Since opening their doors in 1998, Northwest Registered Agent has carved out a name for themselves as a no-nonsense company providing LLC formations and other legal services for business.
Plus, they made our list of the top LLC services available.
This Northwest Registered Agent LLC service review discusses all of the details that set them apart from the competition and should help you decide whether you’d like to use their services.
Pros & Cons of Northwest
Pros of Northwest Registered Agent:
✔ Their customer support is incredible. Northwest Registered Agent keeps their premium customer support in-house, with a team of professionally trained Corporate Guides. Every time we have called with questions about complicated state rules or forming an LLC, the very first person we talk to is able to immediately answer our questions.
✔ They’re one of just a few LLC service providers that includes a full year of registered agent service upon formation.
✔ Unlike many of their competitors, Northwest Registered Agent won’t sell your information to other companies. They also run their own servers and write their own code. In short, they take your security and privacy seriously.
Cons of Northwest Registered Agent:
✖ Northwest’s starting price point is pretty expensive. If you’re on a tight budget, there are much more affordable LLC services that cost $185 less.
✖ Compared to other services, Northwest Registered Agent has fewer 3rd-party customer reviews online. While this isn’t necessarily a “disadvantage”, some of our readers have raised this concern when considering Northwest’s services.
Northwest Registered Agent LLC Pricing
With Northwest Registered Agent, customers have one filing option. No packages, no frills, and no energy spent trying to figure out which features you should choose. If you’d like to examine the way they advertise these services, feel free to check out their own website for all the details.
LLC Filing ($225 + State Fee)
➢ Name Availability Search: They will search your state’s official business database to make certain that your desired LLC name is still available, and hasn’t already been claimed by another individual or business entity.
➢ Preparation and Filing of Your Articles of Organization: These documents outline your basic company information so that your state can officially form your new LLC. Northwest Registered Agent will prepare these documents on your behalf, then file them with your state of formation.
➢ One Year Registered Agent Service: Every LLC in America is required to designate a registered agent. The registered agent is in charge of receiving important legal documents on behalf of your LLC, then forwarding them on to you. Northwest will serve as your registered agent for one year, after which you can renew your service for $125 per year ― although you are under no obligation to do so.
➢ Operating Agreement: This document isn’t required by the state to form an LLC, but it is highly recommended. An operating agreement describes how your LLC will be operated, and also outlines the ownership structure of your company.
➢ Fast LLC Filing: Northwest Registered Agent will process your order and submit your LLC formation papers to your state quickly after you purchase their service.
Northwest Registered Agent Customer Reviews
|Google (197 reviews)||4.5 out of 5 stars|
|BBB (72 reviews)||4.3 out of 5 stars|
There aren’t a lot of online customer reviews for Northwest Registered Agent, but we did manage to track down nearly 300 of them on Google and BBB.
The majority of these reviews are positive, with customers praising the support they receive and complimenting Northwest Registered Agent for the speed of their services.
Overall, Northwest Registered Agent receives high-quality customer feedback, although the volume of reviews is not nearly as high as some competitors who have thousands of reviews available online.
Top Northwest LLC Alternative
|Northwest||Starts at $225||(4.6/5)||Premium Support||Yes|
|ZenBusiness||Starts at $39||(4.8/5)||Overall Value||Yes|
Northwest Registered Agent is one of the best LLC formation services available and offers without a doubt the best registered agent service.
However, that doesn’t mean they’re the right answer for every entrepreneur looking to start an LLC. There are dozens of LLC formation services these days, so if Northwest doesn’t feel like a good fit for you, there is another great option — ZenBusiness.
Our favorite alternative is ZenBusiness, thanks to their excellent prices and features. ZenBusiness charges just $39 to form an LLC and that includes a full year of registered agent service, an operating agreement, and more. They also have thousands of positive customer reviews and a reputation for reliable service.
Is Northwest Registered Agent Right for You?
At the end of the day, there are far more factors working in Northwest Registered Agent’s favor than there are working against them. They offer great overall value and customer support.
Of course, they won’t necessarily be the perfect choice for every single entrepreneur forming an LLC, so to wrap things up, here are a couple of scenarios where you perhaps should or should not use Northwest Registered Agent for LLC services.
✔ When to Use Northwest Registered Agent:
If you’re looking for personalized premium customer support, a full year of registered agent service, and reasonable prices, Northwest Registered Agent is perfect for you.
✖ When NOT to Use Northwest Registered Agent:
Some of their competitors can save you money, like ZenBusiness for example is $185 cheaper. There are also some services that have a higher volume of customer feedback than Northwest has, like LegalZoom. If these are priorities for you, you might want to look elsewhere.
