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Frequently Asked Questions

Our Virtual Offices include a variety of services and features at a great price. These frequently asked questions are for both those who already use the Alliance service and those are considering an Alliance Virtual Office. Select any question to view the full answer on this page. If you cannot find an answer to your question, please contact us at 888.869.9494.



I want a virtual office. Where do I start?
What is an Alliance Virtual Office?
What is a CMRA and why do I need to complete Form 1583?
How do I find a notary to authorize CMRA Form 1583?
What are acceptable forms of ID when completing CMRA Form 1583?
What is a Virtual Phone System?
How Does the Live Receptionist Service Work?
How Does Alliance Count Live Answering Minutes?
How Does Alliance Count Virtual Phone System Minutes?
I'm having trouble logging in. How do I reset my password?
I have booked a meeting room online, but I haven't received my confirmation email.
What will my virtual office address look like? Do other businesses have the same address?
Can I view the virtual office before signing up?
Can I speak to the receptionists who will be handling my calls?
I need an occasional office or meeting room for a few hours per week. Can you help?
Do I have to be a virtual office customer to book a meeting room?
How often is my mail forwarded and what is the cost?
Is there a weight or size limit on parcels for the mail handling service?
Where can I obtain your Terms & Conditions?



I want a virtual office. Where do I start?

Are you looking for only a live receptionist to answer your calls?
Then start by selecting one of our Live Receptionist packages.

Are you only looking for an on-demand office?
Then start by choosing a location

Are you looking for both an on-demand office and a live receptionist?
It's probably easiest to start by choosing a location. After you've chosen your location, we will prompt you to choose your communications package.


Still confused? Call us at 888.869.9494. We'd be glad to help.


What is an Alliance Virtual Office?

An Alliance Virtual Office combines People, Place and Technology as the basis for a complete virtual office. These essential elements offer mobile and work-from-home professionals an experienced live receptionist to answer their phone, a place to meet or spend a day in a professional office space and a start-of-the-art virtual phone system.


What is a CMRA and why do I need to complete Form 1583?

CMRA stands for Commercial Mail Receiving Agency. Before you can sign up to a Virtual Office or activate a new Business Address in the U.S., you must complete, sign and notarize CMRA Form 1583 under U.S. Postal Service regulations.

When you set up a Virtual Office or a new Business Address with Alliance Virtual Offices, we become your commercial mail receiving agency (CMRA) and by completing Form 1583, you legally authorize us to handle mail on your behalf. This step safeguards your business against fraud and other concerns such as identity theft.

During the checkout process on wwwAllianceVirtualOffices.com we provide a pre-filled version of Form 1583 that you can fill out online. Afterwards, print it - you'll need this for the notarizing process (see below FAQ #4 for notary help).

Here, we show you how to complete Form 1583 quickly and easily:

  • Box 1: Print Date.
  • Box 2: Print your full name.
  • Boxes 3 & 4: Leave these sections blank - we will fill these sections out.
  • Box 5: Sign your name. This authorizes the business center to receive certified or restricted-delivery mail on your behalf.
  • Boxes 6 & 7: Print your name and home address (this should match the address shown on your photographic identification). Normally, this should match Box 2.
  • Box 8: (a,b) Write down two forms of ID that you will use to prove your identity. One must be photographic ID, such as a driver's license or passport. See FAQ #5 below for a list of acceptable ID documents.
  • Box 9: Print your Company Name.
  • Box 10: (a,b,c,d,e) Print your current business address (if you do not have one, list your home address again).
  • Box 11: Briefly describe the type of product or service your business provides, eg. "marketing", "legal advice", "stationery".
  • Boxes 12, 13 & 14: Fill in if applicable otherwise leave blank (for each name given we need 2 forms of ID).
  • Box 15: Notary's signature and seal (must be on this form). See FAQ #4 below for help.
  • Box 16: Your signature.

Ready to send? Once the form has been completed and notarized as explained above, send the original copy (NOT a photocopy) of the form along with photocopies of your ID documents to the Alliance Virtual Offices mailing address (see address here).

