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Inc Authority - Logo

1. Inc Authority Review

Free basic plan

Fast and easy setup

Free registered agent for a year

Money-back guarantee

PRICE STARTS AT

Free + state fees

PROCESSING TIME

Up to a week

REGISTERED AGENT

1st year free, then $99/year

OPERATING AGREEMENT

Yes

EIN REGISTRATION

$59.99

ANNUAL COMPLIANCE

No

ADVISORY SERVICE

Yes

WEB DOMAIN & HOSTING

Available through Tycoon bundle

Nortwest Resistered Agent - Logo

2. Northwest Registered Agent Review

Registered agent included

One-day processing

Customizable plans

Knowledge base

PRICE STARTS AT

$79 + state fees

PROCESSING TIME

1 week (basic plan)

REGISTERED AGENT

1st year incl. in basic package (then $125/year)

OPERATING AGREEMENT

Yes

EIN REGISTRATION

$50 (included in Deluxe and Premium packages)

ANNUAL COMPLIANCE

$100

ADVISORY SERVICE

No

WEB DOMAIN & HOSTING

No

Rocket Lawyer Reviews - Logo

3. Rocket Lawyer Review

Free trial

Registered agent available

Legal advice from lawyers

Rush filing system

PRICE STARTS AT

$99 + state fees

PROCESSING TIME

Up to 5 business days

REGISTERED AGENT

$149/year ($111/year for Premium)

OPERATING AGREEMENT

Yes

EIN REGISTRATION

$59.99

ANNUAL COMPLIANCE

No

ADVISORY SERVICE

Yes

WEB DOMAIN & HOSTING

No

LegalZoom review - Logo

4. LegalZoom Review

Unlimited legal consultations

Total compliance feature

Manual double-check

Money-back guarantee

PRICE STARTS AT

$79 + state fees

PROCESSING TIME

30 business days (Economy plan)

REGISTERED AGENT

$249/year

OPERATING AGREEMENT

Yes

EIN REGISTRATION

Depends on the package

ANNUAL COMPLIANCE

10 free + $280/year

ADVISORY SERVICE

Unlimited legal and accounting consultations

WEB DOMAIN & HOSTING

No

Swyft Filings Reviews - Logo

5. Swyft Filings Review

Renowned company

Outstanding customer reviews

Fast incorporation

Useful compliance tool

PRICE STARTS AT

$49 + state fees

PROCESSING TIME

Same-day processing

REGISTERED AGENT

$149/year

OPERATING AGREEMENT

Included with top two tiers

EIN REGISTRATION

Included with top two tiers

ANNUAL COMPLIANCE

$99 + state fees

ADVISORY SERVICE

Yes

WEB DOMAIN & HOSTING

Included with top tier

MyCompanyWorks Logo

6. MyCompanyWorks Review

Three pricing tiers with a long list of services

Fast processing and relatively quick turnaround

Multiple avenues of customer support

Variety of additional services

PRICE STARTS AT

$79 + state fees

PROCESSING TIME

Same-day processing

REGISTERED AGENT

Depends on the plan

OPERATING AGREEMENT

Included in all plans

EIN REGISTRATION

Depends on the plan

ANNUAL COMPLIANCE

Yes

ADVISORY SERVICE

Yes

WEB DOMAIN & HOSTING

Yes

ZenBusiness Reviews - Logo

7. ZenBusiness Review

Registered agent services included

Easy-to-use platform

Business operation services

Wide variety of additional services

PRICE STARTS AT

$49 + state fees

PROCESSING TIME

2-3 weeks (Basic plan)

REGISTERED AGENT

Incl. in formation package, then $119 per year

OPERATING AGREEMENT

Yes

EIN REGISTRATION

Depends on plan

ANNUAL COMPLIANCE

Depends on plan

ADVISORY SERVICE

Yes

WEB DOMAIN & HOSTING

Depends on plan

Incfile Reviews - Logo

8. Incfile Review

Great prices

Registered agent free with every package

Easy order placement

Reliable company

PRICE STARTS AT

$0 + State Fees

PROCESSING TIME

One business day

REGISTERED AGENT

Included in all packages

OPERATING AGREEMENT

Depends on chosen package

EIN REGISTRATION

Depends on chosen package

ANNUAL COMPLIANCE

$99 + state fee

ADVISORY SERVICE

Yes

WEB DOMAIN & HOSTING

Depends on chosen package

Introduction to LLC Services

If you’re an entrepreneur looking for the most efficient way to form a limited liability company, there are three options you should consider.

