It’s vital that you get the best online legal services for your small business.
The right online legal service will ensure that your rights and physical and intellectual property are protected, and will protect your business from people who want to take the business you’ve worked so hard to create.
The wrong online legal service will provide poor legal service which can leave you vulnerable to a world of problems that include lawsuits (including but not limited to product failures and accidents, and employees who leave your business to compete against you, or even worse, take sensitive company data or business secrets with them.
To save time and confusion when looking for the best online legal service for your business, I’ve investigated and reviewed the online legal service market. Here are the best online legal services for small businesses.
Table of Contents
1. Rocket Lawyer – 9.31/10 (Best Online Legal Service)
Rocket Lawyer earned the top position on my list of the best online legal services because they have an abundance of services, charge a fair fee and cover nearly any legal service you could need at a great price, while other online legal services provide fewer services for similar prices.
Rocket Lawyer charges a meager $39.99 per month for their services, which are so vast that if you were to obtain all of the services they provide from other businesses, you would need to sign up with at least three different services at $30-$40 per month apiece (which could run you as much as $120/month). Their attorney services are included in the price and when you sign up for their online legal services, their business formation and registered agent services are discounted.
It’s easy to sign up with Rocket Lawyer, and their system is easy to learn and navigate.
They have a ton of legal documents and forms in their system which you can customize, save, and have signed all from the same system. The forms are broken up into three categories: real estate, family and personal, and business-related.
These three main categories are further broken up into sub-categories such as: home ownership, estate planning, and intellectual property. There are even sub-sub-categories, so you’ll be able to find and customize nearly any form or document that you’ll ever need for your small business.
They provide a Document Defense service that covers any document created through their system if you have trouble enforcing it. This is a service whereby they review the document and then help you to enforce it.
You get a 30-minute, free, legal consultation with a lawyer as part of the Rocket Lawyer online legal services package, along with 10 pages of legal document review each time a new legal matter arises. This saves you the trouble of scheduling a consultation with local lawyers at a law firm. Subsequently, you can get a consultation with a lawyer from the Rocket Lawyer team for 40% less than their standard consultation price.
Not only is their customer service team polite and efficient, but they’re also legally qualified to answer your questions. The Rocket Lawyer customer service team is made up of lawyers who have experience with US law and can help guide you through any small business question or legal concern you may have.
They even offer business formation as part of their online legal services package.
There aren’t many drawbacks to be found with Rocket Lawyer’s service offerings, but one thing that can be said is they aren’t the most cost-efficient service on this list. They charge $39.99 per month, which is pretty typical of online legal services and there are definitely other businesses on my list that charge less.
While Rocket Lawyer will give you a free 30-minute consultation with a lawyer per each legal issue you encounter with your business, that isn’t going to be enough time to work through the issue and resolve it. You’re likely going to have to pay for more time with the lawyer.
Though this does tend to be the industry norm in terms of the amount of time you can spend on the phone with a lawyer before you have to start paying for more time, it would be nice if you got more time than this. It is a paid service, after all.
Rocket Lawyer’s website could use some updating as well. It’s currently an eyesore that’s difficult to navigate.
Rocket Lawyer provides all of the online legal services that small business owners need. Their price is competitive with other online legal services, but their product range is so vast that you won’t find another online legal service provider who will provide quite the same amount of services for the same price.
Their online system is easy-to-use and contains hundreds of legal document templates. And their customer service team is made up of a team of lawyers who can answer any of your small business legal queries.
If you’d like the best online services you can get for your business at a great price, with a team of US-based lawyers who are qualified to answer your business questions, sign up for Rocket Lawyer here today.
2. LegalNature – 7.56/10 (Best for Only Legal Documents)
If the only thing you’re expecting to receive from online legal services is legal documents and forms, then LegalNature is a great choice for you.
LegalNature’s database of legal documents and business documents for self-service is comprehensive enough to include any form that a small business owner may need. It really is worth signing up for their online legal services just to access this database if all you need is access to customizable legal documents.
The real stand-out feature that LegalNature offers, beyond their legal documents, is their online customization system. You simply fill out a form (similar to a questionnaire) and then the information is inserted into the legal documents for you.
