Ready to form an LLC but still searching for an online LLC formation service to use? Leading companies like IncFile and LegalZoom can help you seamlessly in this process. But which of these formation services is the most suitable one for your business?
Our experts’ LegalZoom vs IncFile comparison guide will thoroughly assess their features to help you choose the best LLC service for your business.
Features of Incfile and LegalZoom
Although both LegalZoom and IncFile can reliably form an LLC, they have their individual and unique features that differentiate them from one another. For that reason, one of them can be more suitable and can cater to your business better than the other. Below is the IncFile vs LegalZoom comparison in terms of their valuable features and services.
IncFile vs LegalZoom: Packages and Plans
For LLC formation services, Incfile offers three pricing packages which are Silver, Gold, and Platinum packages. The Silver package offers next day business filing, the preparation and filing of your articles of organization, a free full year of registered agent services, 30-minute business tax consultation and more.
The Gold plan includes everything featured in the Silver plan plus an LLC operating agreement (corporate bylaws), preparation of meeting minutes, Federal Tax ID (EIN), a banking resolution, and filing of Form 2553 (if you want your business to be taxed as an S-corp) , and more.
The Platinum package includes everything from the Gold plan plus expedited processing, business contract templates, domain name, and business website.
Like IncFile, LegalZoom has three pricing packages – Economy, Standard, and Express Gold LLC packages. The Economy package features a name availability check, letter of financial authorization, and filing of your Articles of Organization. The Standard package includes everything in the economy package plus 20 official membership certificates and a corporate kit. The top package only adds an expedited filing.
Incfile has guaranteed next business day processing in all packages while LegalZoom takes seven to 30 business days (depending on the package) to process your formation papers. These make Incfile preferred over LegalZoom in terms of the packages and faster processing.
Pricing and Value
LegalZoom’s Economy package costs $149 (plus state fee). The Standard package costs $329 (plus state fees) while the Express Gold package costs $349 (plus state fees) though it adds only a little value. LegalZoom charges extra for most other features included in IncFile’s packages. For instance, an operating agreement costs an extra $99.
Unlike LegalZoom, IncFile offers a completely free basic plan, and you only have to pay the state fee. Though free, the silver plan offers everything necessary to file your new business. The gold package costs $149 (plus state fee) while the platinum package costs $299 (plus state fee).
LegalZoom has more expensive packages and fewer services than IncFile. Paying nothing is better than paying $149 (plus state fees) for similar services, which makes IncFile a better choice. IncFile includes more value in its LLC formation packages than LegalZoom does.
Experience and History
IncFile was launched in 2004 and since then, the company has processed over 250,000 business formations. Incfile’s amazing services are reflected in the thousands of reviews found online and most of these reviews are positive.
LegalZoom began operation in 1999 providing online legal services and business formation services. Hence, it has more years of experience than IncFile. Currently, the company has served over 3.6 million clients altogether and over one million clients on LLC formation. LegalZoom has lots of online customer reviews but only about a half of these reviews are either positive or with five-star ratings. Nevertheless, forming an LLC with LegalZoom is fine if you want a more experienced LLC company, draft contracts or other legal forms aside from an LLC formation service.
In a nutshell, our experts see that both companies have proven to be experienced and have excellent track records with their customers. LegalZoom appears to be more experienced and has formed more LLCs too while IncFile takes the lead with more positive customer reviews.
Incfile and LegalZoom Registered Agent Service
All Incfile’s plans feature a free one year of registered agent service. However, after the free first year, Incfile charges a flat rate of $119 per year for its registered agent service. Unlike Incfile, LegalZoom does not offer a free one year of registered agent service. Instead, LegalZoom provides this service as a stand-alone feature, which costs $299 per year (previously $159 per year).
This service is not only less expensive with IncFile, but you can also use the one-year free registered agent service to find out if you would prefer their service.
IncFile and LegalZoom: Turnaround Time
If you need quicker processing time, IncFile is one of the best LLC companies to consider. Each of IncFile’s packages comes with next business day processing. The platinum package includes expedited processing, which drastically reduces the processing time.
