Should You Use Their Services?
Are you forming a nonprofit but you’d like some help in doing so? Due to the specific compliance requirements of nonprofits, the DIY route can be confusing. On the other hand, so many companies offer nonprofit formation services that it’s hard to know who’s the best.
To supplement your own research, my team and I spent countless hours poring over the details of every major online nonprofit formation provider, with the goal of helping you figure out which one’s right for your organization.
In this BizFilings nonprofit review, I’ll walk you through some pros and cons, pricing, features, customer feedback and much more. Read on to see if they’re a good fit for you!
All nonprofit formation packages from BizFilings include 6 months of registered agent service for free. Not many competitors include registered agent with nonprofit filings.
BizFilings has a free Business Owner’s Toolkit which includes a ton of valuable information about business formation, tax filings, common compliance issues and more. Most competitors have some sort of free learning center content, but BizFilings kicks it up a notch.
With their extended customer support hours, you can call them any weekday until 8pm ET. Their customers love not having to take time out of their busy day, seeing as they can contact BizFilings after the business day ends.
Their $99 base rate is right at the industry standard for nonprofit formation services.
Their Standard and Complete nonprofit formation packages are of questionable value, compared to their strong Basic package.
If you want them to file your 501(c)(3) application, you’ll have to call them to get a quote. Their rates for this service vary by state and are not listed on their website.
BizFilings offers 3 packages of nonprofit formation service: Basic, Standard and Complete.
In most states these packages cost $99, $239 and $349 respectively, but in some states these prices vary a bit like in California where the Complete package costs $424, or Alabama where Basic costs $119. For the most part though, this pricing model is the standard:
Note: The price chart is specific to filing a nonprofit in Arizona. BizFilings and state fees for nonprofit formation vary by state.
What It Includes: This aptly named package includes the essentials of formation, including a business name availability check, and the preparation and filing of your forms. In addition, you get 6 months of registered agent service to receive and forward your important documents, and also access to their online BizComply compliance management tool.
Who It’s Right For: This is a great package for any entrepreneur looking for the formation basics. The 6 months of registered agent service is a valuable bonus as well.
What It Includes: Everything in the Basic package, plus a nonprofit kit and seal to organize your important business forms, a nonprofit organization guidebook, and “expedited processing” that prioritizes your order above BizFilings Basic filings but does not include any state expediting fees.
Who It’s Right For: To be honest, I don’t see the value here. The kit and seal are largely symbolic gestures these days, and the expediting feature doesn’t actually expedite your order with the state.
What It Includes: Everything in the Standard package, along with a federal tax ID (EIN) that allows you to hire employees and file business taxes, and a certified hard copy of your state-filed documents with overnight shipping.
Who It’s Right For: Even if you need this stuff, which many of you will, the Complete package is built on the weak foundation of the Standard package so I find it difficult to widely recommend.
Personally, I recommend going with the Basic package, possibly adding an EIN and any other features your organization specifically needs.
Keep in mind that none of these packages include 501(c)(3) applications for tax-exempt status, which vary in price by state. If you want BizFilings to handle this for you, give them a call for a price quote.
There’s not a whole lot out there when it comes to customer feedback about BizFilings. Most of their online reviews are on a site called Legal Spring, where you can peruse 20 reviews from 2004 to 2012. There’s also a total of 6 newer reviews on Yelp and BBB.org.
Customer Reviews Section Last Updated 8-14-17
Conclusion: It’s tough to get a grasp on how customers feel about the BizFilings experience because there just aren’t enough reviews to make a consensus. Still, it’s definitely a good thing that there aren’t more complaints than the few we found.
Considering all the time I’ve spent looking into nonprofit formation services, I’ve discovered that some of them are better values than others. Still, our goal is to determine which provider hits the sweet spot of pricing and features for you.
BizFilings is a good nonprofit formation provider thanks to their 6 months of registered agent service with any nonprofit filing package, and their extended support hours. It’s always smart to keep track of what the competition’s offering though, so let’s see what you can get with my personal favorite, Harbor Compliance.
Pricing: Harbor Compliance is a premium service provider with rates starting at $1,499. The BizFilings $99 base rate is obviously much lower.
Features: With Harbor Compliance, you get a 501(c)(3) application for tax-exempt status, an EIN to hire employees or open business bank accounts and a full year of registered agent service. BizFilings only offers 6 months of registered agent service with their Basic plan.
Customer Support: BizFilings has quality customer service with friendly knowledgeable reps. However, Harbor Compliance is known for their top-notch support. Every Harbor Compliance customer gets paired up with one of their Compliance Specialists, who guides you through the entire process. Whenever you call or email, you contact that same person who is already familiar with your unique situation.
Experience: Harbor Compliance has served 10,000+ customers since they opened in 2012, whereas BizFilings has helped hundreds of thousands of business customers since 1998.
Pricing Starts at
In Business Since 1998
Anyone wanting a company with a good track record, fair pricing and a la carte features
Pricing Starts at
In Business Since 2012
Anyone wanting top-to-bottom nonprofit formation and ongoing compliance
You always have that option, but forming a nonprofit can be a hassle because they have some complex compliance requirements. Services like BizFilings can handle that for you, allowing you to focus on running your company. If you decide to try the DIY route, make sure to read through our extensive how-to guide.
All of their services are guaranteed to be free of errors caused by BizFilings. It’s not as good as a 100% satisfaction guarantee, but it’s nice to know that they will own up to their mistakes if they make any.
They protect their website with help from Norton Web Security, which means their site is every bit as safe as any competitor’s website. You’re secure from malware and your private data is encrypted.
Absolutely. With extended support hours that go until 8pm ET Monday through Friday, they’re quite accessible and willing to assist you.
BizFilings scores a 4.5/5 in my book. Their extended support hours are convenient and their inclusion of 6 months registered agent service is a valuable bonus. Overall I recommend this company.
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