LegalZoom is the 900 pound gorilla in the online business service industry. They offer good products and great customer service. Prices for most products are higher with Legalzoom than with others, but they currently offer a $0 LLC package that makes it hard not to take a closer look.
*We form a unique LLC with every site we review. We verify the paperwork is filed correctly and timely, monitor for unexpected charges, and report on our experience.
LegalZoom brings a lot to the table. They have high prices when compared to others (excluding the $0 LLC formation service), but they have good customer service, and they offer a lot of services outside of LLC formation including online legal services and tax services.
LegalZoom has a 2.8 billion dollar market cap and boasts $200 million dollars in annual revenue. The advertising budget that this size of company affords has made LegalZoom a household name. LegalZoom banks on that recognition translating to trust, because in this industry, trust is important.
Overall, we are impressed with LegalZoom’s breadth of services. They offer more than anyone else. Form a business, get a registered agent, acquire compliance management, and while you’re there get some legal and tax services, too. It’s truly a one stop shop.
Until recently, LegalZoom cost more than most of its competitors for everything. Because of their high cost and ready access to cheaper alternatives, we didn’t rank Legalzoom very well. However, Legalzoom has recently added a $0 LLC formation service that demands a closer look. So we formed an LLC using this package.
Okay, so it’s not quite $0. You’ll still have to pay state fees (which vary by state). The package includes only the articles of organization. There are no extras, like an EIN or operating agreement. The signup process is easy (though you’ll have to avoid half a dozen upsells).
If all you want is articles of incorporation filed, and you don’t require any assistance, this is a good deal.
Pro package ($249)- Includes articles of organization, operating agreement, EIN, and local guide to business licenses
Premium package ($299)- Includes articles of organization, hands on guidance from a local attorney (first 3 months), operating agreement, EIN, business license guide,
Registered Agent Service: $299/yr/state
Annual Report Service: $99/yr/state
Operating Agreement: $99
Operating Agreement plus EIN: $159
Legal Documents: prices vary
LegalZoom pitches a lot of expensive services along the way, and the site’s design makes it easy to sign up for those services unintentionally.
For example, to turn down LegalZoom’s registered agent service, you must scroll below the very obvious “Continue with LegalZoom” button down to the much less obvious “Appoint a different registered agent” button. Similar strategies are used throughout the sign up process. It’s a marketing strategy we’re all used to, but it is still annoying nonetheless. And if it results in you signing up for a service you don’t want or need, it could also be very expensive.
Legalzoom offers a one day expedited formation speed as a $99 add on. Otherwise you’ll wait 5-15 days before Legalzoom even files your paperwork with the state. This is much longer than most services take to file paperwork.
We called LegalZooms’s customer care center three separate times and had long hold times on each occasion (average of 12 minutes). However, once we got through, we found all customer service reps we spoke with to be friendly and helpful.
In addition to calling, you can also use their free chat device, which lowered the waiting time and resulted in equally good information. LegalZoom’s customer service hours are also longer than the competition. Customer service is available weekdays from 5am-7pm PST and weekends from 7am-4pm.
This positive experience was reflected by others we read about in their reviews: some long hold times, but quality people at the end.
LegalZoom offers a lot of services. Your’e going to know about all of them because they are offered at the time you signup. But they are very thorough, and the signup process is very user friendly.
In addition to standard LLC formation, LegalZoom offers a variety of unique specialty packages that include combinations of popular add-ons.
Not sure if LegalZoom is right for your LLC? Check out our reviews of other top LLC formation services.
Want to see a side-by-side comparison? See how LegalZoom stacks up to others in our comparison reviews linked below:
Long list of service ranging from LLC formation to personal estate planning
60 day money back guarantee
Excellent customer service (for premium packages)
Free LLC formation package
Generally high prices
Expensive registered agent service
Long processing times (up to two weeks)