Every limited liability company operating in the United States needs to designate a registered agent. Even after you identify your initial registered agent in your formation paperwork, there are several reasons for why you may need to change the registered agent for your LLC in Alabama.
Your registered agent could be moving out of state, or they could be a former co-owner or employee who no longer works for your organization. Maybe you want to switch from an individual registered agent to a professional service that operates in all 50 states, or perhaps you’re simply unsatisfied with your current registered agent’s service.
Whatever the reason may be, each state allows you to change your registered agent at any time, and in most states the process is both simple and inexpensive. Let’s dive into the specifics of how to change your LLC’s registered agent in Alabama.
NOTE: If you need help changing registered agents, the same services that are known for offering online services — like LegalZoom and Zen Business — can also take over registered agent duties and file the needed paperwork.
Who Can Be a Registered Agent in Alabama?
An Alabama registered 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 registered 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 registered agent service.
No matter who you choose to be your registered 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 registered agent, but it’s wise to choose a registered agent who is familiar with the serious responsibilities that come with this role.
There is no minimum age requirement on who can be a registered agent in the state of Alabama. Section 10A-1-5.31 of Alabama State Law outlines the specifics of who can be a registered agent in this state:
- A registered agent may be an individual who is a resident of this state, or a domestic entity or a foreign entity that is registered to do business in this state, and must maintain a business office at the same address as the entity’s registered office.
- The registered office must be located at a street address where process may be personally served on the entity’s registered agent, is not required to be a place of business of the filing entity or foreign filing entity, and may not be solely a mailbox service or a telephone answering service.
For more general information regarding the role of a registered agent with an Alabama LLC, we encourage you to check out our full guide on the topic.
What Is the Procedure for Changing Your LLC Registered Agent in Alabama?
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.
LLCs in the state of Alabama cannot change their registered agent by amending their articles of organization, or by indicating a change on their Business Privilege Tax Return and Annual Report. The only way to make this change is on the Change of Registered Agent or Registered Office by Entity form.
Option 1) Filing a Change of Agent Form
The document used to make changes to your registered agent information in Alabama is called the Change of Registered Agent or Registered Office by Entity form.
Once you finish filling out the form, you will need to mail, email, or fax two copies to the Secretary of State’s office. (There is currently no option to file this form online in the state of Alabama.) The form has a flat $25 filing fee. If you wish, the state will send you an acknowledgement copy of your filed form for $3.
The general processing time for a Change of Registered Agent or Registered Office by Entity form in Alabama is between three and five business days from the moment the state receives your documents. With this in mind, emailing or faxing the form is the quickest option.
You can choose to expedite this process for an additional $100. Expedited filing will be processed within 24 hours of receiving the form.
Prefer to Have a Registered Agent Service Handle Your Requirements?
A registered agent service is a company that specializes in being a registered agent for a wide variety of businesses across the country, bringing tons of expertise and a healthy dose of reliability to the role.
Most professional registered agent services operate on a national basis, meaning there’s no restrictions on which states you can operate your business in. They also tend to charge affordable rates, as you can find several registered agent services that charge around $10/month or even less for this service. In addition, most of these companies will also offer to handle the process of changing a registered agent for you.
If you’re interested in this option, we highly recommend Northwest Registered Agent.
The Law for Changing Your LLC Registered Agent in Alabama
It’s always important to be well-informed regarding the specific laws for changing your registered agent. The laws in the state of Alabama do not distinguish between entity types or classifications for changing a registered agent, and therefore the same law applies to all business entities.
Title 10A, Chapter 1 of the Code of Alabama specifically outlines the rules:
“A filing entity, registered limited liability partnership required to maintain a registered office and registered agent under Section 10A-1-5.31(a), or foreign filing entity or other foreign entity required to register in this state pursuant to Section 10A-1-7.01, may change its registered office, its registered agent, or both, by delivering to the Secretary of State for filing a statement of the change in accordance with Article 4.”
The law goes on to specify what information is needed for the change statement to be valid, including:
- “the name of the entity;
- the name of the entity’s registered agent;
- the street address of the entity’s registered agent;
- if the change relates to the registered agent, the name of the entity’s new registered agent and the new registered agent’s written consent to the appointment, either on the statement or attached to it;
- if the change relates to the registered office, the street address of the entity’s new registered office;
- a recitation that the change specified in the statement is authorized by the entity; and
- a recitation that the street address of the registered office and the street address of the registered agent’s business are the same.”
If you operate a limited liability company in the state of Alabama, you need to designate a registered agent to receive important government document deliveries on your behalf. If you decide at any time that you would rather change your registered agent to a different individual or business entity, it’s important to know what that process looks like.
In Alabama, there’s only one option for changing a registered agent, and that’s to file the state’s Change of Registered Office or Agent by a Limited Liability Company form. It’s a simple document with a reasonable filing fee, but if you’d rather have a registered agent service handle this task for you, you certainly have that option.
We hope this article helped you improve your understanding of changing a registered agent in Alabama, and as always we thank you for choosing Registered Agent Ready!