Illinois Registered Agent (2023 LLC Guide)

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Choosing an Illinois Registered Agent

Before filing your Illinois LLC Articles of Organization with the Business Entities Division, you need to select a Registered Agent for your Illinois LLC.

What is an Illinois Registered Agent?

An Illinois Registered Agent is a person or business entity who agrees to accept legal documents on behalf of your Limited Liability Company in case your Illinois business gets sued.

Registered Agent

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.

Special offer: If you hire Northwest to form your LLC ($39 + state fee), they’ll include their Registered Agent service free for the 1st year.

What are the requirements to be a Registered Agent?

All Illinois Registered Agents must have a physical address in Illinois. PO Boxes aren’t allowed.

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

Who can be a Registered Agent in Illinois?

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

  • You can be your own Registered Agent.
  • A friend or family member can be your LLC’s Registered Agent.
  • You can hire a Registered Agent Service, also called a Commercial Registered Agent.

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

Illinois Registered Agent Service

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

Northwest Registered Agent review

Why we recommend Northwest Registered Agent

Northwest Registered Agent is our personal recommendation (and the Registered Agent 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 throughout your entire LLC filing in order to keep your address off public record.

How to keep your address off public records:

Many filers in Illinois 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 record, you can hire a Registered Agent that will allow you to use their address throughout your Articles of Organization.

Northwest Registered Agent provides 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 discounted pricing for LLC University® readers

Northwest usually charges $100 + state fees to form an LLC. However, we’ve negotiated a discounted rate (60% off) for LLC University® readers.

Special offer: If you hire Northwest to form your LLC ($39 + state fee), they’ll include their Registered Agent service free for the 1st year.

(Check out our Northwest Registered Agent review to learn more)

Are there risks of being a 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 enter a default judgment against your LLC 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 normal business hours
  • You/they are on vacation
  • You moved and forgot to file a Change of Registered Agent with the state

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

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

How do I know which Registered Agent to choose?

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

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

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

Using an Illinois Registered Agent Service offers more privacy and is usually a more reliable setup.

Illinois Registered Agent FAQs

While you can google various different Registered Agents and check on their pricing, here is a list of some of the most popular Registered Agent Services and their fees:

Note: If you want to save money, you can also be your LLC’s Registered Agent in Illinois.

While a Registered Agent can be a Member of an Illinois LLC, they don’t have to be.

And serving as an Illinois Registered Agent doesn’t automatically make someone a Member of an LLC.

Yes, you can be your own Registered Agent in Illinois, as long as you:

  • have a street address in the state
  • can be available at that address during business hours
  • are a resident of Illinois
  • are at least 18 years of age
  • are comfortable with your address being public record

Yes, you can change your Registered Agent in Illinois at any time as long as your LLC is in good standing with the Illinois Secretary of State.

To change your Illinois Registered Agent, you’ll need to fill out the LLC Change of Registered Agent and/or Agent’s Office Address.
You can file this form online and the filing fee is $25.

The Illinois Secretary of State reviews Change of Registered Agent forms within 10 business days of receiving the documents.

No, you can’t use a PO Box for your Registered Agent’s address (also called your Registered Office address). The Illinois LLC Act requires all Registered Agents to keep a physical address in the state of Illinois.

If you will be the Registered Agent for your own business entity, this can be a home or office address in Illinois.

You also can’t use a PO Box for the Address of Principal Place of Business. Your Principal Place of Business address can be a home or office address in Illinois. It is generally the street address where you keep your business records.

Most Illinois Registered Agent Services allow you to use their address for only the Registered Agent’s address in your LLC formation documents.

However, if you hire Northwest as your Registered Agent Service, they’ll let you use their business address for all of the address fields in your LLC filing. You can read more about why Northwest is our favorite Registered Agent Service in our Northwest review.

Articles of OrganizationYou can start an LLC in Illinois by filing LLC Articles of Organization with the Illinois Secretary of State.

We break down the entire process for you step-by-step in our free Illinois LLC Guide.

Or, you can hire an Illinois Registered Agent Service like {{Northwest}}. They also offer LLC Formation services and can handle everything for you.

Next Step

Once you determine who will serve as your Illinois Registered Agent, you can proceed to the next lesson: Illinois LLC Articles of Organization.

If you need to hire an Illinois Registered Agent Service, please do so before going to the next step. You’ll need their complete company name and Registered Office address in order to list them in your Articles of Organization.

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Matt Horwitz
Matt Horwitz
Founder & Educator, LLC University®
Matt Horwitz has been the leading expert on LLC education for the past decade. He founded LLC University in 2010 after realizing people needed simple and actionable instructions to start an LLC that other companies weren't offering. He's cited by Entrepreneur Magazine, Yahoo Finance, and the US Chamber of Commerce, and was featured by CNBC and InventRight.
 
Matt holds a Bachelor's Degree in business from Drexel University with a concentration in business law. He performs extensive research and analysis to convert state laws into simple instructions anyone can follow to form their LLC - all for free! Read more about Matt Horwitz and LLC University.

2 comments on “Illinois Registered Agent”

Disclaimer: Nothing on this page shall be interpreted as legal or tax advice. Rules and regulations vary by location. They also change over time and are specific to your situation. Furthermore, this comment section is provided so people can share their thoughts and experience. Please consult a licensed professional if you have legal or tax questions.

  1. Hello, my wife has a Registered Agent for her business for long time. They file annual reports for her every year. I don’t think they offer the ability to change address of the LLC to their address. How do I change the address of the article of organization of her LLC to a company like yours and how long would it take. What other benefits does your company offers? Thank you.

    Reply
    • Hi Frankie, it’s actually not our company (LLC University) that offers Registered Agent services, but rather, the company we recommend (Northwest Registered Agent) that offers Registered Agent service and they allow you to use their address as the Registered Agent address and any other address on your filing. If you hire Northwest as your LLC’s Registered Agent, they have an option during checkout (where you tick a box). When you do this, it notifies Northwest to make a filing with the state to change the Registered Agent’s name and address. However, if you need to change any other addresses on the Articles of Organization, you’ll need to file an Amendment with the Illinois Secretary of State. Hope that helps.

      Reply

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