Do you want to form an LLC, but you don’t know if LegalZoom is the best company to assist with your formation? With so many choices for LLC service online, it can be tricky to figure out which one would best serve your company.
This LegalZoom LLC service alternatives guide is structured in a way that gives you a quick rundown on a few of their competitors, in order to discern if one of them might be a better choice for you.
ZenBusiness opened their doors in 2015, and they have a unique approach to business formation services thanks to their use of automation to speed up and simplify several parts of the process.
Let’s see how they stack up when compared to LegalZoom.
- ZenBusiness is one of the most affordable LLC services online. For just $39 (plus state fee), they will form your business and provide a full year of registered agent service. That off the bat will save you $60 as opposed to forming an LLC with LegalZoom.
- If you like seeing positive customer reviews, you’ll love ZenBusiness. They have well over 1,400 reviews available online, and it’s difficult to find more than just a small handful of negative reviews.
- We really appreciate ZenBusiness’ commitment to giving back. As a public benefit corporation, ZenBusiness partners with Kiva.org to provide financial lending services to poverty-stricken individuals, and they also loan money to women-owned and minority-owned businesses.
The only negative with ZenBusiness is that their turnaround times can be confusing. They list estimated processing speeds for each level of service on their website (1-2 weeks for the $39 Starter plan, 4-6 business days for the $149 Pro plan, 1-3 business days for the $249 Premium plan), but these estimates also vary from state to state.
Want to learn more about ZenBusiness? Read our review.
Northwest was formed in 1998, and with thousands of LLC formations since then, they’re an experienced and reliable option. If you’re looking for a solid mid-size company, they might just be the right choice for you. How do they compare to LegalZoom?
- When it comes to price, Northwest Registered Agent wins. Their starting price point of $79 is less expensive than LegalZoom’s $99 package.
- Northwest’s claim to fame is their next-level customer support network.
- As you may have guessed from reading their name, Northwest Registered Agent excels at offering registered agent service, and they include a full year with any formation package. Furthermore, Northwest is the only major registered agent provider that locally scans each and every document they receive on your behalf.
Finally, Northwest Registered Agent receives mostly positive customer reviews, although they only have around 115 reviews available online, so their sample size isn’t nearly as large as that of IncFile or LegalZoom.
Want to learn more about Northwest Registered Agent? Read our review.
IncFile opened in 2004, and they’ve served over 250,000 businesses since then. Their popularity can be attributed to a number of positive qualities, from their low prices to their great customer feedback. Let’s take a look at how they compare to LegalZoom.
- With a base rate of $0 + state fee, IncFile is the most affordable LLC service available. Especially compared to LegalZoom’s $99 price point, it’s easy to see why IncFile is one of our top choices.
- Another of IncFile’s major advantages over LegalZoom is the features included in that LLC service package. IncFile provides a full year of registered agent service with any LLC formation, along with a 30-minute business tax consultation. LegalZoom doesn’t include either of these, although they do provide a banking resolution to help you open business bank accounts.
- Customer feedback is a major strong point for IncFile. They have well over 10,000 reviews available online, and they maintain extremely high average ratings ― much better than LegalZoom’s mediocre customer reviews.
In general, it’s tough to beat what ZenBusiness has to offer. They excel in just about every way a discerning customer could ask for, and they also have one of the lowest price points in the industry.
Want to learn more about IncFile? Read our review.
The ownership group behind CorpNet started providing LLC services in 1997, and since then they’ve served 100,000+ businesses. They’re another LLC provider with their own set of advantages, so let’s see where their pros and cons are in relation to LegalZoom.
- Their base rate of $108 (plus state fee) is higher than any of the other services discussed in this guide.
- Do you appreciate the safety net provided by a 100% satisfaction guarantee? With CorpNet, you have 60 days to analyze your purchase, and if you regret it for any reason, simply request a refund and they’ll pay back any fees you paid to CorpNet. LegalZoom has a similar guarantee, but IncFile and Northwest do not.
- CorpNet has fantastic customer feedback, with hundreds of reviews that are almost universally positive. As we’ve discussed, LegalZoom struggles from time to time when it comes to customer reviews, so this is a major advantage.
CorpNet doesn’t exactly jump off the page in any one area compared to their competitors, but they’re a strong company with well-rounded formation packages. They’re well worth considering.
Want to learn more about CorpNet? Read our review.
Which LegalZoom Alternative Should You Choose?
These four service providers are all worthy of forming your LLC. They’re reliable, legitimate operations with extensive track records.
Generally, ZenBusiness has the best price/features, IncFile is the most affordable LLC service, LegalZoom handles the most clients, Northwest Registered Agent has outstanding customer support, and CorpNet is fairly good at all.
Regardless of which LLC service you choose, you’ll be saving a significant amount of money over hiring an attorney to draft and register an LLC for you.
At the end of the day, ZenBusiness is our favorite out of these top LegalZoom LLC alternatives. Their low prices and great features are a winning combination that not many competitors can match. Plus, they’re a socially conscious organization that gives back through small-business lending platforms to support women and minority owned businesses.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q&A for these alternatives to LegalZoom
Which Service Has the Best Customer Support?
We like the customer support provided by all four of these companies, but Northwest Registered Agent has a distinct advantage in this area.
Do Any of These Services Handle Requirements Like Publication?
Only one of these four companies provides state-specific publication service, and that’s CorpNet.
Northwest does at least provide their customers with a set of instructions to complete their own publication requirement, but IncFile and LegalZoom don’t help at all. With this in mind, it’s a pretty significant advantage for CorpNet to be the only option in this guide for those of you forming businesses in states that require publication.
Which Service Has the Fewest Upsells?
LegalZoom attempts a ridiculous amount of upsells, to the point where we added this question to our FAQ sections because of them.
By the time you progress through their LLC formation service order form to the package select screen, you’ve already encountered $1,080 worth of upsell attempts. This is especially egregious considering that none of the other companies discussed in this guide bother us regarding upsells in the slightest.
Do These Services Share My Information With Third Parties?
IncFile is the only one of these four companies that extensively shares customer information with third-party partners.
To get an idea of what we’re talking about, take a look at their LLC formation service order form, where you’ll see features like a business bank account with Bank of America, a website builder and domain name offer from SnapWeb, and a tax consult session with an accountant.
Are Any of These Services Faster Than the Others?
The filing times for Northwest, IncFile, and CorpNet are all quite close in most states, because these companies all use the same criteria to come up with their turnaround time estimates: the actual processing times of each state.
While one of them might be a day or two quicker in a few isolated states, for the most part there is no significant difference. The only exception to this is LegalZoom, because their turnaround times vary based on which level of service you purchase from them. Their cheapest package takes 30 business days, while their most expensive plan takes 7-10 business days.
Which Service Has the Best Refund Policy?
CorpNet and LegalZoom both have fantastic refund policies that are the best in this industry. With either of these service, you’ll receive a 60-day satisfaction guarantee. If you are unhappy with their service for any reason, all you need to do is request a refund and they will grant it. They don’t even charge any sort of convenience fees!
Can I Just Form an LLC on My Own, Without a Service?
You absolutely can. In fact, it’s not uncommon at all for entrepreneurs to form their own LLCs without professional help. However, there’s nothing quite like the peace of mind we get from using a professional service because we have the utmost confidence in their expertise.