Alternatively, you can email a scanned version of the original form to us with copies of your ID documents. Please ensure all text and identification is legible. We will submit the form and identification as required by law, and keep a copy for our records.

How do I find a notary to authorize CMRA Form 1583?

Alliance Virtual Offices makes it easy to notarize your form. We use an online notary service called Notary Cam, which evaluates photographic identification and ensures all elements in the CMRA form are completed accurately.

Alliance Virtual's Notary Cam process takes a few minutes to complete. While signing-up, we'll help you schedule a short online meeting with a qualified notary using a web-cam - just like a normal video call – to complete and authorize the process.

Access Alliance Virtual Notary Cam here.

As you can see, you'll need to have your completed form saved on your computer. We recommended typing all relevant information into the boxes, printing the form, then scanning and saving it on your computer. Do not sign the document at this time - your notary will need to be present for the signature.

If you prefer to see a notary in-person, it is a relatively quick and inexpensive process. Some banks offer an in-house notary service for free. You can also find notaries by searching local directories or via an online search engine.

What are acceptable forms of ID when completing CMRA Form 1583?

Two separate forms of identification are required, one of which must be photographic ID. Acceptable forms of identification are as follows:

  • Valid driver's license or state non-driver's identification card: armed forces, government, university, student, or recognized corporate identification card (work ID);
  • Passport, alien registration card ('green card') or certificate of naturalization;
  • Current lease, mortgage or Deed of Trust;
  • Voter or vehicle registration card;
  • Home, health or vehicle insurance policy.

Please note: Social security cards, credit cards, and birth certificates are NOT acceptable forms of identification.

At least one ID must contain the home address listed in Section 7 of the form. If both ID's have addresses, they must both match the home address as stated in Section 7.

What is a Virtual Phone System?

A virtual phone system goes by many names: VoIP phone, Virtual PBX, Virtual PBX Phone System, Small Business Phone System, etc. Whatever the name, our feature-rich virtual phone system allows users to set up a Fortune 500 type phone system for less. From conference calls to dial by name directories, our phone system has it all. Best of all it can be managed by a non-technical person through our intuitive web interface.


How Does the Live Receptionist Service Work?

Our experienced, professional live receptionists have all been extensively trained to answer phones for a variety of companies, yet still answer each call in a personalized way. Once you are a client of Alliance, you can login to your Alliance management system and tell us exactly how you want your phone to be answered. Give us explicit instructions on how to answer your phone, where you are, where to reach you, etc. You can even tailor our responses depending on who calls. Every time someone calls your number our software will display this information to our receptionists. Additionally, our receptionists get to know each of our clients (and their frequent callers) and become familiar with the types of calls received. This focus enables us to serve our clients better.


How Does Alliance Count Live Answering Minutes?

Alliance counts Live Answering minutes by the second and we never round up!
You can view your Live Answering minutes in real-time through our client admin system.


How Does Alliance Count Virtual Phone System Minutes?

Most of Alliance Phone System plans are unlimited minutes, so this should not be of consequence to most of our clients. However, certain international calls may apply. For this, here is how we count minutes: Alliance does not count any calls against our clients' minutes if they are 5 seconds or less. Other than that, our system counts 30 second increments so a 25 second call is 30 seconds and a 55 second call is counted as 1 minute. Please note that these minutes are counted separately from our Live Answering system.



I'm having trouble logging in. How do I reset my password?

Clients of Alliance Virtual offices can log-in online to view and amend their account settings. If you're having problems signing in, click the 'Password Recovery' option and follow the instructions provided.


You will be asked to enter the email address you used when creating your account before answering a security question, or requesting a new password via email.


A message will be sent to that email address containing a link to reset your password. For security reasons the link can only be used for one hour. If you do not receive your email within five minutes, please check your spam folder.


If you continue to experience problems signing in to your account, please contact us and a member of the team will be happy to help.



I have booked a meeting room online, but I haven't received my confirmation email.

