10 Best LLC Formation Services: Profit, Not Paperwork 
The Biggest Comparison of LLC Formation Services Ever Done
Starting an LLC is a dream for many, whether it’s a simple side hustle or a major enterprise. We’ve taken some of the hassles out of the process by looking at the best LLC formation services out there, evaluating their features, prices, and more.
Sure, anyone can form a business on their own. Anyone who has done so can also tell you that the process is often fraught with time-sucking pitfalls and potentially costly setbacks. That’s why many choose to have a professional service do the work for them.
We’ve spent hundreds of hours putting together a list of 10 of the most popular LLC formation service providers available to help you decide which is right for you and your new business endeavor.
With the info we’ve provided, you’ll discover what fits your budget, your timeframe, and your overall needs. While all of these companies offer some of the same basic services necessary to form an LLC, each has its own unique style and approach. Read on to find the one that best suits your needs.
- Wide range of plans and add-ons to fit any size business
- Free accounting tool with all plans
- Prices start at $0 + state fees
Can an LLC formation service really suit everyone? Yes! ZenBusiness works for side hustles and corporations alike. No matter how big or small your LLC is, it can serve all your needs with its value-packed subscription plans.
ZenBusiness offers free tax consultations with all its plans, including the “free” one that only costs you your state filing fees. You’ll receive a 30-minute phone consultation with a tax professional from ZenBusiness’ partner, 1-800Accountant. You’ll get to know your tax requirements, as well as what to expect come tax paying time.
Another freebie you get with all ZenBusiness LLC formation plans is its Worry-Free Compliance service. This provides you with automated reminders for annual reports, license renewals, and other paperwork, keeping your business compliant with your state.
All plans come with another bonus, the ZenBusiness Money Essential – a financial management tool that helps you track expenses. An upgrade version that lets you also track income, invoicing, mileage, taxes, and more called ZenBusiness Money Pro, is available as a paid add-on on all plans. If you’re not sure what you might need, you can sign up for its free 30-day trial and compare.
One more thing to mention is that after going through ZenBusiness’ very easy signup process, you’ll receive access to your user-friendly dashboard. There’s an app for both Android and iOS that allows you to access your account from your mobile device, as well as through the web-based portal.
- Business formation with creative services
- Graphic design and social media marketing included
- Prices start at $0 + state fees
The major benefit of Tailor Brands is its range of visual design and marketing tools and add-on services. You get a whole lot more than basic LLC formation, including graphic design, brand growth materials, social media tools, and website development. (In fact, if you don’t need all that, you may want to look elsewhere on this list.)
Tailor Brands provides a free logo creation tool, and you can unlock its advanced features if you pay for the top-tier Elite package. This can help to jump-start your company’s online presence while your paperwork is being filed.
Once your logo, business card, and brand guidelines are taken care of, the Elite plan can get your business online, too. It includes a free domain name for a year alongside a website builder. And then there’s Tailor Brands’ social media post tool to make digital marketing and brand awareness campaigns easier and more attractive.
If all you want is LLC formation services, you’ll probably only need the free plan. However, with the middle-tier Essential plan, Tailor Brands will expedite processing your paperwork, provide you with an Operating Agreement, and send you annual compliance reminders. Your Employer Identification Number (EIN) and Registered Agent will cost you extra no matter what Tailor Brands LLC plan you purchase, but you can also take care of these yourself.
- Personalized customer support
- Useful add-ons to help manage your LLC
- Prices start at $0 + state fees
When you’re just starting out, it’s always nice to feel like you have somebody in your corner, helping you along the way. Swyft Filings’ LLC filing process can be done with a minimum of paperwork, making it an ideal choice for new business owners.
Getting your LLC off the ground with Swyft Filings is easy with its user-friendly website and application form. Signing up takes mere minutes, and Swyft Filings’s client account dashboard is extremely user-friendly.
Swyft Filings can help you keep things running smoothly, too. With every plan, you get a free 14-day trial of ComplianceGuard, which helps you maintain state business compliance by providing you with annual reports, meeting minutes, and notifications of when your filings are due.
There’s also the business licensing package that provides you with all you need to register with any necessary local and state agencies to operate your business legally. You get a list of what you need to file, the documents themselves, as well as who to send them to when completed.