  • Option one: Take care of the whole process on your own. Research the state-specific requirements, file the necessary paperwork, and hope that you’ve done everything correctly.
  • Option two: Hire an attorney to do most of the work on your behalf, keeping in mind that the best LLC service lawyers may charge you a hefty fee.
  • Option three: Use an online LLC filing service to help you get through the whole process in a quick, convenient, and cost-effective way.

Reasons to Use LLC Services

Most entrepreneurs don’t feel comfortable with the idea of going through the process of registering an LLC on their own, but they also can’t justify the costs of hiring an attorney to do the work for them. If you find yourself in a similar situation, you’ll be happy to hear that there are affordable and reliable LLC formation services that can handle all the paperwork for a fraction of an attorney’s fee.

As company incorporation specialists help form numerous business entities every day, their knowledge and experience eliminate the risk of mistakes and delays that could occur should you decide to do the paperwork yourself. Additionally, some LLC services offer an error-free guarantee, which means that the service won’t charge you for filing any additional documents needed to ensure that your LLC’s information is correct.

Another good thing about using one of the best LLC filing companies is that it can save you lots of time and effort. The company will do the filing according to the requirements for each US state, take care of all tax-related and legal matters, and update you on relevant government deadlines.

How LLC Services Work

If you’ve made a decision to organize your business as a limited liability company and wish to get everything filed correctly the first time around, using an LLC service is a smart choice.

Setting up an LLC with help from a specialist is simple and easy. All you have to do is provide the company with your business’s desired name, the state where you’d like to register your LLC, the industry of your business’s operation, your personal information, and your registered agent’s details. The LLC service will take it from there and handle all the paperwork with the state to create your new company.

Here’s a breakdown of everything you can expect the best LLC formation service to help you with:

Take Care of Legalities for You

One of the best things about using an incorporation service is that it doesn’t matter whether you understand the legal side of forming an LLC or not. Your LLC specialist will research all the state-specific rules and requirements and make sure to file the documents accordingly.

Keep You Updated on Deadlines & Necessary Filings

Maintaining an LLC can be as complicated as forming it. That’s why most online LLC services will provide you with a dashboard where you’ll get alerts for any upcoming government deadlines and notifications for documents you need to file.

Work as a Mediator Between the State and Your Business

If you decide to go through the process of registering and maintaining an LLC on your own, bear in mind that, should you have any questions or concerns, you’ll need to get in touch with the state directly. On the other hand, working with the best LLC service means that you can get your questions answered and issues resolved much quicker.

Things to Look for in LLC Services

With so many LLC service providers on offer, it’s hard not to get overwhelmed with options. To help you narrow down your choice, we suggest you base your search on the criteria listed below.

Free Registered Agent Service

Although you are allowed to take the role of your own registered agent, we highly recommend you use a professional service instead. Given that the best registered agent service comes at no additional cost for six months to a year with most LLC service providers, we suggest you make the most of that opportunity.

Pricing Plans

As all services do, LLC formation comes with a price tag. In addition to state filing fees, LLC specialists will charge you for the services that they provide. Given that a single product can hardly suit each customer, most business formation services offer tiered pricing plans. Any company that is worth its salt should be completely clear and straightforward about what it offers you for your money. So, before making a decision on which plan to go for, we suggest you review the features included in each package.

Customer Support Quality

High-quality customer support should be a crucial part of any online service provider’s business model. The best LLC formation company should always come with a reputable customer care team. If an LLC service doesn’t offer an extensive phone and email support system, it won’t be able to fulfil its purpose of working as a mediator between your business and the state.

Package Features & Additional Services

As far as features go, each LLC service plan has to include LLC formation and registered agent services. Articles of Organization and the Operating Agreement usually go hand-in-hand with the two basic features.

Depending on the provider, LLC filing services may come with supplementary features such as annual report filing, amendments, LLC publication service, EIN, trademark registration, foreign qualification, business licences, seller’s permits, office supplies, virtual office, legal services, business advisory plans, and dissolution filing. Note that most of these features incur additional charges.

Customer Reviews, Reputation & BBB Rating

Considering that the LLC service market is becoming more and more competitive every day, it’s important to take the time to explore your options before making a final decision. While online customer reviews can speak volumes of a company’s reputation, we also suggest you check out each provider’s Better Business Bureau ratings.

