Choosing the right commercial registered agent is a vital decision that can affect your business’s success.
The right Illinois Registered Agent will do things like keeping your personal information off the public record, keep your important business information safe, and also help your Limited Liability Company ( LLC) meet all of its legal obligations, and not only by merely providing a name and address for you to file for your Illinois LLC.
The wrong Illinois Registered Agent can be costly in more ways than one. You'll wind up paying more for their services than they’re worth, be on the receiving end of personal lawsuits and, if they’re careless with your business information, your business could be vulnerable to scammers and hackers.
I've investigated over 60 different Illinois registered agents, then ranked the top 12 and wrote detailed reviews of the top three. Here are my top picks for the best registered agent in Illinois.
1. Northwest Registered Agent—9.13/10 (My Top Pick)
Northwest Registered Agent earned the top position on my list of best Illinois registered agents. They offer value for money prices for the services they provide and their customer service is the best of any Illinois registered agent service I have come across.
Northwest Registered Agent is a small business, but its service features exceed those of big registered agent services.
They provide you with all the services that a registered agent in Illinois must, like assistance in filing your Articles of Organization, a physical street address in Illinois, accepting mail and legal documents (like Service of Process) on behalf of your Limited Liability Company (LLC) during normal business hours, scanning ALL your mail and documents, and putting them on an online portal that you can access via an online account. They also give you compliance alerts for annual report deadlines so that your Illinois LLC can stay in good standing with the Illinois Secretary of State.
Not only is it easy to sign up with Northwest, but it’s also pretty easy to set up their system. Once you’ve set it up, since they’re a national registered agent service, you can sign up for registered agent services in multiple states through their online portal. This means that they can grow with your company, no matter which state your LLC expands to.
Their best feature is their customer service.
They have a US-based team of former accountants, lawyers, small business owners, and entrepreneurs who will not only help with your registered agent issues but can also help you with some of the million different challenges you'll face as a business owner. They all have various experiences and expertise in the small business world and can provide helpful and actionable advice.
They are the only registered agent service in Illinois to provide this level of support and so when you consider they're only $26 more expensive than the cheapest registered agent in Illinois I reviewed, they provide far more value than any other company on this list.
Unfortunately, their best feature can also be their most annoying. Their customer service is comprehensive and they pay a lot of attention to detail. This can be great, especially if you value good customer service.
But since they ask a lot of questions and go into great detail, it’s pretty much guaranteed that you won’t be off the phone with them quickly. There’s never going to be a “quick fix” or “easy answer” with them. It can be a lot quicker to Google your question than to call them in many cases. You'll get less tailored and actionable advice, but it will be quicker.
This is a small complaint that isn’t a problem most of the time. However, if you really want something answered or fixed quickly, this can be frustrating.
Northwest Registered Agent made my number one spot because they provide the best value of any registered agent in Illinois.
They cover all your legal requirements and ensure you remain in good standing, while their US-based support team can not only help with your registered agent inquiries but can and will also help with your small business questions and issues. When you factor in that they're the second cheapest registered agent on my list, putting them #1 was a simple choice. If you need to change your Illinois registered agent, simply complete the state's Statement of Change of Registered Agent and/or Office by Entity form and submit it to the Illinois Secretary of State by mail or in person.
If you’re looking for a small business that will guide and support you as you move through your small business journey, head to Northwest Registered Agent now.
2. Harbor Compliance—7.92/10 (Best Budget Registered Agent)
Harbor Compliance is in the #2 position on my list of best Illinois registered agent services because they offer the best price of any registered agent in Illinois.
Harbor Compliance is another full-service registered agent in Illinois.
They provide you with all the services an Illinois registered agent must provide, such as helping in filing your Articles of Organization, a street address in Illinois, receipt of Service of Process from a process server, as well as mail and legal documents during normal business hours on behalf of your LLC, give you compliance filing deadline notifications and let you know about any form you need to file to keep you in good standing with the Illinois Secretary of State.
