What is a Registered Agent?
On this page
A Virginia Registered Agent provides various services, such as accepting formal documents and correspondence from the Virginia SCC.
Your LLC must have a Virginia Registered Agent at all times. You appoint one when you first start your business. You can also replace your existing agent after formation, provided there is no period during which your business is without a Registered Agent.
Virginia Registered Agent Requirements
- Every LLC, whether foreign or domestic, must have a Registered Agent with a registered office within the State of Virginia at all times.
- The Registered Agent can be a domestic or foreign (licensed to transact business in the state) artificial legal entity (corporation, LLC, LP or LLP) or a natural person.
- If the Registered Agent is a company, they must be authorized to conduct business in Virginia.
- If the Registered Agent is a person, they must live in Virginia.
- The Registered Agent must be available in person to sign for any correspondence during regular business hours.
- The Registered Office must be located in the State of Virginia at a street address (a P.O. Box is not acceptable)
The address for your Virginia Registered Agent does not need to be the same as your business address. In fact, you can use a Virginia virtual mailbox for your business address.
Important: A virtual mailbox is not a replacement for a Registered Agent. They perform two separate functions and per state law, you are required to have a Registered Agent.
What Virginia Registered Agents Do
A Registered Agent’s primary function is to accept official correspondence and documentation.
- State and federal government correspondence and notices
- Service of process notices (e.g., if your LLC is sued or required to appear in court)
- Correspondence from the VA SCC
- Tax forms and requests to complete permits, company filings and reports
Having a Registered Agent also allows you to prove to the state that your business exists.
Bizee Provides Free Virginia Registered Agent Service for the First Year
With Bizee, you can get a complete Virginia Registered Agent service for any LLC formed in the state. Even better, if you form your LLC through Bizee, your Registered Agent is completely free for the first year and only $119 a year after that.
Bizee is authorized to conduct business in Virginia and is able to legally act as your Registered Agent. Here’s what our Virginia Registered Agent services include:
- A digital dashboard where you can access, store and retrieve any information we’ve received for your business
- An always-available Virginia Registered Agent who can receive correspondence, documents and legal proceedings on your LLC's behalf
- Email notification whenever we receive documents for your business
- Automatic forwarding of all legal correspondence, documentation and information directly to you
Appointing a Registered Agent for Your LLC
When you form an LLC in Virginia, you must appoint a Registered Agent at that time. You can change the agent at any time after that. Here’s how.
Assign a Registered Agent When You Form Your LLC
Your business needs to have a Registered Agent as soon as it’s formed. You can do this two ways:
File Articles of Organization with the VA SCC
When you create your business, you must include your Registered Agent's information in your Certificate of Formation.
Get a Free Registered Agent When You Create Your LLC With Bizee
If you form your business through us, you’ll get our Registered Agent Service free for one year. We’ll use the information you provide to complete and file your Certificate of Formation for you.
Assign a New Registered Agent After Formation
You can also assign someone else as your VA Registered Agent after you’ve started your LLC. There are a couple of ways to do this.
Choose a New Registered Agent Service and File a Form with the VA SOS
Once you’ve chosen a new Registered Agent, complete the Change of Registered Agent/Office form available on the VA SCC website. Once you’ve filled it out, send it to the Secretary of State with a filing fee of $15 so they can update your records.
Sign up for Bizee’s Registered Agent Service and We’ll File the Change on Your Behalf
When you use our Registered Agent service, we take care of all the form filling and filing for you. We’ll collect the pertinent information about your business, complete the form and send it to the VA SCC on your behalf. We’ll notify you when we officially become your Registered Agent.
Virginia Registered Agent Search
In some situations, you may need to know the name of the Registered Agent that represents another LLC in Virginia. You'll find this information in the state's business database.
If you can’t find the Registered Agent’s information there, you can request it through the Corporation Commission.
What Happens If You Don’t Have a Registered Agent?
If you don’t assign or provide a Registered Agent's details to the VA SCC, you may be subject to certain ramifications, including but not limited to:
- Getting sued or served and not knowing about it. You could lose to a default judgment in your absence if your LLC is sued and you don’t respond.
- Losing your status as an LLC in the state. A Registered Agent is evidence to the state that your business exists. Without it, you could lose your business entity protections and your LLC may be dissolved.
- Falling out of good standing with the VA SCC. The state may revoke your right to do business if you don’t respond to certain correspondence (such as a request for your annual report).
Acting as Your Own Registered Agent
You can be the Registered Agent for your Virginia LLC if you have a business office in the state. There can be some drawbacks to this approach:
- The Registered Agent must have a physical street address in Virginia. If you’re forming an LLC outside the state, you’ll need to use an in-state Registered Agent.
- Someone must always be available during business hours at the Virginia address to sign for important documents.
- The Registered Agent’s name and address are part of the public record and available through the VA SCC website. If you prefer to keep your name and address private, you should use a Registered Agent service.
- If you change your business address or move out of state, you need to file additional documentation with the Secretary of State for the new address. This won't be necessary if you use a Registered Agent service, making a move or address change much simpler.
Other Useful Resources
FAQs About Virginia Registered Agent Service
Do I Need to Appoint a Virginia Registered Agent?
Yes. All business entities are required to have a Registered Agent. This is mandated by the VA SCC. You'll find more information above.
When Do I Need to Assign a Virginia Registered Agent?
You must assign a Registered Agent when you form your Virginia business with the Corporation Commission. You can change your agent afterward by filing the correct form. If you form your business through Bizee, we’ll file all the necessary forms on your behalf. You'll find more information above.
Can I Be My Own Registered Agent in Virginia?
Yes, but we don’t recommend it for the reasons listed above.
Does the Registered Agent for My Virginia-Based LLC Need to Have an Address in Virginia?
Yes. And if you use a company as your Registered Agent, that company must be legally able to conduct business in the state. You'll find more information above.