Connecticut Registered Agent: LLC Options & Requirements
Starting an LLC in Connecticut is a big decision. Before filing the Certificate of Organization, you will need to choose a registered agent. In this article, we’re going to walk through what the role of a registered agent is and what your options are as a business owner.
What is a Connecticut Registered Agent & Is it Necessary?
Yes, a registered agent in CT is legally required. A registered agent is an individual or service that acts as a go-between with the LLC and the state.
In short, the registered agent assumes statutory responsibilities. He/she must agree to receive and deliver any official communications such as tax or legal documents from the state of Connecticut to the LLC. Furthermore, the registered agent must be consistently available to carry out this responsibility without interruption.
Here’s what the Connecticut Secretary of State specifically says:
If an LLC does not assign a resident agent, the office of the Secretary of State will likely reject the Certificate of Organization. If the LLC does not maintain a registered agent, it risks losing a Certificate of Legal Existence (good standing) which could negatively impact the business.
What are the Requirements of a Registered Agent?
Aside from carrying out the statutory responsibilities defined above, a registered agent must meet the following requirements:
- The agent must be an individual resident of the state of Connecticut or a corporation authorized for business in Connecticut.
- If an individual, he/she must be 18 years of age.
- The agent must have a physical address in Connecticut.
- The agent must have a mailing address in Connecticut.
- An LLC cannot act as its own registered agent in Connecticut, but a member or manager of the LLC can act as the agent.
For reference, here is a screenshot of what information is required on the Connecticut Certificate of Organization:
Who can be a Registered Agent in Connecticut?
The registered agent can be either an individual or a professional service. Here are the pros and cons of each option.
As mentioned above, if using an individual as your registered agent, the individual must be a resident of Connecticut.
This means that the individual cannot be in the process of establishing residency in another state, territory, or country or receiving benefits while claiming residency in another state, territory, or country.
Otherwise, the individual can be an attorney, accountant, or even a friend or family member. Simply add the person’s name and address to the Certificate of Organization. The registered agent is required to sign the certificate. If the application is completed online, the registered agent must respond to an email accepting the appointment.
- Convenience – Using someone you know saves the time of searching for a registered agent service. The individual is probably also someone that you trust.
- Cost – The cost will likely be much lower than using a service, perhaps even free.
- Inconvenience – The individual who acts as registered agent is required to be available without interruption. She/he may not put a hold on mail. This might make vacations a bit tricky.
- Risk that documents are not delivered in timely manner – If using an attorney, for example, you may be risking that she/he is away from the office at the time of delivery. This leaves open the possibility that the document is put in other hands, possibly slowing the process. If using a friend or family member, you run the risk of having documents misplaced or even ignored. Personal and work lives often have many distractions. For example, if quarreling with Aunt Louise over a late or missing tax document worries you, a registered agent service may be a better option.
Registered Agent Service
If a service is acting as registered agent, it must be a Connecticut or foreign corporation, LLC, LLP or statutory trust. (If foreign, it must have a certificate of authority to transact business in Connecticut.) Registered agent services provide this type of assistance. The service’s name and address must be included on the Certificate of Organization.
- Privacy – If documents regarding a sensitive issue such as a lawsuit are being delivered, the service provides a cushion of privacy between your business and the public. In addition, the address of the service, not your business (or family member or friend) is public record. This means that marketing materials or junk mail will be sent to the service, not to the LLC.
- Reliability – The registered agent needs to be available during regular business hours – all business hours. Using a service might provide a measure of comfort knowing that important documents will not slip through the cracks (as long as you use a reputable service). After all, receiving and delivering important and time-sensitive documents is what the service is experienced doing.
- Location – An LLC is not required to maintain a physical presence in the state of Connecticut. The LLC may also do business in various states. Many services have you covered by providing that presence in multiple or even 50 states.
- Cost – Using a service is going to cost you more than using an individual. Still, having the peace of mind that important documents are being handled by a professional service may be worth it.
- Unfamiliarity – Using an individual usually means using someone you know and trust. With an unknown entity there is always a risk of unsatisfactory service. Of course, this is what reviews are for!
Finding a registered agent that is the right fit for your LLC may be one of many tasks when setting up your LLC, but one that is essential to running your business efficiently.
How to get a Free Registered Agent in CT
The most cost effective way to get a free registered agent in Connecticut is to use a professional LLC service that also offers a free registered agent service.
How it Works
Simply hire a service like IncFile and Northwest Registered Agent to form a Connecticut LLC. As part of their package, they’ll include a free registered agent service and list their address on the Certificate of Organization instead of yours.
All you pay for is the $120 Connecticut LLC registration fee + $49 or $79 service fee.
This will remove all registered agent responsibilities off your plate, take care of LLC formation paperwork, and provide you with an online dashboard to keep track of things that come up in regard to your LLC in Connecticut.
How to Change Your Connecticut Registered Agent
If you need to change your current registered agent in Connecticut, you need to file a Change of Agent form with the Secretary of State’s office. You can find it under the Limited Liability Company section of the S.O.S. Forms and Fees page. There are separate forms for domestic and foreign LLCs, so be careful to use the correct one. Find the domestic one here, and the foreign one here.
Paper forms are available, but the fastest way to file is online. Simply click the “file online” option next to the document on the Forms and Fees page and you’ll be directed to the web filing portal. From there, follow the onscreen instructions to complete the form.
But if you prefer to work with hard copies, that’s an option too. To submit via postal mail, send your completed form to:
Commercial Recording Division, Connecticut Secretary of State
P.O. Box 150470
Hartford, Connecticut 06115-0470
Or, if you live nearby and want to hand deliver your form, you can drop it off at:
30 Trinity St.
Hartford, Connecticut 06106
Changing your registered agent, no matter which option you choose, will cost you $50. For mailed forms, you should include a check made out to “Secretary of the State.” Electronic submissions will ask you to pay via credit or debit card as part of the process. If you’re dropping it off in person, you can pay with either check, card, or cash.
Filing a Change of Agent form is the only way to appoint a new registered agent in Connecticut. While some states may allow LLCs to update their Articles of Organization or annual report with a new registered agent, Connecticut does not.
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! The Connecticut Secretary of State’s office usually processes documents 3-5 business days after they are received. If you’re in a time crunch, you can request expedited processing for an additional $50 fee by submitting an “Expedited Service Request.”
Have Questions or Concerns?
If you’d like to talk to the state directly about your questions or concerns, it’s easy!
Visit Their Website
Visit the Business Services Division of the Secretary of State website for more information about registered agents in the state of Connecticut. They have a great FAQ regarding how an agent accepts appointment and much more you should be aware about.
Give Them a Call
If you’d prefer to call, reach out to their Hartford office at (860) 509-6002.