A registered agent is the individual or business entity that receives legal documents from the state, and then forwards them to your business address. But why is this a requirement, and who should you designate as your registered agent in Kansas?
In this guide, we will break down all the details you need to know about Kansas registered agents.
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What is a Kansas Registered Agent?
One of the most common questions we receive from entrepreneurs in Kansas is why a registered agent is required to form an LLC or corporation. While it might seem like an unnecessary middle-man type of role, the registered agent fills a vital role.
The registered agent’s job is to provide a reliable way for the state to contact an official representative of your business at any time, which is especially important if your business is ever sued. If you didn’t have a registered agent, a lawsuit could progress through the courts without you even knowing about it, which is obviously far from ideal.While Kansas does not provide a recommended list of registered agent services, we reviewed the top options and compiled a list of the best Kansas registered agent services based on price and overall value.
Who Can Be a Kansas Registered Agent?
In the state of Kansas, a registered agent may be either an individual who is a resident of the state or a qualifying business entity.
For corporations and LLCs, those business entities may be a domestic corporation, a domestic limited partnership, a domestic limited liability company, a domestic business trust. Foreign corporations, limited partnerships, LLCS and business trusts are permitted to serve as registered agents as long as they are authorized to do business in the state of Kansas and have a business office which is open during standard business hours. Lastly, an entity may serve as its own registered agent in Kansas, but only if it has a Kansas address.
Aside from the legal requirements, an important aspect to discuss is who should be your registered agent. You have the right to declare yourself as your own registered agent, which has its pros and cons.
On the positive side, you can save some money by not paying anyone to serve as your agent, but you’ll also likely need to make your home address a matter of public record, which is not ideal. Additionally, you’ll need to be physically present at your business during all standard operating hours (9-5, M-F).
Some entrepreneurs like to have a friend or family member serve as their registered agent, but if that person doesn’t have experience in this position, they might not know what is expected of them. In addition, designating your lawyer or accountant as a registered agent can work, but these options are usually quite expensive.
Our preference is to hire a professional registered agent service, which provides a combination of convenience, affordability, and peace of mind that is unrivaled by any of these other options.
How Do Kansas Residents Get Served?
The most important part of a registered agent’s role is being served a summons.
The summons process may begin when three copies of the summons, two copies of the petition, any exhibits, any applicable fees, and the defendant’s address are filed with the Secretary of State.
If these steps are all taken correctly, the state of Kansas will then permit a sheriff, a sheriff’s deputy, an attorney, or by an appointed process server to serve a summons to the defendant’s registered agent.
How to Designate a Kansas Registered Agent
The answer to this question depends on what type of business you’re starting, but with either a corporation or an LLC, you’ll need to designate your registered agent when you form your company.
When forming an LLC, you’ll need to designate your registered agent in field 2 of the Limited Liability Company Articles of Organization. For corporation formations, you’ll want to list your registered agent in field 2 when completing the Articles of Incorporation for For-Profit Corporations.
How Can I Change My Kansas Registered Agent?
If you would like to change your registered agent for any reason, the process is pretty simple.
To begin, you must simply complete the Resident Agent and/or Registered Office Amendment document which can be completed online here using the state’s digital filing platform. Alternatively, if you choose not to file electronically, you may find a PDF version of the Change of Registered Office or Agent form by clicking this link and selecting the appropriate document for your company’s entity type.
Taking into account that the fee to change your agent is only $30 and there is only one simple form to fill out, the process should be considered incredibly easy and simple.
How Does a Kansas Registered Agent Resign?
Sometimes, a registered agent may have to resign from their position.
In Kansas, resigning agents will need to inform the business entity of the change via written notice and then complete and submit the Certificate of Resignation of Resident Agent Without Appointing a Successor document. The form requires only the Business entity ID number, the entity’s name, the resigning agent’s name, the date that notice was given, and a signature. There is a $35.00 standard filing fee. Should you decide to fax the document rather than mail it, there is an additional $20.00 processing fee.
Why Should You Hire a Professional Kansas Registered Agent Service?
Hiring a professional registered agent is basically the best of both worlds between serving as your own agent, and designating a lawyer or accountant.
The biggest benefit in our opinion is the privacy protection this allows, as you will be able to keep your personal address private. There’s also a major advantage compared to having an attorney or accountant serve as your agent, namely the fact that registered agent services are almost always much cheaper.
Another reason we like this option is that these companies specialize in providing quality registered agent service. They know exactly what’s expected of them, and there are rarely any issues to speak of.
The other major benefit of hiring a registered agent service is that most of them operate in all 50 states, so that if you ever want to expand your business into another state, you won’t need to hire an additional registered agent. Your same registered agent will be able to provide the coverage you need in your new state, while still providing the same service in Kansas. If you hired a lawyer or accountant, they would only be able to help you expand to a new state if they have another physical office in that state.
You Stay Compliant
Finally, most professional registered agents operating in Kansas offer some sort of compliance calendar. With this service, your registered agent helps you keep track of due dates for ongoing LLC maintenance requirements like annual reports, which is a valuable bonus.
The top registered agent service providers include some other appealing attributes, including access to their extensive customer support networks. Some of them include a full year of registered agent service with any business formation package, which can be a real money-saver. Another welcome attribute is that some registered agent services provide volume discounts if you require service in multiple states, or if you prepay for multiple years.
What Is the Penalty for Not Designating a Registered Agent in Kansas?
You need to have a registered agent to form your limited liability company or corporation in Kansas in the first place, but if you let your registered agent service lapse, there could be some serious consequences.
Failure to maintain a registered agent could lead to your business losing its good standing with the state of Kansas, and the state also has the right to officially dissolve your LLC if they choose to.
Another issue would be the difficulty of being served if your business is sued. If the state cannot get ahold of your registered agent, a court may decide to go ahead with the lawsuit without your knowledge, which could even lead to a judgment against you. This can happen not just if you fail to designate a registered agent, but also if your agent is not present during business hours to accept the document delivery.
As you can see, the task of designating a registered agent for your Kansas business isn’t quite as easy as just writing down your own name.
There are significant downsides to just about every option in our opinion, but we recommend hiring a professional registered agent service because that option has the fewest disadvantages. They charge affordable rates, and you never have to worry about losing your good standing, having your LLC or corporation dissolved, or having a lawsuit proceed in your absence.
If you have any further questions, you can contact the Kansas Secretary of State:
Kansas Office of the Secretary of State
Memorial Hall, 1st Floor
120 S.W. 10th Avenue
Topeka, KS 66612-1594