Recommended Step Before Using Northwest or LegalZoom
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.
Northwest and LegalZoom Commonalities
Both LegalZoom and Northwest Registered Agent are entirely capable of handling every step of your LLC formation in a professional manner. You won’t need to dive into the specifics and formalities yourself, and they’ll handle all the legal red tape too. All that’s required of you is answering a few simple questions about your business, and paying any necessary fees. They’ll take care of the rest!
Here’s what LegalZoom and Northwest have in common when it comes to the LLC service they provide:
- Fast, professional services with plenty of experience.
- Either of these services can save small business owners hundreds of dollars compared to hiring a lawyer to form your company.
- Both companies offer many other business services beyond your formation. If you want them to help maintain your LLC as well, they're both certainly capable of doing so.
- These services both have safe and user-friendly websites loaded with options and information about the LLC formation process.
- Northwest Registered Agent and LegalZoom each package some other premium features in with your LLC formation services, adding a considerable amount of value to even their base-rate formation packages.
- They both offer access to trained customer support experts who can assist you if anything goes wrong, or if you just have questions to ask!
What Sets LegalZoom and Northwest Apart?
Northwest Registered Agent offers LLC formation service for a price point of $29 (plus state fee). LegalZoom's prices start at $79 (plus state fee).
Registered Agent Service
As you may have guessed by their company name, Northwest Registered Agent's claim to fame is their premium registered agent service. On the other hand, LegalZoom doesn't include registered agent services with any of their packages, and charges $159 to add it on.
LegalZoom is one of the industry giants, with millions of clients and a truckload of brand power. Northwest Registered Agent has plenty of experience in their own right with thousands of customers, but they're more of a mid-sized company compared to LegalZoom.
Because they have more customers, LegalZoom has many more total reviews available online than Northwest Registered Agent, but they are mixed in quality. Northwest only has a few dozen pieces of online customer feedback, but they're mostly positive.
It's not that one or the other has better turnarounds, but they are certainly different. Northwest Registered Agent bases your turnaround times on how long they expect your state of formation to take when processing your order, and also whether you purchase expedited service (where available).
LegalZoom is quicker in some states and slower in others, because they base their estimate on whether you buy their Economy package (30 days), Standard package (15 days), or Express Gold package (7-10 days). LegalZoom's estimates do not vary by state.
While both companies do have solid support, Northwest Registered Agent provides their clients with Corporate Guides, who are highly trained U.S.-based support agents. Every customer gets a Corporate Guide assigned to their specific account, so you can talk to the same person whenever you have a problem or question. As for LegalZoom, their customer service is a more standard call-center type of experience.
While Northwest specializes in registered agent services and LLC formation, LegalZoom is known for providing legal services beyond business formation.
Recommended: Northwest Registered Agent
We recommend Northwest Registered Agent because they provide knowledgeable customer support, affordable LLC formation services, and premium registered agent service.
LegalZoom vs Northwest: Pricing
Northwest Starts at $29
Northwest Registered Agent offers one incorporation package for $29 plus state fee.
For $29 + state fees, Northwest's business formation service includes:
- Corporate Guides® (experts) who will take care of the LLC filing
- Premium registered agent services
- Business address
- Mail forwarding
- Privacy by Default®
- Online account to access important business documents
LegalZoom Starts at $79
LegalZoom also offers their clients three different levels of service for their LLC formation.
Like Northwest Registered Agent, LegalZoom’s Economy package includes the must-haves for your LLC formation: a business name check, along with the drafting and filing of your formation articles.
In addition, the Economy tier also includes a banking resolution, which can be used to obtain a business checking account if you don’t have an EIN.
When you step up an extra $250 to the Standard tier, LegalZoom adds 20 personalized LLC membership certificates, prioritized order processing, and a symbolic embossed organizer and company seal.
Finally, an additional $20 on top of the Standard package gets you the Express Gold tier, which includes expedited processing from your state, and express shipping of the completed documents. Unfortunately, LegalZoom does not include essential features like registered agent services in any of their packages. Northwest on the other hand, includes free registered agent service for a full year.
LegalZoom vs Northwest: Customer Reviews
We found a few dozen online customer reviews for Northwest Registered Agent, and the vast majority of those are positive reviews. Their customers frequently mention how pleased they are with Northwest's excellent customer service, as well as how easy to use their services are.
"A very excellent registered agent and company formation service. I have used others and Northwest has been the best. It's only slightly more expensive than your average provider and entirely worth it. The account area is nice and support is responsive/knowledgeable. The resources on the website are useful. And the registered agent service includes basic mail forwarding (with limitations, which for my business are fine and save me from needing a PO box). I love 'em."
"Had an issue with the website but within an hour had a response that explained the issue, provided a fix AND provided the link to get directly to what I needed to see. The assistance was very fast, friendly and could not have been more helpful."
"NWRA walked me through the process of changing my registered agent and have done everything they promised. They've greatly exceeded expectations and are reasonably priced. They have followed up to make sure I have everything needed and have set the bar for registered agent services very high. My previous registered agent charged significantly higher prices and wanted ridiculous fees to file a form. So glad I switched! Thank you NWRA!!"
LegalZoom has hundreds of reviews all over the web, but they're much more mixed between positive and negative feedback. Their largest collection of online reviews is on SiteJabber, where they maintain a 3.3-star (out of 5) rating with well over 600 reviews.
While plenty of their customers are indeed quite satisfied, there is also a noteworthy amount of them that have issues with LegalZoom's outsourced customer support.
"Starting my business with legalzoom has been easy. There are a lot of available add-ons, but they can be expensive. But even with a basic setup, my legal documents were ready within a few days. The free tax consult was nice. However, the fee for the registered agent was not included in the setup cost for my business. So, I was charged an additional 250$ that I was not expecting to pay because I thought it was included in my initial set up fees. That's on me for not reading my documents thoroughly enough the first time through."
"I think too many people expect too much from this company. Let's be clear, when you do business with Legal Zoom, it's not the same as hiring an attorney. But for simple legal tasks, it's hard to beat Legal Zoom and their great prices."
"I signed up with Legal Zoom to open an LLC. I wish they explained the process better and helped me understand which services were necessary and which were not. They essentially just sent me a list of the documents that I needed to file myself. I feel that I paid a lot of money but didn't get much value back, really. And then I just found out it is very difficult to cancel their services, they won't let me do it from my account."
While LegalZoom has many more reviews online, Northwest Registered Agent has a higher ratio of positive feedback compared to negative reviews. Neither company has a bad reputation in this regard, but Northwest Registered Agent wins in this area.
Indeed, this can be one of the advantages of working with a smaller company — it's easier to maintain a top-notch customer experience when you're not servicing millions of clients.
LegalZoom vs Northwest: Which Should You Choose?
Overall, we recommend forming an LLC with Northwest due to their affordable pricing, premium features, quick service, and knowledgeable customer support. You can also check out our review of the best LLC services to explore more options!