Starting a company requires several steps, including legal paperwork and government filings. If you are new to creating a business entity or do not have time to complete these steps on your own, a third-party organization can help.
There are tons of choices available on the market to help you get your new company up and running, without the hassle. IncFile and LegalZoom are two agencies that provide this essential service to those who need it.
Ready to learn more? Here’s your detailed guide on IncFile vs. LegalZoom, and which will be the right choice for you.
IncFile vs. LegalZoom: The Verdict
Having someone complete the necessary paperwork and file all the documentation correctly can save a great deal of time and stress. Both of these companies offer services to help create an LLC (Limited Liability Company), S corporations, C corporations, and non-profit businesses.
Before getting into the details, the comparison summary below can help you determine which agency would be best suited to help complete your business paperwork and filings. While both of these third-party companies provide similar services, there are some key differences between the two.
Choose IncFile If:
- You want to save money
- You value customer reviews and satisfaction
- You want to prepare and file tax returns
- You want an easy online dashboard for your business needs
Choose LegalZoom If:
- You prefer a more well-known brand
- You want extended customer support hours
- You need to file a patent, trademark, or copyright
- You want to make custom legal forms
IncFile does have many positive reviews, but LegalZoom has been around longer. They have more of a solid presence for a trusted company to handle your documents.
The rest of this article will examine some key similarities and differences that may help you make a final decision. You can also read our full IncFile review and LegalZoom review for more information.
Services Offered & Pricing
While both of these companies can easily help you when starting your business legally and efficiently, each specializes in separate areas. The type of business you are creating and your location will affect the services and prices you will pay from each provider.
- Both can offer LLC, sole proprietorship, non-profit, and c-corps or s-corps
- Both offer business compliance
- Both provide simple online business legal services
- IncFile cannot help you form a partnership company
- LegalZoom provides intellectual property filing services
- IncFile provides business tax preparation and returns
IncFile is terrific for starting a business and following up with regular business compliance and taxation. LegalZoom is a more full-service company that focuses on making specialized legal services more affordable for small businesses.
IncFile Packages & Pricing
Silver Tier Business Services - $0 + State Filing Fees
The Silver Tier package from IncFile is ideal for those on a budget or those who do not require complicated business filings. You get a business name availability search and next-business-day filing of formation documents with the state. This package includes email and phone support.
Gold Tier Business Services - $149 + State Filing Fees
IncFile’s Gold Tier package adds to the basics from the Silver Tier with additional services. This package includes corporate bylaws, an LLC operating agreement, tax form filings for S-corps, and preparation of meeting minutes.
Platinum Tier Business Services - $299 + State Filing Fees
The Platinum Tier combines the Silver and Gold options and adds a business website and domain name. This choice is the most comprehensive option for anyone starting a new business. The first year of business includes a registered agent but will be an additional charge of $119.00 for each following year.
LegalZoom Packages & Pricing
Economy Tier Business Services - $79
The Economy Tier is the LegalZoom basics of completing state business registration paperwork, but it does not cover any filing fees. It helps you through creating your Articles of Organization paperwork, which you will need for an individual to open bank accounts on behalf of the company.
LegalZoom includes guides to aid with document reviews and planning for assessment purposes. Their exceptional customer support is part of this package.
Standard Tier Business Services - $329
LegalZoom’s Standard Tier package builds onto the Economy Tier by including more features. You will receive company membership certificates that have your company seal, which is necessary for ownership recording. They give you an organizer etched with your company name, and all of the filing services have VIP processing available.
Express Gold Tier Business Services - $349
When you choose the Express Gold Tier from LegalZoom, you can expect the best processing time possible. They include all of the features from the Economy and Standard Tiers with some extras. They add rush processing in your state and express shipping to receive your documents sooner.
Receiving your documents through the mail sooner can make a huge difference in your start-up operations. LegalZoom ensures that clients with the Express Gold Tier get their documents back to them in less time.
