Top 5 California Registered Agent Services
We compared service providers based on:
- The cost and value of their services
- The needs of small businesses
- Additional services that might be helpful to business owners
- ZenBusiness ($99/year) is our best registered agent service for small businesses because it’s the most dependable and affordable service.
- Northwest ($125/year) deserves an honorable mention because its pricing is competitive, and it offers exceptional customer service.
- Incfile ($119/year) received an honorable mention because it offers free premium services available in its base-level packages at a competitive price.
- Rocket Lawyer ($149.99/year) is a great value if you need legal information and access to free documents in addition to registered agent services.
- LegalZoom ($299/year) is good for customers who value LegalZoom’s brand recognition and access to discounted legal services.
We chose ZenBusiness as the best registered agent service in California because of the company's dependability, great customer support, and excellent value.
ZenBusiness’ customer reviews highlight the company’s ability to provide speedy support and create a high degree of customer satisfaction.
ZenBusiness’ Basic Package Includes:
- Registered agent services starting at $99 without LLC formation
- One year of registered agent services free with all limited liability company (LLC) formation packages, which is $119 per year after
- Online document access
ZenBusiness offers an upgrade to its “Complete Coverage” registered agent service, which adds a “Worry-Free Compliance” guarantee. This guarantee includes:
- Annual filing report alerts
- Documents submitted on your behalf (you’ll only be responsible for state fees)
- Two free changes to your filings per year (state filing fees may still apply)
- Protection for any costs if you fall out of compliance with the state
2. Northwest Registered Agent
Northwest Registered Agent offers exceptional customer service and knowledgeable staff. The company locally scans every document you receive.
Northwest’s Basic Package Includes:
- Registered agent services for $125 per year
- Business data protection
- Unlimited cloud storage
- Compliance calendar
Northwest Registered Agent receives service of process on behalf of California small businesses at its Sacramento location.
Honorable Mention: Northwest Registered Agent
Northwest Registered Agent provides standout customer service from knowledgeable professionals. Get business attorney-level service at a cost any business can afford.
Incfile has served over 150,000 customers since 2004, and its Learning Center offers helpful information for business owners.
Incfile’s Basic Package Includes:
- A free year of registered agent services with LLC formation
- $119 annual fee after the first year (or $119 annual fee without LLC formation)
Incfile also provides a convenient registered agent dashboard, which allows you to track and instantly access important business documents. In addition, the company sends email and SMS notifications so you can stay updated on the status of your documents.
Incfile’s virtual mailbox can provide international businesses with a principal street address for their business entity in addition to a registered agent office address.
4. Rocket Lawyer
Rocket Lawyer has provided services to over 800,000 businesses. This service is excellent for business owners who anticipate needing legal help. Its “Business Bundle” plan can include registered agent services for free for the first year.
Rocket Lawyer Packages:
- A 25% discount with a premium subscription
- $149.99 annual fee for non-members
- Business Bundle Plan includes a free year of registered agent services
Rocket Lawyer is known for providing high-quality legal information and support to business owners and entrepreneurs. The company is highly experienced in offering legal information and registered agent services. Rocket Lawyer promises a 100% satisfaction guarantee for its registered agent services.
Exclusive Deal: Need affordable incorporation, registered agent, and legal resources? TRUiC has partnered with Rocket Lawyer to offer our users a discounted price.
LegalZoom offers brand awareness, higher pricing, and a strong foothold in the registered agent services industry.
LegalZoom’s Basic Package Includes:
- $159 annually with LLC formation
- $299 annually
LegalZoom's registered agent service includes features such as business data protection, a compliance calendar, and unlimited cloud storage.
Its prices are higher than the competition, but you might feel more comfortable choosing its service because it has experience and brand recognition.
Electing or Changing a California Agent for Service of Process
Businesses are required to elect their agent for service of process when they fill out formation documents for their California LLC or corporation.
Electing a California Agent for Service of Process for a New Business
To form an LLC yourself and elect a registered agent service, choose the guide that matches your business entity type:
- How to Form an LLC in California
- How to Start a California Corporation
- How to Form a Nonprofit in California
If you are hiring a formation service to create your LLC or corporation, the service will elect your agent for service of process for you when it fills out your formation documents.
Some formation services, like ZenBusiness, offer free registered agent service when you form an LLC or corporation with them.
Recommended: If you use a formation service to form an LLC or corporation, you can get free registered agent services from providers like ZenBusiness.
Changing Your California Agent for Service of Process
If you have an existing LLC, corporation, or nonprofit in California and you’d like to hire a registered agent service to replace your existing agent for service of process, the new agent will complete one of the following forms on your behalf:
Benefits of Using a California Registered Agent Service
An agent for service of process acts as your business’s main point of contact with the state by accepting and sending legal documents. While it’s possible to serve as your own agent for service of process, there are several benefits of hiring a registered agent service:
- Compliance. Your registered agent service will help your business stay on top of state requirements.
- Peace of Mind. With a registered agent service, you can focus your time, energy, and attention on growing your business.
- Flexibility. A registered agent service will enable you to choose your own business hours instead of having to make yourself available between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. every weekday to accept service of process.
- Privacy. The public record will list your registered agent service’s address — not your personal or office address.
Explore Individual Reviews
California Registered Agent Service FAQ
How do I choose an agent for service of process in California?
Hiring a registered agent service provider is an investment in time management, privacy, and peace of mind. Not all registered agent services are alike. We recommend using a dependable national registered agent service.
Visit our Best Registered Agent Services review to learn more.
How much does an agent for service of process cost in California?
The cost of hiring a registered agent service typically ranges from $99 to $349.
Do you need an agent for service of process in California?
The State of California requires that all LLCs, corporations, and nonprofits elect and maintain an agent for service of process and registered office.
Should I be my own registered agent for an LLC?
Hiring a registered agent service provider is an investment in time management, privacy, and peace of mind. Take a look at our Can I Be my Own Registered Agent guide to learn more.
Should I hire an agent for service of process for my California business?
We recommend that most small businesses hire an agent for service of process for their California businesses. Take a look at our Should I Hire a Registered Agent guide to learn more.
How much does it cost to change my registered agent?
Changing your registered agent can cost from $0 to $50 per state depending on the number of states you’re registered in to do business with your LLC.