LegalZoom’s processing times are based on the LLC formation package you purchase. For instance, LegalZoom’s Economy package has a turnaround time of 30 to 35 business days, the Standard package has a turnaround time of 15 business days, and the Express Gold plan features expedited filing and has a turnaround time of about seven to 10 business days.
User-friendliness of Incfile and LegalZoom
Both companies are user-friendly. The layouts of their websites are simple, very easy to navigate, and can make the business formation process easy for small business owners. It would take less than 15 minutes to go through and complete the business formation process on both websites. Incfile or LegalZoom offers informative package-comparison and checkout pages, thereby helping new business owners get started and know exactly what they are paying for.
Additional Services of Incfile and LegalZoom
Beyond starting your limited liability company, do note that both LLC service providers also offer additional features for LLC formation. Some of these features are included in the LLC packages while some can be purchased independently for more pricing flexibility.
Both companies provide similar additional services to their users, which include registered agent service, operating agreement, annual reports, doing business as (DBA) names, foreign qualifications, employer identification number (EIN) acquisitions, and so on.
However, Incfile has offered almost all the necessary features in its pricing packages while they offer a very few additional services, such as a 30-minute business tax consultation, file tax returns and more that can be purchased independently.
Aside from the fact that LegalZoom LLC formation company provides most of its additional services as stand-alone services, it was originally created to provide online legal help and services. Therefore, they offer many legal services that aren’t unavailable from IncFile, such as LegalZoom forming of last will (testament), power of attorney, living trust, divorce documents, property deeds, and so on.
Customer Support: Incfile and LegalZoom
Both LegalZoom and Incfile offer several channels for customer support with helpful, professional representatives. LegalZoom has both email and phone support along with a detailed FAQ page on its website. The phone support is available on weekdays from 5 am to 7 pm PT and weekends from 7 am to 4 pm PT.
Incfile has less extended customer service than LegalZoom. Though you can also submit your queries by email, or contact a representative by phone, phone support is only available on weekdays from 9 am to 6 pm CT.
IncFile vs LegalZoom: Customer Evaluation
As seen above, LegalZoom has mixed feedback from its customers. The company has over 2,000 online reviews on third-party websites but almost half of the reviews are negative. Based on customer service, LegalZoom has an A+ rating on Better Business Bureau (BBB), but only a 1.5-star customer rating.
The customers’ main complaint was about LegalZoom’s unfair charges. Customers were either charged without their authorization, charged the wrong amount, or charged for services they didn’t receive. However, the company was praised for the range of legal services it offers.
Unlike LegalZoom, IncFile has over 15,000 online reviews and almost all of them are positive. The company has an A+ rating on the BBB and nearly a 5-star customer rating. Our team observed that customers love IncFile’s for its clear and easy-to-understand business formation and compliance processes. The company’s transparent pricing is also well-received by customers. Only a few customers complained about missed deadlines and poor communication.
Is IncFile better than LegalZoom?
IncFile is better than LegalZoom in terms of affordability. The best way to know which is better between Incfile vs LegalZoom is to take a closer look at why you need a business formation service in the first place. If you need a business formation service just to form an LLC, file your small business tax, get operating agreement or compliance assistance, then Incfile is better and more affordable than LegalZoom. However, if you want to access legal forms or require an attorney regularly, our experts recommend LegalZoom.
Overall Winner: IncFile
Both companies provide online LLC services but each focuses on different areas. Incfile helps with initial business formation and business tax returns and compliance assistance. LegalZoom, on the other hand, is a full-service legal provider. The company can also help you with initial business setup and compliance, in addition to other legal needs like filing a trademark application or drafting a contract.
After a thorough assessment on Incfile vs LegalZoom, it is clear for our experts that Incfile is the better LLC service provider if you want to save cash, enjoy more value for your money, great customer support, and receive thorough and quick business formation services.