Archive for the ‘Registered agent’
Sounds like a simple question, right? Of course you would know who your Virginia resident agent is. But do you really?
What we have seen and heard from our clients is that there are a lot of web sites out there that offer to provide Virginia registered agent service for you but don't really tell you anything about who they are, where they're really located (most use a mail drop and not an actual office), and who's in charge. Some don't even have a company name on their web site let alone names of actual people that work for them (and therefore, for you). It seems that the cheaper the price the less you can find out about who's behind the service and where they really operate from.
For something that's so crucial to the ability of your business to operate in Virginia and for your ability to get limited liability protection, it seems important to know more. That's why we're transparent and open about our identity. We would want to know. We think you would, too.
A Virginia registered agent, also commonly referred to as a Virginia resident agent, is the official contact point for your company and receives communications on behalf of your business from the Virginia State Corporation Commission and other state agencies. Your registered agent also receives service of process, whether that is a lawsuit involving your company, a garnishment of wages for one of your employees, or a subpoena. The role of the registered agent is to make sure you receive those documents and communications as quickly as possible.
It is very important that your Virginia registered agent is responsible, diligent, knowledgeable, and responsive because your company is deemed to receive anything that has been delivered to your registered agent, whether they forward it to you or not. This means that if you are sued and the lawsuit is served on your registered agent, the court will consider you to have knowledge of the lawsuit and the time to respond starts ticking (in most cases, 21 days from the date of service of process in Virginia). If you don’t know about the lawsuit and don’t respond within the time limits, you won’t get the opportunity to defend yourself and you’re facing a default judgment that can be difficult, if not impossible, to undo. At the very least, it’s going to be an expensive effort, the expense of which far exceeds whatever you may have paid your registered agent for a year of service.
Many of our clients have come to us after experiencing the frustrating and expensive situation of not receiving their documents from their previous registered agent. Sometimes this resulted in them have little or no time to defend a lawsuit. And sometimes this resulted in them losing their authority to transact business in Virginia, risking a deal, a license, or protection from individual liability. In all cases, they have been frustrated by not receiving a service they paid for either because their previous registered agent was located far from Virginia and took a long time to receive and forward documents, or because their resident agent had a whole nation of clients to try to keep track of, or because their registered agent was offering a “free” or very low cost service and simply could not afford to be responsive and diligent. For these reasons, it’s very important to you and your business that you pick a quality Virginia registered agent that will provide the level of service and assistance that you deserve. This is why we are here and why we only focus on providing registered agent service in Virginia – our clients are our number one priority and we do everything possible to protect them.
If you live in a State other than Virginia but own four or more properties within Virginia in your individual name, then §55-218.1 of the Virginia Code mandates that you appoint a registered agent in Virginia. That Code section specifically states that "any nonresident person who owns and leases residential or commercial real property consisting of four or more units within a county or city in the Commonwealth shall have and continuously maintain an agent who is a resident and maintains a business office within the Commonwealth. Every lease executed by or on behalf of nonresident property owners regarding any such real property shall specifically designate such agent and the agent's office address for the purpose of service of any process, notice, order or demand required or permitted by law to be served upon such property owner." This is important to do because if you don't you can't bring a lawsuit to enforce your rights. The last thing you would want to find out when dealing with a tenant in default is that you can't legally do anything to get them out. We can help you with this with the appointment of a resident agent in Virginia. Just order registered agent service from us and we'll help with the paperwork that gets filed with the County or City in which your properties are located.