The best way for new businesses to reduce some of the startup costs is to take advantage of the affordable services available for filing and forming an LLC online. Attorneys are expensive but $49. is a reasonable price to form an LLC. One service does the filing for free, just pay the state fee! These are the top 3 most popular LLC services today and our favorite picks for 2019.
Best Online LLC Services 2019
#3 – ZenBusiness
Base Rate $49. “Outstanding”
Standard Rates + State Fees
- Incfile $49.00
- Northwest $49.00
- Swyft Filings $49.00
- CorpNet $79.00
- ZenBusiness $0.00
Main Business Structures
- Sole Proprietor – Simple, one person is responsible for all company’s profits and debts.
- LLC – An LLC is a business entity that is separate from its owners who are known as members. An LLC with a single member will be taxed as if it is a sole proprietorship. If the LLC has more than one single member it will be taxed in a similar way as a partnership. The LLC is treated as a pass-thru entity, avoids double taxation. Partners or LLC members are the owners. Getting started requires some legalities but nothing like a corporation. A limited liability company is a structure that allows owners, partners or shareholders to limit their personal liabilities while enjoying the tax and flexibility benefits of a partnership. Does not require formalities like C Corp. Flexibilities on the ways to distribute income.
- S Corp – Unlike an LLC and C Corp, an S Corp is not a business entity. A S Corp refers to the way a business has chosen to be taxed. S Corporations provide some personal liability protection and tax savings. They are pass-thru entities. The S Corp is not subject to federal income taxes. Avoids double taxation, much like LLCs, they provide more limited liability protection than sole proprietorships. They require some paper work to form the S Corp but less than a C Corp. Less formalities than C Corp. Flexibilities on distributing income.
- C Corp – Owned by the shareholders, are taxed as separate entities. Much more formalities are needed to form the corporation. Corporation law requires board of directors, meetings, minute recording and more formalities. Income is distributed to shareholders. A corporation will be taxed as a S Corp or C Corp.
- Non Profit – Charity purposes and get rewarded with tax exemptions.
Online LLC Service Reviews
Starting a company is a very big risk for a group of individuals, let alone a single person. Aside from running the business, other expenses to worry about are taxation, legal requirements and even possible litigation. So, the best way for startups and small businesses to mitigate some of these high costs is by finding an affordable way to form a business entity such as a LLC or S-Corp.
And what if you do business in several states and need a registered agent in multiple states? Attorney services can be very expensive but today there are online legal services that assist and do this stuff for you and for very reasonable amounts. TV advertising companies Legalzoom and Rocketlawyer did not make our list of the top 3 best llc service due to their high prices and poor reviews.
Ordinary folks turned entrepreneurs who simply want to run a business without getting too embroiled in paperwork, require services who are more knowledgeable in dealing with the legal requirements of government. Among these agents is Incfile whose services include assistance in company formation, legal compliance as well as IRS filing.
IncFile assists businesses on how to become a C-corporation, an S-corporation, a nonprofit organization and a limited liability company. Becoming a limited liability company offers small businesses minimum compliance requirements, some protection from debt and litigation but ties the company taxes to the personal taxes of its members (known as pass-through taxation), which has some benefits; until the company matures to become something bigger.
Since 2004, Incfile has helped with over 150,000 company formations and continues to assist them with their legal requirements. Given that base, IncFile is a company that is more than capable.
Beginning with the small price of $49 plus the state fee, IncFile’s core features are impressive with the following list of services.
Verify Company Name Availability – checks if your chosen company name is available in your state.
Preparation & Filing of Articles
Next Business Day Processing
Registered Agent Service (1st Year FREE) – an affordable 119 dollars for every succeeding year
Lifetime Company Alerts – special dashboard that will alert you of legal deadlines and updated state requirements.
Online Order Status Tracking
Free Business Tax Consultation – a free hour-long professional business tax consultation.
Lifetime Customer Support
Online Access to Incorporation Documents
Compare to similar companies that offer more features, Incfile focuses on the basics above as a way to keep things simple for everyone. One can say that their services are optimized. There are basically three packages they refer to as Silver ($49), Gold ($149) and Platinum ($229) wherein Gold is applicable for most companies where Platinum can be considered as Gold with candy sprinkles on top but may cater to many companies with special requirements.
