How to Find the Best Registered Agent in North Dakota
This guide will help you find the best registered agent in North Dakota. We’ll explore key factors to consider, evaluate top providers, and equip you with the knowledge to make an informed decision for your business’s registered agent needs.
What is a North Dakota registered agent?
The North Dakota Model Registered Agents Act mandates that all businesses formed in the state must appoint and maintain a registered agent upon formation. According to the North Dakota Secretary of State, a registered agent is an individual or entity appointed to accept service of process and official correspondence for a business organization. In other words, a North Dakota registered agent is the point of contact between you and the Secretary of State.
The key role of a registered agent in North Dakota is to receive legal notices and other important documents that include:
A registered agent is your North Dakota street address
The Secretary of State requires an agent to be physically present in North Dakota to physically accept official documents.
You get the added benefit of listing the registered agent service’s physical address on the public record to address any privacy concerns.
An agent is a representative for a business
You must appoint a point of contact so that the North Dakota Secretary of State knows someone is available to accept time-sensitive documents such as subpoenas.
North Dakota allows only ten days to respond to a subpoena.
Not responding to a subpoena can result in default judgments and could result in contempt of court.
A registered agent accepts urgent documents and sends you immediate notifications so you can respond promptly.
A commercial registered agent service is a compliance calendar
The annual report is due by November 5 every year.
If you forget to submit the fee on time, you can lose good standing in North Dakota and your business’ liability protection.
A professional registered agent service in North Dakota keeps a compliance calendar that tracks all your due dates so you can file fees and documents on time.
Cost of a registered agent in North Dakota
The North Dakota Secretary of State requires all registered agents to be at least 18 and have a street address.
You can appoint anyone that meets the North Dakota registered agent requirements, including:
- An adult son or daughter
If you appoint a commercial registered agent service, it will cost between $50 and $500.
When to appoint a registered agent
North Dakota businesses provide the Secretary of State with registered agent information when submitting the formation documents.
For limited liability companies (LLCs), the registered agent’s address and name are listed on the Certificate of Organization.
Corporations appoint the registered agent or service on the Articles of Incorporation.
How does a North Dakota LLC appoint a registered agent?
File the Certificate of Organization
You will use the North Dakota FirstStop filing system to submit your Certificate of Organization to the Secretary of State.
Appoint your registered agent
The Certificate of Organization form will ask you to provide information.
- Registered agent name
- Registered agent address
Pay your North Dakota filing fees
The cost to file North Dakota Certificate of Organization is $130.
The Secretary of State does offer expedited business filing services for an additional fee.
The cost to file your LLC Certificate of Organization in North Dakota is $130.
How to change your registered agent in North Dakota
When you switch registered agents or there is a registered office address change, you must officially notify the North Dakota Secretary of State.
Submit the registered agent or office statement of change online
You will use the North Dakota FirstStop website to file the registered agent or office statement of change form online.
The cost to switch registered agents in North Dakota is $10.
How to resign as a registered agent in North Dakota
You will submit a statement of resignation of registered agent form to the North Dakota Secretary of State by mail or in-person to withdraw consent to act as a registered agent.
You must then send the statement of resignation to the North Dakota business you’re resigning from.
The North Dakota statement of resignation will ask you to provide information including:
- Business entity name
- Registered agent name
- Name & address of the company you’re resigning from
- Statement of resignation
The North Dakota Secretary of State does not charge to resign as a registered agent.
Benefits of appointing a registered agent in North Dakota
You ensure you remain in good standing
You can’t rely on the North Dakota Secretary of State to notify you as the due date for the annual report nears.
Missing the due date can result in losing good standing and your liability protection in North Dakota.
An appointed outside registered agent ensures that your annual report is filed on time and the proper fees are paid.
It addresses the privacy concerns of a small business
Small business owners often work from private offices or a home address. It puts a business owner’s personal address at risk of becoming a public record when appointing themselves as the registered agent.
Business addresses in North Dakota are available on North Dakota Business Search and are searchable by partial business name or ID number.
Appointing a professional registered agent allows you to use the service’s address on the North Dakota Secretary of State business database instead of personal addresses.
You gain peace of mind
A process server in North Dakota does not have to send a notification before attempting to contact you at your office.
When you appoint an outside agent or service, the representative will accept the sensitive documents away from the business so that you maintain your good reputation.
You create your own work schedule
North Dakota Registered Agent Act requires a registered agent to be available during regular business hours Monday through Friday to physically receive official correspondence from the Secretary of State, law firms, and the North Dakota Office of State Tax Commissioner.
You become responsible for being available during normal business hours by appointing yourself as your own registered agent.
The appointment of a registered agent service allows you to make your own work schedule.
You get access to your Certificate of Fact
The Certificate of Fact is proof of good standing in North Dakota and is required by banks to open new business accounts.
Professional registered agents give business owners 24-hour access to the Certificate of Fact and other formation documents, which makes doing business easier.
You can expand your LLC with ease
Forming a foreign LLC requires you to appoint a registered agent before you begin the process.
If you have one appointed already, you can start a foreign LLC formation in a different state as soon as you want.
What can I do if a business appoints me as a registered agent without my consent?
You must file a statement of resignation with the Secretary of State. North Dakota does not charge for withdrawing consent to act as a registered agent.
What is the difference between a commercial and a noncommercial registered agent?
The role of a commercial and noncommercial registered agent are the same. The only difference is that a commercial registered agent in North Dakota registered with the Secretary of State and is listed on an easy-to-search list.
Do I appoint a registered agent before or after I start my business in North Dakota?
You will appoint your registered agent before you begin the business formation process. You must list the agent or service on the formation documents you submit to the North Dakota Secretary of State.
Can I use a post office box as a business address in North Dakota?
You can use a PO box as a mailing, shipping, or billing address in North Dakota, but you can’t use it as the registered office address on formation documents.
What happens if my North Dakota registered agent resigns?
You will immediately file the registered agent or office statement of change form online using the North Dakota FirstStop website to update your resident agent.
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