Agent – Definition, Examples and Types

Definition: AGENT A person who acts or exerts power is essentially an agent.

Examples of an agent in a Sentence

The couple worked with an agent who helped them plan their vacation.

The first known use of agent

The first known description of an agent was in the 15th century.

What Is an Agent?

An agent represents a client who acts on his behalf to negotiate and carry out any legal action. An agent is authorized to work on behalf of a principal in negotiating agreements with third parties. The agent generally has the power of decision-making.

There are two major types of agents in the business today: stockbrokers and attorneys.

Investors employ stockbrokers to make decisions about which stocks and bonds to buy and sell on their behalf. Stockbrokers represent their clients’ best interests; they do not earn commissions if they make transactions that go against their clients’ wishes. Stockbrokers who trade against their client’s interests can be sued for malpractice.

Attorneys represent clients in legal matters, such as litigation and contract disputes. Attorneys cannot legally represent one client if it creates a conflict of interest with another; for example, an attorney cannot defend two defendants charged with murder if one is innocent and the other is guilty. Attorneys must also maintain strict confidentiality regarding their clients’ affairs.

The agent is someone who represents someone else, called the principal.. An agent may perform transactions on behalf of the principal.

Types of Agents

1. Universal agents

Universal agents, also known as corporate officers, include those who have the authority to act on behalf of a company or group of companies for the well-being of those companies.

These officers generally have financial experience and may have worked for investment banks, brokerage firms, or consulting firms. In general, universal agents are responsible for the day-to-day running of a company and performing tasks assigned by their superiors.

2. General agents

General agents are paid to help people act, direct, write, produce, and edit a wide range of materials. They’re not experts in every field. Nor are they experts in every type of material.

Their job is to find individuals with relevant expertise who can act or edit for them. Anyone who has ever attempted to find a talent agent will know that it can be challenging.

3. Special agents

Special agents are the people who go out and try to sell contracts or products. They have a lot of competition in this field because the agents that work for real estate companies and brokerages do all they can to sell their services, so agents must stand out in some way. That way, they can get more business and can stay employed.

There are different levels of special agent training that an individual may go through depending on the size of their company and whether they are exclusively handling business or trade (real estate).

There are times when hiring an agent is the right thing to do. Agents can be paid either commission or hourly wage, depending on their work and what solutions they develop.

In addition, there are benefits to employing an agent—for example; they can find workers for your business faster than you can find them on your own or find workers who are cheaper than independent contractors. However, if you are doing routine tasks that don’t directly help your business run smoothly, hiring an agent is probably not worth it.

Special Considerations

The agency, by necessity, is an established concept in administrative law. It is also known as “agency of necessity” or “necessity agency.” It consists of an agent’s appointment to act in the name and in the stead of another person to deal with one or more matters when the latter is, in fact, unable for any reason to assume this representation.