Getting the right registered agent is critical for your Florida small business or LLC.
The right registered agent will guarantee that you comply with all state legislation and your personal information and assets are protected from public records.
The wrong registered agent will put your entire company at risk, your personal details in the hands of scammers, and your personal assets within reach of litigators.
If you can’t afford to lose your company, identity, and personal assets, you need to get the right registered agent for your Florida business, corporation, or LLC.
After reviewing 60+ registered agent services through our 4-stage process and ranking them based on five factors, here is our pick for the best registered agent in Florida.
1. Northwest Registered Agent — 9.13/10 (Best Overall Registered Agent Service)
Northwest Registered Agent is our choice for the best registered agent service in Florida because on top of providing everything you need to ensure you meet the legal requirements established by the Florida Department of State, they have exceptional customer service.
There’s a lot to like about Northwest Registered Agent.
First of all, they do everything you need from a Florida registered agent service. They provide your registered office address in Florida, protect your personal information from those who wish to use it for nefarious gains, and forward all your mail.
They also scan all your important documents, upload them to an online document portal you can access 24/7, and provide a compliance alerts calendar that informs you about your annual report filing and other important upcoming dates.
Their system is both easy to get set up within (even if you need a registered agent in multiple states) and easy to navigate once you’re inside and their customer support team responds quickly and is courteous and efficient.
But, the biggest reason they’re #1 on our list is their customer support.
In an era where more and more companies are offshoring their customer support to undertrained operators with no real-world industry experience, the US-based support team of ex-lawyers, accountants, and entrepreneurs on hand at Northwest Registered Agent is rarity.
Even rarer is that when you contact them, instead of just providing templated and generic responses that don’t really answer your question, they take the time to understand your situation and goals and tailor their answers to ensure you get the right advice the first time.
And at only $125 per year (only $26 more than the cheapest price on the market), they are an easy pick for #1.
The only con with Northwest Registered Agent is that while their customer support team is incredibly patient, helpful, and polite, this can cause an issue in the rare situations where you just want a quick answer to a quick question.
There were one or two situations where I just wanted a one-sentence answer to a one-sentence question and the support agent asked more questions than I had time to answer.
But really, in an age where customer support standards are dropping lower than world-wide interest rates, that’s an unbelievably high-quality problem.
Northwest Registered Agent provide everything you need to meet your compliance requirements and deadlines in an intuitive online system for only $125 per year.
When you factor their top-ranked customer support team, they’re an easy choice for our #1 best registered agent.
If you’re looking for a Florida registered agent, head to Northwest Registered Agent now.
2. Harbor Compliance – 7.92/10 (Best Budget Registered Agent)
If you’re looking to save $26 per year and are happy to trade away the extra support available at Northwest Registered Agent, then Harbor Compliance are a reliable budget option.
Harbor Compliance give you all the basics you need to ensure you meet the legal requirements from the Florida Department of State and Division of Corporations.
They’ll give you the all-important business address within Florida, forward your mail (while scanning and uploading the important pieces to their online portal), receive any legal notifications, and alert you to any important upcoming compliance deadlines.
Their system is simple to sign into and is easy to navigate once you’re in.
While they do everything to a reasonable standard, they don’t go above and beyond with any part of their service.
They tick all the boxes you need without any additional ‘nice’ extras, their system is simple and mostly intuitive to use but there are a few glitches that really need ironing out, and their customer support is good enough to ensure you get a reasonable answer in an acceptable time period.
While they’re good at most things, they’re not great at anything.
Harbor Compliance provide everything you need to meet your state legal requirements at the cheapest price on the market.
If you’re looking to cut a few dollars from your operating costs and are happy to sacrifice superior customer support, then head to Harbor Compliance here.
3. LegalZoom – 6.59/10 (Best Premium RA)
LegalZoom is #3 on our list and takes the award for the best premium registered agent service in Florida.
Using LegalZoom as your registered agent means you’re partnering with a big, trusted, established player in the business services world. They have a strong reputation for delivering on their promises and have been around for more years than I’ve been in business (meaning they’re likely to be around for a long time to come).
The big advantage of using a premium Florida registered agent service is that on top of the basics (business address, identity hidden, mail forwarding, etc.), you get $1,000,000 worth of identity theft insurance.
In the modern technological environment, where hackers are becoming increasingly clever and underhanded in their attempts to rip off everyday people, having this kind of insurance is a big plus.
Unfortunately, LegalZoom seems to use the fact that they’re a big, established player with a strong reputation as an opportunity to provide less value in their offering.
