Before you start a limited liability company (LLC) in the Blue Hen State, you need to seek the services of a good LLC formation service that will assist you with your business formation process.
The right LLC service will help you draft your operating agreement, file your certificate of formation with the Delaware Division of Corporations, and make sure your business stays in compliance with the Delaware Secretary of State.
The wrong LLC service will charge you an exorbitant amount of money for low-rate services, delay launching your business for weeks, sometimes months, and cause lost business hours due to the lack of proper paperwork.
I’ve investigated the LLC service industry in Delaware through a four-stage, five-factor, analysis process and come up with the 10 best LLC services in the state. Here are the results of my legwork:
1. Northwest Registered Agent: 9.45/10 (Best LLC Service)
Northwest Registered Agent provides the most affordable formation plan and the best customer service.
Northwest’s formation package provides all the essential services you need to establish your business, including filing your certificate of formation on your behalf with the Delaware Division of Corporations, assistance with drafting your operating agreement, and a business tax consultation with its in-house accountants.
This package also includes a free, 90-day trial of Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) service so that you can make calls through the internet instead of using your analog phone line, compliance notices that remind you to file your annual reports, and a free year of registered agent service in Delaware, which includes a business address in Delaware and compliance alerts.
Northwest also provides other services (at an extra cost), such as certified copies of your formation documents, assistance with obtaining an employer identification number (EIN), and a Certificate of Good Standing.
Northwest’s most valuable feature is its industry-leading customer support service.
Unlike companies that offshore their customer support services to foreign call centers, Northwest has a team of US-based Corporate Guides made up of former business owners, lawyers, and accountants who are well-versed on the dos and don’ts of how to run an LLC in the state of Delaware.
Not only do they provide assistance during your business formation process but they also provide credible business advice that will assist you when you encounter challenges during your business journey.
Northwest’s formation package has a standard cost of $225, but Boostsuite readers can follow my dedicated link to Northwest’s sign-up page where they can access an 82% discount. This discount reduces the standard $225 charge to an affordable $39.
The only problem I came across while reviewing Northwest’s services is that it doesn’t provide online tools to assist your business entity in establishing an online presence, such as a customized business website, an email or direct messaging service, or a domain name registration service.
However, you can acquire these services for a small fee from a number of websites, such as Wix and Squarespace, so this shouldn’t be a major problem.
Northwest is by far the best Delaware LLC formation service because its affordable LLC Formation Package provides an array of essential services and its Corporate Guides are always ready to assist you when you encounter business challenges.
If you need a Delaware business formation service that provides great customer support and affordable services, follow my dedicated link to Northwest Registered Agent’s sign-up page and get an 82% discount.
*All prices listed are per state, per year, and do not include state fees.
2. ZenBusiness: 8.25/10 (Best Essentials LLC Service)
ZenBusiness won the #2 position on my list thanks to its $0 (plus filing fee) rate, which is the best price on my list. But because it only covers the basics for that price, you’ll pay more in the long run.
Obviously, the best part about ZenBusiness’ LLC services is its $0 price. For that price it will provide you with all of the formation basics you need to establish your LLC, like checking the availability of your business name, assisting you with filling out formation documents, and filing them for you.
With its $199 Pro plan you’ll also get expedited filing (which usually takes around four to six days), and assistance with creating your company’s operating agreement.
With its $299 Premium plan you’ll get rush filing (which can take as little as one to two days), a business domain name, email address, and a custom tool to build your website.
The $0 plan will cover the basic LLC formation necessities. But should you require anything beyond that, it’ll cost you a pretty penny.
You probably noticed that none of its plans includes free registered agent service, which is quite a drawback. The only plan that includes registered agent service is its $199 Pro Plan.
The customer service team at ZenBusiness does an adequate job of speedily and efficiently dealing with normal problems like password changes and updating your account information. But if you find yourself in need of small business or tax advice, then that’s something they aren’t able to help you with.
ZenBusiness offers LLC formation service basics for $0, which is one of the lowest prices in the industry. I mean, let’s face it—it’s free.
For that low price, ZenBusiness will do everything you need to make sure your paperwork is filed with the proper authorities. But if you want anything beyond that, like registered agent service or small business advice, you’ll have to upgrade beyond the $0 option.
