Incfile vs LegalZoom (Honest Comparison): Who’s The Best?

Incfile and LegalZoom are two giants in the online LLC formation industry, and it’s hard to go wrong choosing either of these options. However, like any smart shopper, you want the most bang for your buck, so you want to know which of these companies to trust with your time and money.

Luckily that’s why we’re here! We will show you what you can expect out of both of these companies, compare them, and finally answer the question, “between Incfile and LegalZoom, who is best?”

The 6 Criteria to Judge Both Companies

Before we can gauge whether Incfile or LegalZoom is better, we need some criteria to judge both of these companies. To accomplish this, we will use these six points of comparison.

  • Price – This is clearly a big concern for people just forming their LLC. So, we will compare the prices of Incfile’s and LegalZoom’s packages along with a few of their extra services.
  • Customer Support – Forming an LLC can be a bit complicated at times, and you’re probably using an LLC formation service because you want some help. You want to be able to contact customer support when you need it. So, we’re going to tell you what kind of job these companies do with their customer support.
  • Ease of Use – Another thing most people expect if they are paying for help with forming their LLC is that it be reasonably easy to do. These companies each have their own process, and we will rate these on ease of use.
  • Features – Incfile and LegalZoom both have packages they offer that include different features. Also, they have additional features that can be purchased separately. We will discuss these features and which company has the better features included in their packages.
  • Turnaround Time – Most people are probably anxious to have their orders completed quickly. But the processing time can vary a lot. The time can vary based on the package you choose, the time it takes for your service to process your order, and the state’s processing time. We will look at the turnaround time for Incfile and LegalZoom and see who has the better turnaround time.
  • Customer Reviews – When you’re trying to pick an LLC Formation Company to form your LLC, it helps to know how other customers’ experiences with the company have been. So, we will look at whether Incfile and LegalZoom have good customer reviews.

Now that we have established our criteria for reviewing these two companies let’s see how they do.

Incfile and LegalZoom Quick Comparison

If you don’t have enough time to go into detail examining the benefits of these two services, don’t worry. Take a look at these quick comparisons.

Price

Price

Incfile will form your LLC for no charge other than state filing fees with no added costs. However, LegalZoom will charge $99 + state filing fees for LLC formation. It is pretty clear that free is a better deal for basic LLC formation services.

The best part about Incfile’s price is that for just starting packages alone, they include much more features as well. However, both do offer additional features to consider at an added price.


Customer-Service_1

Customer Support

Both of these competitors possess large support departments with a number of representatives. This makes it hard to say what any given experience with support may be, especially with LegalZoom.

However, with Incfile, the time it can take to receive a response can be pretty long. Sometimes, it may take greater than 24 hours. Incfile is also available for telephone support from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. ET on weekdays.

LegalZoom has extended customer service hours for those who wish to contact them outside of regular business hours. Their customer service hours are from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. ET on weekdays and on weekends from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. So, LegalZoom does better in this category.


User-Friendly

Ease of Use

LegalZoom and Incfile both have easy-to-use websites and make forming your LLC a lot easier. Unfortunately, they both have upsells, although Incfile is not as aggressive about this. Incfile also has a dashboard where you can easily access all of your documents, making their website a bit easier to use. So, Incfile wins this category.


Features

Incfile has many more features in its packages than LegalZoom. This is in addition to costing less. The most impressive feature that Incfile includes in their packages for free is registered agent service. LegalZoom does not have this feature in any of its packages. They charge $299 per year for this service. So, this is quite a savings.

Incfile also includes an operating agreement for free with their Gold and Platinum Packages and for $40 with their Silver Package. But, LegalZoom charges $99 for their operating agreement or $199 if you want expedited processing. This is another feature that Incfile provides at a better price than LegalZoom. Incfile wins this category.


ZenBusiness-Turnarround-Time

Turnaround Time

Incfile has next-day order processing, but their overall turnaround time depends on the state of formation. With LegalZoom, the turnaround time depends on the package you purchase. The Express Gold Package takes 7-10 days, and the Standard Package takes 15 days. Whereas the Economy Package takes 30 days. Therefore, which company has a faster turnaround time varies based on your state of formation. So, this category is a tie between the two companies.