They’re $299 per state per year, meaning they’re more than double the cost of Northwest Registered Agent. Identity theft insurance costs less than the $176 per year difference, so you’re not getting any additional value going that route.
Also, as LegalZoom’s core product is templated legal documents, they don’t put anywhere near as much attention or focus on their registered agent service. This means their system is less optimised and their customer support is less knowledgeable and helpful with registered agent-related questions.
LegalZoom is a big, established, and reputable company that offers a premium registered agent service. If you really want identity theft protection included in your registered agent service, then they’re a great option, but if you care about value-for-money, optimized systems, and knowledgeable support, there are far better options.
Check out LegalZoom here: LegalZoom.
Here are the results of our quick reviews into ten other Florida registered agent services:
ZenBusiness is an LLC formation service that offers everything you want from a registered agent, but for some reason, has two pricing tiers.
The first tier is $99 per state per year and includes everything included by Northwest Registered Agent, with one notable exception – compliance alerts. To get access to their compliance alert system, you need to pay an additional $50 per state per year.
This is probably because their primary focus is on LLC formation services (which you can read our full review of here), rather than registered agent services, so they haven’t fully optimised their offering. But, regardless of the reason, they’re still more expensive than Northwest Registered Agent and don’t offer the same level of support available.
5. IncFile Review
IncFile is a bare-bones registered agent service that provides a physical address in Florida that’s available during regular business hours that provides none of the fun stuff (like annual report filing alerts or assistance with your articles of organization).
They charge $119 per state per year but their support is nowhere near the level of Northwest Registered Agent so we don’t recommend them.
6. Sunshine Corporate Filings Review
Sunshine Corporate Filings is one of those under-$60 registered agent services I mention in the price comparison section below but I’ve included them here as they’re Florida-specific and I get a lot of questions about them.
For $35 per year, you get a street address in Florida available during normal business hours and mail forwarding, BUT, you only get five pieces of non-state mail forwarded per year, no document scanning, no online portal access, and definitely no identity theft protection. If you want any of those other elements that are standard with many registered agents, it’s going to cost you well over $120/year more.
7. Rocket Lawyer Review
Rocket Lawyer is a LegalZoom knockoff that has positioned itself as a cheaper option to the incumbent. Unfortunately, it’s ‘cheaper’ registered agent service is still $149 per state per year and while you’ll get a street address in the state of Florida available during regular business hours to receive state mail from the Division of Corporations and Department of State, they provide fewer services than Northwest Registered Agent provides for $125 per year.
8. SunDoc Filings Review
SunDoc Filings is another generic registered agent service that charges $159 per year for no alert system for filing your annual reports. Yes, you’ll get your important legal documents from the Secretary of State and the Division of Corporations, but why would you pay more for less?
9. InCorp Review
InCorp is an interesting one. It’s another LLC formation company that offers the same range of services as Harbor Compliance at the same price of $99 per state per year.
However, the reason they’re stuck down here with all the other ‘don’t waste your time’ registered agent services is that their system is so hard to use. It’s clunky, confusing, counter-intuitive, and just frustrating to navigate.
10. Swyft Filings Review
Swyft Filings is also another LLC formation company and is in the same boat as most of the registered agent services in this ‘other’ list. They provide nothing but the bare bones and charge $149 for the pleasure.
If you want to know more about their services, check my Swyft Filings review.
11. CSC Global Review
CSC Global is another premium-level registered agent service at $299 per state per year. The only benefit of using them is that they’ll cover any state filing fee to change your address from your current registered agent. But, they don’t offer compliance alerts and their customer support is less than remarkable.
Given that it costs less than $176 to change your address, you should really only use them if you’re already using them for other services and would prefer to manage all your services in one dashboard.
12. Registered Agents Inc. Review
Registered Agents Inc. is the only company on this list that specialize solely in registered agent services and yet they still charge $200 per state per year. With no additional benefits offered for the increased cost, I cannot recommend them.
13. Jumpstart Filings Review
Jumpstart Filings is just another bare-bones registered agent service that charges $129/state/year.
Florida Registered Agent Review Methodology
This is how we arrived at our recommendations.
Why You Should Trust Me
You should trust me when selecting your Florida registered agent service because I have more experience in this field than just about anyone should.
First of all, I had to find the best registered agent for my two businesses.
I didn’t want to deal with the Florida Division of Corporations or Department of State and potentially miss a service of process so I had to waste precious hours wading through mountains of registered agent promotional material attempting to discern the difference between fact and hype.