The reason this customization feature is great, aside from being convenient, is because it minimizes the chances of human error in your documents and the chances of legal backlash as the result of entering incorrect information into the legal documents.
They also provide business formation services as part of their online legal services.
You really won’t notice the value of LegalNature’s fee until you look at their yearly rate. Their monthly rate is $38.95, which is pretty typical of most online legal services. But they give you a great discount if you pay for their services annually, rather than monthly.
Their yearly rate is only $84 per year, which averages out to around $7 per month. That’s not a bad price considering you get access to a plethora of business documents with their online customization system for this price.
LegalNature does not provide legal services the way that Rocket Lawyer does. You won’t get legal consultations with a lawyer and they won’t provide document enforcement assistance. So if you feel like you need the legal assistance of an attorney or lawyer, you’ll need to find those services elsewhere because those aren’t the sorts of online legal services that LegalNature provides.
Their customer support team isn’t on par with Rocket Lawyer’s team either. Of course, LegalNature’s team will respond to you in a timely manner and answer any question you have about their services or help you with technical issues, but they don’t provide you with small business advice or legal advice. And their customer service team isn’t made up of lawyers the way that Rocket Lawyer’s is.
LegalNature provides small businesses with all of the legal forms to meet their business needs. They have a comprehensive database of legal forms and they have a customization system that makes filling in legal forms easy. If you sign up for their yearly subscription, you’ll pay only $7 per month for these services, which is worth it just for the number of legal forms you’ll have access to.
You won’t have access to legal advice from a lawyer or attorney with LegalNature. This online legal service isn’t a law firm and their customer service team isn’t comprised of lawyers like Rocket Lawyer’s. So while they can answer questions about their services and guide you through technical issues, they can’t help you enforce your legal documents or give your small business legal advice or legal representation as part of their online legal services.
You can read more about the legal forms LegalNature provides here.
3. Harbor Compliance – 7.24/10 (Best for Legal Compliance)
If the only service you expect from online legal services is assistance with maintaining legal compliance for your small business, then Harbor Compliance is a good choice.
One of the perks of having an online legal service that only provides your business with one service is that the service they provide is very high-quality, which is enough to make any business owner content with the fact that they aren’t getting other services.
They have an easy-to-navigate and learn monitoring system and you’ll be able to access all of the information your business needs to remain compliant. Their business compliance system is comprehensive and reliable and it will exceed your small business needs.
While you may not have access to legal advice from an attorney or lawyer as part of Harbor Compliance’s online legal services, you’ll be surprised by how good their customer service is. You’ll be assigned a project manager, so you won’t call into some random customer service agent.
This project manager will be familiar with the ins and outs of your business and be able to tell you what you need to do to not only meet your business needs and maintain compliance, but also grow and improve your business. This level of personalized service is invaluable for small businesses.
Harbor Compliance doesn’t offer many online legal services to assist small businesses with their legal needs. The only online legal service they provide is legal compliance assistance. You won’t have access to legal advice or consultations from a lawyer or attorney.
They don’t offer up any legal forms or legal documents for self-service and they don’t provide any assistance with enforcing legal documents or forms. And they don’t provide any business formation services.
They’re not upfront about the price of their online legal services. They say “personalized services require personalized prices”, which is true to a degree. But from my research and review reading, it’s pretty clear that they charge small businesses the same prices that large enterprises are charged for the same services. So if you’re looking for a cost-effective, online legal service option, Harbor Compliance probably isn’t the best option for your business.
Harbor Compliance is third on my list of best online legal services, but they’re my top pick for best business compliance service for small businesses. They provide comprehensive business compliance services that will meet your business needs. And the fact that they assign you a project manager means you won’t have to explain the same problem to random customer service representatives multiple times.
You won’t be able to ask for legal advice or consultations from a lawyer or attorney if you choose Rocket Lawyer, and you won’t get legal forms or legal documents from this service, or enforcement assistance with legal documents or forms, and you won’t get business formation services. So if you need any of these online legal services, it may be wise to choose a different service to meet your business needs.
You can get a free demo of Harbor Compliance’s software and systems here.