Customer Reviews

Incfile and LegalZoom both get mixed reviews, but Incfile does seem to get more positive reviews than LegalZoom does. So, Incfile is the winner in this category.


Pricing: Incfile Versus LegalZoom

Pricing is clearly an important part of any product, but it doesn’t say much without knowing exactly what comes with it. However, with LLC formation providers, this isn’t always easy to say when most companies in these industries provide multiple formation packages with a variety of different features at each price level, and neither Incfile nor LegalZoom are an exception to this.

Luckily both of these companies provide three tiers of packages with increasing prices, so we will compare each of these sides by side to show what you can expect to receive at each price level. To make it easier to tell who wins, we will provide a side-by-side “snapshot” of important facts for each price level.

Lower Tier Plans

Incfile’s silver package is free outside of state fees. LegalZoom’s Economy Package costs $79 plus state fees.

Side By Side Snapshot

 IncfileLegalZoom
Time To ProcessOne Business Day30 Business Days
Includes Operating Agreement$40No: Costs an extra $99 or for expedited processing $199
Includes Registered Agent ServiceYes: First year free and then $119 annuallyNo: Costs an extra $299
Includes EIN FilingNo: You can add an EIN for $70.No: Costs an extra $60 dollars and has to be purchased alongside an operating agreement for a total of $159
Annual Compliance ServiceFree Lifetime AlertsNo: Costs an extra $55 to $75
Financial ServicesYes: A free tax consultationNone
WebsiteIncluded free web domain + hosting for $20 through third-partyNone

Incfile

Incfile’s Silver Package is free, although you will have to pay state filing fees. The package includes a free year of registered agent service, lifetime company alerts, and next-day processing in addition to filing your Articles of Organization. You also get a free tax consultation and a free web domain, although these are provided by a third party.

LegalZoom

The only feature LegalZoom includes in their Economy Package for $79 plus state filing fees other than filing your Articles of Organization is a guarantee of 30-day order processing.


Middle Plan Highlights

Incfile charges $149 plus state fees for their Gold Package. LegalZoom charges $329 plus state fees for their standard package. Here is a comparison of these packages.

Side By Side Snapshot

 IncfileLegalZoom
Time To ProcessOne Business Day15 Business Days
Includes Operating AgreementIncludedCosts an extra $99
Includes Registered Agent ServiceFirst-year free and then $119 annuallyNo: Costs an extra $299
Includes EIN FilingIncludedNo. It can be purchased along with an operating agreement for $159.
Annual Compliance ServiceFree Lifetime AlertsNo: It can be purchased for $55 to $75.
Financial ServicesYes: A free tax consultationNone
WebsiteIncluded free web domain + hosting for $20 through third-partyNone

Incfile

Incfile’s Gold package costs $149 plus state filing fees and includes everything the silver package has, as well as an EIN and operating agreement. LegalZoom would charge you $159 for these services.

LegalZoom

LegalZoom’s standard package costs $329 plus state filing fees and includes a reduced processing time of 15 days, a corporate kit, 20 personalized stock certificates, and a contract template library with their Standard Package.


Top Tier Plans

Incfile charges $299 plus state fees for their Platinum Package. LegalZoom’s Express Gold Plan costs $349 plus state fees. Here is a comparison of these packages.

Side by Side Snapshot

 IncfileLegalZoom
Time To ProcessOne Business Day7-10 Business Days
Includes Operating AgreementIncludedCosts an extra $99
Includes Registered Agent ServiceFirst-year free and then $119 annuallyNo: Costs an extra $159
Includes EIN FilingIncludedNo: It costs $60 but must be purchased along with an operating agreement for $159.
Annual Compliance ServiceFree Lifetime AlertsNo: It can be purchased for $55 to $75.
Financial ServicesYes: A free tax consultationNone
WebsiteIncluded free web domain + hosting for $20 through third-partyNone

Incfile

Incfile’s Platinum package costs $299 plus state filing fees. This package adds expedited shipping for your filings and includes contract templates and a website domain name. For getting your business underway and setting up online, this package can add a lot of value.

LegalZoom

LegalZoom’s Express Gold package costs $349 plus state filing fees. This package offers fairly little other than faster shipping and processing. However, they do promise a 7 day per week phone line for customer support.


