Pennsylvania Registered Agent

Pennsylvania LLC Registered Agent & Registered Office

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

Detailed Lessons:

 

Pennsylvania LLC Costs:
Pennsylvania state fee: $125

Need help?
Hire a reliable service to form your LLC:
IncFile ($49 + state fee) or LegalZoom ($149 + state fee)

Before filing an LLC Certificate of Organization with the Pennsylvania Bureau of Corporations, you need to select a Registered Office Address for your LLC.

A Registered Office Address is a street address located within the state of Pennsylvania where Service of Process (legal documents) can be delivered, in the event of a lawsuit.

In Pennsylvania, the Registered Office Address also serves as a general point of contact for receiving business and tax notices, payment reminders, and other documents from the State.

The Registered Office Address you use must be a street address located in Pennsylvania. You cannot use a PO Box address.

Unlike most states that require your LLC to list the name of a Registered Agent, Pennsylvania is unique in that it only requires you to list the address of the Registered Agent (known as the Registered Office). For simplicity, throughout this lesson, we will use the terms “Registered Agent” and “Registered Office” interchangeably.

Someone at the Registered Office Address (technically the LLC’s Registered Agent) needs to be available during normal business hours of 9:00am to 5:00pm, in case Service of Process arrives.

Service of Process can include the delivery of legal documents such as complaints, summons, and/or subpoenas.

It’s important to note, that the Registered Office Address on file becomes a part of the public record. Many people who prefer privacy and don’t want their home or office address listed publicly, choose to hire a Commercial Registered Office Provider (CROP). In most states, this is known as a Commercial Registered Agent.

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

Who Can Be Your Registered Agent/Registered Office in Pennsylvania?

When forming an LLC in Pennsylvania, you have 3 options for the address you can use as your Registered Office Address:

Option 1: You can use your home or office address.

Option 2: You can use the address of a friend or family member.

Option 3: You can hire a Commercial Registered Office Provider, also known as a Commercial Registered Agent.

How Do I Know Which One to Choose?

• If you have a street address located in Pennsylvania (such as a home or office), and are available during business hours, you can use your address as the LLC’s Registered Office Address.

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

• If you don’t have a street address in Pennsylvania, 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 Office Provider (CROP).

Using a Commercial Registered Office Provider (CROP) offers more privacy and is usually a more reliable setup for most people.

Reminder: Most states refer to a Commercial Registered Office Provider as a Commercial Registered Agent, but they are basically one and the same.

Commercial Registered Office Providers (CROPs) in Pennsylvania

A Commercial Registered Office Provider (CROP) is a company that specializes in receiving Service of Process on behalf of your Pennsylvania LLC. Companies charge anywhere from $100-$300 per year.

Once hired, they will receive Service of Process on behalf of your Pennsylvania LLC and then forward it to you by mail at any address you’d like. Most will also scan and email your documents.

If you need to hire a Commercial Registered Office Provider in Pennsylvania, we recommend Northwest Registered Agent ($125/year).

Northwest Registered Agent has been in the business for over 2 decades, and in our opinion, they have the best customer service, hands down.

Reminder: If you’re going to use your address, or a friend or family member’s address, you don’t have to hire a CROP. However, if you don’t have an address in Pennsylvania, you’ll need to hire a CROP. We also recommend hiring one if you prefer more privacy. You will be able to keep your home address off the public records.

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

In short, there are some 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 shut down your Pennsylvania LLC.

Additionally, if a process server is unsuccessful in reaching your LLC’s Registered Agent about a lawsuit (they’ll try a few times), a 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/they moved and you forgot to file a Change of Registered Agent/Office Address with the state

Hiring a Commercial Registered Office Provider (CROP) is a more reliable setup and gives you the freedom to take vacations and not worry about changing your Registered Office Address with the state if you move.

Our recommendation: Northwest Registered Agent ($125/year).

