Last updated March 1, 2021

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Georgia LLC Registered Agent

How to form an LLC in Georgia
This Quick Start Guide is a brief overview of how to form an LLC in Georgia.

Detailed Lessons:

 

Georgia LLC Costs:
Georgia state fee: $100
Annual registration fee: $50 per year

Need help?
Hire a reliable service to form your Georgia LLC:
Northwest Registered Agent

Georgia LLC - Registered Agent

Video Transcript:

The following information is provided for educational purposes only and in no way constitutes legal, tax, or financial advice. For legal, tax, or financial advice specific to your business needs, we encourage you to consult with a licensed attorney and/or CPA in your State. The following information is copyright protected. No part of this Lesson may be redistributed, copied, modified or adapted without prior written consent of the author. In this video, we will discuss the Registered Office and the Registered Agent. The Registered Office and the Registered Agent are required for your LLC Formation Documents. Once you figure out who your LLC’s Registered Agent will be, you will then be able to complete your LLC Formation Documents which we discuss in the next Lesson. Again, your LLC is required to list a Registered Office and a Registered Agent within your LLC Formation Documents. The Registered Office must be a physical address (it cannot be a PO Box) located in the State where your LLC is formed. A Registered Agent is a person or a company who agrees to accept legal mail and important documents on behalf of your LLC. The Registered Agent is located at the Registered Office and is generally available during normal business hours. As we mentioned, a Registered Agent can be a person or a company who has an address in the State where your LLC is formed. You can serve as your LLC’s Registered Agent. However, your LLC cannot serve as its own Registered Agent. For individuals who have an address in the State, it is common that they serve as the LLC’s Registered Agent. Having said that, the individual person you choose as the Registered Agent does not need to be a member of the LLC. It can be a friend or family member, or, frankly, anyone you know who agrees to accept Service of Process on behalf of your LLC. “Service of Process” is the delivery of legal mail and important documents sent from the State or a law firm to your LLC. Important documents from the State can include items such as certificates, late notices, and copies of Formation Documents. Legal documents can include items such as subpoenas and/or complaints for legal action. The purpose of the Registered Agent and Registered Office is to be a “point of contact” for the State and to accept Service of Process for your LLC. You (or someone you know) can be your LLC’s Registered Agent, so long as you or they have an address in the State. If you don’t have an address in the State that you can use, or you don’t want to serve as your LLC’s Registered Agent, you should hire a Commercial Registered Agent. A Commercial Registered Agent will receive Service of Process on behalf of your LLC and then forward it to you at any address you like. Many Commercial Registered Agents will also fax or email Service of Process if you prefer. Again, a Commercial Registered Agent is a company that specializes in receiving Service of Process on behalf of businesses nationwide. They typically charge between $100-300 per year. If you decide to use a Commercial Registered Agent, we recommend a company called Northwest Registered Agent. They’ve been in the business for more than 2 decades and they have a solid reputation. Their fees are among the most affordable, and their support is top notch. We’ve joined forces with them in order to provide Registered Agent services nationwide to our clients. There is information below this video where you can find instructions on how to sign up for their services. If you or someone you know will serve as your LLC’s Registered Agent, you can then proceed to the next Lesson. If you need to hire a Commercial Registered Agent, please see the information below this video. Once you’ve signed up with Northwest Registered Agent, you will then receive their address to use in your LLC Formation Documents. If you have any questions about their services, you will also find their phone number below this video. Again, once you sign up for their services and obtain their address, you can then proceed to the next Lesson. And that concludes this video.

Before filing your Articles of Organization with Georgia, you need to select a Registered Agent for your LLC.

A Registered Agent is a person or company who agrees to accept legal mail on behalf of your LLC in case your business gets sued.

In most states, a Registered Agent will also serve as a general point of contact for receiving business and tax notices, payment reminders, and other documents.

Your Registered Agent must have a street address in Georgia (PO Boxes are not allowed).

Your Registered Agent must also be available during normal business hours (9am – 5pm) in case Service of Process arrives. Service of Process includes delivery of documents such as complaints, summons, and/or subpoenas.

Who Can Be Your Registered Agent in Georgia?

When forming an LLC in Georgia, you have 3 options:

Option 1: You can be your LLC’s Registered Agent.

Option 2: A friend or family member can be your LLC’s Registered Agent.

Option 3: You can hire a Commercial Registered Agent.

Important: If your Registered Agent is going to be an individual (you, a friend, or a family member), that individual needs to be a resident of Georgia.

How Do I Know Which One to Choose?

• If you have a street address located in Georgia (such as a home or office), and are available during business hours, you can list yourself as the Registered Agent.

• If you don’t have a street address in Georgia, you can use a friend or family member’s address. They need to have a street address in Georgia and be available during business hours.

• If you don’t have a street address in Georgia, and you don’t have a friend or family member’s address that you can use (or prefer not to), you can hire a Commercial Registered Agent.

Using a Commercial Registered Agent offers more privacy and is usually a more reliable setup.

Commercial Registered Agent

If you need to hire a Commercial Registered Agent, we recommend Northwest Registered Agent ($125 per year).

Why we recommend Northwest Registered Agent

Northwest Registered Agent is our personal recommendation (and the service we use ourselves) because they’ve been in business for over 20 years, have great customer service, and they let you use their address in your entire LLC filing in order to keep your address off public record.

How to keep your address off public records:

Many filers in Georgia start businesses from their home. For this reason, it’s important to know that all addresses that are on your LLC’s Articles of Organization get listed on public record and may appear in google searches.

If you were thinking of using your home address, but would rather keep it off public records, you can hire a Registered Agent that will allow you to use their address throughout your Articles of Organization. Northwest Registered Agent offers this unique service at no additional cost. They offer Registered Agent services for $125 per year and they’ll let you use their address throughout your Articles of Organization.

Any mail that is sent to your LLC will be scanned by them and uploaded into your online account.

Special offer: If you hire Northwest to form your Georgia LLC, they’ll include their registered agent service at no additional cost.

Are there risks if you, a friend, or family member are your LLC’s Registered Agent?

In short, there are risks. They are not likely to occur, but if they do, you could lose your liability protection.

For example, if the state is unsuccessful in reaching your LLC’s Registered Agent, you may lose your good standing status, and the state has the authority to dissolve your LLC.

Additionally, if a process server is unsuccessful in reaching your LLC’s Registered Agent about a lawsuit (they’ll try a few times), the court case can proceed in your absence and you might not even know about it. Worse, the court could place a judgment against you if you aren’t there to defend yourself.

A few reasons a process server might not be able to reach your LLC’s Registered Agent:

  • you, your friend, or family member are not there during business hours
  • you/they are on vacation
  • you moved and forgot to file a Change of Registered Agent with the state

Hiring a Commercial Registered Agent is a more reliable setup and gives you the freedom to take vacations and not worry about changing your Registered Agent address if you move.

Many Commercial Registered Agents will also help keep your LLC in compliance by sending you reminders of annual reporting requirements.

Next Step

Once you determine who will serve as your Georgia LLC’s Registered Agent, you can then proceed to the next Lesson: Articles of Organization.

If you need to hire a Commercial Registered Agent, please do so before going to the next step.

Matt Horwitz
Founder & Educator, LLC University®
Forming an LLC shouldn't be so complicated. Our step-by-step guide will make the process a breeze – and no complex legal jargon! LLC University® teaches people how to form an LLC for free in all 50 states. We hope you find our free guides and resources helpful in your business journey.
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