The requirements for a statutory agent in Arizona (referred to as a registered agent in most states) might seem simple on the surface, but in reality this role has some nuance involved. Rather than spending hours researching the rules and regulations yourself, we’ve created a guide to help you access this information easily.
Knowing exactly what is required from a statutory agent is essential to your business remaining in compliance with your state’s laws. Whether you take on this role yourself or outsource it to another person or business entity, the Arizona statutory agent must keep on top of things in order for your company to stay compliant.
Below is a complete picture of the four best Arizona statutory agent services and what they offer. We will outline each option and make independent recommendations based on what you are looking for.
4 Top Arizona Statutory Agent Services & Description
A statutory agent service is a company that specializes in being a statutory agent for a wide variety of businesses across the country, bringing tons of expertise and a healthy dose of reliability to the role.
What’s great is that the personal addresses of home-based entrepreneurs remain private when you hire a professional statutory agent service. There are quite a few of these companies out there, and most of them make it quite easy to enlist their services.
Statutory agent services usually include some additional features, which vary depending on which company you choose. In general though, you’ll often see these services offer a compliance calendar to help you track your important filing deadlines, and you’ll always receive access to their helpful customer support teams.
Here are the four best statutory agent services in Arizona:
|With a free business formation package that only requires you to pay your state fee, along with great rates for statutory agent service, ZenBusiness’ outstanding customer satisfaction reputation is the icing on the cake. We firmly believe we’re one of the best business services companies in the world today!|
ZenBusiness: ZenBusiness has a low $99 rate for the first year, with an extra focus on making the process less stressful with an easy-to-use website. After the first year, the rate is $199 per year. You’ll receive our outstanding customer support, as well as access to helpful software that allows you to track your company’s ongoing compliance requirements.
In a nutshell, here are some of the most important things to know about ZenBusiness:
- Smaller company feel gives you more individualized attention than other companies
- Forming your business with ZenBusiness is free (all you pay is your state’s required fee)
- Has one of the lowest à-la-carte statutory agent prices of $99 for the first year ($199 after that)
If you use ZenBusiness to form your LLC, you’ll only pay the $85 Arizona filing fee.
- Fantastic customer feedback – It’s difficult to find more than a small handful of negative reviews for ZenBusiness. The vast majority of our 10,000+ reviews are positive.
- Inexpensive LLC and corporation formations – ZenBusiness offers some of the lowest prices in the industry for business formation service, while still providing clients with a nice selection of features.
- Dedication to giving back – ZenBusiness is a public benefit corporation (PBC), and we dedicate a portion of our revenue to helping disadvantaged entrepreneurs grow successful companies.
- While ZenBusiness does have solid pricing and great features, we are not quite the cheapest statutory agent service available.
Northwest Registered Agent
|If you value personalized customer support and statutory agent service with 100% local scanning, give Northwest Registered Agent a look. At $225, its business formation service is pricey, but it is a fully featured offering.|
Northwest Registered Agent: Northwest charges $125 per year, and they were the first major national statutory agent service that locally scans every document they receive as your agent. They also have personalized customer support that assigns a dedicated account representative to each client.
Here are some of the other top things to know about Northwest:
- Discounted rate of $100 per year per business if you use them for more than 10 states, or you use them as the statutory agent for more than 10 businesses
- Promises never to sell your personal data; stands by their Privacy by Default guarantee
- Offers one year of free statutory agent service if you use their LLC formation service, which has a $225 price tag ($125 per year will start on the second year)
One last note: if you do choose to use a business formation package from Northwest, you’ll pay their service fee plus the $85 Arizona filing fee for LLCs or $95 for corporations.
- Solid pricing model – Northwest doesn’t have the lowest prices in the industry, but considering what you get, their statutory agent service is a solid bargain. They even have volume discounts available if you require service in multiple states, or prepay multiple years.
- 12 months statutory agent service included with business formation packages
- Personalized customer support – They refer to their representatives as “corporate guides,” and they have all the expertise necessary to walk you through each step of your company’s formation.
- 20+ years experience – So many companies in this industry were just formed within the last few years, but Northwest has already been around for decades. They’re here to stay.
- Cheaper options available – There are other companies that undercut Northwest’s pricing models for statutory agent service, although they can’t always match Northwest’s local scanning or personalized customer support.
|Looking for a totally free LLC formation service where all you pay is your state’s fee? Incfile has you covered. This company also receives strong customer feedback and offers reasonably priced statutory agent service. Incfile is a well-rounded service provider.|
Incfile: They are one of the most well-known LLC and statutory agent services available, with statutory agent rates of just $119 per year. Plus they offer a free LLC formation service if you haven’t created a business yet and would like a free statutory agent service in the process.