Both their sign-up and setup processes are easy to get through. Their best feature by far is their fee. They charge a meager $99 per year, which makes them the cheapest Illinois registered agent service on this list. They’re even $26 per year cheaper than Northwest Registered Agent.
Harbor Compliance is good at everything. But they’re not exceptional at anything. You can see this in all their features, making pricing the only exceptional thing about them.
Their services are pretty good, but they don’t offer any premium services and while their customer service is adequate, it’s nowhere near as good as that of Northwest Registered Agent because they're only able to help with your registered agent-related questions.
So, “good” is all you’ll ever get from them.
Harbor Compliance is a good option if you’re looking for a service that provides everything a registered agent must according to the Illinois Secretary of State. They give you all the services you need, with no frills, bells or whistles and they do it at the lowest price of any Illinois registered agent on this list.
If you need to save that extra $26 and you're happy to forgo the support of a team of experienced business advisors, then check out Harbor Compliance.
3. LegalZoom—6.59/10 (Best Premium Service)
If you want a premium Illinois registered agent service, LegalZoom is the best one I’ve reviewed so far.
LegalZoom is a commercial registered agent service in Illinois, meaning they do everything you need, such as assistance in filing your Articles of Organization, provide you with a street address in Illinois, become your point of contact and accept mail and Service of Process on behalf of your Illinois LLC during regular business hours.
They give you compliance filing deadline notifications about any form you may need to file to keep you in good standing with the Illinois Secretary of State. And, they also offer up to $1 million in identity theft protection for your Illinois LLC.
Their rate is a pretty hefty $299 per year—$174 more than Northwest, and $200 more than Harbor Compliance. Of course, you get identity theft protection with LegalZoom, but for those prices it would be cheaper to go with another registered agent service and find identity theft insurance elsewhere.
Another drawback with LegalZoom is that their primary business activity is legal documentation, with registered agent services being simply a side act. This means that their customer support team is great with your legal document questions, but not so great with your registered agent issues and their online system is a lot harder to use than either Northwest Registered Agent or Harbor Compliance.
If you’re looking for a big-name, premium, commercially registered agent and if you’re already doing business with LegalZoom for other reasons, or if you’re concerned about getting identity theft protection, LegalZoom is probably a good option for your business.
You can learn more about LegalZoom on their website.
ZenBusiness is an LLC formation service that offers everything you want from a registered agent including accepting Service of Process on behalf of your LLC and help you maintain a good standing with the Illinois Secretary of State, but for some reason, has two pricing tiers.
The first tier is $99 per state per year and includes everything included by Northwest, 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, rather than registered agent services, so they haven’t fully optimized their offering. Regardless of the reason, they’re still more expensive than Northwest Registered Agent and don’t offer the same level of support available.
If you want a full breakdown of their products and services, you can read about them all in my ZenBusiness review.
IncFile is an Illinois registered agent service that provides you with the bare minimum services, like filing your Articles of Organization, providing your company with a street address in Illinois and accepting mail and Service of Process on behalf of your LLC. However, they don’t offer any compliance filing deadline notifications to keep your LLC in good standing with the Illinois Secretary of State.
As with some of the other Illinois registered agent services on this list, IncFile offers a free year of registered agent services when you sign up for their LLC formation services. However, you ultimately wind up paying too much for their services in the long run after the first year.
If you want to learn more about IncFile, you can do so here: IncFile
6. Rocket Lawyer
Rocket Lawyer is an Illinois registered agent service that appears to be a slightly less expensive imitation of LegalZoom. They offer all the services that a registered agent in Illinois has to provide, like filing your Articles of Organization, providing an address in the state of Illinois, annual report compliance alerts and accepting mail and Service of Process on behalf of your business entity, to stay in compliance with the Illinois Secretary of State. However, they charge $149 per year for services that don’t quite match up to that price.
In saying that, Rocket Lawyer also offers a huge range of legal services, including legal documents and attorney services. If you'd like to know more about those services, read my Rocket Lawyer review.