Finally, Swyft Filings also offers personalized support, with agents familiar with your specific account.
- Installment payment plans available
- Year-round legal assistance available by subscription
- Prices start at $0 + state fees
LegalZoom has been offering legal services to both personal and business clients for over 20 years, making it one of the most established business service providers on our list. If your operation requires you to keep a close eye on legal issues like contracts or compliance, LegalZoom may just be the LLC formation service for you.
While many service providers create pre-packaged plans that may include features you don’t need, LegalZoom gives you the option to create your own package. It offers pre-made plans, too, but the real benefit of LegalZoom’s service is its customizability. You can get what you want and can avoid paying for features you won’t use.
A valuable add-on available from LegalZoom is its Business Advisory Plan. For a yearly fee, you can receive year-round legal assistance. It’s much more cost-effective than LegalZoom’s one-off legal services, especially for businesses that rely on contracts, agreements, copyrights, and other heavily legal business documentation.
Lastly, LegalZoom’s plans and services all come with the option to pay in installments, which can make the services your business needs more affordable.
- Local offices in every state and Washington, DC
- Operating Agreement included free
- Prices start at $39 + state fees
Would you like a personal touch to your LLC formation and maintenance service? Northwest Registered Agent offers just that. It has over 900 Corporate Guides scattered across the country working from real offices in every state as well as the District of Columbia. Every one of those Guides is a Registered Agent, too. Sign on with Northwest Registered Agent and one will be assigned to you and your business.
The personal touch continues with Northwest Registered Agent’s program called Privacy by Default. The company uses the local offices’ addresses and its payment info in place of yours whenever possible in your filing paperwork. It also cuts out third parties, having its own servers, as well as IT, customer service, legal, and other teams. And Northwest Registered Agent promises never to sell your data.
There are three choices when using Northwest Registered Agent’s services, but only one paid plan. There’s a free DIY program, where you’re supplied with the required forms and then you do all the work. There’s a “walkthrough” plan, where the company will advise you and provide you with an account dashboard – but again, the work is on you. And then there’s the paid plan with lots of add-ons and upsells.
One major benefit of signing up with Northwest Registered Agent is the same-day processing feature. Your account is handed over to one of your local Corporate Guides who immediately starts working on your paperwork – even if it’s a weekend.
Another benefit is that every plan includes an Operating Agreement, something others charge extra for, and that some states require an LLC to have by law.
- Package forwarding available
- Notarize documents from anywhere in the world
- Prices start at $37 + state fees
BusinessAnywhere gives expats, non-citizens, and digital nomads an opportunity to register and run a business while staying location-independent. The wide range of services and simple, easy-to-use dashboard take a lot of the hassles out of running a business without the need for a home base.
All three of BusinessAnywhere’s plans include one year of Registered Agent services and automated compliance reminders. Packages Two and Three add more valuable services. Package Two includes EIN filing and a customized Operating Agreement, while Package Three, BusinessAnywhere’s top-tier plan, includes a virtual mailbox with a physical address and worldwide mail and package forwarding.
The online notary service will cost you an extra fee per document, but this could really benefit home-based business owners and side-hustlers. You don’t always work typical business hours, no matter where in the world you are. BusinessAnywhere provides you with an e-notary that doesn’t keep “regular” hours either, allowing you to get your important documents notarized without worrying about the day or time.
But there’s one drawback to BusinessAnywhere’s services. While your first year is fairly reasonably priced for the services you receive, renewal fees can be quite high. And you still have to pay your annual state fees on top of that.
- Next-day filing available on all plans
- Grant programs to help you get started
- Prices start at $0 + state fees
Sometimes, easy-on-the-budget services only offer the very barest of necessities. Incfile is a little different, in that it provides the basics and a whole lot more, while keeping its prices reasonable. With Incfile, you pay one-time fees, with no hidden costs, and you get a lot of value for your money.
Incfile offers 3 plans, and the entry-level Silver plan is free, minus your state filing fees. All plans, including the free Silver, include next-day filing of your paperwork. And that Silver plan includes a Registered Agent for a year. It’s a good way to form your LLC for a small out-of-pocket expense.
The Gold and Platinum plans offer more, of course, and cost more, but they’re still very reasonably priced. With both of those, you receive an Operating Agreement, your EIN, lifetime compliance alerts for reporting, and a free 30-minute consultation with a tax expert.