After reviewing and ranking all of the options online, we found that Northwest Registered Agent is by far one of the best LLC services available. Their outstanding customer support is a great selling point, as is their industry-best registered agent service and feature-loaded packages.
Northwest is an excellent choice for entrepreneurs who want the best possible customer service and zero upsells whatsoever.
What Other Services Does Northwest Registered Agent Offer?
As with most competitors, Northwest Registered Agent provides a wide variety of additional services to help entrepreneurs form, maintain, and grow their businesses. We dug into the list of features Northwest Registered Agent offers to see how much they charge for each of these services, which can be especially interesting when examining a la carte pricing for features included in their formation packages.
Let’s take a look at everything Northwest Registered Agent offers and discuss which services are good deals and which ones you can ignore.
- Registered Agent Service ($125): If you don’t use Northwest’s LLC service, you won’t have access to the free year of registered agent service they offer with each formation. Instead, you’d have to pay the reasonable rate of $125 per year, which is a pretty good deal when you consider that Northwest locally scans all documents they receive as your registered agent.
- Annual Report ($100): Most states require some sort of annual or biennial report from entrepreneurs. This report keeps the state updated regarding some basic attributes of your business, like your address or your registered agent’s name. To be honest, this price point feels a bit high — the annual report is quite a simple document in most states.
- EIN ($50): While it’s quite easy to obtain your own EIN from the IRS for free, Northwest charges a lower rate than the vast majority of competitors for this service (the typical price point is around $70).
- LLC Kit ($40 or $80): Northwest offers two different versions of its LLC kit — there’s a $40 version that comes in a ½ inch zip-up binder and an $80 version that comes in a 2-inch binder with a slipcase. Either kit includes a selection of document templates. Overall, this is an unnecessary feature from a compliance standpoint but if you want an LLC kit, Northwest’s pricing is better than most.
- Certified Copy ($50): If you need any official copies of your state-filed business documents, Northwest will acquire them for $50. This is a solid price point that’s right in line with industry norms.
- Foreign Qualification ($150): If your LLC already exists in another state, you need to file a foreign qualification rather than a formation. Considering that some competitors charge considerably more for this same service (like LegalZoom’s $229 price point), this is a reasonable offer.
- Mail Forwarding ($40 per month): Not only will Northwest Registered Agent receive and forward your mail, but they’ll even provide you with an exclusive suite number in their office. This service is only available for customers based in Delaware, Texas, Idaho, Florida, Wyoming, and Montana.
- Call Forwarding ($9 per month): Northwest provides you with a custom phone number for your business and enables you to access all of your calls and messages from anywhere you have high-speed internet access.
- Virtual Office ($49 per month): Northwest’s virtual office service gives you phone service, same-day digital document scanning, a unique suite number, an office lease, and weekly physical mail forwarding.
Frequently Asked Questions
Got Northwest questions? We’ve got answers.
Does Northwest Registered Agent Offer Any Discounts?
No, at least not right now. Northwest used to offer an LLC service discount, but that is not currently the case.
However, Northwest does offer volume discounts on their registered agent service. If you require service in multiple states, they’ll provide a $10 discount for your 4th through 9th states, and a $25 discount on each state beyond that.
Is Northwest Registered Agent Legit?
Northwest Registered Agent opened for business in 1998. Since then, they’ve become one of the top national LLC formation services available, as they form hundreds of new business entities each week.
Seeing as they’ve been around for decades and they’ve served a high volume of customers, we were a bit surprised to see that Northwest only has about 270 reviews available online. Still, it’s impossible to doubt the quality of those reviews, as the vast majority of them are highly positive.
Northwest's Office Is in Spokane, Washington. How Do I Use Their Address as My Registered Office?
Northwest’s tagline, “Use Our Address, Not Yours” is referring to the information used on state filings such as Articles of Organization.
Yes, Northwest’s home base is in Washington, but they have registered agent offices in every single state/jurisdiction which you can use as the information on state filings when you use their services.
How Does Northwest Registered Agent Compare to Other LLC Providers?
We strongly believe that Northwest Registered Agent is among the best companies in the business services industry, and they’re actually our top pick for anyone looking for the best customer support this industry has to offer.
Overall, Northwest holds down a solid position on our “7 Best LLC Services Available” list, behind ZenBusiness. The big difference between the two is that ZenBusiness offers lower prices ($39 compared to Northwest’s $225), although ZenBusiness can’t match the level of personalized customer support offered by Northwest.
