Are you in the process of forming a limited liability company (LLC) but you don’t want to go the full DIY route?
In this CorpNet vs LegalZoom comparison, you’ll find the info you need to make the right pick. Read on to find out which company should handle your LLC formation.
LegalZoom and CorpNet are two of the most popular LLC formation services available, and they are both entirely capable of forming a compliant LLC. However, LegalZoom does have some advantages that make them our preferred option for the majority of our readers.
Most importantly, LegalZoom’s pricing is more reasonable than CorpNet’s. In addition, LegalZoom has a serious advantage when it comes to experience and longevity.
Is There a Better Alternative? While CorpNet and LegalZoom both have plenty of positives, neither of them are among our absolute favorite companies in this industry.
In general, we prefer to use an LLC service like ZenBusiness, IncFile, or Northwest Registered Agent. They include a full year of registered agent service with all of their LLC formation packages and a lot of other solid features. Plus, they have fabulous customer feedback reputations, with hundreds of positive reviews all over the web.
6 Things They Have In Common
1) Affordable: With either CorpNet or LegalZoom, you’re getting a service that bridges the gap between hiring an attorney and going it alone. They both save hundreds of dollars over hiring a lawyer, and you won’t be left to handle your formation by yourself.
2) Customer Support: Customer service is one of the main reasons people hire these companies, as you can give them a call or send them an email anytime you have a question. This saves lots of time because you won’t have to go digging for answers yourself.
3) Experience: Experience is a major selling point for CorpNet and LegalZoom, as they’ve both served thousands of customers over the years.
4) Additional Services: Both of these companies offer far more than just LLC formation service. If you need registered agent service, a federal tax ID number (EIN), or many other business services, LegalZoom and CorpNet can help your business reach the next level.
5) Security: There’s no need for concern about online security. LegalZoom and CorpNet both use Norton products to protect their websites from malware and to encrypt data transfers. Your private info will remain private.
6) Educational: If you need more information about formation or any of a number of other business issues, CorpNet and LegalZoom have extensive online learning centers filled with valuable information. Whether you require info about business types, licensing issues, or taxation, they have a wealth of info to help you out.
Side by Side Comparisons
Obviously, everyone would rather pay $79 than $108 for a similar service, right? While pricing certainly isn’t everything, it is a very important element to consider when choosing your LLC formation service provider, and LegalZoom has clearly started this competition with a significant advantage. Let’s see if CorpNet can catch up in some of these other categories.
LegalZoom and CorpNet have quite similar basic LLC formation packages. There are some small differences, like CorpNet including access to their online corporate compliance tool and a 60-day trial of registered agent service, or LegalZoom providing a banking resolution to help you open business checking/savings accounts.
At the higher levels of service, CorpNet adds a full year of registered agent service, which LegalZoom doesn’t include in any formation package, so that’s an advantage for CorpNet.
Overall, both of these companies disappoint us a bit when it comes to included features because neither of them includes a year of registered agent service in their entry-level LLC packages like some of their top competitors do (for instance, ZenBusiness, Northwest Registered Agent, and IncFile). LegalZoom and CorpNet are relative equals in this category unless you want to spend extra for one of CorpNet’s top-tier packages.
CorpNet’s ownership group got their start in 1997, with more than 100,000 businesses served since then. On the other hand, LegalZoom has served more than 2 million business customers since they started offering business services online in 2001.
CorpNet gets lots of praise for their customer service, and rightfully so. Their reps are helpful, knowledgeable, and friendly, and they’re easy to get ahold of as well. You can reach them from 10 am to 8 pm ET on weekdays.
LegalZoom is such a large company that its service department is somewhat hit or miss. It’s not surprising that a few customers slip through the cracks here and there, but it is still a bit disappointing when it happens. On the positive side, LegalZoom has extended support hours that run from 10 am to 8 pm ET weekdays and 10 am to 7 pm ET weekends.
CorpNet’s turnarounds are based on requirements from your state of formation, which means your formation could be as quick as just a couple of days, or it could take several weeks, depending on your state. LegalZoom’s processing times depend on which level of LLC service package you purchase from them: Economy ($99) takes 30 business days, Standard ($329) takes 15 days, and Express Gold ($349) takes 7-10 days. In short, CorpNet is faster in some states, whereas LegalZoom can be quicker in others.
However, we strongly prefer CorpNet’s approach, as we don’t like the concept of intentionally slowing down a customer’s order based on how much money they spend on your platform.
Both LLC service providers have advanced order tracking systems that allow you to track your formation’s progress in real-time. They also send you alerts when your documents are filed.
Registered Agent Service
Every LLC in America is required to designate a registered agent, which is a person or business entity that receives important document deliveries (like service of process) from your state government, informs you of the receipt, then forwards the documents to you. This is so crucial because the state needs to have a reliable means of contacting your business at any time.
CorpNet charges $149 per year for registered agent service, compared to $299 for LegalZoom (or $249 for your first year if you add this service to your LLC formation order). Keep in mind that CorpNet’s more advanced formation packages do include a full year of registered agent service, whereas LegalZoom never includes this feature in any formation bundle.