During online meeting room bookings, Alliance Virtual Offices liaises directly with the meeting room venue to verify your booking. This is only possible during business hours, so bookings made out of hours or in different time zones may result in a slight delay.


We will confirm your booking within one business day. However if you require a faster response or if you have any concerns about your reservation, please contact us and a member of the team will be happy to help.


Please also remember to check your email spam or junk folder.



What will my virtual office address look like? Do other businesses have the same address?

A virtual office uses a real building address, not a PO Box. The business center which provides your virtual office address houses multiple tenants under the same roof, so you will share the same address with any other tenants and virtual office clients using the business center building. Some virtual office operators include a unique PMB (Private Mail Box) number as part of your business address.


Your virtual office address will look something like this, with your unique PMB number (if applicable) shown in bold:

Company Name
17011 Beach Blvd.
Suite 900 - #123
Huntington Beach
CA 92647



Can I view the virtual office before signing up?

Yes. One of the Alliance Virtual Offices team will be happy to arrange an appointment for you to visit the building. Please contact us so we can arrange a time for you to visit the center.



Can I speak to the receptionists who will be handling my calls?

Yes. Our Live Receptionist service is carried out by a team of professionally trained receptionists based in our offices in Las Vegas, NV.


We would be happy to set up a call with our team manager who handles our Live Receptionist service, who will walk you through the process and explain how it works. Prior to going live with your Live Receptionist service, we will conduct test calls with you to ensure you are happy with the way company calls are answered.


At any time, you can contact us or log-in to your account to update your preferences or change the way calls are handled.



I need an occasional office or meeting room for a few hours per week. Can you help?

There are various options to consider, all of which Alliance Virtual Offices can help you with:


  1. Book a meeting room at your local center on a flexible basis and pay by the hour (some locations allow half-day or full-day bookings too). Meeting rooms can be booked online through Alliance Virtual Offices and you don't have to be an existing Virtual Office client to book. Find your nearest venue here.
  2. Book a Day Office at your local center. As above, start by searching for a local meeting room venue and select the 'Day Office' option (if applicable). Again, you don't have to be an existing customer to book a Day Office.
  3. Sign up to a Platinum Plus Virtual Office and get 16 hours inclusive meeting room usage every month (in most locations). Start by finding your local virtual office location and select either the 'Platinum Plus' or 'Platinum Plus With Live Receptionist' option. Please note that these inclusive hours must be used during regular business opening hours. In addition to 16 hours monthly meeting room access, you'll get all the benefits of a virtual office such as a company business address, mail handling, and more.


Do I have to be a virtual office customer to book a meeting room?

No. All meeting rooms and day offices listed on Alliance Virtual Offices are available to everyone, regardless of whether or not they are an existing Virtual Office client. Simply find your nearest meeting room venue on the Alliance Virtual Offices website and book online.


The Alliance Virtual Offices Customer Service Team is available to help with your booking, so please contact us anytime for help arranging your meeting room.



How often is my mail forwarded and what is the cost?

You can choose how often you wish to have mail forwarded. If you need mail forwarded monthly, it's $5 per month plus postage costs. Mail forwarded every 2 weeks is $10 per month plus postage, and once per week is $20 plus postage.


You can also call into your virtual office venue anytime and collect your mail in person, free of charge.



Is there a weight or size limit on parcels for the mail handling service?

Yes. Under normal circumstances we cannot accept any items exceeding 10 lbs (4.5 kgs) in weight, 18" in dimension, or 1 cubic foot in volume. Under special arrangements, virtual office clients may arrange for larger or heavier items to be delivered to the business center. Normally, the center manager will ask you to collect the package in person on the same day as delivery. Please contact us prior to arranging delivery so we can confirm whether or not the center is able to meet your requirements for larger items.


Alliance will not accept items containing any dangerous, live or perishable goods and shall be entitled in its absolute discretion to return uncollected items or refuse to accept any quantity of items it considers unreasonable or unlawful.



Where can I obtain your Terms & Conditions?

Please follow these links to access Alliance Virtual Offices' terms and conditions:

- Virtual Office Terms and Conditions
- Website Terms of Use