How to Get a Registered Agent in Montana

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Swyft Filings is committed to providing accurate, reliable information to help you make informed decisions for your business. That's why our content is written and edited by professional editors, writers, and subject matter experts. Learn more about how Swyft Filings works, our editorial team and standards, what our customers think of us, and more on our trust page.

Alexis Konovodoff
Written by Alexis Konovodoff
Written byAlexis Konovodoff
Updated September 11, 2023
Edited by Zachary Ace Aiuppa
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One of your responsibilities as a Montana business owner is to ensure your company abides by state laws. Among other compliance requirements, your business must elect a registered agent to receive legal paperwork from authorities, such as a process server. 

This article will tell you what a Montana registered agent is, the process to elect or change one for your business, and how third-party registered agent providers can benefit your organization.

Key Takeaways 

  • To comply with Montana laws, you need a registered agent with a physical address.

  • A Montana registered agent for LLC, corporation, or nonprofit must be an adult and a Montana resident.

  • A third-party Montana registered agent service offers numerous benefits to business owners, including receiving business documents privately.

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What Is a Registered Agent? 

A registered agent is a business or individual with a physical address who receives legal paperwork on your behalf. 

All business entities in Montana must have a registered agent and provide information about their registered agents on their formation documents. For instance, if you’re a limited liability company (LLC), you need a registered agent for your Montana LLC to remain in good standing with the government. 

Business owners also need to update the details about their agents if changes arise to maintain their role correctly and avoid issues with the receipt of legal documents.[1]

Registered Agent Responsibilities 

A registered agent helps your business maintain compliance by sending reminders and informing you of legal notices. More importantly, they’re essential for managing and tracking all your documents and procedures. This allows you to take timely action and resolve problems before they hurt your reputation or client relationships.

Here are the primary responsibilities of a registered agent:[2]

  • Filling out tax forms and performing corporate filings for the public record

  • Accepting legal documents during regular business hours at a physical address

  • Managing your annual report and other government correspondence

  • Receiving service of process and notices of lawsuits

  • Delivering notifications promptly

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Choosing Your Montana Registered Agent 

If your business doesn’t have a registered agent, it can lose its good standing with the state of Montana. But you may encounter just as many problems if your agent doesn’t meet specific requirements. Here’s what you should look out for when choosing yours.

Montana Registered Agent Requirements 

  • Be over the age of 18

  • Reside in Montana

  • Include a registered office address that’s a physical location in the state

  • Be able to receive legal documents during regular business hours

If you choose to hire a business entity as your registered agent, you must also disclose their business name and address for the public record when you provide their details on your formation documents.[3] 

Can I Be My Own Registered Agent in Montana? 

There are a few reasons you might consider appointing yourself as your registered agent. Primarily, it lets you save money upfront and avoid paying provider fees. Government authorities will also deliver the paperwork to you, meaning you are the only person inspecting your legal documents.

However, being your own Montana registered agent has both advantages and disadvantages. While it might make sense initially, you should weigh both sides before appointing yourself on your formation documents.



• Lower upfront costs

• Risk missing important documents

• No need to train an employee

• Risk incurring hefty fees and penalties

• No one else sees your paperwork

• Own responsibility for updating address and other information

• Lose privacy from listing address on the public record

• Limit working hours and location flexibility

• Create a need for organizational skills and time for mail handling

The main disadvantage of being a self-designated registered agent is the risk. You face severe consequences if you miss a legal document or compliance deadline, forget to update your registered address, or leave the office unoccupied during regular business hours. These can vary from harsh fines and penalties to the government outright shutting down your company. 

Benefits of a Third-Party Registered Agent 

You can make compliance-related matters much more manageable by leaving the work of a registered agent to a third-party Montana registered agent service. Here are a few reasons business owners should outsource this role.

No Missed Deadlines

You may miss a crucial deadline because you failed to receive a legal document. As a consequence, you run the risk of not abiding by Montana laws, which can incur fines and penalties.

The risk is far lower with a third-party registered agent. They will alert you about important dates several business days in advance and send annual report reminders so you can handle specific tasks on time.

Privacy Remains Intact

Most business owners want to separate their personal life from their business life, but this requires you to have a registered office address that doesn’t overlap with your home. 

The best Montana registered agent providers receive legal correspondence at an address separate from your business or home location. They prepare the documents on your behalf before consulting you, adding an extra layer of protection by eliminating the need to disclose personal details.

Foreign Qualification

You need a registered agent to maintain good standing with the Montana Secretary of State, but several other states also have this requirement. If you choose to expand into another state through foreign qualification, there’s a high chance you’ll need to hire a registered agent there. 

For instance, suppose your company obtains revenue from areas outside Montana. In this case, you’ll need a registered agent for every state in which you generate income. The same holds if your company pays payroll taxes in other locations or wants to apply for a license in a different state.