If you’re satisfied with trading quality services for a low price, you can learn more about ZenBusiness on its website.
3. Harbor Compliance: 7.15/10 (Best Premium LLC Service)
Harbor Compliance is the best premium LLC service on this list and the second overall because it provides personalized customer support services.
The main difference between Harbor Compliance and Northwest is how they conduct their customer service. While you can call and talk to one of Northwest’s Corporate Guides, Harbor Compliance provides you with a personal account manager who understands your specific business challenges and provides assistance tailored to your personal situation.
Harbor Compliance’s basic formation service package includes features such as an operating agreement template, assistance with filing your initial formation documents, assistance with applying for an employer identification number, and a full year of its registered agent services (valued at $99).
Being a premium LLC service, Harbor Compliance charges $399 for its Starter package and $799 for its Compliance package. This is almost 10 times the amount Northwest charges for the same services.
Harbor Compliance is the best premium LLC formation service in the state of Delaware.
Its $399 Starter package provides all the services you need to establish a Delaware LLC and also provides a personal account manager who’ll guide you through the business registration process.
If you're willing to pay $399 for a personal representative who’ll help you set up your Delaware LLC and advise you when business challenges arise, visit the Harbor Compliance website today.
4. Swyft Filings
For $49 per year, Swyft Filings helps you file your company formation documents and gives you a 30-minute tax consultation with its in-house consultants as well as a domain name for your LLC.
However, Swyft Filings charge $149 for a year of registered agent service. This makes it three times more expensive than Northwest and, although it’s a reputable LLC service, you really are paying more for less.
For more information, read my full Swyft Filings review.
MyCompanyWorks charges $79 (plus state filing fees) for its basic service, which includes assistance with filing your initial formation paperwork, help with drafting your operating agreement, access to an online portal to store your important files, and compliance alerts so that you don’t miss any important filing deadlines.
It has a 4.5/5 average score out of 3,500 online reviews and it also offers good customer support service.
Its $279 Premium package provides a full year of registered agent service but considering Northwest provides registered agent service for just $39 for the first year, MyCompanyWorks doesn’t seem like great value.
6. Inc Authority
Inc Authority is a ZenBusiness clone that tries to pass themselves off as a budget LLC provider in Delaware. On closer scrutiny, you’ll realize that this is far from the truth.
It assists you with drafting and filing your certificate of formation for free, but if you need other basic business services, such as an operating agreement, an EIN, or a company seal, you have to part with $399. If you’re interested in getting a year’s worth of registered agent service, you’ll have to purchase the $799 Premium package.
Even if you’re completely strapped for cash and all you want is to file your company formation documents with the Delaware Secretary of state, ZenBusiness is a better option for a budget LLC formation service.
7. Incorporate Fast
Incorporate Fast is an LLC formation company that offers its Basic Package for $99 (plus state fees).
For that price, you get a free year of registered agent service, a couple of document templates to help your business in Delaware get started, and assistance with drafting your LLC operating agreement and formation documents.
If you need an employer identification number, you must purchase the $199 package. It doesn't offer an online storage portal or a business tax assessment.
The best part about Incorporate Fast is that it processes new business filings the same day they’re received. No other provider on this list offers this quick turnaround time.
BizFilings is another Delaware business formation service that provides minimal business services for the price. For its $99 basic service, all you get is assistance with filing your certificate of formation with the Delaware Secretary of State and compliance alerts so you don’t forget to file your annual report or tax returns.
BizFilings doesn’t provide assistance with your operating agreement, a business tax assessment, or an online document storage. In comparison, Northwest provides these and more services in its $39 basic package.
IncNow is a Delaware-only LLC service that offers basic business services for $99, including help with your formation paperwork and a free year of Delaware registered agent service.
However, if you need assistance with your operating agreement, you need to upgrade to the $208 premium package.
It’s worth mentioning that IncNow is the last service on this list that provides a free year’s worth of their Delaware registered agent service. Other services only include it in their premium packages while others don’t provide it at all.
10. Rocket Lawyer
Rocket Lawyer is a legal service provider that also offers very basic LLC formation services for $99. All you get is help with filing your certificate of formation and an online portal that stores your most important legal documents.