LegalShield provides one online legal service for small businesses: attorney services. They won’t provide your small business with legal documents for self-service, give you help with enforcing legal forms, provide business formation service or help meet your business compliance needs. However, their attorney services are high-quality.
While Rocket Lawyer requires you to stick to one legal issue per call when seeking legal assistance for your small business, LegalShield has no such limitations on the number of legal topics you can seek legal advice for from their lawyers. The drawback is that there’s a limit to the number of times you can call and get legal help from a lawyer or attorney for your small business in a given period.
You can call and get legal help for your business from a lawyer or attorney 10 times per year (but no more than three times in a month) for $49 per month. If you sign up for their Legal Plus package, you can call up to 20 times per year (not more than five times per month) to get legal assistance for your business from an attorney or lawyer for $99 per month. Their Legal Pro package is $169 per month and includes 40 calls per year (no more than 10 per month) to get legal help from a lawyer or attorney.
There are a couple of reasons that LegalShield is #4 on my list. The first is that their fee is quite expensive. Their fee breaks down to $58.80 per call for legal assistance from a lawyer or attorney. That’s what Rocket Lawyer charges non-members, so it seems ridiculous to pay that sort of price for a service you’re subscribed to. You’re also locked into a payment schedule with LegalShield and have restricted access to calls for legal assistance from an attorney or lawyer, even though you’re paying for online legal services.
At these prices, it’s cheaper to pay for Rocket Lawyer’s online legal services, get your initial call and assessment, and then pay for legal consultations as needed when you need the legal assistance of an attorney or lawyer for your small business.
To read more about LegalShield’s online legal services, click here.
5. Law Depot
LawDepot falls so low on my list because they are basically a more expensive version of LegalNature. They’re a nearly identical online legal service provider.
LawDepot specializes in legal forms and documents for self-service, and their online customization and storage system for these documents is admittedly as impressive as LegalNature’s.
The problem is that they charge $40 per month for these services, and if the services are identical to LegalNature’s, there’s no reason for small businesses to pay $40 when you can pay $7 per month for the same services.
This also really isn’t a good legal service for small businesses that require legal assistance from an attorney because that’s not a service they provide. They don’t even offer consultations with a third party firm or lawyers so they likely won’t meet your legal needs if you want a company that provides legal help.
LegalZoom is likely the oldest, most established, and popular legal service on this list. The problem with their service is that they use their reputation to obtain customers, rather than actually providing quality services.
And I’m not just making vague claims. You can see this yourself by going to their website as I did. There’s nothing specific on their site about their prices or services until you click “Select Your Plan” and then further click the “Legal Plan Contract”, which is practically hidden in the small print under the price listing.
Once you’ve made your way to this page, you’ll need to learn a bunch of legal terms just to be able to decipher which services are included in this plan and which aren’t. You really shouldn’t have to have a law-school-level understanding of legal terms just to figure out what services an online legal service offers small businesses.
You can also see that they aren’t offering any sort of superior services when you closely inspect their service offerings.
They really only offer legal assistance in the form of legal consultations, so no compliance or quality-of-life-improving services for small businesses here. The only legal help they provide comes in the form of consultations from a third-party law firm and lawyers who aren’t part of LegalZoom’s team.
You get a 30-minute consultation with an attorney per legal topic, and there’s no limit on the number of legal topics you can call in and talk to an attorney about. But you do have to make separate calls for separate topics. If you do need more legal help beyond the 30-minute consultation they will let you purchase legal services from the third-party lawyers at a 25% discount. But you’re not getting any services that feel like “extras”, such as business formation services or a comprehensive archive of legal documents.
They will also have their third-party lawyers review up to 10 pages of legal documents and provide feedback and suggestions about them to meet the legal needs of small businesses.
LegalZoom’s online legal services amount to being a third-party affiliate arrangement between them and the lawyers they’ve contracted, and those two parties are the only ones who benefit from this arrangement. Small businesses in need of legal assistance should look elsewhere to have their legal needs met because LegalZoom doesn’t provide the quality services that Rocket Lawyer does.
Probably the best way to describe Nolo’s online legal services is to think of it as an online bookstore. They have a ton of legal documents and forms that are customizable (more on this in a minute) and they have a range of fees that are designed to fit the budget of small businesses or mega corporations.