6 Steps to LLC Formation

Forming an LLC is the simplest way of structuring your business while protecting your personal assets in case your company is sued or indebted. The concept of limited liability ensures that you can’t be held liable for the company’s debts and obligations beyond the amount you invested in the business.

Owned by one person (single-member LLCs), or co-owned (multi-member LLCs), these business structures are hybrid entities that bring together the characteristics of a partnership or sole proprietorship with those of a corporation. While the limited liability component resembles that of a corporation, greater tax flexibility and fewer corporate formalities are similar to those of partnerships.

Overall, some of the main reasons why entrepreneurs decide to organize their business as an LLC include limited personal liability, minimal requirements for recordkeeping and reporting, pass-through taxation, ownership flexibility, management flexibility, and flexible profit distribution.

The LLC registration process consists of the following six steps, regardless of whether you decide to handle everything on your own, or hire a professional to do it for you.

Here’s what you need to do:

1. Choose the state where your LLC will be registered

When making a decision about where to form your LLC, there are a few factors you should consider, such as regulatory burden, taxes, and workforce availability. For most new businesses, forming your LLC in the state where you reside and plan to conduct your company’s activities is usually the best option. Alternatively, you can also create an LLC in one of the states with more business-friendly laws, such as Delaware, Nevada, or Wyoming.

2. Pick the company’s name

Next up, it’s time to pick a name for your LLC and make sure that it meets legal requirements. Considering that rules may differ from state to state, we suggest you look them up on the Secretary of State website for your state. However, there are a few requirements that most states impose. Most importantly, the company’s name has to be unique, it usually has to include “LLC” in the title, and it cannot mention terms such as “corporation,” “bank,” or “insurance.”

3. Choose a registered agent

In all 50 states, a business registered as an LLC is required to have a registered agent, also called a statutory agent or agent of process. A registered agent is an entity designated to accept legal notices (federal and state legal documents along with service of process) on behalf of your business, sign for them, and email you a copy. A registered agent can either be an individual or an agency that has a physical address in your LLC’s state of operation. Keep in mind that, even if you use the best online LLC formation service, registering your company in more than one state will require a registered agent in each state of operation.

4. File the articles of organization

Your company has to be legally recognized before it can start operating. In other words, to properly register your LLC, you have to file a state-required formation document. While most states refer to this document as “articles of organization,” it can also be called “certificate of formation” or “certificate of organization.” Through this document, you’ll provide information about the LLC and its owner or owners to the state. This usually includes the company’s name, address, ownership, registered agent, and the LLC’s effective start date. The best LLC service providers usually include this feature in their basic package.

5. Create the operating agreement

Unlike the articles of organization, an Operating Agreement isn’t always required by law. Much like Partnership Agreements do for corporations, an Operating Agreement outlines an LLC’s rules of ownership and operation. This type of document usually includes each member’s ownership percentages, voting powers, rights, and responsibilities, how the company allocates its profits and losses, means of management, and buy-sell provisions.

6. Get an EIN

Unless you run a single-member LLC and don’t plan on hiring employees, you’ll need to apply for an Employer Identification Number (EIN) with the IRS. An EIN is essentially your business’s Social Security number and it’s easy to apply for – all you have to do is fill out a form on the IRS’s website.

FAQ

Where is the best place to set up an LLC?

In most cases, the best state to incorporate your LLC is the state where you live and plan on conducting your company’s activities. Alternatively, you can register your business in one of the states with business-friendly laws and taxes, such as Delaware, Nevada, or Wyoming.

Does an LLC pay less in taxes?

The pass-through tax treatment is one of the most significant advantages of an LLC. What this means is that owners of an LLC don't need to file corporate tax returns. Instead, all LLC owners have to do is report their share of profit and loss while filing their individual tax returns.

How can I get my LLC for free?

Instead of hiring an LLC filing agency to help you form your company, you can take care of the whole process on your own. If you decide to go for this option, make sure that you research the legal requirements and file all the necessary paperwork correctly. While the state-specific requirements may vary, you’ll need to think of a unique name, choose a registered agent, file the articles of organization, create the operating agreement, apply for an EIN, and pay state filing fees.

How do online LLC services work?

The process of registering a business is much less complicated with an online LLC service. With the best LLC service agencies, all you have to do is give the company that you've decided to work with your business's name, location, and the industry of operation, along with some basic information about you as the owner and your registered agent. From there, all you have to do is sit back and wait for the LLC service company to take care of the paperwork for you.