Mon 23 May 2016 | By:

Ohio Registered Agent: Everything You Need to Know

Choose a Registered Agent

An Ohio Registered Agent is a vital entity to compliance with business incorporation requirements and the success of your business in the long run. The state of Ohio requires every business entity within the state to retain the services of a Registered Agent.

The Registered Agent’s prime responsibility is to receive service of process, legal notifications, state correspondence, tax reports, and other legal documents from government agencies.

Upon designation, the Registered Agent provides a physical address from where all these legal documents will be mailed. From there, it is then the Registered Agent that will forward these documents to your office and inform you about it.

While some states allow you to be your own Registered Agent, this is a highly discouraged practice for various reasons.


Ohio Registered Agent Requirements

File Annual Reports & Publication RequirementsThere are statutory requirements as to the hiring of a qualified Registered Agent in Ohio. Strict observance of these requirements is tantamount to the incorporation of your business and for compliance purposes.

1) The Registered Agent can be an individual resident of Ohio or a business entity, domestic or foreign, duly registered with the Secretary of State of Ohio.

2) A physical street address should be provided by the Registered Agent upon designation. Alternatively, the individual Registered Agent can provide a P.O. Box as the physical address provided that the agent certify in the registration that he is really an Ohio resident.

3) The Registered Agent must be present at the physical address he provided during business hours.


Five Reasons to Have an Ohio Registered Agent

1) You want to focus on building your business

As a newbie entrepreneur, it is such a challenge to juggle tasks. This becomes even more difficult when business operations start. If you also take up the Registered Agent position yourself, you might neglect one of the two tasks.

If you are to make a choice, it always boils down to focusing your time and energy on building a business. The Registered Agent position can be delegated instead to a reliable third party entity that can efficiently fulfill the responsibilities.

2) You often travel

If the nature of your business requires that you travel often, a Registered Agent is an indispensable help to ensure that all legal documents as well as state correspondence and tax notices reach your business at the right time.

3) You want to preserve the image of your business

The receipt of service of process and legal notifications should be done separate of your business address as this can cause quite a furor among your customers and even employees. Imagine being served a service of process while in the middle of talking to a client.

By hiring a Registered Agent, you don’t have to fear or stress over situations such as these, because all legal notifications will now go through the address provided by the Registered Agent.

4) You have flexible business hours

There are businesses that have flexible hours and some do not keep regular hours as well. Since legal correspondence are usually delivered any time of the day during business hours, your flexible hours may cause a delay in receiving these notices.

Hiring a Registered Agent ensures that legal notifications are received on time because these entities are always at their designated address during all business hours.

5) You are avoiding the hazards of non-compliance

When you divide your time running your business and being a Registered Agent, it could eventually lead to some matters of non-compliance. With the many state regulations involved not to mention the fact that you will be dealing with time-sensitive documents, you might have some lapses completing deliverables.

This is where your Registered Agent comes in. With a dedicated Registered Agent to take care of all these, you won’t have to worry if you have overlooked any document or whether you have complied with a state correspondence that has been mailed to you.


How to Find a Reliable Registered Agent in Ohio

Get a Registered AgentAside from the state-regulated requirements that must be fulfilled when hiring a Registered Agent, there must also be some other factors that should come into play when finding the right agent for your business.

With these additional considerations, you should then do a thorough research of various Registered Agent services available. Look for track record, credibility, and make sure that the Registered Agent has a legitimate office where your legal notices will be sent.

While there are numerous Registered Agent companies, you can look into the services below for consideration.

Get a Reliable Registered Agent

Both services will act as your Registered Agent and handle all legal notifications from the state on your behalf.

IncFile (for $99) or LegalZoom (for $159)

Please be advised that this article is not a legal advice or document. It is an informational guide on how to go about the Registered Agent requirements in Ohio. For more information on starting a business in Ohio, you can consult a business lawyer.

About Ryan James

Half hardworking hermit, half avid adventurer, Ryan founded Startup Savant to simplify entrepreneurship and pay it forward by donating a portion of all revenue to support children's education via