Add-on Services

Both companies offer additional services as well.  These additional services can be very useful for a business. Every LLC is required to have a registered agent. Also, although not all states require an LLC to have an operating agreement, every LLC should have one. Most LLCs will also want to obtain an EIN as well. This is necessary for hiring employees and is usually required for opening a business bank account. You can obtain one yourself on the IRS website. Although, you may find it convenient to have your LLC formation service obtain one for you while they are forming your LLC.

Incfile

With Incfile, you can pay for a business license search for $99 or filing for a DBA  (Doing Business As or fictitious business name) for $99 plus state fees. Incfile also offers services, such as filing your annual report, trademark registration, filing personal and business tax returns, and several other services that could be of use for LLC owners.

LegalZoom

LegalZoom also offers features that are not a part of their packages for an additional fee. Some of these services are creating an operating agreement for your LLC for $99, obtaining an EIN and operating agreement for $159, or registered agent service for $299 per year.


Customer Service: Incfile Versus LegalZoom

No matter the service, the way a company assists its customers, is an important part of the overall service. So, let’s see how well these companies help their customers.

Incfile Customer Service

Incfile’s customer service hours are from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. CST Monday through Friday. You can also contact them by email or by making a client support request on their website. Also, since they provide lifetime support, it doesn’t matter how long it’s been since you formed your LLC; they are there to help. They not only answer basic questions: they’re ready to help you with more complicated issues as well.


LegalZoom Customer Service

LegalZoom has customer service agents available from 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. PT, Monday through Friday, and on weekends from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. This is a lot more hours than Incfile has. LegalZoom has extended hours to help people that are unable to contact them during regular business hours.


Features: Incfile Versus LegalZoom

Both of these companies offer a wide variety of useful services for any business forming an LLC. However, LegalZoom does not include many services as a part of their packages. Instead, they provide these services separately for a fee. Whereas, Incfile includes many services with each of their packages.

Incfile Features

Incfile offers many features in its packages, even its free package. This really adds value to their service and is great for those on a budget. New business owners can get registered agent service, an EIN, and even a free tax consultation, and the only cost is the state filing fee. They also offer a wide variety of add-on services for an extra fee, such as trademark registration, a Certificate of Good Standing, a business license research package, and many more services.


LegalZoom Features

LegalZoom does not offer many features with its packages. The difference in packages mainly consists of faster service for higher-tier packages. However, they do offer many additional services for a fee. They offer registered agent service, annual reports, a business legal plan, and many more services.


Customer Reviews: Incfile Versus LegalZoom

Both companies receive mixed reviews, but Incfile gets slightly better reviews. We will discuss the reviews below.

Incfile Customer Reviews

Incfile gets mixed reviews. It gets an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau, and customer reviews give it almost 5 stars. Although, some customers stated that Incfile did not meet their deadline. However, customers were pleased that the formation process was easy and prices were very clear. On Trustpilot, customers were not quite as happy and gave the company a rating of 2.7 stars.

Positive Review

This was easy and fast. I made sure to READ everything before I run into any surprises later on and made my own research. What I could do on my own I did, what I wanted them to do they did.

I believe all their information is clearly written and I haven’t run into any issues yet.


Negative Review

bad support, I won’t recommend working with them


LegalZoom Customer Reviews

LegalZoom’s customer reviews vary a good bit. The Better Business Bureau gives them a rating of A+: yet, their customer rating on the Better Business Bureau website is 1.5 stars. The most common complaint customers had was of unauthorized charges. But LegalZoom responded to the complaints and dealt with them. One thing customers complimented was the numerous legal services LegalZoom offered. However, customers on Trustpilot seem to be happy with LegalZoom giving them a rating of 4.1 stars.

Positive Review

They are great to work with, they helped me start my LLC and also helped me to get my business license and a trademark for my make up line.


Negative Review

Absolutely horrible experience. They made a mistake forming my corporation and instead of taking 1 month for incorporation we are going on 6 months and they do not know what is going on and their customer service is useless. You are on hold for 2-3 hours each time and nothing gets accomplished. I wish I had never used them and do not recommend.