Though the document and book list that Nolo provides is extensive, you can’t customize the documents online through their system. You have to download the documents and edit them manually. This is a pain that could potentially cause you legal problems down the road because when you don’t use an automated customization tool, it’s easier for human error to occur.
Furthermore, they don’t have an online storage system for you to save these documents on once you’ve edited them to meet your needs.
Once again, small businesses requiring legal assistance or general counsel from lawyers should look elsewhere for online legal services.
8. Blumberg Excelsior
I honestly can’t tell you what sort of services that Blumberg Excelsior provides. Their website looks like it was designed in the 90s by an intern and was never updated. It’s confusing and glitchy. Many of the links on the site don’t even work.
It seems that they offer some sort of business formation services for business owners who are starting a business, general counsel with lawyers or an attorney (I’m not sure which or how many because it isn’t specified on their site), legal documents, and compliance services for small businesses.
I’m most confused about the legal document service because if you click the link for it, it takes you to a completely different website. Their entire website is a tangled, complicated, and glitchy mess that is frustrating for even the most tech-savvy business owners to navigate.
If you can actually comb through this website and comprehend their mission statement or find any objective within it, hit me up and I’ll email you some cute cat pictures as a reward.
Online Legal Services Review Summary
I investigated all of the online legal services on the market to find the best online legal services for businesses to use. This process led me to the conclusion that Rocket Lawyer is the best online legal service for small businesses.
They provide you with consultation from a group of lawyers and an attorney will review up to 10 pages of legal forms for each new legal issue to make sure that businesses prepare business documents in a legally enforceable way. They also have a comprehensive database of customizable legal documents for self-service that include topics from real estate and estate planning to intellectual property, as well as many other business matters.
The documents are customizable and can be saved on their online portal, which prevents mishaps and human error that could result in needing legal assistance from lawyers in the future.
The fee they charge is great as well. When you consider all of the services that Rocket Lawyer provides, you’d need to hire at least three different online legal services for $30-$40 per month each to achieve the same services otherwise.
Business owners who want an online legal service that will provide you with legal counsel from lawyers, help you retain your intellectual property, provide assistance with real estate endeavors and provide a comprehensive list of customizable legal documents, go and sign up for Rocket Lawyer today.
Best Online Legal Services Review Methodology
How I Selected The Best Online Legal Services
The online legal services market is a jungle of offers and promotions that can be extremely confusing to navigate, so I narrowed this list down to the top eight to make finding the right service significantly easier for business owners.
The following four stages are my process for determining which online legal services are the best for small businesses:
Stage 1: Reviews
The first stage in finding the best online legal service was to check online reviews. I spent hours on sites like Facebook, the Better Business Bureau, and various other review sites to see what other people had to say about these online legal services.
This allowed me to save some time and helped me refine my list to the top eight after reading some fairly negative reviews about many other online legal services. This let me determine the sort of things that owners of small businesses were encountering when they went to these businesses to get help with their legal problems as well as the terms and conditions of their services.
Stage 2: Website Analysis
After weeding out the bad deals and scams, the next stage was to visit each online legal service’s website and review exactly what they offered as part of their subscription services. Once on each website, I checked out their promotional offers, about page, FAQs, and customer support channels to clear up any confusion.
This allowed me to find out which of these businesses offered the best services. Some offered consultations with lawyers from local lawyers or external law firms to provide legal advice, legal documents that are customizable and can be saved to an online portal, as well as document reviews from an attorney, business formation services to help when starting a business, registered agent service, help protect your intellectual property, compliance services, and other products to help meet the needs of small businesses. Others only offered one of these services rather than offering multiple services, which isn’t as much help to a business entity that wants to get help with all of their legal issues from one business service.
This allowed me to break down each online legal service into its basic offerings.
Stage 3: Speaking With Real Customers
After reading reviews and checking out the website for each online legal service business, the next stage was to reach out to real customers and see what their experience was. After all, fancy promotional posters and charismatic sales teams can talk the talk, but it’s the customers who know if the business truly delivers on its promises.
The key difference between this stage and the online review stage is that most online reviews for a business are either overwhelmingly positive or negative, with the average customer often not feeling the need to leave a review online. This can cause you to get a skewed picture of what each online legal service business is like.