The Platinum plan offers a package to get your business online, a library of free business contract templates, and free expedited filing with your state. Again, a lot of good stuff for a wallet-friendly price.
If you’re really cash-strapped, you can apply to receive one of Incfile’s grants: one for students in US high schools, trade schools, and universities, and another for adults who are no longer in school. The adult grant program also includes a free Platinum plan for a year. You can get your dream startup off the ground while Incfile foots the bill.
Just don’t expect a lot of assistance from its less-than-helpful support team. The support agents are the only disadvantage to using Incfile’s services.
Most, if not all, of the companies on this list offer more than just LLC business formation services. They offer S- and C-corp and non-profit formation, trademark services, or expense tracking, for example. BetterLegal goes a step further by offering a package aimed at new businesses.
BetterLegal only offers one plan for LLC formation. It includes your filing, an EIN, an Operating Agreement, and banking resolution paperwork. One thing BetterLegal’s plan doesn’t include is a Registered Agent. That will cost you either a monthly or yearly subscription, or you can handle this responsibility on your own.
Need to get your business online or create an e-commerce store? BetterLegal includes a free website, social media marketing tools, and for e-commerce, online ordering fulfillment and inventory tools.
One thing to note: BetterLegal outsources your website design to Square, so technically, you could get the same free package through Square without BetterLegal. That seems to be a theme with BetterLegal, too. It outsources a lot of its “features” including the accounting and legal services.
As one of the pricier options available, BetterLegal is probably best for partnerships, where the expenses can be shared, rather than solopreneurs trying to bear it all alone. And, honestly, much of what BetterLegal outsources will likely be handled in-house in the case of larger corporations.
Inc Authority isn’t the fanciest nor the most feature-filled option for your LLC formation, but if you don’t need much, then it will do the job just fine – and possibly for just the price of your state’s filing fees. Inc Authority offers a “free” plan that’s a pretty good deal, if you don’t want or need much.
Inc Authority’s free plan includes a Registered Agent for a year, a free EIN, your paperwork filed, a business name check, and tax planning consultation. Anything else costs extra.
Pricing is not transparent. You have to go through the ordering process or contact support to find out just how much the services you need will cost you.
Inc Authority’s optional upsells include:
- An Operating Agreement
- A legal documents package with ownership certificates
- Minutes and resolutions forms
- Expedited processing within 24 hours of placing your order
- Online presence package with domain name, website creator, and email address
- Unlimited phone and email support
- A business checking account and credit card through Bank of America
All of these together will cost you well over $500. Of course, you may not want or need all of them. Just know that the costs can quickly add up.
Another weakness with Inc Authority is that its Registered Agent service carries a hefty renewal fee after the first year is up. If all you need is a very basic package, Inc Authority might be worth a look. If you need more, others on this list might suit you better.
If you’re just starting out, and have a lot of cash to invest in your new business endeavor, then MyCompanyWorks could be an LLC formation service to consider. Its plans are feature-filled, and its features are geared to new business owners, but its prices are a bit higher than others on this list.
One of MyCompanyWorks’ best features is the Startup Wizard dashboard, which you’ll find on its fairly standard client dashboard. It’s a checklist of all the things you have yet to do to get your business going after filing your LLC formation papers. Obtaining an EIN, banking accounts, local and state licenses and registrations – it’s all there so you don’t miss a step.
Other newbie-friendly features are the company’s online resources and support team. There’s a library filled with digital download support materials that include state-specific guides for every US state, as well as info for non-citizens and expats. The MyCompanyWorks blog has many insightful and helpful articles, and the support team is extremely helpful and reliable, too.
The one big downside of MyCompanyWorks is its prices. Your EIN and Registered Agent services cost extra. And not just a little extra. Adding them to the basic plan more than triples its fee before adding in your state fees. The Entrepreneur plan that includes those two services is more than twice the cost of the basic plan without those services added (again, without your state fees).
Granted, the basic plan offers same-day filing and an Operating Agreement. It just feels excessive to pay a significantly higher price for two services that most LLCs require. You can handle these tasks on your own, but if you prefer to enlist a company’s assistance, you’d likely want all the help you can get for the money you’re investing.
