This thread, points out in many places why it seems you can't use USPS with the 'real street addressing', or UPS Store, or PostalAnnex as your principal office address:

...in case of audit, they always want to meet at your principal office address.

Yet this article says the opposite:

...it's not an option for the majority of people to lease a physical store if we're are solely working online from home. The best option is getting your business address from a mailbox at a local UPS store. You can do this with any other location that offers mailboxes with the exception of the post office. You cannot use a P.O. Box number when applying.

Quora also has mixed messages on the topic.

Quickbooks also hints at it:

If you have an LLC or a corporation, be sure to ask the postal service for a real address rather than a P.O. box. For registration purposes, a business address must be a legally valid address—that is, a physical address.

But then USPS seems to say do not use their service for a business address on legal documents:

You may not use the street address option as your physical residence or place of business in legal documents.

So my understanding is that it is b~lu~rr~y. The technical definition (on the official SOS form) just says "No PO boxes". I think I have seen on other official documents the extra bit of it must be a "physical address". So to summarize:

  1. No PO Box.
  2. Must be physical address.

No explanation as to why this is the case is provided. From what it seems, USPS and the UPS Store simply have a "simple redirect" from 123 Main Street #456 to PO Box 456. So it's probably still a PO box under the hood, but from the "outside" it looks like a "physical address". So then it satisfies the two requirements above.

But then there is the added piece that I forgot, that you must keep your business documentation at your principal office address. But if it is a USPS address, then that doesn't seem possible. So then it seems that anyone who is using these 3 services (or others like Virtual Office spaces) are not adhering to the regulations. However, maybe if you simply put your office documents on a USB drive in your mailbox that is enough to qualify. But then that is probably not too secure of a thing to do.

Wondering if one can clarify this issue. On if you can use any of these 3 services as your principal business address, and so don't need to use your home address.

  • There's nothing saying that a business can't have 2 (or more) addresses. This is how my company works, I have a "corporate" address that any corporate type mail goes to, and a mailing address where I receive packages/customer mail from. – Ron Beyer Dec 6 at 14:11
  • I got that part, but still wondering about if the "principal business address" can be from one of these 3 services. – Lance Pollard Dec 6 at 14:15

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