I devoted far more hours than I had to spare reading online reviews and I chalked up hefty phone bills trying to speak to the sales and customer support representatives at least a dozen registered agent services.
Secondly, I’ve helped thousands of people, just like you, find the right registered agent service for their businesses.
Guiding some of my close friends from my local business community through the process of finding the right registered agent for their business convinced me that not only was there a dire need for clarity and simplification of the offerings, but that I was also the right person to provide it.
Since launching my website, I’ve helped thousands save the hundreds of hours I spent trying to find the right support, and I can help YOU as well.
How I Selected The Best Florida Registered Agent
My process for finding the best Florida registered agent was a 4-stage process.
Stage 1: Online Feedback
The first stage in finding the best registered agent was reading reviews of the 60+ registered agent services that are currently available. I logged onto TrustPilot, Better Business Bureau, Google Business, Facebook, and various other online review sites to see what people were saying.
Doing this allowed me to save some of my precious hours weeding out nearly 50 different registered agent services that used a common and extremely unethical pricing structure (more on that below).
Stage 2: Website Analysis
Once I’d eliminated the obvious scams, the next step was to see what each of the remaining 13 registered agent services offered as part of their subscriptions.
Completing this part was simple. I logged onto their websites to review their sales pages, checked out their support channels, reviewed their ‘About’ pages, and spoke to their customer service teams to get any necessary clarifications.
This left me with a simple, 13 row, 24 column spreadsheet which broke down every service into their basic offerings.
Stage 3: Speaking With Real Customers
A company’s website and sales team will tell you what they offer, but it’s their customers who’ll tell you how well they offer it. Are they efficient? Are they effective? Are they polite? Can they patiently solve my problem?
While online reviews can fill in a few blanks, most online reviews are written by people who have overwhelmingly positive or negative experiences which can skew your perspective. Therefore, you can only get a complete picture by speaking with current customers.
To do this, I reached out to the people I’d previously helped find a registered agent, as well as new visitors to my website who were looking for a registered agent. This was a great way to hear about their experiences.
This gave me a complete and well-rounded picture of the experiences using each of these services.
Stage 4: Speak With Their Sales Team
The final stage of my analysis process was to talk to each company’s sales team.
While their sales team is obviously only going to give you very biased and one-sided information, it’s always an interesting process to understand how well they take on feedback and improve their services based on that.
I peppered their sales staff with the complaints I discovered both through the online reviews and in talking to their customers to see how much progress they’d made improving their systems. I also listened closely to see whether they were able to own their mistakes and improve or whether they blamed the clients.
This process gave me an overview of the company culture behind each organization and allowed me to see whether it was an organization that valued improvement or one that just wanted to blame others for their failings.
I rated each of the remaining 13 Florida registered agents based on five factors.
Factor 1: Offerings
There are a wide range of products and services offered by registered agent services in the state of Florida.
Some will just provide a physical address in Florida, keep your personal details off the public record, be your point of contact during normal business hours, and forward your mail.
Others will scan and upload important documents (like service of process) on the day they’re received, assist you with your articles of organization, and let you know when your annual reports and other important documents are due.
And others will provide identity theft protection in case someone tries to access your details.
The first stage in determining the best Florida registered agent was to rate each service based on their range of products and services they offer.
Factor 2: Price
Not only do the range of products and services vary between registered agents, but the price for providing these services varies as well.
Some services claim to be as cheap as $39/year while the premium offerings cost nearly $300/year.
The next stage in our rating process was to rank each service in terms of the return on investment, meaning which service will give you the most bang for your buck?
In this investigation, we looked very closely at a large group of Florida registered agents that charged between $39 – $59/year. Through our investigations, we discovered that while it might only cost the advertised price to sign up to their service, to get the basic level of service that is offered by most registered agent services, it can cost you upwards of an additional $120/year.
I believe this deceptive pricing strategy is entirely unethical and so any registered agent service that used it was immediately eliminated from my analysis.
While the majority of these organizations were located outside of Florida, they were still eliminated as part of our country-wide investigation.
Factor 3: Ease of Signup
There’s nothing more frustrating than finding a provider or any product or service that offers a wide range of products and services at a competitive price, only to spend the next three weeks trying to set yourself up in their system.
To make sure you don’t waste your precious time trying to establish your registered agent service, the next factor we rated the Florida registered agent services on was how simple it was to sign up with them.
Were there just a few fields to complete and a few forms to sign? Or did they request that I courier certified copies of my fingerprints to their European office via carrier pigeon?
We signed up for every service to see how easy it was to get started and took note of all the challenges.
