You formed your Wisconsin LLC. You did the paperwork. You started operating your business.
And now, for one reason or another, you need to change your registered agent. No worries, we’ve got you covered.
There are a number of reasons you might need to change your Wisconsin LLC’s registered agent. Maybe your designated registered agent moved out of state, left the company, or no longer wants the responsibility. Maybe you had assigned the job to yourself, and you no longer want your address on public record. Maybe (hopefully) your business has expanded so much that you no longer have time to handle the registered agent responsibilities.
Whatever your reason may be, changing a registered agent in Wisconsin might seem like a daunting task, with a mountain of paperwork and legal proceedings involved. However it’s actually quite simple, and this guide will help make the process quick and painless.
What the State of Wisconsin Says about changing a Registered Agent
The state of Wisconsin has certain requirements for changing your LLC’s registered agent. Any business entity that wants to change its registered agent can do so on its Annual Report, or by filing a separate Form 13: Registered Agent and/or Registered Office Change.
Who can be a Wisconsin Registered Agent
You can’t pick just anyone to be a registered agent for your LLC. The state of Wisconsin puts certain restrictions on who can serve as one. If you’re choosing or changing your registered agent, keep these requirements in mind. The registered agent in Wisconsin must:
- Be an individual Wisconsin resident or a business entity located in Wisconsin
- Have a Wisconsin street address (P.O. boxes are not allowed)
* If your registered agent is a foreign business entity, it must be authorized to transact business in Wisconsin
How to Change Your Wisconsin Registered Agent
Even if your new registered agent is onboard and ready to start, their appointment isn’t official until it’s on record with the Department of Financial Institutions. Here’s how to get it done.
As mentioned above, you can make this change by submitting a registered agent change form or by updating your Annual Report.
You can file Form 13 (the Registered Agent and/or Registered Office Change) online and anytime throughout the year, which makes it the more common option. To access the online form, go to the Limited Liability Company forms page. Select, “Form 13” and you’ll be directed to a business search page. Enter your business name and choose the correct entity from the list. From there, simply follow the onscreen prompts to complete your filing. The form costs $10 to file, and you can pay via credit or debit card as part of the online filing process.
If your registered agent change happens to coincide with your Annual Report filing window, you can update your information there. All Wisconsin LLCs are required to file an Annual Report each year before the end of the quarter they were formed (due dates are March 31, June 30, September 30, and December 31). File your Annual Report online here. There is a filing fee of $25, payable by credit or debit card.
If you’re too busy, or if you’d feel more comfortable letting someone else take the reins, you have the option of hiring a company or individual to file your paperwork for you. It’s a great way to save time and stress.
Submit your form? Pay your fee? Then you’re all set! Standard processing time for the Department of Financial Institutions is five business days, so you should see your change on file within a week or so.
Consider a Registered Agent Service
Think of your registered agent as a mediator between you and the state of Wisconsin, the person or business entity that handles some of your most important paperwork.
In case you thought the registered agent was just a formality, look at the documents they handle:
- service of process notices
- tax information
- and other Secretary of State correspondence.
A lot of important stuff. Which is why a reliable registered agent is essential to every Wisconsin business owner.
By handling high-priority and sensitive documents on your behalf, your registered agent takes care of your communications with the state, so you can spend more time building your business.
Plus, if you operate a Wisconsin small business from out of state, a trustworthy registered agent is especially important, as the state requires a local contact for your LLC. Having this contact ensures your company will receive and respond to time-sensitive documents, so you won’t miss filings and get hit with penalties.
If you’re unsure where to find a good Wisconsin registered agent, consider using a registered agent service. These companies provide you a reliable, professional registered agent so you can have peace of mind knowing you won’t ever miss a filing, tax deadline, or state correspondence.
Sure, you can jump online, search “registered agent service,” and get a ton of results. But the truth is that not all of these services are trustworthy. So, we’ve done some research for you. If you want to know you’re getting a top-quality registered agent, take a look at our comparison guide on the top five registered agent services.