This part of the process allowed me to get a much clearer idea of how well each online legal service business delivered on promised services and how much they valued the relationship with the customers and businesses they serve.
Stage 4: Speak With Their Sales Team
The last stage of the process was to speak with each online legal service’s sales team.
Sales teams are notorious for providing you with biased information about the business entity they represent, but you can still learn a lot from them if you ask the right questions. You can also get a good idea of what company culture and conditions each team works in by seeing how well they respond to criticism and negative feedback from the people and businesses they serve.
Some teams I spoke with would take the criticism in stride and try to improve my overall customer experience, while others would shift the blame to other departments or people within their company, their competitors, or even other customers.
This part of the process allowed me to see which online legal services work to improve the customer experience for the people they serve and which ones blame others for their shortcomings rather than work to make sure there aren’t as many failures in their provided service.
After narrowing my list down to the top eight online legal services, I put in the work to rank them according to the following five factors.
Factor 1: Offerings
There’s a wide variety of products and services on the market when it comes to online legal services which makes it hard to determine which are the best services for your business entity.
Most provide you with legal consultation with real lawyers, but some offer discounted rates for those lawyers should you need further consultation and someone to help with a complex legal issue.
Most online legal services that provide you with legal documents allow you to edit and store each form to their online portal through a process that is streamlined and automated to help prevent errors.
Still, other services provide a form review service where an attorney will review up to 10 pages of forms to ensure that they are legally sound and enforceable. But some services will require you to put in the extra work to download each form and edit it manually yourself, with no way to save it and no attorney to review it.
Others offer business formation services, such as providing LLC formation kits and registered agent service, which can help take some of the work out of starting a business. Any time you can get business formation services as part of a bundle with other services, it feels like a luxury.
And others only provide limited assistance and have unclear terms and conditions for service, often forcing you to pay additional fees and exceed your budget should you need legal assistance. You may even need to go out of your way to hire another service so that you have access to things like lawyers, law firms, business formation services, or legal documents.
This is why it was important to rank each online legal service according to their offerings to help ensure that you won’t have to hire several different services to meet the needs of your business and make sure that you’ll get a lot of use out of the service you choose. This factor went a long way to help me determine the best online legal services.
Factor 2: Value for Money
The services offered by an online legal service business aren’t the only major factor when ranking online legal services. The price of those services is just as important.
Some services advertise pricing of as low as $7 per month (if purchased yearly), while others obscure their pricing structure behind vague and unclear language.
With such a wide range of pricing options available, ranking each online legal service according to the value of their offerings was essential to find the best online legal services.
Factor 3: Ease Of Signup
The next factor in ranking the best online legal services was how easy it was to sign up for their services. Nothing can be more frustrating than finding the best deal on a service or offer, only to miss out on the opportunity because of a poorly designed or difficult signup process.
I made sure to check out each service's sign-up process and take note of how many pages and fields I had to fill out on the paperwork, how much information they required from me, and whether or not I experienced any bugs or technical issues during the signup process.
This factor enables me to rank each of the businesses on this list so that you don't waste your time with complicated signup and onboarding processes to find the best online legal services.
Factor 4: Ease Of Use
One thing that can negate an easy signup process is a poorly designed online system, so the next factor I used when ranking the best online legal services was user-friendliness.
Everyone has had a bad experience with a poorly optimized or glitchy online system, so I checked out each service’s online systems to help you avoid the ones that were buggy, poorly designed, and filled with technical issues.
I took a note of which sites had technical hiccups and which were simple and easy to navigate, so that way you didn’t end up with a service that was too difficult to use. This was another important factor when determining the best online legal services.
Factor 5: Customer Service
Customer support can make or break your customer experience, so I wanted to make sure I ranked each online legal on how good their customer service is as well.
This part of the process was fairly straightforward. I contacted each online legal service’s customer service team and asked them a few standard questions in order to see how polite and efficient they were.
I took note of how many questions I needed to ask, how clear the answers were, and how polite each customer service team was and then ranked each online legal service accordingly.
This factor ultimately finalized my list of the best online legal services for small businesses.
