Are They Right For You? (Pros, Cons & More)
Are you in the process of forming an LLC and thinking about using an online formation service? Maybe you’re not interested in the legalese and red tape of the DIY route, or you’re tired of trying to navigate confusing state resource sites. I’ve been there myself!
To help you in your research, my team and I spent hundreds of hours researching the ins and outs of every major online LLC formation service. Instead of trying to convince you to pick one service over another, I want to give you the info you need to make the best decision for your company.
In this Active Filings LLC review, I’ll go over some pros and cons, pricing and features, customer reviews and more. Let’s find out if they’re the right fit for your business!
Starting at $79, their prices aren’t the absolute lowest in the LLC formation industry but it’s a highly competitive rate that beats many other providers.
Whether you’re a customer or not, they offer a free business name availability search to anyone who fills out the form on their website.
If Spanish is your preferred language, Active Filings has a fully translated Spanish-language version of their website.
There aren’t many customer reviews of Active Filings, but those we did find are all positive.
Active Filings isn’t a huge operation, with just 4 employees. However, with 60,000+ customers served since 2001, they have the experience to handle your LLC formation with no snags.
They have a handy chart that shows average filing times by state for regular and expedited processing. There’s far less guesswork than with most providers.
None of their LLC formation packages include registered agent service. Many competitors offer 6 months to a year of registered agent for free.
Their Complete and Premium packages aren’t great deals, as all of the extra features included could be added on an a la carte basis for only about 10% more.
Active Filings offers 3 standard packages for LLC formation, ranging from $79 to $444: Economy, Complete and Premium. The way Active Filings presents these options is slightly confusing, in that they actually make the Complete and Premium packages seem more expensive than they are, by not including the “Instant Discount” in the package price.
What It Includes: This package includes the basics of formation, including a business name availability check and the preparation, filing and electronic delivery of your articles of incorporation. In addition, you also receive a number of customizable sample documents via their online DocuCenter, as well as a business tax consultation.
Who It’s Right For: If you’re an entrepreneur who wants all the essentials along with some handy sample forms, the Economy package should be the best for you.
What It Includes: Everything in the Economy package, plus a federal tax ID number (EIN) that allows you to open a business bank account and hire employees, a corporate kit and seal for organizing company documents, and priority shipping with a tracking number from the USPS.
Who It’s Right For: Since you’re only saving about $23 by bundling all of these additional services rather than ordering them a la carte, this package only really makes sense if you would order the EIN, kit/seal and priority shipping even if they weren’t bundled together.
What It Includes: Everything in the Complete package, along with a customized LLC operating agreement that outlines the structure of your company, and expedited service to get your LLC formed by the state as quickly as possible.
Who It’s Right For: In a hurry? The Premium package is worth a look if you also don’t want to draw up your own operating agreement.
For non-US customers, Active Filings also offers an International option that varies in cost by state. This package is exactly the same as the Economy package, except the international version includes registered agent service.
Honestly, I would buy the Economy package and add the features I need on an a la carte basis. If you ordered Economy and added an EIN and registered agent service, that would cost $237 which is still less than the Complete/Premium packages.
There simply aren’t many Active Filings reviews to be found, although the ones we did hunt down are quite positive. Their happy customers tend to be pleased with the efficiency of services and with the personalized assistance they receive from Active Filings reps on the phone.
Customer Reviews Section Last Updated 8-2-17
Conclusion: While I would like to see a bit more feedback in general, a couple dozen positive reviews are better than no reviews at all. That said, the lack of criticism is a great sign. You’re clearly doing something right if you don’t even make anyone want to complain on the internet!
Considering all the hours I’ve invested into researching LLC formation services, I’ve determined that some of these providers offer more bang for your buck than others. Still, the goal here is to figure out which service has the right balance of pricing and features for your company.
Active Filings is a good option for LLC formation service because of their low base rate and bilingual capabilities. It’s still always smart to see what the competition is up to, so let’s take a look at my personal favorite, IncFile.
Pricing: IncFile’s LLC formation service starts at just $49, a $30 savings over Active Filings.
Features: IncFile includes registered agent service for a year with any package, which costs $99 as an add-on feature with Active Filings. Aside from that, the features are quite similar between IncFile and Active Filings.
Turnaround Time: Active Filings provides customers with average turnaround times for both regular and expedited filings in all 50 states, ranging from 2 days to about 10 weeks. IncFile’s filing times also vary by state, from 1 business day to 8 weeks.
Customer Support: With just 4 employees, Active Filings has built a reputation of contributing a personal touch to their customer service, while still not being so busy that they can’t answer the phone. IncFile is a larger company that can sometimes take a bit longer to get ahold of, but they are also quite knowledgeable and friendly.
Businesses Formed So Far: Active Filings has helped over 60,000 customers since 2001. On the other hand, IncFile has helped form 100,000+ businesses since 2004.
Pricing Starts at
100,000+ businesses formed so far
Anyone starting a business on a budget and need quick formation with generous features
Pricing Starts at
50,000+ businesses formed so far
Anyone wanting a service with bilingual support or international business formation
You sure can, but it can be a real hassle if you don’t know what you’re getting into. You need a degree of familiarity with state-specific compliance guidelines with the DIY route, and there’s a good deal of legalese to get through as well. Services like Active Filings can alleviate these concerns, allowing you to focus on running your business. If you do want to form your own LLC, check out our comprehensive how-to guide.
Not that I’ve found. Active Filings has easy to understand pricing, and their rates are fair.
They take your security seriously. Their site is protected by GoDaddy Verify Security encryption service, and by Authorize.Net’s merchant identity verification scans.
They certainly do. In their own words, Active Filings prides themselves on their “superb post-sales support.” Sounds good to me!
Active Filings scores a 4.6/5 for me. Their base rate is reasonable and they’re an especially great choice for anyone requiring assistance in Spanish.
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