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Northwest Registered Agent vs LegalZoom — Which Offers The Better LLC Service? (2024)

Are you looking for a company to help you form a new LLC? In this review, we compare the features of two recognized LLC service providers in the industry: Northwest Registered Agent vs LegalZoom. In this comparison, we will answer all the basic questions about both LLC services before you make a final choice for your business formation.

Features of Northwest Registered Agent and Legalzoom

Experience and Background

In comparing LegalZoom and Northwest Registered Agent, it is important to tackle first the experience and background of both companies in the field. Northwest has been in business since 1998 while LegalZoom started operations in 1999. Since their respective inception, both companies gained good track record and have become well known among businesses over time.

LegalZoom vs Northwest: Plans & Packages

Currently, LegalZoom offers three formation packages for its business formation services: the Economy package, the Standard package and the Express Gold package. This is more compared to that of Northwest’s which offers just one LLC formation package.

LegalZoom's LLC formation packages

A notable difference between both company packages is the registered agent service. While Northwest  comes with free registered agent service for a year, LegalZoom does not offer this in its LLC formation packages. 

In order to get registered agent service from the latter, a client would have to pay an extra $159 per year, thereby increasing the total cost. Northwest’s single package includes a registered agent service, while all LegalZoom packages do not include registered agent service. 

LegalZoom vs Northwest: Pricing and Value

For Northwest Registered Agent’s plan, the cost of the total package is about $225 plus state fee. However, all basic features of the incorporation service can be accessed for just $49 plus state fees  similar to the fees offered by LLC service

This fee covers all the essentials of starting an LLC, including Corporate Guides who will help with the LLC filing, an operating agreement, an annual report compliance, relevant LLC membership, among others.

On the other hand, LegalZoom offers three LLC and incorporation service packages which starts from $79 plus state fees. The cheapest package is the Economy package which covers the basic groundwork involved in forming a LLC: business name validation, drafting and filing of vital formation articles. Apart from this, the Economy package also comes with a banking resolution which clients can use to get a business checking account.

The Standard package, offered at $250, comes with more priority in order processing, and 20 personalized LLC membership certificates, among other perks. The highest package, the Express Gold package is offered at $270. This package comes with faster processing of all documents and shipping.

In sum, Northwest’s Basic package is the cheapest of all the plans, plus, it comes with a year of registered agent service. Should you decide to use their services, a full year of registered agent services are included for free for the first year. This advantage easily makes Northwest as the winning contender for this  segment.

Speed of Formation

While both companies are fast with their processing and formation like the Better Legal Services, the Express Gold package of LegalZoom offers high priority in processing and delivery, making it more advantageous for those who want to opt for quicker services. However, do note that this package comes at a higher cost.

LLC formation steps on LegalZoom

Winner: LegalZoom

Customer Service by LegalZoom and Northwest

Like the Harvard Business Service with excellent customer reviews, most of the reviews on the services offered by Northwest are also positive. Most of them emphasize the amazing customer service received from the LLC formation services company. LegalZoom also has several positive reviews across several platforms. 

Customer Support representatives in Northwest are referred to as Corporate Guides and each client of the brand is connected to one of these representatives. This makes it easy to course questions and complaints directly to these representatives.

Although the customer support from LegalZoom might not be as good as what Northwest includes, the former has good phone support on business days. 

Legalzoom and Northwest Ease of Use & Support

With respect to user-friendliness and ease of  use, LegalZoom and Northwest Registered Agent websites seem to be easy to navigate unlike the SunDoc Filings relatively unclear website. Both websites have an updated, simple, and straight to the point layout which makes it easier for users to select what services and information to read on. 

Registered Agent Service

Since having a registered agent is a basic requirement for all LLCs in America and online incorporations services, having an agency that offers this service alongside helping form an LLC business is a major advantage. The registered agent is the link between the state and LLC. Having a top-notch registered agent service can help you handle and pass all pertinent information and notifications such as state fees and processing some important documents (e.g articles of organization)[1]. 

Northwest has a better offer in terms of registered agent service, because this service is automatically included in its LLC formation services for a year. After one year, users will be required to pay a service fee of $125 per year. This is still a good advantage because it gives users a leeway to try a year of registered agent for free before deciding to choose it for another year. All documents received on behalf of LLCs by Northwest are also locally scanned. 

Meanwhile, LegalZoom’s LLC formation service does not come with a registered agent service. To avail of this, clients need to be charged a fee of $299 per year to access this service.

Efficiency and Turnaround Times

The turnaround time for LegalZoom depends on the package. The Express Gold has the lowest turnaround time  of 7 to 10 days, while the Economy package can sometimes take as high as 30 days. 

On the other hand, for Northwest Registered Agent, the turnaround time depends on the state. It is similar to the turnaround time offered by Direct Incorporation LLC. Thus, the turnaround time of the companies depends on the state your business is based. 

Reasons to choose LegalZoom

Customer Reviews

Most of the reviews online about Northwest services were largely positive. It has great customer service similar to other greatly recognized LLC services. Majority of these reviews laud the company’s customer support which exceeded their expectations. 

As for LegalZoom, they have over 2,000 reviews and customer feedback on several sites, most of which are positive as well.

Order Tracking

Northwest and LegalZoom offer LLC online tracking to their clients, allowing them to keep an eye on their LLC formation process.

Overall Winner: Northwest Registered Agent

If you are left with these two options to form your LLC, our experts recommend Northwest Registered Agent. It emerged as the best LLC formation service in this LegalZoom vs Northwest Registered Agent comparison for its appealing customer support and price point. Northwest has lower pricing in comparison to LegalZoom packages for the value and features they offer. 

Planning to establish a consulting company? Then you should know the best states where you can form your LLC consulting firm. Read next! 

Charles McMillan
Charles McMillan
Charles is a family man, an entrepreneur, and a writer. He is skilled in finding the balance between efficiency, affordability, and high-quality offerings when it comes to business services. He’s on a continuing mission to discover and rediscover the most popular LLC services, while sharing his most accurate assessment and review to help business owners like himself.