The Best Online Legal Services Results Summary
I investigated the online legal services industry to bring you a list of the most useful services on the market today. Here is a list of the best online legal services:
Rocket Lawyer (Best Online Legal Service)
Rocket Lawyer is at the top of my list of the best online legal services because they offer the most services and products of any business on my list, so they can help with nearly any legal problem your business may encounter, and they charge a fair price for this plethora of services.
If you choose to use Rocket Lawyer’s online legal services, you won’t have to fuss with finding law firms or local lawyers in your practice area. They provide free legal consultations for up to 30 minutes on each legal issue and will review up to 10 pages of legal forms.
You also get access to tons of free legal forms, all of which you can customize and save to their online system. They also provide a service called Document Defense where an attorney will review your documents and make sure they’re legally enforceable as well, which is a nice perk.
They even offer business formation services to help your business get started. Business formation services always make a nice addition to any product bundle for businesses.
Their customer service team is made up of a team of lawyers that are qualified not only to tell you about the products and services that Rocket Lawyer provides, but also help you with any business or legal issues you have.
They don’t have the best price on this list, but they do offer the most services of any provider I researched. And though you can get free legal consultations with a lawyer when you use their services so that you don’t have to go out and find lawyers in your practice area, you only get one half-hour conversation with them per legal issue.
You’re likely to have to pay for more help, and that’s typical of most online legal services, however, it would be nice to get more from a paid service. In light of these shortcomings, Rocket Lawyer is still the best online legal service I’ve found and these are really small shortcomings compared with their excellent products and service offerings.
If you’re looking for an online legal service that offers all the products that your business needs, with great customer service for a fair price, then Rocket Lawyer is the best service for you. You can get started with their services here today.
LegalNature (Best for Only Legal Documents)
If you want to use an online legal service that simply provides your business with legal documents, then LegalNature is your best option.
With LegalNature you can get free access to a library of legal documents, all of which you can customize and save on their online system. This minimizes the chance for mistakes on the documents that could cause legal problems later.
They have the best price on this list, as well. Their monthly fee is $38.95, which is typical. But their annual subscription fee is only $84, which averages out to $7 per month.
If you need to use online legal services to gain legal counsel, LegalNature probably isn’t the most practical choice for you because they don’t offer the products and services to meet your needs.
If you’d like to learn more about LegalNature, click here.
Harbor Compliance (Best for Legal Compliance)
If you want to use an online legal service that provides products and services that will maintain your company’s legal compliance and good standing status, then Harbor Compliance is a good choice for you.
Because they only offer one service, they offer very specialized compliance services. On top of all of the compliance features they offer, they provide your business with a project manager.
When you call for customer service, you don’t speak to some random customer service agent who’s never had any dealings with your business, you speak to your project manager who knows what your business needs. Your project manager will offer helpful suggestions about products that could help your business and tactics you could use to help your business along.
You’re not going to get other legal services from Harbor Compliance, which means you’ll need to start shopping for law firms and possibly business formation services to meet the legal needs of your business. But if the only thing you currently need is compliance services, Harbor Compliance is a good choice.
To learn about Harbor Compliance, click here.
It can be really confusing to shop around for online legal services.
But after I investigated the industry, I found that Rocket Lawyer provides the best online legal services for small businesses. They charge a fair fee of $39.99 per month for their vast array of services. You can’t get the number of services they offer without purchasing legal services from at least three other services, so Rocket Lawyer provides the best value on the market.
They provide legal documents to cover nearly any legal situation your business could encounter, and they let you customize and save the forms on their online system. This prevents errors in the documents that could cause legal problems and make them unenforceable. But, they also offer Document Defense, in which an attorney will review your documents and ensure that they are enforceable, which eliminates future legal problems with your documents.
You get access to lawyers who will discuss legal issues with you, as well. You get a 30-minute consultation and up to 10 pages of document review for each legal issue.
They even provide business formation services, which is a nice “extra”. And their customer service team is made up of lawyers who know how to guide you through any legal issues your business has.
You’ll love the relationship you will build with this company if you use Rocket Lawyer as your online legal service.
If you want the best online legal services for your business, you can sign up for Rocket Lawyer here.