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FAQ - Registered Agent

What is a Registered Agent?
RCW 23.95.105(35) "Registered agent" means an agent of an entity which is authorized to receive service of any process, notice, or demand required or permitted by law to be served on the entity. The term includes a commercial registered agent and a noncommercial registered agent.

Do I need a Registered Agent?
RCW 23.95.405: Entities required to designate and maintain registered agent. (wa.gov)

The following shall designate and maintain a registered agent in this state:

  1. A domestic entity; and

  2. A registered foreign entity.

Who can be Registered Agent?
Anyone who consents to receive all legal mail and accept Service of process on behalf of the entity/business.

What are the different types of Registered Agent?
RCW 23.95 Article 4 creates two types of Registered Agent, the Commercial Registered Agent, and the Non-Commercial Registered Agent.

Commercial Registered Agent (CRA)
A person or a business may be listed as a commercial registered agent by filing a Commercial Listing Statement with the agent’s name, physical address located in Washington State, and an email address. Changes can be made to the Commercial Registered Agent information for all represented businesses by filing a Statement of Change by Commercial Registered Agent.

Once registered, Commercial Registered Agents are added to a public list which is made available on the Corporations and Filing System (CCFS) login page. Businesses filing with the Secretary of State can hire Commercial Registered Agents to provide registered agent services.

Non-Commercial Registered Agent
Any person or business with an address in WA who agrees to accept legal mail on behalf of the business. Businesses can appoint a position or office title to perform the services of the registered agent no matter who holds that position; the person holding the designated position at the time of filing must sign the Registered Agent Consent statement.

What is the Registered Office?
The office address where the Registered Agent must be located during business hours. This must be a physical address in Washington State. A mailing address in Washington State can be provided as well but is not required.

Does the Registered Agent address have to be in Washington State?
Yes, a registered agent is required to have a physical address (not a PO BOX) in the State so legal process can take place. The agent may also provide a PO Box address in addition to a physical address for receiving notice.

How do I resign as Registered Agent?
In order to resign as the Registered Agent you must file with the Secretary of State's office the Statement of Resignation and follow the procedures under RCW 23.95.445. You may also file online using the Corporations and Charities Filing System (CCFS).

Why am I still showing as the Registered Agent? I resigned!
Both the Corporations and Charities Filing System (CCFS) and our forms record the true effective date of the resignation. Please review the business’s filing history and verify the effective date of the resignation and the current date, or if another filing was filed, confirm the space between those filings is 31 days or more. Please contact this office if it has been more than 31 days since the Statement of Resignation’s filed date.

Why am I showing as the Registered Agent? I never agreed or signed consent!
RCW 23.95.415(2)
In the event any individual or entity has been appointed registered agent without consent, that individual or entity may deliver to the Secretary of State a notarized statement attesting to that fact, and the name shall immediately be removed from the records of the Secretary of State.

How do I change or update our Registered Agent?
To change the registered agent, for a business registered with the Washington Secretary of State, you can file a Statement of Change online. This service is free of charge. You may also update your Registered Agent information when you file the Annual Report. If it is too early to file the Annual Report (beyond 180 days of your expiration date) and you need to update other information (in addition to the Registered Agent), such as Governors, Principal Office, Nature of Business, etc. you can file an Amended Annual Report online.