Registered Agents - Definition
What is a Registered Agent?
Some registered agents are 'mom & pops' representing their own businesses while others are full time professional registered agents or Commercial Registered Agents.
Basically a registered agent:
- Represents businesses formed in Wyoming.
- Must have a physical address in Wyoming.
- Is required to be at their registered office address during normal business hours.
- Is served the legal documents in the event one of the businesses an agent represents gets sued.
Registered agents are required to keep certain information about the companies they represent on site at the registered office. Information includes:
- The name and address of directors, officers, limited liability company managers or members, or anyone else in a similar capacity. In other words, registered agents are required to keep information about key individuals associated with the businesses they represent.
- A "communications contact." This is a natural person who is authorized to receive communications from the registered agent and is not an employee of the registered agent. Their name, address, and business phone number must be kept with the registered agent. In short, registered agents are required to keep contact information on the businesses they represent in the event a state agency like the Secretary of State's Office or law enforcement needs to contact a particular business.
What are Commercial Registered Agents?
- Commercial Registered Agents are registered agents, just like those described above, that represent more than 10 businesses in Wyoming.
- Once registered agents reach the threshold of representing 10 businesses, they are required to register as a Commercial Registered Agent with the Secretary of State's Office before they can represent additional businesses.
- The same requirements stated above for registered agents also apply to commercial registered agents.
Currently there are just under 450 commercial registered agents registered with the Secretary of State's Office. Of those approximately 450 agents, several represent thousands of businesses which would all be registered to the commercial registered agent's address. Commercial registered agents take many forms in Wyoming. Several are large multi-state companies representing businesses in several states. And some are attorneys or accountants representing their clients' businesses. So it is not uncommon to have anywhere from a few hundred to a few thousand businesses registered at any one particular address in Wyoming.
A good analogy would be to compare commercial registered agents with accountants. Accountants are hired by businesses for tax preparation or other fiscal responsibilities. Accountants may have a few clients or several hundred clients, all of which have certain records kept on file at the accountant's office. Registered agents or commercial registered agents are similar in that registered agents are hired by businesses forming in Wyoming as the "point person." Registered agents are the face of the company they represent.
Commercial Registered Agents are subject to compliance audits, especially if there is question as to whether or not they are available when they agree to be; and if they are keeping the required information.
If you have further questions about registered agents please contact our Compliance Division at 307-777-7370 or via email at Compliance@wyo.gov.