Illinois Registered Agent

All limited liability companies (LLCs) and corporations in Illinois are required to appoint a registered agent.

Your Illinois registered agent can be yourself, a partner, or a registered agent service. Many small business owners use a service because they:

  • Offer a higher degree of privacy 
  • Reduce risk
  • Give owners the freedom to be absent from their registered office address during regular business hours

We’ll help you make the right choice for your business.

Recommended: Northwest Registered Agent offers free registered agent services with LLC or corporation formation ($29 plus state fees).

Choosing a Registered Agent in Illinois

An Illinois registered agent serves as your business’s point of contact with the state and will also receive service of process in the event that a lawsuit is filed against you. 

Appointing a registered agent in Illinois is a legal requirement for both LLCs and corporations. This can be a registered agent service or an individual, so long as they:

  • Are at least 18 years old.
  • Have a physical address in Illinois.
  • Are always available during regular business hours at their registered office address. 

Illinois Registered Agent Services

  • Flexibility: Working with a third-party service — instead of acting as your own agent — will allow you to operate with more flexibility on a day-to-day basis. This is because you will not need to be present at your business’s address during normal business hours. 
  • Privacy: Since your registered agent’s name will become publicly searchable as soon as your LLC or corporation is registered, you can choose to hire a third-party service in order to protect your private information. 
  • Legal compliance: Several service providers offer additional compliance-related features, such as annual report reminders. 

Let’s Find the Right Registered Agent for Your Business

We’ve tested and reviewed the most popular registered agent services.

Can You Be Your Own Registered Agent?

Yes you can.

Being your own agent can be a good idea if you are operating with a relatively small budget. This is because it can be done free of charge, and so you will not need to pay for a third-party service (i.e., around $90 per year.). 

Having said that, it is important to consider the drawbacks of acting as your own agent before making a final decision. 

For example, acting as your agent will mean that you will need to always be physically present in your business’s address during regular business hours; you will also be solely responsible for going through all paperwork sent to you via the SOS. 

If you are forming a new LLC, it will make sense to hire a formation service that includes a free year of registered agent services. These can charge as little as $29 per formation (excluding state fees). 

If you are forming an LLC but prefer to file the paperwork yourself and act as your own registered agent, take a look at our How to Start an LLC in Illinois guide.

Best Illinois Registered Agent Service

Northwest is our highest-rated registered agent service based on overall quality and transparent pricing. Northwest offers a seamless user experience and best-in-industry customer service and privacy protection

When you choose Northwest as your registered agent service, you'll get an online account to access essential documents, mail forwarding, and business address services. 

Northwest’s virtual mailbox service will scan your mail and forward it to you electronically. This means that you can keep track of your mail no matter where you are in the world.

Registered Agent Standard

$125 Annually

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LLC Formation + 1 yr Free Registered Agent Service

One Year Free Registered Agent with LLC Formation $29 (Plus State Fees)

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Benefits of Using a Registered Agent Service

Many businesses choose to use a registered agent service when they form an LLC. This is because it can offer a number of benefits, including:

  • Legal compliance: A registered agent service will ensure that you don’t miss an important legal document or notification (e.g., service of process, etc.) as a result of not being in your office (or as a result of a human error). 
  • Improved privacy: If you act as your own agent, your name and address will become public record on the Illinois Business Search. Using a registered agent service will help keep your information private.
  • Discretion: When it comes to legal disputes, you will want to avoid receiving lawsuit-related documents in front of your clients and/or some employees. 
  • Better storage: Your service will generally scan all documents received and upload them online in PDF form. This means that you will always be able to access them online, and won’t have to worry about losing an important document. 

A registered agent service can also be beneficial if you plan to expand into other states as a foreign LLC. This is because, otherwise, you would need to find an individual or business entity that is a resident — or is allowed to transact business — in each state that you want to register in. 

How to Elect a Registered Agent in Illinois

For your LLC in Illinois, you will be required to elect your registered agent when you complete your LLC’s Articles of Organization

The Articles of Organization is the LLC formation document that you will need to file with the Secretary of State’s Department of Business Services in order to form your business (Form LLC-5.5).

Electing a Registered Agent Online

You can form your LLC online at the Illinois Secretary of State website ($150 filing fee required). Your registered agent’s name and contact information will be requested when you file your LLC’s Articles of Organization online.

An image of the online LLC filing form for the state of Illinois

Electing a Registered Agent by Mail

To form your LLC by mail, download the Articles of Organization form ($150 filing fee required), fill out the required fields, and submit a physical copy to the Idaho Secretary of State. You’ll be asked to provide your registered agent’s information under the number 3 on page 1:

An image of the manual LLC filing form for the state of Illinois

How to Change Your Registered Agent in Illinois

If you want to appoint a new agent, you will need to file a Statement of Change form with the Illinois Secretary of State.

Different forms can be required depending on how your business is registered:

You can file your completed form by mail or in person. LLCs, corporations, and nonprofits can also complete their forms online.

File Online:

Corporation and Nonprofit

File by Mail or In Person:

Corporation and Nonprofit

Secretary of State
Department of Business Services
501 S. Second Street, Room 350
Springfield, IL 62756 

Limited Liability Companies

Secretary of State
Department of Business Services
Limited Liability Division
501 S. Second Street, Room 351
Springfield, IL 62756 

Limited Partnerships

Secretary of State
Department of Business Services
Limited Liability Division
501 S. Second Street, Room 357
Springfield, IL 62756

For more information read our how to change registered agents in Illinois guide.

Illinois Registered Agent FAQs

Can I be my own registered agent in Illinois?

Yes, you can, although this is seldom recommended.

This is because being your own agent will inevitably come with several drawbacks (e.g., needing to be physically present at your business’s address during regular business hours, etc.). 

Your name and address will also become publicly available as soon as your Illinois business is registered.

See our Illinois Registered Agent review for more information. 

How do I appoint a registered agent in Illinois?

You will need to appoint a registered agent when you are completing your business’s formation document.

For Illinois LLCs, this is Section 4 of the Articles of Organization (Form LLC-5.5).

How do I register an LLC agent in Illinois?

All Illinois registered agents must be appointed in Section 4 of the LLC’s Articles of Organization (before it is filed with the Secretary of State).

This can be yourself, a registered agent service, or an LLC partner. 

We recommend going with a third-party service due to the fact that it’s the most time-efficient approach.

Can a registered agent address be the same as a business address in Illinois?

Yes, although this is generally not recommended.

This is because — unless you are acting as your own registered agent — your registered agent’s address will not be in your control, and you will need to fill out a USPS Form 1583 in order to authorize your agent to receive mail for you. 

See our How to Get a Virtual Address for LLC Formation article for more information.  


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