the LLC. I am often asked “can I just put my name and address down as that registered again?” and my resounding answer is “yes you can, but you shouldn’t!”

First off, what is a registered agent? A registered agent is nothing more than an individual or business entity that accepts tax and legal documents on behalf of your business. That is literally it. This person would receive special documents from the IRS, the state, or god forbid a lawyer that is suing your LLC. Registered agent information is PUBLIC. For this reason, I recommend AGAINST using your personal name and address for your LLCs registered agent.

Why? Because you want to maintain your anonymity and privacy as much as possible. Why? Because if you are sued, the greedy plaintiff’s lawyer is going to do their research on you to determine what you have. Why? Because they want to see how much you are worth. Is it worthwhile to just go after your insurance policy or you personally? If they know your name, they can look you up in county records, see the house you own, determine its value, try to go after it, etc…

Another reason why you SHOULDN’T use your personal information for your LLCs registered agent is because it makes finding out who owns the LLC more difficult. If you are sued, and people know who you are, and they just look up your LLC and see that you are the registered agent, they will put two and two together and determine that YOU own the LLC. Instead, if you use a friend or a registered agent service, it makes finding out who owns the LLC more difficult. It helps maintain YOUR privacy. You want to maintain your privacy, not only because of lawsuits, but because there are CRAZY people out there…

Now, this isn’t EXTREMELY important, but in my opinion and that of many lawyers, it is just one more way to add a layer of complexity to your LLC. Your job is to make the job of anyone wanting to “research” your LLC a pain in the ass. You need to add layers upon layers of complexity to your business. This is why you need multiple LLCs and an asset protection strategy in place if you end up building a successful and profitable practice. Having someone else be your registered agent is just one of MULTIPLE things you need to be doing within your LLC to help maintain your privacy.

This is a short article because it doesn’t need to be long and complex. DO NOT BE YOUR OWN REGISTERED AGENT! End of story.

50 Responses

  1. As a ‘Nurse Practitioner in NY I was under the impression you had to have PLLC and it had to be in your own name. Does a PLLC have different rules?

    1. Yes, in states like NY, you have to have a PLLC, so the rules around a PLLC are different from state to state….

  2. Hey Justin!
    Not having a clue about this I went ahead formed my LLC and made myself a registered agent- Had no clue about this pearl. What would be your advice moving forward? thanks!

  3. Thank you for this information. I registered my llc in Maryland uses my husband name as the register agent and my home address..Any suggestions on how or what kind of changes should I make.

    1. If he has the same last name, I would advise using someone elses name and a different address. I just use a friends name and address often times. Do you know how often you will get mail to your registered agent? Not often, I have never received mail to my registered agent for any of my businesses…

    1. You don’t need a lawyer for this… Avoid lawyers unless it is absolutely necessary, they are expensive.

  4. Thank you so much. I was recommended to this site by a colleague. I just registered last week for my LLC and used my name as the registered agent. I wish I had seen this earlier.

    I am I’m California, I guess I can change that online.