The Gold package includes the provision to process an Employer Identification Number (EIN), which many know as the company equivalent of a person’s social security number. Also included are corporate forms, banking resolution and a custom corporate kit.
The Platinum package includes all the above plus superficial features such as a company website which people can easily work with on Wix or Weebly plus business contract templates? It’s quite a point of contention, especially with the price jump from $149. to $299. which is why earlier we mentioned that everyone is better off with the Gold package. But for anyone who does not want to bother asking another service or hiring a lawyer to speak and write legalese, these extra 25 contract templates are written by professional lawyers. The main advantage of the Platinum package however is expedited filing which speeds up the process of incorporation if you’re in a hurry to get your business started.
Compared to other LLC services on the web, IncFile is the more affordable option and offers more to the core package than leader Legalzoom. Reviews for Incfile based on their website have so far been unanimously positive except for one major flaw for people who are in a hurry. IncFile can take as long as 8 weeks to complete a filing but mostly depending on how difficult your state can be as well as delayed responses from customer support.
The fastest filing is one business day which is great for most. But onsite reviews can sometimes be difficult to rely on, so it’s best to try for one’s self or ask someone you know who has already taken advantage of the service.
Getting into business is not as simple as choosing the industry you’ll be in or choosing between being a single proprietor, a partnership or a corporation. Whatever you choose from the latter three, you’ll need to decide what your business structure will be. For small businesses, it’s best to be registered as a limited liability company or an LLC. The words limited liability sounds good from the get go, as LLCs, allow for a level of protection against debt, litigation, as well as taxation for the company’s owners.
Such things will be shouldered by the company as an entity and not by the owners, except that taxation will be based on the owner’s fixed income. Now, most entrepreneurs are more interested in the actual running of the business rather than all the paperwork involved. So, fortunately, there are many companies that do such things for them. One such company is called Northwest that provides registered agents that serve as the businesses’ contact for legal matters with the state.
Several companies can be found on the web that specialize in helping people in the formation of their limited liability companies. Northwest differentiates itself from other LLC formation services because it allows companies to affordably declare themselves as LLCs in multiple states, not that the others don’t do so but Northwest gives their customers bigger discounts the more states they apply for. This makes Northwest the perfect LLC formation company for any entity that wants to cover several states at once.
Northwest offers a discount for the fourth to ninth states and an additional discount for every additional state. That’s their premium feature. Other good points for Northwest include:
Northwest registered agents offer a more personal touch with clients as opposed to the bland recorded-like manner of other companies. Clients immediately reach a knowledgeable professional instead of having to go through annoying automated menus.
An easy-to-use online form system that minimizes redundancy by asking for data on relevant fields, only once and automatically populates the fields of other forms that have the same information. People hate forms especially redundant ones and legal endeavors such as the registration of a business entity tend to use a lot.
Northwest is diligent in scanning all legal documents received by their clients, so all documents have digital copies in case when needed. This makes the registered agent much more transparent with the client and the scans are sent in real time, so the client will not run into surprises. The scanning service is totally free.
An overwhelmingly positive feedback record – which comes in very handy considering their higher rates compared to others despite their multi-state discount.
Northwest also has a different pricing structure compared to the others. They charge for a flat annual rate of $125 per registration. They charge $125 dollars per state for the first three states, $115 for four to nine states and $100 for 10 states or more. Aside from this multi-state discount, they pull all the stops when it comes to recording and scanning and sending all documents. Clients are informed every time in real time when there’s anything new.
The annual $125. subscription gives the client 365 days of premium registered agent service, a secure online portal to help clients manage the documents, access to forms varying from state to state and a lifetime of client support. But instead of $125 annually, compared to other services, clients need only pay $100 annually if they apply for more than nine states while others charge more. That’s at least some savings in the long run.
The only drawback to considering Northwest as a registered agent is that it hurts the pocket the first time unlike other companies that charge below $50 for the first year of service, but these guys are the registered agent experts.
ZenBusiness offers 100% free business formation along with discounted services including registered agent, EIN, banking, ongoing compliance and much more! They use technology and transparency to create an experience that is fast, friendly, affordable and hassle-free.
Unlike the competition, we use technology and automated processes to provide a fast and low-cost business formation service that meets your unique business needs.
It’s your participation that truly fuels our service and success! Our technology keeps our costs down and allows for a more customized experience. We’re able to provide free services and discounted prices because many of our customers – small business owners and entrepreneurs just like you – purchase add-on services and monthly package plans that subsidize our remaining costs.
