- What Is an Arkansas Registered Agent?
- Why Businesses Need an Arkansas Registered Agent
- What To Look for When Choosing an Arkansas Registered Agent
- How Much Do Registered Agents Cost?
- What’s the Best Registered Agent in Arkansas?
If you’re interested in starting a business in Arkansas, then you need a registered agent. A registered agent is someone who acts as a point of contact between your business and the state. They keep track of communication and legal documents so that you don’t have to.
In this article, we’ll cover everything you need to know about registered agents. You’ll learn why you need one, how they can benefit you, and what to consider when searching for a registered agent to hire. We’ve also got recommendations for registered agents in Arkansas.
What Is an Arkansas Registered Agent?
A registered agent is a point of contact between a business and the state the business operates in. Registered agents are also sometimes called resident agents or statutory agents.
They receive all communication from the state of Arkansas on a business’s behalf. This includes service of process should the company be part of a lawsuit.
It is required by law for businesses in Arkansas to have a registered agent. Most businesses elect their registered agent upon formation, but it is possible for businesses to change their registered agent if they aren’t happy with the service they’re receiving or if they are acting as their own registered agent but would like to hire someone.
Registered agents are required by law because they ensure that a business receives correspondence. This leaves no room for confusion or excuses for why a business didn’t meet a deadline. It’s all about accountability and efficiency.
What Are the Requirements To Be a Registered Agent in Arkansas?
Almost anyone can be a registered agent because the requirements are not strict. You only have to be 18 or older, have a street address in Arkansas, and maintain regular business hours.
This means that you can be the registered agent for your business if you want to. You could also have a friend or family member, co-owner, or employee act as your registered agent. Of course, there are some reasons that you may prefer to hire a registered agent, which we will talk about in the next section.
Why Businesses Need an Arkansas Registered Agent
As we discussed, the law requires that businesses in Arkansas have a registered agent. However, there are many other reasons why a business would want to have a registered agent. We’ll explain the benefits of having a registered agent as well as why you might prefer to hire one rather than be one yourself.
Registered agents help companies meet important deadlines by maintaining a compliance calendar and sending reminders. One such deadline is that of annual reports. Should a company be involved in a lawsuit, it’s also important that they respond to service of process in a timely manner.
When companies don’t meet these deadlines, they lose their good standing with the state. This puts businesses at risk of losing certain protections such as limited liability. Companies may also have to pay fees for missing deadlines.
A registered agent is invaluable because they keep track of all of these important compliance deadlines. In addition, their reminders ensure that you’re able to file important documents before they are due.
A registered agent’s address is public record and thus easy to access. Some people would prefer not to have their address made public, especially if they’re unable to use the location of their business as their address.
If your business does have a location, it may not be the best place for legal mail to be sent. Should employees witness you receiving service of process, it would be not only embarrassing but bad for morale. Employing a registered agent to receive important documents on your behalf can help you avoid such situations.
Not every business has a building. Online marketplaces are abundant and successful, and even office work can be done from home. If your business doesn’t have a building and you don’t want your own address on public record, then hiring a registered agent is the solution.
Irregular Business Hours
One of the requirements to be a registered agent is to keep regular business hours. Even if you’d prefer to be the registered agent for your company, keeping regular hours isn’t always realistic. If you work irregular hours and can’t change them or don’t want to change them, then hiring a registered agent may be the best option.
Registered agents receive correspondence from the state, which means legal documents and a lot of paperwork. However, it’s part of their job to organize this paperwork and make it easy for you to access.
It’s the norm for registered agents to scan and upload these documents to a server and keep them organized in different folders. Not only that, but registered agents have to keep track of important deadlines and send reminders.
Though this is work that you could do yourself, it can often be a headache and add more stress to an already heavy workload. For this reason, many businesses prefer to hire a registered agent.
Locations in Different States
If you have a large business that operates in different states, then you need a registered agent in each state. You can’t be the registered agent for more than one state, so even if you are your own registered agent in Arkansas, you’ll still have to hire others.
What To Look for When Choosing an Arkansas Registered Agent
Now that you understand the many reasons a registered agent is worthwhile, it’s time to talk about what to consider when looking for one. There are many registered agent services available, so you need to consider them carefully. We recommend that you think about the price, services provided, and time saved when searching for a registered agent.
Registered agents typically charge a yearly fee which luckily isn’t very expensive. Of course, some registered agents charge more than others, so you’ll want to consider your own budget as well as whether or not spending extra money is worth it.
Some registered agents do provide services beyond the basics, which is why they cost more. Aside from that, registered agents may charge fees to help you file annual reports. The price of these fees should be made clear to you before you agree to hire the registered agent.
Most registered agents offer the following basic services: accepting documents on your business’s behalf and getting them to you, maintaining a physical address, and keeping normal business hours.
It’s also common for registered agents to keep track of deadlines and send you reminders of due dates. Most registered agents scan and upload documents immediately after receiving them so that you can access them as soon as possible.
While many registered agents will perform all of the services we just listed, some go above and beyond. They may offer to accept and organize a limited number of normal business mail on top of their other duties.
If you hire a registered agent through a company, you may also gain access to other tools such as help hotlines where operators answer business-related questions. This type of service is especially useful for first-time business owners.
While you could do most of the services offered by a registered agent yourself, it can be somewhat time-consuming. You likely already have a busy schedule and heavy workload. Even an hour’s worth of extra work feels like too much.
Consider the services a registered agent is offering and think about how much time they will save you. If you’re looking to save a lot of time, then it may be worth hiring a registered agent who costs more but goes the extra mile.
How Much Do Registered Agents Cost?
Believe it or not, registered agents are pretty affordable. Most of them cost between $50 and $300 per year. Of course, being your own registered agent is free.
As we mentioned before, some registered agents also charge fees to help you file annual reports. Typically, they charge less for LLCs and more for corporations.
What’s the Best Registered Agent in Arkansas?
If you’re looking for a registered agent in Arkansas, try ZenBusiness. Zenbusiness’s registered agent service costs only $99 per year, and the company is upfront about all of the features you will receive as well as any potential charges.
Zenbusiness also has a Worry-Free Compliance service that ensures you don’t miss any deadlines for annual reports required by the state of Arkansas. You will receive alerts and updates to keep you on track. Should you somehow miss a deadline, you’ll be provided with the support you need to get your business back in good standing with the state.
ZenBusiness is one of the best options for registered agents, but if you’re looking to compare services, we’ve got your back. Check out our article comparing all of the best registered agent services.