When it comes to feedback, this category is pretty much a toss-up. CorpNet has about 500 overwhelmingly positive reviews online, with their customers frequently praising the assistance they receive from their support reps. LegalZoom has more than 4,000 reviews available, which is a much higher volume of feedback. While LegalZoom also receives more positive reviews than negative ones, the ratio isn’t quite as impressive as CorpNet’s.
Ease of Use
With both of these companies, you’ll receive LLC services that are remarkably easy to use. They also both have user-friendly websites with plenty of information. Neither side has much of an advantage over the other in this area.
CorpNet and LegalZoom both offer many other services that can help you start and cultivate your new business entity. In addition, these two companies provide their customers with access to quite a few of the same services, as you can purchase registered agent service, annual reports, foreign qualification, amendments, conversions, and more.
However, there are also some services that you can only purchase from LegalZoom, as they offer a wide variety of personal services in addition to their business services, so they offer things like last will and testament, power of attorney, and divorce papers. LegalZoom also provides access to attorney consultations, which CorpNet does not.
Which Is the Best LLC Website for You?
CorpNet and LegalZoom are both entirely capable of handling your LLC formation service, and as you can see, there’s not a whole lot differentiating the two companies. To get a better grasp on which one is best for you, let’s review some scenarios where each of them has an advantage.
➥ Choose CorpNet if You Are:
Do you want a service with superior customer feedback? CorpNet is worth a look because their customer feedback is about as good as it gets, with glowing reviews all over the web.
➦ Choose LegalZoom if You Are:
Do you place lots of importance on experience? Do you want to save some money? LegalZoom has fairly substantial advantages over CorpNet in those areas, so if this appeals to you, they are your best option.
While both of the LLC services in this comparison offer good overall value and have formed thousands of businesses, we think LegalZoom is the better option. However, in the larger picture, neither of these LLC services are our top pick. We highly recommend checking out our list of the top LLC services to see which is the best option available.
Frequently Asked Questions
Got questions? We’ve got answers.
If I Decide to Use LegalZoom, Which Package Should I Choose?
To be honest, we only think one of LegalZoom’s LLC formation packages is worth buying, and that’s their $79 Economy plan.
This package is rather simple, as it includes the basics of your formation, as well as a banking resolution to help you open business bank accounts. LegalZoom’s other two packages cost $329 and $349, but they barely add anything of real value to the Economy plan.
How Does LegalZoom Compare to Other LLC Formation Websites?
While LegalZoom is one of the most popular and well-known LLC formation services, it’s a stretch to say they’re the best. Check out our comparison reviews between LegalZoom and other top LLC services to see how good they actually are:
Does CorpNet Handle Extra State Requirements Like New York Publication?
They certainly do. CorpNet takes a great deal of pride in being a truly comprehensive LLC formation service, and they will gladly handle your state-specific requirements.
There are plenty of companies in this industry that don’t provide publication assistance (like LegalZoom, for example), so this is a welcome sight from CorpNet.
Which Service Has Fewer Upsells?
LegalZoom has a ton of upsells, to the point where we added this question to our FAQ sections because of them. Before you even get a chance to select which LLC formation package you want to buy, LegalZoom has already attempted $1,080 worth of upsells.
CorpNet doesn’t have many upsells, but we will quickly mention that we don’t love the way they exclude shipping costs from their advertised prices ― we only know of one other company (InCorp) in this industry that doesn’t include shipping in the advertised price points. Considering that CorpNet charges $29 just to ship a few pieces of paper, it’s a significant added cost.
Do These Services Share My Information With Third Parties?
Many competing services in this industry have “free extras” or “special offers” designed to get your permission to share your personal information with third-party partners.
Thankfully, CorpNet and LegalZoom don’t have this problem, and overall we’re quite pleased with both of them in this regard.
Does Either of These Services Have a Refund Policy?
LegalZoom and CorpNet have nearly identical refund policies that are among the best in the industry.
They both have satisfaction guarantees that allow you to request a refund at any time within 60 days of placing your order, and neither of them charges any sort of convenience fee for refund requests either.
Which LLC Formation Website Is Faster?
These companies take different routes when it comes to providing turnaround time estimates. LegalZoom bases its processing times on which level of LLC formation service you purchase from them.
Their Economy package has a 30 business day turnaround, while their Standard package takes 15 business days, and the Express Gold package can be ready in 7-10 business days.
CorpNet bases their turnarounds on the actual capabilities of each state, so their times could either be faster or slower than LegalZoom depending on your state (and which package you want to purchase from LegalZoom). Overall, we prefer CorpNet’s approach, as we dislike the idea of intentionally slowing down a customer’s order just because they didn’t spend enough money on LegalZoom’s platform.
Can I Just Form an LLC On My Own, Without a Service?
Yes, this is always an option in any state. In fact, quite a few entrepreneurs form their own LLCs every day.
However, we would simply like to mention that because there is no one set way to form an LLC across the country, each state has its own rules and regulations for LLCs.
Therefore, you’ll need to familiarize yourself with the specific requirements of your own state, which can take a bit more effort than you might expect. Of course, the other factor here is that the DIY route doesn’t provide the peace of mind that we get from using a professional service like CorpNet or LegalZoom, because we can trust their expertise to get the job done right.