The result is a low-cost, personalized formation with fast and friendly service for everyone!
From The Swyft Filings Website
“Form an LLC Today In As Few As 10 Minutes”
You need an online LLC service and you need it now. Right? Well, you won’t find a better match for your needs than this Houston, Texas based LLC formation service, Swyft Filings. More than just another company out there with a name and a half-formed idea, Swyft Filings specializes in business formation for small and medium sized businesses. Swyft Filings is the real deal and ready to help you out on your new adventure.
An online LLC service that will be able to offer online legal service when and where you need it, this is a great match for those who are looking specifically for LLC formation services that can be done from their own home or office. The goal is to prioritize comfort, comprehension and, of course, professionalism. Allow Swyft to help you make the most out of your LLC formation by doing all of the hard work for you and still meeting your budget. They are ready to help you reach your dreams, whatever they may be.
- Totally online LLC service so that you can do what you have to from the comfort of your own home
- Operating in each of the 50 states and Washington D.C.
- Cheap LLC formation service to meet all expectations and budgets for those who need it
- Swyft Filings will be able to offer online legal support that will surpass the competition in all of the right ways
The Limited Liability Company or LLC is currently the popular business structure of choice among startups in the United States. The name alone inspires confidence to entrepreneurs who want to go to business with as little risk as possible. What are the benefits of becoming a limited liability company and what does it take to become one? Unfortunately choosing a business structure and implementing it is a major step in creating a business with lots of paperwork to do which varies from state to state but luckily, there are online LLC formation services available that can help at very reasonable prices. These services help companies become registered as LLCs and their registered agents help maintain that business structure as long as the company exists, or matures into something bigger. Formation companies like Legalzoom, Incfile, Northwest and Corpnet. You can look them up with you know what, but first read on about the benefits of LLCs and why Corpnet would be the perfect service for you to help your business become an S-Corporation, a C Corporation, a non-profit organization or a limited liability company.
There are several benefits for businesses to register as LLCs. These include:
Limited liability – with limited liability, the owners’ personal assets are protected from the obligations of the business. Should the business go in debt or litigation, it will be the assets of the company that will be subject and not the assets of the owner/s.
Pass-through Taxation – means that the owners of the LLC won’t be taxed double unlike C Corporations whose earnings are taxed along with their respective owners’ incomes. The business tax is only reflected on the owners’ profits and losses.
Fewer Formalities – in large corporations and companies, they need to hold formal board and stockholders’ meetings to satisfy regulation. The only things required for the LLC include the company’s articles of incorporation and the company’s Operating Agreement on how the company should be run.
Flexible Profit and Loss Allocation – LLCs are allowed to allocate profits and losses among their members however they wish. This is important as in some companies, participation to the business is not equal. Taxation also becomes more flexible among members.
Limited Liability is always a good start for budding businesses and companies like Corpnet assist in their formation.
Why is Corpnet the perfect choice for LLC formation assistance?
Corpnet has already helped in the formation of over 100,000 various types of companies. An astounding accomplishment for a husband and wife team who have been in the business for twenty years.
This dedication to their work has resulted in an almost unanimous positive feedback from their clients and Corpnet guarantees that unsatisfied customers can get their money back, no questions asked.
They offer free registered agent service to clients who take advantage of their top two service packages and 60 days free for their basic service. All three service tiers offer some form of flexibility.
- Business Name Availability Check
- 24-hour document preparation
- Official Filed articles of Organization
- Free Corporate Compliance Tool
- Free Registered Agent Service
- Federal Tax ID Number (EIN)
- Custom Operating Agreement and Minutes
- Custom LLC Kit and Seal
- State Fees
- State Filing Fee
- Standard Processing
- Express Processing
- 24-hour Processing
- Print Delivery
- Shipping and Handling
– Check Out Corpnet.com prices.
The drawback with Corpnet is the price of their package pricing. To make the most bang for the buck, clients are better off with their Complete Package instead of having to add premium amounts to their other packages. Their main advantage is their seeming quality of service and personal touch. Their website is also very informative and easy to use.
Disclaimer: The author of this article is not an attorney, this article is for information purposes only and should not be construed as being advice. Please seek the guidance and advice of a n attorney or law professional.