How to Find the Best Registered Agent in Montana
What is a Montana registered agent?
The Montana Secretary of State defines a registered agent as an individual or business entity responsible for accepting service of process and important documents as a company representative.
A registered agent is the point of contact between a company and the Montana Secretary of State.
The central role of a resident agent is to receive legal notices and other official correspondence, including:
- Articles of Organization – Montana limited liability company (LLC) formation document
- Articles of Incorporation – corporation formation document
- Annual report fee– due April 15 every year
- Certificate of Existence – proof an organization is in good standing on Monday
- Corporate income tax – expected by the 15th day of the fifth month after the end of the corporation’s tax year
An agent is a physical presence in Montana
The Secretary of State requires you to appoint a registered agent that is available during the regular business hours necessary to accept official documents and notices from the state.
You have the added benefit of choosing if you list the registered agent’s address in public record rather than that of your private office or home address.
A registered agent is the required point of contact
The Montana Secretary of state requires the point of contact to accept official correspondence directly from them, such as subpoenas.
A business or individual in Montana has fourteen days to respond to a subpoena.
Failure to respond to a summons in Montana can result in default judgments and other appropriate sanctions.
Registered agent services are a helpful reminder
The Montana annual report fee is due April 15 every year.
For a business to remain in good standing in Montana, it must pay the annual fee and other taxes on time.
Commercial registered agent services keep compliance calendars that they use to send notifications when taxes are due and assist you in filing the correct documents with the state of Montana.
Cost of a registered agent in Montana
The Montana registered agent requirements are that a person must be 18 and have a physical street address in the state.
It means that you, a family member, or a trusted friend wants to serve as your registered agent as long as they meet those prerequisites.
Hiring an outside professional registered agent service will cost around $50 to $500.
When to appoint a registered agent
When you submit the formation documents for your business, you will provide the Montana Secretary of State with your registered agent information.
Your LLC will produce the registered agent name and address on the Articles of Organization.
Corporations in Montana supply the information on the Articles of Incorporation.
The Montana Secretary of State does require that all businesses, regardless of structure, appoint a registered agent upon business formation.
Other business structures include:
- Sole proprietorships
How does a Montana LLC appoint a registered agent?
File the Articles of Organization
You can only file an LLC’s Articles of Organization online with the Montana Secretary of State using the Online Filing Portal.
Appoint your registered agent
The Articles of Organization form in Montana will ask you to provide information regarding the appointed registered agent.
- registered agent address
- registered agent name
Pay your Montana filing fees
The filing fee to submit the Montana Articles of Organization is $70.
It will take around five days for the Montana Secretary of State to process LLC formation.
You can choose to pay an additional cost for expedited business filing services.
The cost to file Articles of Organization in Montana is $70.
How to change your registered agent in Montana
The Montana Secretary of State requires you to notify them if you switch registered agents officially or address changes.
Submit the registered agent change form online
You will use the Montana online business service website to submit the registered agent/office change by entity form.
The Secretary of State will process a registered agent change in 3 to 7 business days.
You can opt to pay extra for expedited services.
The Montana Secretary of State does not charge to switch registered agents.
Submit the change of agent on the annual report
The Montana Secretary of State allows you to change registered agents on the annual report if it’s near the April 15 filing period.
How to resign as a registered agent in Montana
You will need to submit the statement of resignation of registered agent online to the Montana Secretary of State.
The statement of resignation will request certain information.
- business entity
- registered agent name
- statement of resignation
- contact information where the statement is being sent to
The Secretary of State does not charge for processing a statement of resignation.
Benefits of appointing a registered agent in Montana
You will maintain good standing in Montana
The Montana annual report is due every year on April 15.
If you submit the fee late, you risk losing good standing in Montana and could face involuntary dissolution and accrue late fees.
You appoint a registered agent so that they can keep up with critical due dates so that you don’t miss important deadlines.
Your private office address doesn’t become public record
Working from a private office in Montana means the small business address becomes the business address and public record.
Anyone can search the Montana Business Search by business or business file number.
Appoint an outside agent allows you to use the registered office address as the business address to keep your private office or home address out of public record.
You preserve your good reputation
An agent receives sensitive legal documents, such as subpoenas on behalf of a business organization.
The appointed agent accepts the official correspondence from law firms and process servers out of the view of clients.
You get the benefit of working when you want
Montana state law requires a registered agent to be available during normal business hours, Monday through Friday, to accept important notices from the Secretary of State.
Appointing yourself as your own registered agent means that you must be available during those hours.
When you appoint an outside agent, they will cover those hours so you can come and go from the office as you wish.
You can access the Certificate of Existence 24/7
You require the Certificate of Existence to prove you’re in good standing with the state of Montana to open business bank accounts.
Registered agent services give you access to the certificate and other formation documents anytime to make business convenient.
LLC formation is fast and easy
When you expand a business into other states, you’re required to appoint a registered agent for the formation process.
Having one already appointed, you can quickly form a foreign LLC.
How do I search for a company’s registered agent in Montana?
You will use the Montana Business Search to search for a company’s registered agent utilizing the business’ name.
What is the difference between a commercial registered agent and a noncommercial registered agent in Montana?
According to the Montana Secretary of State, a commercial registered agent has national coverage and has filed a special listing statement. Noncommercial registered agents are individuals or small businesses providing services in one state.
Can I use a Montana registered agent address with the IRS?
You can’t use a registered agent address with the IRS. The Internal Revenue Service requires the physical street address of your LLC when you apply for the EIN.
Can I have my business mail delivered to my Montana registered agent?
In Montana, business mail can be forwarded to the registered agent’s physical street address. Most commercial registered agent services do charge an additional fee for mail forwarding.
How does a registered agent in Montana receive service of process?
A process server or a Montana sheriff will physically walk into the registered agent’s office and serve the summons or subpoena. The server will then deliver an affidavit to the Montana court that proves service.
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