Turnaround Time: Incfile Versus LegalZoom

Incfile and LegalZoom tie in turnaround time because, in some cases, LegalZoom’s set times that come with their packages can be quicker. Whereas other times, Incfile’s turnaround time which is dependent on state processing times, can be faster.

Incfile Turnaround Time

Incfile claims that the turnaround time for most states is three weeks. However, it could take as long as six weeks since it really depends on the processing time for your state of formation. If you’re in a hurry, though, they do offer expedited filing. With the expedited filing, the turnaround time drops to one to five days for most states.

If you purchase Incfile’s highest tier package, expedited service is included for free. You also have the option of purchasing expedited service as an add-on to the lower-tier packages. The price varies depending on the state, but it’s typically anywhere from $50 to $150.

Incfile also provides a list of estimated turnaround times on one of their pages. Incfile tries to process all of their orders quickly, in one business day if possible.


LegalZoom Turnaround Time

The turnaround time for LegalZoom depends on the package you buy. If you choose the Economy Package, the turnaround time they give is 30 business days. For the Standard Package, the turnaround time is supposed to be 15 business days. Incfile offers the fastest time for the Express Package at 10 business days.

LegalZoom gives faster service for expensive packages at the expense of those purchasing less expensive packages. Unlike some formation services, they do not vary their estimates of turnaround time based on your state of formation.


Ease of Use: Incfile Versus LegalZoom

Incfile and LegalZoom both provide a very easy-to-use service. They make their services easy to use and offer a lot of useful information on their website in addition to their formation services. However, Incfile has a dashboard for their clients that allows them to access their documents whenever they want, which makes their website even easier to use than LegalZoom’s website.

Incfile Ease of Use

Incfile is a specialist in business formation. It’s the only thing they do. Their process is quite easy. They have a simple guided process in which you provide the information needed for each step to form your LLC.  You also have the option to purchase expedited filing, which some people might find worthwhile to get their LLC formed faster. There will be a few upsells throughout the process, but they are not too intrusive.

Incfile also has a significant amount of information available to help you form your LLC. Some of the information is more general, but they do have some information on specifics topics as well as some business guides. They also have some tools you can use to help with your business, such as a business name generator, some useful calculators, and more. In addition to this, they have a dashboard that allows clients to access their documents at any time.


LegalZoom Ease of Use

LegalZoom has a very easy-to-use website. Although, LegalZoom offers a number of services other than LLC formation. So, you’ll need to get to the page for LLC formation. LegalZoom makes forming your LLC easy. All you really need to do is answer a few easy questions, and you’ll soon be done with the whole process.

LegalZoom also has many articles you’ll be able to access if you decide to use their service. These articles will give you general information as well as state-specific information about operating a business entity.


Verdict

Based on our criteria, the decision is clear Incfile wins. Incfile won in four out of our six criteria and tied in one, but LegalZoom won in only one. Incfile provides more features, is easier to use, and in our opinion provides the better product for the money. So, though both provide a solid product, Incfile is the winner.


Final Thoughts

Now you have had a chance to see what both of these companies have to offer and a side-by-side comparison. In the end, Incfile won out over their competition, and most customers appear to agree.

It is easy to see why Incfile is so popular when they offer a wide variety of features, including LLC formation and registered agent service for free. Whereas LegalZoom would charge nearly $400 dollars for the same service. However, despite Incfile’s victory, these are both solid companies and will get the job done right.

Is There a Better LLC Formation Deal Than Incfile or LegalZoom?

Yes, we actually highly recommend using Zenbusiness. A lot of people use it and the vast majority are more than surprisingly satisfied with their service.

Use our special promo and get your LLC started today with ZenBusiness! Hassle-free, cheap, and quick.
They are one of the top-rated quality-to-price ratio services.

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About the Author
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Founder & author

Ian Broderick is an avid author and owner of LLCGuys.com. He's been involved with the LLC formation field for over 4 years. On top of that, he has worked in several well-known LLC formation service providers. Now he decided to share his knowledge and advice with everybody. Since there are a lot of questions and concerns surrounding this field - his aim is to make LLCGuys a top-notch information provider in regards to LLC creation, service reviews and etc..

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