Here is a video on how to sign up for their services:


Video Transcript:

In this video I’m going to show you how to signup and register for Northwest Registered Agent. There’s a link below this video that will take you to their website. Once you’re there, in the upper right hand corner, it says order online and there’s a drop-down menu. Let’s go ahead and select Registered Agent service. And let’s scroll down on the page. We have a four-step process. In the first field you’re going to enter your desired LLC name and then in the drop-down select LLC. I’m going to enter ABC Widgets LLC as my example company. And don’t worry if you end up switching your name; you can change it in the system later. It’s not that important. Then we’re gonna hit next step. It says are we changing Registered Agent. In my case is no. Underneath States I’m going to select the state in which you’re forming your LLC. For this example, I’m going to choose Pennsylvania. Next, it says would you like your attorney notified at the same time we notify you if you get sued. If you don’t have an attorney, you can leave it on. If you do have an attorney, you can go ahead and fill in their email address. Once that’s complete click next step. On the next page, you’re going to enter your name your, your phone number, your email address, your mailing address, and then click on final step. On the next page at the top, it’s going to ask if you’d like to sign up for one year, two years, or three years. One year is going to be on by default. If you’d like to save a little bit of money, you can go ahead and sign up for two years, or three years if you’d like. Once you have that in place you’re going to enter the password. When you log into your account at Northwest Registered Agent, you’re going to use the email address that you end on the last page, and you going to use this password, so make sure you say this in an important place. Next, under payment information, you’re going to select pay with a credit card. You’re going to enter your name, your credit card number, expiration date, billing address, and then at the bottom go ahead and click the finalized button. In this case it says yeah I’m done. It’s now going to redirect you and it’s going to process your payment. And on the next page, you’ll see a thank you message. It says all the state forms are under the filing resources. In your case you’re not going to need any of the state forms as we have them all in our course. They’re here as well if you do need them. We will click over there in just a second to get their address. If you happen to be changing your Registered Agent from an existing company, there are instructions here, and there are forms in the filing resources. Next, there’s some important email addresses to make sure that you add to your address book or you white list them as it’s called in your email, just to make sure they don’t go to spam. And these emails are very important because if you ever get Service of Process or if you ever sued, you definitely wanna make sure you get notified of that, so make sure you say these email addresses. There’s a nice thank you message down here. Once you agree to this page, you can go ahead and click on filing resources. One thing to note in the back end here, we are at www.llcagent.com. That’s different than the existing site that we’ve been on. If you need assistance at any time, go ahead and go to www.NorthwestRegisteredAgent.com. And you can always find their phone number on the page, or you can click on the contact button. Let’s go back to our back-end tab here, under the LLC agent, and under filing resources, here’s the most important information I need right now. It is the name. Make sure you double check in the state that you’re forming, in this case Northwest Registered Agent operates under the name Northwest Registered Agent LLC in the state of Pennsylvania, but in some states they go into the business name Northwest Registered Agent Services Inc., or some other variation. Now that we have their address here, we can continue with their LLC formation documents. This page has additional resources if you do need them. Most of these documents will not apply to you. There’s documents here for corporations. There are documents here for LLC’s, but again, we have all that documentation for you inside the course. But there are some nice additional resources on this page in case you need them. Again, if you have any questions about the process go to www.NorthwestRegisteredAgent.com, give them a call. Great company, great people, they have excellent support. And once you have your address, you can go ahead and continue with the next step, which is going to be completing your LLC formation documents. And that concludes this video.

Next Step

Once you determine the address you will use for your Pennsylvania LLC’s Registered Office, you can then proceed to the next Lesson: Pennsylvania LLC Certificate of Organization.

If you need to hire a Commercial Registered Office Provider in Pennsylvania, please do so before going to the next step.

Matt Horwitz on LinkedinMatt Horwitz on TwitterMatt Horwitz on Youtube
Matt Horwitz
Founder & Educator at 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! We teach people how to form an LLC for free in all 50 states. We hope you find our free guides and resources helpful in your entrepreneurial journey.


How would you rate this?

Leave a Comment