7. SunDoc Filings
SunDoc Filings is another Illinois registered agent service that charges too much for too few services. Of course, you get the address your LLC needs in order to stay in good standing with the Illinois Secretary of State and accept mail and Service of Process on behalf of your LLC. However, they charge you $159 per year for bare-bones services.
You can learn more about Sundoc Filings here: SunDoc Filings
InCorp is an Illinois registered agent service, as well as an LLC formation service that provides your Illinois business with the bare minimum in terms of services. They help in filing your Articles of Organization, give you an address and registered office in the state to receive mail and Service of Process so that your Illinois LLC will stay in good standing with the Illinois Secretary of State, they offer compliance filing deadline alerts to remind you about filing your annual report, along with a lot of the same services that Harbor Compliance and Northwest Registered Agent offer.
They also charge $99 per year for their registered agent service, which is the same as Harbor Compliance. But their online system is so hard to use that it’s not the value it seems. And their customer service is adequate, but adequate isn’t really enough when you’re dealing with such a challenging online system.
If you’d like more information about InCorp’s registered agent service, you can check them out here: InCorp
9. Swyft Filings
Swyft Filings offers you a lot of the services that business entities expect from a registered agent service, like filing your Articles of Organization, a street address and registered office in the state of Illinois to accept mail and legal documents, and compliance filing alerts about any important form that may be due from the Illinois Secretary of State.
However, they charge $149 per year, so they aren’t exactly a cheap registered agent.
They do offer an LLC formation service so if you'd like to know more about that, read my Swyft Filings review.
10. CSC Global
CSC Global is a “premium” registered agent service but actually offers very little in terms of premium services.
They’ll provide your Illinois LLC with an address and registered office in the state to accept mail and legal documents, along with other full-service offerings that businesses need.
The only premium feature they provide is they’ll cover any state fees or filing fees you incur if you’re changing your registered agent to them. But they charge $299 per year. For that price, you could go with Northwest Registered Agent and pay the state fees yourself, and still have money left over.
11. Registered Agents Inc.
Registered Agents Inc. provides the basic registered agent services that you need for your Illinois LLC, like providing your company with an address in the state. However, they charge $200 for their services. That’s $75 more than Northwest, and you won’t get customer service on par with Northwest for Registered Agents Inc.’s price.
12. Jumpstart Filings
Jumpstart Filings is a registered agent and LLC formation service in Illinois that offers minimal services. They charge $150 per year. And the real downside is that they don’t even offer free registered agent services for a year when you sign up for their LLC formation services, like many other resident agents on this list do.
Registered Agent Review Summary
Northwest Registered Agent is my top choice for the best registered agent in Illinois because they offer all the services you could need for only $125 per year, and they have excellent customer service as well.
They have an easy setup process, and their computer system is pretty user-friendly. They’re the best choice if you want a registered agent in Illinois that will provide you with a name and street address in the state for your LLC to use, as well as keeping your personal information off the public record and your business information safe, and giving you compliance notifications when you need to file important paperwork for your Illinois business.
If you need to maintain an Illinois registered agent for your business, sign up for Northwest Registered Agent.
Best Registered Agent Review Methodology
Here’s how I determined the best registered agent in the state of Illinois.
Why You Should Trust Me
The reason you can trust my registered agent recommendations is that I've spent more time reviewing registered agent services than just about anyone in the industry.
I started my deep dive into this confusing world with my journey to finding the best Illinois registered agent for my business. I read online reviews, asked my friends and fellow business owners, visited websites, and spent more time on sales calls than I honestly had to spare.
When I sold both my businesses, I started asking my fellow entrepreneurs what they were struggling with most and the most common answer was “business advice.” This led to me starting BoostSuite and once again diving into the registered agent world.
Since I started writing about the best registered agent, I've helped over 1,000 people find the best choice for their company and now I'm here helping dozens of people just like you, every day.