Factor 4: Ease of Use
Having an easy signup process is great, but if you then have to spend hours trying to navigate a clunky and confusing backend system to perform the most insignificant tasks, then you’re probably going to end up smashing your keyboard through your monitor, not something that an uncooperative system should drive you to do.
To make sure you don’t end up with a registered agent service that wastes your precious time and life and adds unnecessary frustration to your life, the next factor we rated the services on was how simple their system is to use.
We logged in, poked around, tried to perform some important tasks, and took note of every place we got stuck.
Factor 5: Customer Service
Regardless of how well a system is designed and how much time is spent crafting the user experience, there are always going to be challenges, barriers, and glitches that frustrate you. It’s in these moments that customer service really matters.
An organization with great service can take the stress and hassle out of your day and allow you to move forward with more important tasks. But an organization that doesn’t, well, if you’ve ever tried to call a government office at lunchtime on a Thursday, you’ll know what I’m talking about…
To assess the level of customer service at each registered agent service in Florida, we called their teams to ask some obvious and simple questions, taking note of their response time, efficiency, the number of people we needed to speak to in order to get a useful answer, and how helpful and courteous they were.
The Best Florida Registered Agent — Review Summary
I’ve investigated over 60 registered agent services and reviewed the top 13. Here are my top three picks.
Overall Best Registered Agent Service in Florida – Northwest Registered Agent (9.08/10)
Northwest Registered Agent is my #1 choice because they provide everything you need for $125 per year with stellar customer support.
They’ll cover everything you need – provide your business with a registered street address in Florida to receive service of process, legal notifications, and other official state mail from the Division of Corporations and Florida Department of State, keep your personal details off the public records, be your legal point of contact, and keep you in good standing.
On top of that, they cover everything you want – all mail scanned and uploaded on the same day it’s received, online account access portal for all your legal documents, alerts for important business compliance dates (like filing your annual report), and discounts for multiple state and multiple year registrations.
But the real clincher is their customer support. Their US-based team of ex-accountants, lawyers, and entrepreneurs have personally dealt with most common (and some uncommon) challenges faced when starting and running a business and provide sound, reliable, and actionable advice to get your business moving in the right direction.
If you need a Florida registered agent then head to Northwest Registered Agent now.
Best Budget Registered Agent Service – Harbor Compliance (7.92/10)
If you need to save $26 per year and are happy to forgo the patient and polite support of Northwest Registered Agent, then Harbor Compliance is a reliable second option.
Just like Northwest Registered Agent, they provide everything you need to ensure you remain in good standing with the Division of Corporations and Florida Department of State, like your registered business address, a legal point of contact, and mail scanning and forwarding.
Their online system is reasonably intuitive to use and their customer support, while not on the same level as Northwest Registered Agent, is still reliable enough to get you through most challenges.
If you’re on a tight budget and comfortable with less support, check out Harbor Compliance.
Best Premium Florida Registered Agent Service – Legal Zoom (6.59/10)
If you’re looking for a Florida registered agent service that offers a little more, Legal Zoom is a useful option.
They provide the basics you need – a registered address in Florida for receiving service of process and other official state mail, mail forwarding, and scanning of all your important documents. They also provide one additional feature that neither Harbor Compliance nor Northwest Registered Agent provides: identity theft insurance.
When you use LegalZoom as your Florida registered agent, they’ll include $1,000,000 of identity theft insurance as part of your subscription.
While that feature will set you back more than double the yearly registration cost of Harbor Compliance (and you can also purchase it for less than $176 price difference between the two), if you, for some reason, NEED it included in the services offered by your registered agent and are happy to forgo compliance alert notifications for your annual report filing, LegalZoom is the choice for you.
Check them out here: LegalZoom.
Summary — The Best Florida Registered Agent Service
Getting the right registered agent is critical for not only ensuring you meet all necessary state requirements, but also so you keep your identity off the public record and your personal assets safe.
Of the 60+ registered agents I investigated and the 13 I reviewed, I find Northwest Registered Agent to be the best registered agent service in Florida.
They provide everything you need from a registered agent, including:
- an official street address in the state of Florida to receive service of process and other legal notifications from the Florida Division of Corporations and Florida Department of State,
- mail forwarding,
- mail scanning,
- online document access,
- assistance filing your articles of organization, and
- alerts about important compliance dates (like your filing your annual reports).
They also provide this at $125 per state per year through their easy-to-navigate, online registration and management system and support you with their US-based customer service team composed of ex-accountants, lawyers, and entrepreneurs.
If you need an excellent Florida registered agent service, head to Northwest Registered Agent.