As remote work becomes increasingly common, companies must comply with payroll- and tax-related requirements at the state level for every state in which they operate. This can create a challenge for HR and compliance managers to manage.
Some states have residency or office hours requirements for registered agents, so using a third-party service may be easier. These services can scan and forward important documents quickly, saving time for the company.
Simplifying the Process
Using a single registered agent across multiple states streamlines the entire business compliance process. Paperwork will come to the same place, and billing will be centralized. Plus, the same company will know your business inside and out and can provide consistent information about state law and compliance responsibilities.
While some companies choose to appoint a personal address or an employee to serve as their own registered agent, this haphazard approach may actually create more work in the long run. This is because registered agents have many responsibilities that go far beyond accepting legal papers or important notices on behalf of their clients.
A commercial registered agent like CT Corporation provides a full suite of services that helps companies manage their multistate operations more efficiently. For example, they can help businesses track and file annual reports, corporate document filings, and business licenses through a consolidated platform. This means less paperwork and fewer fees as office locations and staff change.
Managing Multiple Subsidiaries
Companies may operate in multiple states, and each state requires that a company doing business there establish a registered agent with the state. As a result, many businesses appoint different professional Registered Agent services in each state in which they operate or have satellite offices. While this haphazard approach to managing Registered Agents seems easier than choosing one solution for all states, it often creates more difficulty for a company. Relatively few Registered Agent solutions operate in all 50 states, and when you choose a single service to manage your state compliance, you gain the ability to streamline processes and get access to unique tools like garnishment tracking and paperless filings. These efficiencies can save time and money, and help you keep better track of your compliance status.
Simplifying Tax Compliance
As the Covid-19 pandemic forced companies to expand their work-from-home hiring, it heightened awareness of the need for multi-state compliance. This can be challenging, especially for new hires whose onboarding may no longer include a physical tour of the office or bagels on their first day.
As a legal requirement, every business must designate and maintain a registered agent on file. This is the person that is responsible for receiving service of process, important business documents and compliance notices from state authorities.
A professional registered agent service can provide this function for you for a flat annual fee. If your business has employees in multiple states, this is an affordable and simple solution that keeps you compliant without requiring you to track down individual agents in each state. It also provides you with the convenience of a single contact point for your tax department, legal team and other key personnel. This saves valuable time and reduces the risk of miscommunication and costly mistakes.
Many small business owners will often use a lawyer, friend or local business entity as their Registered Agent when they are first expanding into new states. This may seem like a good solution, but it becomes extremely problematic as the business scales. Using an online Registered Agent service that is available in every state where the business has operations, and that knows all the compliance rules and procedures will make it easier to manage as the company grows.
These services typically charge an annual fee, but they provide a reliable address that can be used to receive legal notices on behalf of the business. They can also help to streamline the process of reconciling daily payroll, addressing tax compliance issues, re-coding employees for Wage & Hour and Workers’ Compensation purposes, and complying with other labor laws. It’s worth considering this option if your business has employees who travel frequently or work nontraditional hours. They may not be able to be present at their home or business during the weekday, and this could create difficulties for them in the long run.