If you’d like to do some more research and read comparative reviews of Northwest, here are our most popular:
Is Northwest Registered Agent the LLC Website You Recommend to Family and Friends?
This is a somewhat difficult question to answer. If our mom asked whether Northwest Registered Agent is worth using, we would say that we appreciate their industry-best customer service and their free year of premium registered agent service, but that you can also save some money elsewhere.
In our opinion, there are three companies that provide better value than any of their competitors in this industry: ZenBusiness, Northwest, and IncFile.
Depending on your unique needs, you may prefer one of these options over the others. Generally speaking, ZenBusiness is the most well-rounded, Northwest has superior customer support, and IncFile offers free LLC formations. Overall, though, all three LLC formation websites mentioned are good choices.
Do They Have a Refund Policy?
Their refund policy is fairly convoluted, but in general Northwest Registered Agent will refund your money if you request a refund within 60 days ― minus $25.
However, they do say on their website, “We form hundreds of LLCs every day, and each filing is backed by our 100% error-free guarantee. Although extremely rare, in the 20 years we’ve been in business, we’ve learned that mistakes do happen. Should an error occur, we’ll file every amendment required to make sure your company information is accurate (at no cost to you)“.
Can I Form an LLC on My Own?
You do always have this option, and there are quite a few entrepreneurs who do choose to form their own LLCs. This process can take time because each state has its own rules and regulations regarding how LLCs are formed and maintained.
On the other end of the spectrum, some entrepreneurs choose to hire a lawyer to form their new businesses, but this is much more costly than using an online incorporation service.
Should I Reserve My LLC Name Before Registering an LLC With Northwest?
Each state (minus Florida) has a way to reserve a business name before forming your entity itself. In general, this is only necessary if you aren’t yet ready to enter the formation process.
If you’re ready to start your business, there’s no reason to reserve your name before forming your LLC with Northwest. We will note that certain states (like Alabama) require you to reserve a name before you form your business.
Can I Start an LLC Without Physically Being in the United States?
Yes, there is no requirement that you be present in the U.S. while starting an LLC. In fact, you don’t need to be an American citizen or resident to form an LLC either, as foreign nationals are allowed to own and operate LLCs just like American citizens are.
Does Northwest Help With New York Publication Requirements?
Northwest plays a sort of middle ground with state-specific requirements. Using the New York publication requirement as an example, they don’t offer to handle this step for you, but they do offer significant assistance with it.
When you hire Northwest to form a New York LLC, you can use their registered agent address in Albany as either your “address for service of process” or your “principal office.” Then, all you need to do is follow their convenient step-by-step instructions to publish your LLC info in area newspapers.
What Is the Northwest Customer Support Phone Number and Email?
You can contact Northwest via phone by calling 509-768-2249. Instead of posting a general contact email address on their website, they provide a support inquiry form on the “Contact Us” page that you can fill out to start the email support process.
Does Northwest Sell or Share My Information With Third Parties?
One of the things we love about Northwest Registered Agent is that they never share or sell your information with any third parties. They’re so obsessive (in a good way!) about your privacy that they even write their own code and run their own servers to keep your info secure.
I’ve Heard LegalZoom Has a Lot of Upsells. Does Northwest?
In our opinion, Northwest keeps the upsells to an absolute minimum.
Quite a few of their competitors, especially LegalZoom, place a considerable amount of pressure on you to buy expensive add-on features that drive your total cost way up — but Northwest doesn’t bother us in this regard.
How Quickly Does Northwest Process LLC Formations?
Northwest’s processing times vary depending on your state of formation, but in general, they’re pretty fast. If you need to speed up your formation turnaround time, you can upgrade to their expedited service which can reduce your processing time from weeks down to just a few days in some states.
Other Than LLC Formation, What Else Can Northwest Registered Agent Do?
Aside from forming your business entity, Northwest’s core services include registered agent service, annual reports, mail forwarding, and virtual office. They can also help you with foreign registrations, international business formations, IRS registrations, S corporation tax elections, operating agreements, and business licensing.
Is It Worth the Money to Get an EIN via Northwest?
This is a tough question to answer without knowing the specific needs of your unique business. We personally enjoy getting an EIN included with our LLC formation, even if it means spending extra to add it on, or to upgrade to a higher level of LLC service.
The convenience of not having to get one ourselves through the IRS is worth it for us, and we like to have our articles of organization and EIN confirmation in the same place. However, we would completely understand if you’d rather save some money and acquire your own EIN from the IRS directly.
Ready to Start Your LLC?
Start your LLC with Northwest or read our comparison of the 7 best LLC services.