All companies in Florida, whether they be corporations, LLCs, Limited Partnerships, etc., are required by law to designate and maintain a registered agent. Failing to do so can result in civil sanctions such as fines or loss of incorporation.
A registered agent acts as the company’s representative for receiving Service of Process of important documents, such as legal documents, notices from state agencies, and tax documents from the IRS. Your registered agent is the only person authorized by the State of Florida to receive these documents.
A registered agent must have a Florida address, not a P.O. Box, and be open to the public during regular business hours.
It is a good idea to hire an attorney for your company’s registered agent. This will ensure these important documents get to you in a timely fashion.
One of the main benefits of hiring an attorney as a registered agent comes in the instance that the company is sued. If this occurs, the company has 20 calendar days to respond. If not, it could result in the automatic loss of the case by default or a much greater expense to defend the case.
A lawyer will also insure that you understand the importance of maintaining your corporate formalities, such as annual returns, corporate minutes, and annual meetings for your company. This is critical to maintaining your personal liability protection.