Document Management & Online Experience
Access to your business documentation is vital, whether you are just starting a new company or continuing business operations for years. Choose a provider that will suit your needs by keeping your documents safe, making them readily available and easy to access at any time of the day.
- You can view and receive your business documents online
- Both have exceptional customer support to walk you through your online documents
- IncFile’s built-in dashboard platform is easier to navigate and use
- LegalZoom has annoying pop-ups and upselling throughout the system
Both online portals are simple to use and easy to access, but IncFile comes out on top. This advantage is due to clients having to face fewer upsell ads while navigating through to their documentation. IncFile also notifies you each time you have documents ready for viewing.
The time it takes to file and receive your documents can mean a world of difference, especially if you are in a rush. The quicker turnaround you need for your business filings, the more money you will pay in fees to an agency.
- Both will handle your documents properly and process them with the correct state offices
- Both offer expedited processing for an additional fee
- IncFile has next-business-day filing
- LegalZoom filing can take 7 to 30 days to process
Remember that no matter how much you pay to expedite services, how the state is handling the documents on their end will also affect processing times. The third-party organization is always at the mercy of the state when finalizing documents.
Compliance & Track Record
Having a company that can guide you through processing the legal documents the correct way is an immeasurable asset. When choosing an agency, you want to ensure that there will be no mistakes that could affect your business operations later or cause processing delays.
- Both companies provide support on completing legal documents needed for business filings
- Neither is a lawyer service; they only offer legal guidance for business documents
- IncFile’s BBB accreditation was revoked as of September 2020 for a failing record of consistency
- LegalZoom can get you in touch with registered lawyers for any specific legal questions or concerns
When you compare LegalZoom’s track record alongside IncFile, you can see they are consistent with aiding clients while remaining compliant in their state. Knowing that a provider like LegalZoom can take the stress out of filing legal documents can mean a huge difference in starting your company.
With the many third-party companies that provide document filing services, it can be hard to decide. Many new business owners will opt for an agency that can give them exceptional customer service as they navigate the business world.
- Both have options to call customer support or online chat through the website
- Both companies have a knowledgeable support team that can solve problems and answer questions as you need
- Long wait times to reach customer service by phone when calling LegalZoom
- IncFile has the option to send a customer request through the website rather than waiting on the phone or online chat
When examining online reviews for both organizations, you will find that many previous clients prefer the customer service of IncFile to what you will find with LegalZoom. While LegalZoom has more negative customer service complaints, they also have a broader customer base because they have been in business longer than IncFile.
Your business structure will depict the type of paperwork filings you need and what you spend on state fees or additional services. When exploring the choices that IncFile and LegalZoom offer, it could be better to go with one or the other, based on your company’s needs.
While both these companies can provide exceptional service when starting an LLC, IncFile also offers tax return processing and filings. This feature is an asset for an LLC because there can be various ways your company can pay taxes for operations.
If you are creating a corporation, both IncFile and LegalZoom can guide you through the process, but LegalZoom can provide exceptional legal help for C-corp businesses. This structure requires more legal documentation and filing than an S-corp business.
LegalZoom is the only one that can help you get your partnership started when comparing these two agencies. IncFile can provide guidance and services to partner organizations after it is active and operating, but if you need help at inception, LegalZoom is your only option.
Although both IncFile and LegalZoom can help you begin your non-profit company, IncFile’s fees are lower, making it the better choice. You may require specialized tax services that IncFile can provide as you do business year after year.
The Last Word
After comparing IncFile to LegalZoom, you can see many similarities between the two and some distinctions of services each one includes. In the end, the type of company you want to create, your location, and your budget will help you decide which service will work best for you.
If you are unsure what type of organization structure you should start with, both IncFile and LegalZoom can help you figure out your business needs to suggest one that will work. These two agencies have helped numerous individuals begin all business types and have a great support team to guide you through the process.