How I Selected the Best Registered Agent
I started with over 60 registered agent business services in Illinois and then weeded out the worst of the bunch, which left me with only 12. Here’s how I did it:
Stage 1: Reviews
The first thing I did was read online reviews for each Illinois registered agent. I scoured the internet and found reviews on TrustPilot, Facebook, the Better Business Bureau, and other sites. Truthfully, there were more reviews than anyone in their right mind would read, so I did the hard part for you.
I didn’t actually read all of them, simply because that would have taken years. So, I read the reviews that were more than a couple of paragraphs long and also provided lots of details. This gave me a lot of information about how each Illinois registered agent treated every business in the state and the level and quality of service each company got from them. This allowed me to eliminate a lot of agent business services that were obvious scams or used deceptive fees. (More on that later.)
Stage 2: Website Analysis
The next thing I investigated was the website of each agent. This gave me a few bits of information about how each agent presented themselves, and what level of service they would potentially provide.
Some of the things I looked for were the range of services that each Illinois registered agent offered, how many methods to contact customer support they provided, awards they’d won and displayed, their business history, and of course their business location. (Each agent had to have an office address in the state of Illinois).
These aspects of their sites gave me a picture of each Illinois registered agent business in the state and how they presented themselves.
Stage 3: Speaking with Real Customers
Reading online reviews doesn’t give you ALL the information about a registered agent business. You won’t really get the whole picture of how a business treats its clients in that state until you actually talk to some of the clients. So that’s what I did.
To do this, I reached out to customers who had used my site to find an agent, as well as those who had already had an agent in the state when they came to my site.
This stage was very telling. I asked them what level of service the agents in the state provided their business with, and how satisfied they were. By doing this, I learned how each agent's business in the state operates based on more than just the information on their websites.
Stage 4: Speaking with Their Sales Team
You can tell a lot about a company by the way its sales team handles questions and feedback. So I rounded up all the negative feedback, comments and complaints about each business and asked their sales team about them. Then I recorded and gauged their reactions.
An agent’s ability to change and grow is crucial to their ongoing success. Did they address the complaints and tell me about the change they implemented to fix the problem or did they say that I shouldn’t listen to those complaints because the customers who made them are “crazy”?
This stage really separated the wheat from the chaff, and by the end of this process I was equipped to start rating the 12 agents I was left with.
Here are the factors I used to rate the 12 best registered agents for your Illinois LLC:
Factor 1: Offerings
This was the first factor I considered because it’s important. If an agent doesn’t provide you with the registered agent services your company needs, none of the other factors are going to matter.
I took into account whether the business forwards your mail (including Service of Process) to you or scans it, whether they put it on an online portal that you can access from your office, whether they offer compliance filing deadline alerts to remind you about filing your annual report or any other form you may need to file, or do they simply give you a calendar, whether they offer a cheap LLC service, or maybe even the best LLC service, and finally whether they offer identity theft protection or just a vague promise to protect your information.
Factor 2: Value
Another important factor in rating each business was the value for money. If an agent offers all the services you need but doesn’t offer you with a fee that fits your budget, it’s pretty useless to you. Unfortunately, pricing varies widely from agent to agent, and the average person can be quite confused when trying to find a price-to-value ratio.
I found that Illinois registered agents tend to have 3 different price ranges: budget, full-service and premium. Budget services run around $39–$59 per year, full-service agents typically cost $99–129 per year, and premium services start at $299 per year.
Budget services look like a good idea on paper, but they’re deceptive. In order to get services, like compliance alerts, you’ll have to pay extra fees. These extra fees can add up to be more than some of the premium services charge, and you’re not even getting premium services for the price!
For that reason, I left budget services off of the list. I don’t feel that these deceptive pricing practices are ethical.
Factor 3: Ease of Sign-up
Okay, imagine you’ve found an agent business with all the services you need, at a price you can afford. You’re ready and excited to start using their services, only to find that the sign-up is extremely complicated and takes forever. This can be a real turn-off that spoils the whole experience.
I actually signed up for services from each of the agents on this list to see how easy it was to get through their sign-up process.
Those with automated, streamlined processes earned higher positions on the list, while those who required you to fill out form after form and had drastically long waiting periods got lower positions.