Here are some of Incfile’s best attributes:
- One of the only services to offer free business formation services, including one free year of statutory agent service
- Positive customer feedback: a 4.8 out of 5 satisfaction score across 33,000+ reviews
So in short, if you form your business with Incfile, you won’t owe anything except the Arizona filing fee for the first year.
- Free business formation offer – Incfile is one of only a few companies we’re aware of that offers a business formation service package for free. All you need to do is pay your state fee, and they’ll take care of the rest!
- Thousands of positive customer reviews – Incfile has one of the best customer feedback reputations in this industry. They have thousands of positive reviews, and very few negative reviews to be found.
- One year statutory agent service included with formation packages – No matter which one of their formation packages you choose (even the free version), they’ll include 12 months of statutory agent service at no extra cost.
- Mediocre customer support – Incfile’s phone support is pretty good but its email support is almost entirely non-responsive. If you need help, you’ll probably need to call them.
|LegalZoom has significant brand power, with millions of customers served and broad advertising initiatives. It also receives solid customer reviews, although its pricing models are all average at best.|
LegalZoom: This is another very popular option that more or less does the same thing as the other services, but charges $299 per year ($249 for the first year if added to a business formation package).
While LegalZoom isn’t the most affordable service, there are some perks:
- One of the largest business service networks in the nation
- Offers comprehensive legal services, so they can be your one-stop shop for both business and personal legal needs
- Their basic business formation service is $79 plus state fees (a fair value)
- Lots of experience and high customer volume – Not many competitors can say that they’ve served millions of customers, but LegalZoom can. They have a ton of experience that gives them an advantage over most companies in this industry.
- Wide-reaching name recognition – LegalZoom advertises more than the vast majority of their competitors, which is part of why they’re so popular. Their brand power is unrivaled.
- Many other services available – Few companies offer as wide a variety of services as LegalZoom does. They provide personal services like wills and power of attorney, and of course they also have a vast array of business services as well.
- High prices – LegalZoom’s statutory agent service costs $299 per year, or $249 for the first year if you add it to a business formation package. While there are a couple of competing companies that charge more than that, there are dozens of services with lower price points.
- No statutory agent included with LLC formations – Some competitors, like Northwest Registered Agent and Incfile, include a full year of statutory agent service with any business formation package. LegalZoom does not.
What Is an Arizona Registered Agent?
Every business entity in the state of Arizona is required to have a statutory agent. In fact, you will not be allowed to finish the formation process for your company until you designate your statutory agent.
The most important aspect of this role is receiving document deliveries from the state government, then alerting your business of the delivery, before forwarding the documents to you. The role of the statutory agent is so important because it establishes a point of contact for your business with the state, so that they have a reliable place to get in touch with an official representative of your company at any time.
Arizona doesn’t offer a list or index of statutory agents; you will need to find your own. That’s where this guide comes in.
Who Can Be an Arizona Registered Agent?
An Arizona statutory agent is a person or business entity that has a physical address in the state. You or one of your co-owners can serve as your own statutory agent, you can designate a friend or family member for this role, you can hire a lawyer or accountant as your agent, or you can hire an online business services company to provide statutory agent service.
No matter who you choose to be your statutory agent, they need to be physically present at the address provided to the state during all standard business hours. This person or entity does not need to have any prior experience being a statutory agent, but it’s wise to choose a statutory agent who is familiar with the serious responsibilities that come with this role.
There is a minimum age requirement of 18 years old to serve as a statutory agent in the state of Arizona. The Arizona Corporation Commission’s Statutory Agent FAQs list the state’s requirements for statutory agents:
- The agent must be an individual, corporation, or LLC
- Individuals appointed must be 18 years or older
- Must have a physical, full-time address in the state
- Mailing address, if any, must also be in-state
What Does a Registered Agent Do?
A registered agent performs several modest tasks that accumulate into a larger role of significant importance. They are essentially the liaison between your business and the state you are conducting business in.
First and foremost, a registered agent must act as the designated recipient of any tax or legal documents sent by the state of Arizona. In the case of legal matters, the registered agent must be physically present to receive hand-delivered service of process (SOP) paperwork regarding legal action being taken against your company. After the handoff, the registered agent then needs to effectively report this delivery to your business, and forward the documents to you.
The registered agent and the business they represent should have a previously agreed-upon order of operations for the intake and delivery of these documents. For example, they should determine whether the documents will be delivered from the registered agent to the business via fax, mail, or email.