If all you need is legal representation for you or your Delaware business, then Rocket Lawyer is a sure bet. But if you need a Delaware LLC service, you are better off with other services on this list that offer more value for your money. Read my full Rocket Lawyer review for a full list of the services it offers.
Other LLC Services
As part of my investigation process, I included the following eight LLC services. Their services don’t offer much to write home about, but for the sake of being meticulous, I’ve included them below.
LegalZoom is another online legal services provider that also provides basic formation services.
Its $99 package provides your limited liability company with a banking resolution and assistance with filing your certificate of formation and that’s it. If you need more comprehensive services, you're better off hiring a comprehensive LLC service that provides more for less.
If you are interested in online legal services, then LegalZoom has you covered. Other than that, consider Northwest.
Incorporate.com offers the same level of service as Rocket Lawyer. For $99, the only services available are an online document storage portal and assistance with filing your certificate of formation.
CorpNet charges $79 for its basic LLC package, which includes compliance alerts and assistance with filing your formation documents. It doesn't offer anything else.
MyCorporation charges $133 to file your certificate of formation with the Delaware Secretary of State and also provides assistance with drafting your operating agreement.
15. Direct Incorporation
Direct Incorporation provides the same services as MyCorporationWorks. But it goes further to include an EIN and a banking resolution. The only problem is that it costs $147.
For $117, InCorp files your formation documents and helps with your LLC operating agreement. Any other additional service entails an extra cost.
17. Nationwide Incorporations
Nationwide Incorporations charges $200 for the same minimal services as InCorp.
18. SunDoc Filings
SunDoc Filings offers three packages. Their $79 Basic package gets your certificate of formation or certificate of formation filed with the Delaware Secretary of State. The $99 Key package offers assistance with your LLC operating agreement, while the $279 Premier Package gets you an employer identification number.
The Best LLC Service Review Summary
My review of the 10 best LLC formation services drew me to the conclusion that Northwest Registered Agent is my #1 pick for LLC services in Delaware.
Its highly discounted $39 package offers you all the best-registered agent and formation services you’d expect from a Delaware LLC service:
- Assistance with your certificate of formation
- Assistance with drafting your LLC operating agreement
- A business name and registered office address in Delaware
- A three-month free trial of VoIP service
- Compliance alerts
- A business tax consultation with in-house accountants
- An online document portal
- A full year of Delaware registered agent service
Northwest’s Corporate Guides not only assist you with your Delaware business formation process but also provide the best small business advice in the industry. If you need an affordable Delaware LLC service that’ll help you get properly started in the business world and also provides top-rated customer support, head over to Northwest Registered Agent today.
Best LLC Service Review Methodology
This section outlines the method I used to determine the best Delaware LLC service.
Why You Should Trust Me
You should trust me with your Delaware LLC service recommendations because I have more experience with dealing with LLC services than anyone I know.
My story began when I formed my first limited liability company (LLC). I did not have the essential knowledge required to file my formation paperwork so I decided to hire an LLC service to help me. The service I hired (whose name I won’t mention here because its services have substantially improved over time) was too expensive and provided such second-rate services that the entire process, in the end, was all too overwhelming.
My second foray into the business world was much smoother. This time I hired Northwest, who walked me through the entire setup process without any hitches.
After some time, I sold my second business and began to look for a new business opportunity. This time around, I decided to upgrade to a premium LLC service and my obvious choice was Harbor Compliance. Their personal account manager assisted me through the formation process and was always available to offer good business advice during my business journey.
My experience extends beyond using these services. During the search for my third business venture, I had a chat with a couple of my entrepreneur friends and a persistent pattern emerged. There’s plenty of business advice out there and most of it is either technical jargon or too contradictory to even comprehend.
That is why I started BoostSuite, to assist business owners in choosing the right LLC service that will help them set up their business, and since then I’ve helped more than 1,000 small business owners achieve just that.
How I Selected the Best LLC Service
I used a four-stage process to determine the best LLC formation service in Delaware.
Stage 1: Reviews
The first stage was to analyze online reviews of the more than 50 LLC services in Delaware. This meant days of perusing through sites like TrustPilot, Google Business, FaceBook, and the Better Business Bureau, since most LLC services in Delaware encourage their customers to post their experiences on these sites.