Working with a registered agent service is a great way to address your foreign qualification needs. Many services are available in all 50 states, allowing you to easily get an address without purchasing another office space. Your provider will also handle any change documents on your behalf, minimizing the risk of non-compliance.

Free Your Schedule

Registered agent providers are well-versed in foreign qualification procedures, so you never have to abandon your money-making activities to stay compliant. This knowledge allows you to start operations in new states faster and focus on your strategic duties.

Moreover, you can manage your schedule however you choose because you don’t have to be at your office from nine to five. The agent acts as the point of contact on your behalf, freeing up your schedule.

Online Tools

Some registered agent companies simplify access to vital documents by uploading them to online storage solutions. When you receive critical compliance notifications, foreign qualification information, and annual reports, your provider can send them directly to an online account. This offers seamless access to valuable company data.

Real-Time Scanning

Registered agent providers prevent critical documents from being lost by scanning paperwork as soon as it arrives. They store the files on a computer or other type of storage to ensure you can access the documents at your convenience.

Legislative Changes

Montana laws change from time to time. Third-party registered agents take on the duty of monitoring relevant legislative changes to eliminate any problems. This benefit is especially convenient if you operate in multiple states simultaneously and don’t have the time to learn about different legislatures.

Teaming up with a third-party registered agent is incredibly beneficial, but it can be confusing if you’ve never done it before. Luckily, our registered agent service makes the integration easy by fulfilling your registered agent requirements and handling all the paperwork for your business formation.

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How to Set Up Your Montana Registered Agent 

A reliable Montana registered agent provider can help business owners avoid many issues, including non-compliance, limited privacy, and busy schedules. If you want to yield the benefits of a Montana LLC, nonprofit, or corporation registered agent, here’s how you can set one up.

Electing a Montana Registered Agent 

The Montana Secretary of State requires you to provide information about the person or business entity performing as your registered agent when submitting your Articles of Incorporation. Also known as the Articles of Organization, these papers are crucial formation documents for every business.

When you’re ready to elect your Montana registered agent, we can handle all the filing hassle on your behalf and fulfill your registered agent requirement. Otherwise, you can file in person or by mail using this address:

Montana Capitol Building, Rm 260

P.O. Box 202801

Helena, MT 59620-2801

The state fees are currently $70.

Changing a Montana Registered Agent 

If you already have a registered agent in Montana but are trying to switch to a different provider, you must fill out a change form.

We can help you change your registered agent seamlessly in minutes, or you can consult the Secretary of State website for the form you need to complete. Once you provide the necessary information, you can submit it in person or by mail to the address above.

There are no state fees for changing a registered agent. You can also make the change when submitting your annual report.

Why Choose Swyft Filings as Your Montana Registered Agent
  • Avoid Penalties: Every business is legally required to have a registered agent in any state where it operates.

  • Prioritize Your Privacy: We go on record with the government so you don’t have to, meaning any legal actions come to us, not your home or office.

  • Stay Flexible: We are always available at a physical address during business hours, so you’ll never miss an official notice.

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Who can be a Montana registered agent?

Montana has specific requirements on who can be your registered agent. Individuals must be over 18 and have a physical street address in Montana. The registered agent must also be able to receive legal documents during regular business hours.

How much does a registered agent in Montana cost?

If you appoint yourself, a family member, or an employee, your business doesn’t need to pay anything for its registered agent. A registered agent service provider costs around $100 to $300 per year, but many business owners see this as a minimal expense considering the value of their services.

How do I change my registered agent in Montana?

It’s easy to change your Montana registered agent. You must complete a statement of change of agent or address form and submit it to the Secretary of State. There are no filing fees. 

How do I find a registered agent in Montana?

Business owners generally perform an online search, consult the Montana business search database, or ask other business owners for recommendations when searching for a professional registered agent service. 

What is a Montana registered office?

A Montana registered office is the physical Montana address where your agent is available during standard business hours to receive documents. The state does not allow a registered agent to use a P.O. box or mail forwarding service as a registered office address.

What’s the difference between a registered agent and a resident agent or statutory agent?

The terms registered agent, resident agent, and statutory agent are different names for the same role. The only major difference is that they emphasize specific aspects of this role.

  • Statutory agent: A statute requires you to have a registered agent in your company.

  • Resident agent: Your registered agent must be a resident of the state of Montana.

  • Registered agent: You provide information to register your agent in your formation documents.

What is a registered agent service?

A registered agent service is a third party that fulfills the registered agent requirements on behalf of the business. Swyft Filings offers a reliable registered agent service that maintains your privacy, provides immediate access to vital documents, and gives you more time to focus on your business.


  1. Secretary of State Montana. “About Registered Agents.” Accessed December 23, 2022.

  2. Montana Legislature. “Montana Code Annotated 2021 – Duties of Registered Agent.” Accessed December 23, 2022.

  3. Montana Legislature. “Montana Code Annotated 2021 – Appointment of Registered Agent.” Accessed December 23, 2022.

Originally published on March 28, 2023, and last edited on September 11, 2023.
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