Ongoing Arizona Business Compliance
The registered agent also typically helps ensure that your business remains current and compliant on all state-required ongoing maintenance filings. Each state has its own set of laws regarding which maintenance filings are required, which usually refers to annual reports and/or franchise tax payments. These rules are subject to change at any time, so the registered agent must stay up to date in order to ensure your business remains in good standing with the state, and avoids fines or a business dissolution.
Many states require you to file an annual report, but Arizona is an exception. There are other filings to make to stay compliant, though—we won’t go into the full details here for the sake of brevity. Your registered agent should be aware of these different requirements and help you stay in good standing with the state.
What about small, Arizona-only registered agent services?
As you’ve probably noticed, the statutory agent services we’ve listed here serve businesses across the country. But if you Google “Arizona Statutory Agent,” you’ll probably see results for local services, too. These can be local entrepreneurs with a knack for clerical tasks, offices dedicated to serving businesses in their counties, or statewide companies.
On one hand, using a local service can have its advantages. Some will be cheaper than nationwide firms (but not always!). And each state has its own nuances for business compliance requirements, Arizona included. A statutory agent service that services Arizona alone will have detailed knowledge about those requirements. Granted, most national services do a good job of understanding local requirements. But they probably won’t give you the same “homegrown Arizona” feeling as a local agent service.
That said, national businesses like Northwest Registered Agent and ZenBusiness give you streamlined solutions. Let’s say you’re using a local Arizona-only statutory agent service, but it’s time to add locations in New Mexico. You could search for an additional agent that services New Mexico businesses. But that’s going to require a lot of additional paperwork, including new receipts, new automatic payments, more emails…you get the idea. But if you’re using a national service, you can cut down the “new” paperwork and focus on what really matters: growing your business.
Ultimately, the choice is up to you, and there’s no “wrong” answer. The most important thing is that you appoint one so you can run a compliant Arizona business.
What If I Want to Change My Arizona Registered Agent?
While the role of the registered agent is vitally important for any American business entity, this role can always be changed, and there are different rules for how to change your agent depending on which state your business operates in.
In Arizona, business entities can file a Statement of Change form. Please note that there are different forms for changing your registered agent and changing your registered agent’s address. They look pretty similar, so be sure you find and file the correct one.
For step-by-step instructions to change a registered agent in Arizona, please check out our guide.
Need to start a business in Arizona?
We’ve gone into a lot of detail about statutory agents in this guide, but here’s the deal: appointing a statutory agent is just one step in the much bigger process of starting a business. If you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed by all that goes into it, don’t panic. We’re here to help.
You can catch the full guide to starting an Arizona LLC, but here’s the fly-by version:
- Choose a business name: Every business in Arizona needs a name that’s both catchy and gives potential clients a good idea of what the business does. The name also needs to be unique — both for legal reasons and so your business stands out from the competition.
- Appoint your statutory agent: Whether you elect to use a private statutory agent, serve as your own, or you hire a service like the one we’ve listed here, you can’t skip this step. Without a statutory agent, you won’t become a legitimate, registered entity.
- File your formation documents: If you’re forming an LLC, you’ll need to file the Articles of Organization; corporations file the Articles of Incorporation. Once you fill it out and file it, this document is what officially forms your business in the state. There is an $85 fee for LLCs and a $95 fee for corporations.
Beyond that, there are plenty of ongoing maintenance requirements. We won’t go into a ton of detail here, though. Your statutory agent will help you keep tabs on most of those, but you can read more here.
Arizona Business Fast-Facts
- Business Formation Speed: 5-7 business days online, 13-15 business days on paper
- Cost to Form a Business: Online ($85 for LLCs, $95 for corporations); on paper ($50 for LLCs, $60 for corporations)
- How to Register: File the Articles of Organization (LLC) or Articles of Incorporation online or by mail ($35 upcharge for online, expedited filings)
- State General Business License: Not required, but industry licenses may apply
One of the biggest advantages of using one of the statutory agent services we’ve listed is that they will help you handle most of these fast facts!
The role of an Arizona registered agent is critical to your company’s compliance and legal standing. This position requires dealing with seemingly simple tasks, yet if they’re handled incorrectly, they could cost you a considerable amount of money in fines, and could even potentially see the state dissolve your business.
While you can always change your registered agent down the line, we think it’s essential to pick the right registered agent for your business starting at the formation phase. You should also keep an eye on your compliance standing to ensure nothing goes awry along the way.