This approach allowed me to separate the Delaware LLC services that offered low-quality service packages—or those that were scams—from those that were legitimate and offered high-quality services.
Stage 2: Website Analysis
After ditching the second-rate services, I logged on to the websites of the remaining Delaware LLC services and analyzed their offerings, claims, and statements. This allowed me to understand the basic services that are offered by each Delaware company and how they distinguished themselves from the competition.
Stage 3: Speaking With Real Customers
For this next stage, I decided to get in touch with actual customers and find out if these companies lived up to their claims. Granted, I could have relied on online reviews to answer my questions, but these reviews tend to be skewed more toward very negative or very positive experiences. I needed a balance.
I talked to friends who have worked with an LLC formation service, spoke with people who’ve used my website, and I also reached out to individuals I’ve referred before to find out what their experiences were with these companies.
This gave me a good grasp of what it was like to use each Delaware LLC service.
Stage 4: Speaking With Sales Teams
For the final stage in the investigation process, I got in touch with their sales and customer support teams and pushed them for answers regarding the negative feedback they received from their customers online.
This helped me to observe how their support teams worked under pressure and how well they dealt with criticism.
As I worked through the four-stage analysis process, I used the five factors below to rate the LLC services in Delaware.
Factor 1: Offerings
The first factor was the type of services that are offered by these Delaware LLC service providers.
Some LLC formation services have a wide range of features included in their basic packages. These services include assistance in filing your certificate of formation—or in the case of corporations, a certificate of incorporation—help drafting your Delaware LLC operating agreement, a business name and address in the state of Delaware, an employer identification number, online access to your important documents, and a full year of Delaware registered agent service.
Other Delaware LLC and registered agent services simply assist you with your initial formation paperwork and omit other offerings from their basic package or fix this with their more expensive packages. I pushed these companies to the bottom of the list to make way for those with more comprehensive services.
Factor 2: Price
The next factor I used in my analysis process was price per year. There’s no point blowing your start-up capital on an LLC and registered agent service and then being left with no money to run your business in Delaware.
Some Delaware LLC services charge you $0 for their basic services while others charge close to $400 for the same. The key factor here was to isolate those that offered more value for money from those that didn’t.
Factor 3: Ease of Sign-up
The third factor I used to rate the Delaware LLC services was how easy it was to sign up for their services.
Some companies have clunky, outdated systems that look like they are straight out of the 90s while others have highly intuitive and uncomplicated systems that save you a lot of time and brainpower.
I signed up for each and every Delaware LLC formation service to find out how easy or cumbersome the process was.
Factor 4: Ease of Use
In most cases, if a Delaware LLC service has a difficult sign-up process, you better believe that most of their website’s functions will behave the same way.
Some services provide blank forms that require a substantial amount of time to fill in (despite having all the necessary information) while others provide filled-out document templates that not only save you and your LLC precious time but also don't tax your brain.
This is why the fourth ranking factor was how intuitive each Delaware LLC formation service’s website was.
Factor 5: Customer Service
The final factor I used to judge these companies was the efficiency of their customer support services.
Some companies that outsource their customer support to call centers in foreign countries where poorly trained locals with little or no insight on how to operate a business in the US are asked to solve a customer’s problems.
Then there are companies like Northwest, whose US-based Corporate Guides, a team of former lawyers, accountants, and business owners with years of experience, will answer all the questions you have about the setup process and are ready to guide you through your Delaware business journey.
This disparity in the varying quality of customer services offered meant that I had to add this as my fifth and final factor in my quest to find the best Delaware corporation to help you form an LLC.
Northwest Registered Agent is the best LLC service in Delaware.
For only $39 per year, it provides all the necessary LLC formation services while providing the best value for your money:
- Assistance with filing your certificate of formation
- Assistance with drafting your LLC operating agreement
- A business name and address in the state of Delaware
- A three-month free trial of their VoIP service
- An online storage portal
- Compliance alerts
- A business tax consultation with their accountants
- A full year of registered agent service
Northwest’s Corporate Guides provide great small business advice whenever your LLC runs into any challenges during your Delaware business journeyIf you are ready to start your Delaware company and form an LLC, visit Northwest Registered Agent today and enjoy an exclusive 82% discount.