There are necessary steps to take before you can become a registered agent in Florida. A registered agent is an entity that is designated to receive very important legal documents, such as lawsuit papers, subpoenas, and other legal notices on behalf of a business.

The registered agent’s business office is also referred to as the registered office and will need to have a street address in Florida. Florida mandates a registered agent and a registered office for every corporation, limited liability company (LLC), and limited partnership that is either formed in Florida (a domestic entity) or organized in another state, territory, or country and that carries out business activities in Florida (a foreign entity).

This includes entities that own real estate or own a mortgage on Florida real estate. If the registered agent changes, the entity will need to file a Change of Registered Agent and/or Registered Office Address form with the Secretary of State. If the registered office address changes, either the entity or the registered agent must file.

A change of registered agent for a corporation will also need to be approved by a board of directors’ resolution, or by a corporate officer authorized by the board. If your corporation or LLC fails to designate a registered agent, you will be in violation of Florida law. Your company will be dissolved, and you will have to re-register with the state.

When it comes to choosing a registered agent in Florida, you can choose to have an owner or employee of your company serve as your “in-house” registered agent, or you can hire an outside registered agent. However, it is always recommended you choose a registered agent who can be relied on to promptly notify you when important legal documents are received.

Florida Registered Agent Requirements

To become a registered agent in Florida, you have to meet the following requirements:

  1. Have a Physical Address

Registered agents are expected to have a registered office in Florida. This registered office can be any sort of physical residence as long as mail and service of process can be expressly delivered and accepted in person. A registered office address can be as simple as a home, business, or office suite number. P.O. boxes and virtual offices are not permitted.

  1. Always Be Available

A registered agent in Florida needs to be always available to receive service of process on behalf of the business.

  1. Accept Service of Process

Note that the main role of all registered agents is to receive service of process on behalf of the business to which the agent has been appointed. The registered agent must be willing to accept service from a process server and forward the documents received to the individuals in charge of the business entity.

  1. Receive Official Notices

Agents serving as registered agents for Florida businesses will receive other important documents such as tax notifications and annual report reminders on behalf of the business entity they serve and must be capable of forwarding those legal documents as well.

Unlike registered agents in higher profile states like Delaware and Wyoming, Florida registered agents are not mandated to keep communication contact information on file. In Florida, an individual serving as a registered agent for one business is equivalent to a corporation serving as a registered agent for thousands of businesses.

Steps to Become a Registered Agent in Florida

To become a registered agent in Florida, here are steps to take;

  1. Reside in Florida

One of the key requirements to become a registered agent in Florida is to have Florida residency, and also have a Florida office or home business address you can use to receive official mailings and process services for businesses.

  1. Consent to the Appointment

In Florida, LLCs, corporations, and nonprofit organizations elect their registered agents on the formation document for each type of business entity. To be regarded as a registered agent, you must consent to their appointment by physically or electronically signing the formation document.

Registered Agent for Your LLC

LLCs in Florida are expected to designate their registered agent in the Articles of Organization. Most often, your information as the registered agent will go into Article 3. The cost to file the Articles of Organization is $125.

File by Mail

Submit your Articles of Organization to the address below:

New Filing Section

Division of Corporations

P.O. Box 6327

Tallahassee, FL 32314

File Online

You have to form your LLC on the Florida Sunbiz website. Note that you do not need to set up an account with Sunbiz to file online.

Registered Agent for Your Corporation

Almost as with an LLC, corporations will have to designate their registered agent on the Articles of Incorporation. As the registered agent, your information will go into Article VI. Note that the cost to file the For-Profit Articles of Incorporation is $70. (This includes the $35 fee to designate a registered agent.)

File by Mail

Send in your For-Profit Articles of Incorporation to the address below:

New Filing Section

Department of State

Division of Corporations

P.O. Box 6327

Tallahassee, FL 32314

File Online

You will have to visit the Florida Sunbiz website; however, note that you do not necessarily need to set up an account with Sunbiz to file online.

Registered Agent for Your Nonprofit

Nonprofits in Florida will have to designate their registered agent on their Articles of Incorporation (Not for Profit). As the registered agent, your information will go into Article VI. The cost to file the Nonprofit Articles of Incorporation is $70. (This includes the $35 fee to designate a registered agent.)

File by Mail

Send in your Nonprofit Articles of Incorporation to the address below:

Department of State

Division of Corporations

P.O. Box 6327

Tallahassee, FL 32314

File Online

You will have to visit the Florida Sunbiz website; however, note that you do not necessarily need to set up an account with Sunbiz to file online.

Conclusion

Anyone can serve as your registered agent in Florida as long as they are resident in the state and are available at their listed address during standard business hours during the week. If you have a lot of free time to manage administrative work and to always be at the address you provided during business hours, being your own registered agent is fine.

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