Factor 4: Ease of Use
It’s really going to do you no good to get a new Illinois registered agent service, or change to a different one if, when you get it, you find that their online system is so complex that those in the office who are going to use this service are upset about it. I decided to free you from that hassle and test them out myself.
Those agents whose computer systems had great layouts and were user-friendly (even for those who aren’t tech savvy) were in the top half of the list, while those with complex, hard-to-use and unnavigable systems were placed in the bottom half of the list.
Factor 5: Customer Service
No matter how easy a computer system is to use, the client is going to have a question that needs to be answered at some point, so having good customer service is a nonnegotiable for resident agents.
One bad customer service experience can change your perception of the entire company. A good or bad call experience can mean the difference between quickly solving your problem and leaving you free to get back to work, or having to wait for hours while you try to get through to someone just to answer a question.
For that reason, the agents with the quickest response, those who answered questions in an efficient and friendly manner and were able to fix the problem took precedence on my list over those who were hard to contact and didn’t solve problems or answer questions well.
The Best Illinois Registered Agent Results Summary
After using these methods to rate the 12 agents on my list, I determined that Northwest Registered Agent was the best registered agent in Illinois.
Best Overall Registered Agent—Northwest Registered Agent (9.13/10)
Northwest Registered Agent has earned its position at the top of my list because they offer a range of full-service offerings, they have the second-best price on the list and they offer the best customer support of any registered agent in the state.
For $125 per year, you’ll get a street address, they’ll scan ALL your documents (including Service of Process) and put them on an online portal for you to access, they’ll keep your personal details off the public record, and they’ll issue important compliance deadline alerts so that you’ll remember to file your annual report or fill out any other form that needs filing. They ensure your business is in compliance with the Illinois Secretary of State.
Better still, they have a US-based support team of former accountants, lawyers, small business owners, and entrepreneurs that can help you through not only your registered agent issues, but also, the hundreds of challenges you'll face as you grow your business.
This level of support has remained strong across more than 3,000 positive Northwest Registered Agent reviews so you can be sure that it will continue into the future.
To get a commercial registered agent service that will ensure you remain in good standing and support you as you grow your business, head to Northwest Registered Agent.
Best Budget Registered Agent—Harbor Compliance (7.92/10)
Harbor Compliance offers a lot of the same services that Northwest Registered Agent does. They are a full-service option that offers their services for a mere $99 per year.
Their customer service won't help you deal with your small business challenges, but they’ll still answer your registered agent questions adequately.
If you’re okay with sacrificing excellent customer service in order to save $26 per year, you can find out more about Harbor Compliance here.
Best Premium Registered Agent—LegalZoom (6.59/10)
If you’re looking for a registered agent that provides premium services, LegalZoom is the best premium agent in the state. They offer the same full-service options as Northwest Registered Agent, but with a couple of premium services as well. You’ll also get up to $1 million in identity theft protection, and LegalZoom will cover any filing fee you incur if you change from your current commercial registered agent service to theirs.
The inclusion of this identity theft protection will run up the cost to $299 per year, which is $175 more than Northwest Registered Agent’s service. But if you’re looking for a premium registered agent that will provide you with identity theft protection and you don’t care about price, LegalZoom is a good option.
You can learn more about LegalZoom on their website.
Whether you’re a domestic or foreign corporation, whether you’ve never had a registered agent, or are looking at changing agents, Northwest Registered Agent is the best registered agent you’ll find in Illinois.
To free you from the burden of researching every registered agent in the state, I did it for you. I investigated over 64 different agents, which narrowed my list down to 12. Then I rated them and chose my top three, of which Northwest Registered Agent earned my top spot.
They offer all the services you need from a commercial registered agent at a fair price, their computer system is easy to use, and their customer service is thorough and comprehensive.
If you want the best registered agent you can get for your Illinois business, head to Northwest Registered Agent now. To change your registered agent, you must complete the state's Statement of Change of Registered Agent and/or Office by Entity form and submit it to the Illinois Secretary of State by mail or in person