Recommended Step Before Using Direct Incorporation to Form an LLC
It’s important to name your LLC before going through the business formation process with a professional service. TRUiC’s Free LLC Name Generator will help you to do the following:
- Find the perfect name for your new LLC.
- Conduct a name search to make sure your desired LLC name is available.
- Help secure a domain name for your company.
Direct Incorporation Pros & Cons
Pros of Direct Incorporation
- If you’re looking for comprehensive services, their Venture Startup package includes some truly advanced features like trademark protections and even professional graphic design.
- With over 60,000 customers served since 2003, they have the necessary experience to handle the entire LLC formation process (research, filing, ongoing compliance, etc.).
- All of their LLC formation packages include a federal tax ID number, or EIN. Not many competitors include an EIN in their base package.
- Direct Incorporation protects their site using both Norton Web Security, which scans for malware and encrypts data, and Authorize.Net, which verifies merchant identity.
- Their Executive Club add-on ($13.99/month) allows you to create forms like meeting minutes and resolutions, track tax filings and compliance reminders, etc. Also, you can get legal advice from attorneys and tax advice from accountants, receive discounts on incorporation and trademark services, and more. It’s big value for under 15 bucks.
Cons of Direct Incorporation
- Because they don’t offer registered agent services, they don’t include it in any of their LLC formation packages like IncFile, where it is free for one year.
Pricing & Features
Direct Incorporation has three packages for traditional LLC formation services: Standard, Premier and Elite. Also, if you’re looking for a fully-featured option, they offer their Venture Startup package.
Unlike some providers with packages that barely differentiate from each other, Direct Incorporation’s four tiers of LLC formation service each suit a certain type of business. Below let’s go through the basics of each, but don’t forget that state filing fees differ. Once you know what state you’re forming in, you can add that to the total along with any other applicable fees, like perhaps a name reservation fee.
Standard = $139 + State Fee
What It Includes: The base package includes the Client Resource Center online dashboard, a federal tax ID number (EIN), S-Corporation assistance, they’ll help get your Articles of Incorporation completed/filed, conduct a name check and you get a 3-week trial subscription to the Executive Club (a legal services package).
Who It’s Right For: If you’re a small business owner or brand new startup looking for a well-rounded formation package and access to basic legal services, this could be a good investment. Do you already have the internet domain name secured for you business? If not, they toss that in the package as well.
Premier = $297 + State Fee
What It Includes: This package includes everything in the Standard package, plus “Attorney-Drafted” sample business documents and forms (corporate records, stock certificates, bylaws, operating agreements, NDAs, etc.), LLC seal and a Corporate Suite startup CD-ROM containing more documents.
Who It’s Right For: If you anticipate requiring a document library, the Premier package could be a nice fit. The Corporate Suite CD-ROM includes corporate forms, minutes, resolutions and more, which combined with the other documents and forms in this package makes this a good option if you need these docs anyway.
Elite = $383 + State Fee
What It Includes: This package bundles everything from Premier with website services – 12 months domain name, 3 months hosting, emails, WebsiteBuilder software and a professional stock logo. I wish I could tell you we know the value of these services, but we don’t. There really isn’t any feedback out there. For example, is the DIY website builder any good, or how about the quality of their hosting? Do you need 5 email accounts?
Who It’s Right For: If you don’t have your company’s website setup and figured out, you might consider the Elite package. However, I’d definitely call them and talk to one of their support reps to get an idea about the DIY websitebuilder and logo.
Venture = $773 + State Fee
What It Includes: Like the Elite package, this includes everything from the Premier package. The difference is Venture beefs up the website features to include web design service and a year of hosting. Additionally, the Venture package includes a 12-month Executive Club subscription, trademark protection services, and even a custom designed logo with 3 drafts and 3 interactive revisions.
Who It’s Right For: Maybe you’d love a year of the Executive Club and don’t want to hire a web designer? Or, maybe you like the convenience of bundling web design with incorporation? Venture is ideal if you’re in the initial startup phase and could use a one-stop-shop package.
This largely comes down to your unique business needs right now. All of their LLC formation packages represent fair value, so there isn’t one that jumps out to me as being the best in general. Personally, I would probably choose Premier because it includes a number of valuable documents and forms without breaking the bank.
There aren’t a ton of Direct Incorporation reviews available online yet, but the ones they do have are largely positive. Of their 39 reviews on Facebook, 33 of them are positive, with users glowing about their efficient services and ongoing customer support.
Customer Reviews Section Last Updated: 7-18-18
Conclusion: The few critical reviews they have don’t reveal any negative trends; they seem like isolated incidents to me. All told, Direct Incorporation has strong customer reviews, they just don’t have a whole lot of them yet compared to titans like LegalZoom or similar services.
How Does Direct Incorporation Compare?
Direct Incorporation is a great choice for LLC formation thanks to their variety of service packages and inclusion of an EIN with any of them. Still, it’s always a good idea to see what the competition’s up to, so let’s get a quick look at my personal favorite, IncFile.
Pricing: IncFile prices start at just $49, saving you $90 over Direct Incorporation’s Standard package.
Features: Direct Incorporation offers many features that IncFile doesn’t, like the Executive Club and trademark protection options, and they give you an EIN with all formation packages. On the other hand, they don’t offer registered agent service, which IncFile includes for free for a year with all orders.
Turnaround Time: Filings times vary by state for both Direct Incorporation and IncFile, but in general they’re close. Direct Incorporation turns around your order in 2 days to 12 weeks, IncFile gets it done in 1 day to 8 weeks.
Customer Support: Both companies offer phone support on weekdays, Direct Incorporation from 9am-6pm ET, IncFile from 10am-7pm ET. In my correspondence with reps from both providers, I encountered friendly-helpful people with minimal wait times. Since they both provide fairly good support, I think they’re about even in this category.
Businesses Formed So Far: IncFile has helped form over 150,000 businesses since they opened their doors in 2004. Direct Incorporation isn’t far behind, with 60,000+ clients since 2003. IncFile has a slight experience advantage, but it’s negligible.
HERE'S A QUICK Breakdown
Pricing Starts at $49
150,000+ Businesses formed so far
Perfect for: Anyone who's starting a business on a budget and need quick formation with good features
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I Just Form a Business Myself?
Sure, you can. You’ll have to learn the legalese and compliance guidelines, deal with all the red tape on your own, etc. LLC formation providers like Direct Incorporation alleviate most of these concerns. However if you’d like to check out what the LLC formation process looks like, check out our step-by-step guides.
Are There Any Hidden Fees?
Nope, Direct Incorporation is up-front about all pricing matters.
Is My Information Secure?
With the combination of Norton Web Security and Authorize.Net protecting their site, they’re about as secure as any other major web-based service.
Does Direct Incorporation Offer Ongoing Support?
They do. In fact, in one review we read, a customer said Direct Incorporation still checks in with her, and this customer hadn’t made a purchase in over a year.