And now, for one reason or another, you need to change your registered agent. No worries, we’ve got you covered.
There are a number of reasons you might need to change your New Jersey LLC’s registered agent. Maybe your designated registered agent moved out of state, left the company, or no longer wants the responsibility. Maybe you had assigned the job to yourself, and you no longer want your address on public record. Maybe (hopefully) your business has expanded so much that you no longer have time to handle the registered agent responsibilities.
Whatever your reason may be, changing a registered agent in New Jersey might seem like a daunting task, with a mountain of paperwork and legal proceedings involved. However it’s actually quite simple, and this guide will help make the process quick and painless.
The state of New Jersey has certain requirements for changing your LLC’s registered agent. The state suggests making this change through its online portal or on your Annual Report, and online filing is the only option for these forms. Be sure that your new registered agent has a New Jersey street address and not a P.O. box.
The New Jersey Department of the Treasury has a page dedicated to registered agent changes which includes links to more information regarding the Annual Report and online filing.
You can’t pick just anyone to be a registered agent for your LLC. The state of New Jersey puts certain restrictions on who can serve as one. If you’re choosing or changing your registered agent, keep these requirements in mind. The registered agent in New Jersey must:
* If your registered agent is a foreign business entity, it must be authorized to transact business in New Jersey
In order to change your registered agent in New Jersey, navigate to the online filing portal. Here you will be able to complete either a standalone registered agent change form, or an Annual Report.
For the standalone form, select “Change Registered Agent/Office” from the box labeled “Business Filings.” Then, simply follow the onscreen instructions to input your information. At the end, you’ll be prompted to pay the $25 fee with a card or eCheck. There is an online payment processing fee involved too: $2.50 for cards and $1 for eChecks.
Every business entity in New Jersey is required to file an Annual Report each year before the last day of the month you formed your LLC. If this coincides with your need for a new registered agent, you’re in luck! You can make the change on your Annual Report and save some time and money. In the online filing portal, select “File an Annual Report” from the “Business Filings” box. Then, follow the instructions to input the necessary information, including your registered agent change. The Annual Report comes with a $50 fee, payable by card or eCheck. The service fee is $2.50 for cards and $0.50 form eChecks.
If you’re too busy, or if you’d feel more comfortable letting someone else take the reins, you have the option of hiring a company or individual to file your paperwork for you. It’s a great way to save time and stress.
Submit your form? Pay your fee? You’ve done your part. Online changes are typically reflected in your file within one business day, so your new registered agent will be on record soon.
Think of your registered agent as a mediator between you and the state of New Jersey, the person or business entity that handles some of your most important paperwork.
In case you thought the registered agent was just a formality, look at the documents they handle:
A lot of important stuff. Which is why a reliable registered agent is essential to every New Jersey business owner.
By handling high-priority and sensitive documents on your behalf, your registered agent takes care of your communications with the state, so you can spend more time building your business.
Plus, if you operate a New Jersey small business from out of state, a trustworthy registered agent is especially important, as the state requires a local contact for your LLC. Having this contact ensures your company will receive and respond to time-sensitive documents, so you won’t miss filings and get hit with penalties.
If you’re unsure where to find a good New Jersey registered agent, consider using a registered agent service. These companies provide you a reliable, professional registered agent so you can have peace of mind knowing you won’t ever miss a filing, tax deadline, or state correspondence.
Sure, you can jump online, search “registered agent service,” and get a ton of results. But the truth is that not all of these services are trustworthy. So, we’ve done some research for you. If you want to know you’re getting a top-quality registered agent, take a look at our comparison guide on the top registered agent services. Many of these providers can also form an LLC for you if you’re needing a fresh start. ZenBusiness is a very well known option.
There are numerous reasons you might need to give up your New Jersey registered agent role, but only one way to resign.
Registered agents play an important role in the life of an LLC, handling sensitive legal and tax documents, so it’s essential that agents follow proper resignation procedures. Otherwise, you could leave your company with unplanned fines or penalties, and you could be individually liable.
Fortunately, for New Jersey LLCs it is easy.
Follow these steps and the hardest part of your resignation won’t be the process itself, it’ll be saying “so long” to your former business.
Giving your LLC advance notice of your resignation isn’t just courteous, it’s required by New Jersey state law. Before submitting your official resignation to the Division of Revenue and Enterprise Services, you must send a notification by certified mail to your company. This is to ensure that your LLC has enough time to plan for a change of registered agent and avoid penalties for operating without one. Then, after you receive a return receipt, you can go ahead and send you resignation to the state.
There are several different forms for registered agent resignations, different ones for each business type and for whether or not you’re appointing your own replacements. So, make sure that you complete and submit the correct form, or else your resignation won’t be processed.
Find the LLC-specific forms on the Division of Revenue \u0026 Enterprise Services PDF Forms page. Before choosing one, you need to decide if you will be appointing your own replacement or if you’ll leave that up to the LLC. If you will be appointing a successor, choose Form L-121 and include the following information:
Plus, you must attach statements from each affected LLC approving the new agent. But if you won’t be appointing a replacement, select Form L-123 and enter this information:
The fee for resignation is $25 if you’re not appointing a successor, and $25 plus $10 per entity if you are appointing one. When you’re ready to submit your form and payment, you have four options: online, by mail, by fax or in person.
Online: At the bottom of each form, there are buttons to add attachments and open the Central Forms Repository. Fill your form out using a PDF editor like Adobe Acrobat, and make sure you’ve attached all appropriate documents. After accessing the Central Forms Repository, you will need to create an account (if you haven’t already). Once you’re logged in, follow the instruction to submit your form and credit card payment.
Mail: Print your form with the necessary attachments. Then mail them, along with a check (made out to “Treasurer, State of New Jersey”), to the Corporate Filing Unit at P.O. Box 308, Trenton, NJ 08625.
Fax: Send your forms and attachments to (609) 984-6851
In Person: Print your forms and attachments, then deliver them, with your payment, to 33 West State St., 5th Floor, Trenton, NJ 08608.
If you’ve appointed a replacement, that change will take effect as soon as your resignation is processed. If you haven’t, you will retain your registered agent duties for 30 days unless your LLC brings on a new agent sooner.
When you put down your registered agent responsibilities, someone else has to pick them up, or your LLC will lose its good standing with the state. Help your LLC keep its momentum by carefully planning your transition.
This starts with finding a successor who’s ready to take over right away. Even a small gap in registered agent coverage can result in severe penalties. Any New Jersey business entity that goes 30 days or more without a valid registered agent can be administratively dissolved by the state and no longer able to do business.
If you’re appointing your own replacement, it’s important to remember New Jersey’s registered agent requirements. Every registered agent must:
The registered agent should also be available to receive service of process at the registered office address during regular business hours.
While these requirements leave you with a lot of options, we recommend using a registered agent service, which can take over registered agent duties, freeing up more time for the LLC’s managers to focus on running the business.
You do a lot for your New Jersey LLC. You’re essentially the shield that protects it from fines, the filter that catches important documents, the conductor that keeps it on track with compliance.
Because you play such an important role, it’s crucial that you follow the resignation procedures exactly — and potentially provide a replacement agent for the business. Otherwise, you might find yourself and your LLC in hot water.
Follow this guide and you’ll be totally fine. Soon, you’ll be on to your next project, whether that’s starting a new business in New Jersey or something completely different.
If you need a fresh start and would like to form a brand new LLC, there are plenty of services that can take care of this for you. ZenBusiness and LegalZoom are two very popular options.
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