How Do We Evaluate LLC Formation Services?Here at Website Planet, we strive to give you honest reviews based on research and experience because we believe you deserve nothing less than the best value for your money. To get below the surface and the marketing hype, we used several criteria to review these LLC formation services.
FeaturesWhen it comes to forming your LLC, there’s a lot you can do on your own, especially filing your state paperwork. So when looking at the best LLC formation services to recommend, we took into consideration the kind of features each one offered and what value those features provide you. We researched to discover which companies added a Registered Agent service, provided an EIN, and how quickly each filed your paperwork after processing your order. We also awarded bonus points for companies that offered unique or exceptional services, like Tailor Brands’ design and marketing options. Additional features considered included formation services for other business entities like S-corps and nonprofits, help for non-US citizens and expats, and state-specific requirements such as Operating Agreements.
Ease of UseNot even free services are worth the bother if using them is just too difficult. That meant measuring the ease of use of our top ten LLC formation services had to be a priority. We looked at everything from website UX, to the online ordering process, to client dashboard use. And then we went a step further, uncovering the quickest filing times (even if as a paid add-on). For example, ZenBusiness can provide a filing turnaround of 1-2 days. We also tried to identify the most beginner-friendly services, as well as those best for the veteran, experienced business owner. And, we checked whether providers offered support or sign-ups in languages other than English, such as Spanish.
Plans and PricingWhen determining which provided the best value for money, we investigated each company’s plans and fees. What fee structure did each one use: one-time fees, subscription fees, or a combination? What “basic” services were included in each plan? And how did those fees stack up against other companies’ fees? We also looked at upsells, add-ons, and renewal fees. Remember, if you view a Registered Agent as an additional expense, it’s crucial for you to be aware of it. Similarly, if you’re receiving something highly valuable, such as a complimentary tax or legal consultation, you should also be informed about it. Moreover, consider whether any service truly holds its value if you’re required to pay a substantial renewal fee within a year. To make the most informed decision, it’s imperative that you have a clear understanding of the expected expenses.
SupportWe all need a helping hand from time to time, and a new venture like forming your first LLC can turn into a frustrating adventure rather quickly. To assist you in the best way possible, we tried to evaluate each company’s support through personal experience. We actually called, chatted online, sent tickets, and wrote emails, all to give support teams a thorough examination. Our first look was at the types of support each company provides. Next, we checked the availability of that support. Are they really there at 11:00 pm on a Saturday? Then, we tested response times. Maybe they aren’t there late night weekends, but if not, how long does it take to answer your email? And lastly, just how helpful are they? If they can’t help us, they probably can’t help you, either.
What should I look for in an LLC formation service?This really depends on your budget and your specific needs. However, ZenBusiness can give you all of the LLC-related services you need, with very competitive rates. Generally speaking, you should look for quick turnaround times on filing your paperwork, additional services like a Registered Agent (every LLC needs one, although you may be able to do this yourself), and state-specific requirements such as an Operating Agreement or compliance filings. Lastly, make sure that the services you need can be provided at a price you can afford.
How long does it take to form an LLC?There’s no quick or easy answer to this question, as processing times vary from company to company and from state to state. Some states offer an additional expedited filing fee, too, where they will process your paperwork quicker than for just the standard fees. For example, ZenBusiness can have your paperwork filed in 1 to 2 days. As you’re dealing with a US state agency, time of year and whether or not there are a lot of other outstanding filings will have an effect on filing times. You can expect anywhere from a matter of days to a month, sometimes even more.
What documents are required to form an LLC?While requirements vary from state to state, the most common documents required to form an LLC are:
- Articles of Organization: the paperwork you file with the state
- Registered Agent acceptance: who your agent is and where they are located
- Business licenses and permits: your local and state registrations
- Operating Agreement: only some states require them, but they’re considered important by many business and legal advisors
Why should I use an LLC formation service?An LLC formation service offers you several advantages. Their employees are experts at completing and filing formation paperwork, so you’re assured it’s completed and filed correctly. You can also save time by having the work done for you. You can save money using an LLC formation service as opposed to hiring an attorney. And lastly, most services offer professional support and other services to assist with managing your company after its formation. For example, Tailor Brands offers marketing and creative services alongside LLC formation.
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