Ratings Highlights


SWYFT FILINGS LEGALZOOM
Overall Value 4.7/5 3.4/5
Cost Value 5/5 3/5
Customer Service 5/5 3.5/5
Ease of Use 4.5/5 3.5/5
Included Features 4.5/5 3/5

Northwest comes out of this comparison with an advantage in every category. Everything from cost to ease of checkout, availability of features and best-in-class customer support makes Northwest a great choice over LegalZoom.

Northwest’s checkout process is one of the most straightforward we’ve seen. There are no confusing a la carte options for the basic bundle and they progressively add features as the price points increase. There are no hidden costs, and the process is easy to complete.

The overall cost savings are fairly significant. For example, with Northwest’s most basic package you save more than just $40 once you factor in the cost of registered agent. LegalZoom immediately charges you an additional $159 for this service, while Northwest gives it away for free for the first year.

Read on for a more in-depth, side-by-side breakdown of each company's basic, middle, and top tier service packages.

Our Recommendation: Northwest Registered Agent

Form an LLC
with Northwest

($49 + State Fees)

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Free operating agreement

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Side-By-Side Comparison


Northwest and LegalZoom offer additional services beyond forming your LLC. Some features can be purchased independently, offering even more pricing flexibility. Below, you’ll find a side-by-side comparison of their basic packages and the features that actually matter.

Please note that the service costs for each tier do not include the State filing fees.

Side-by-side: Basic Tier

Order Processing Time

A legal document that declares the name or names of an LLC’s owners, their percentage of ownership, and operating procedures for the company.

NorthWest
1-3 business days
LegalZoom
30 days
Registered Agent

The company will act as your legal point of contact for the government to receive important notifications or mailings on your behalf.

Northwest
Free for one year, then $125/year
LegalZoom
$159 extra per year
Operating Agreement

A legal document that declares the name or names of an LLC’s owners, their percentage of ownership, and operating procedures for the company.

Northwest
Not included in this package
LegalZoom
$99 Extra
EIN Registration

Employer Identification Number (EIN) works essentially the same as an individual’s social security number, except for businesses. It’s how the government is able to keep track of your business’ tax status.

Northwest
Not included in this package
LegalZoom
$60 extra, must be bundled with Operating Agreement for a total of $159
Annual Compliance

The company will keep you notified of upcoming legal filing requirements, such as your annual reports.

Northwest
Included with their free registered agent
LegalZoom
One month free, $320/year after

Basic Tier Highlights

For $39, Northwest will form your LLC, give you a year of free registered agent service at no extra cost, and process your order within 3 business days. LegalZoom, by contrast will only form your LLC, and requires an additional $159 for a year of registered agent service, meaning this plan saves you just a little more than $200 if LegalZoom is chosen as your registered agent.

Side-by-side: Middle Tear

Order Processing Time

A legal document that declares the name or names of an LLC’s owners, their percentage of ownership, and operating procedures for the company.

NorthWest
1-3 business days
LegalZoom
15 days
Registered Agent

The company will act as your legal point of contact for the government to receive important notifications or mailings on your behalf.

Northwest
Free for one year, then $125/year
LegalZoom
$159 extra per year
Operating Agreement

A legal document that declares the name or names of an LLC’s owners, their percentage of ownership, and operating procedures for the company.

Northwest
Not included in this package
LegalZoom
$99 extra
EIN Registration

Employer Identification Number (EIN) works essentially the same as an individual’s social security number, except for businesses. It’s how the government is able to keep track of your business’ tax status.

Northwest
Included in this package
LegalZoom
$79 extra
Annual Compliance

The company will keep you notified of upcoming legal filing requirements, such as your annual reports.

Northwest
Included with their free registered agent
LegalZoom
One month free, $320/year after

Middle Tier Highlights

At this tier, Northwest stands out by including EIN number registration and the creation of an operating agreement for your company, which you would have to purchase separately with LegalZoom. Plus, Northwest’s typical 3-day order time beats LegalZoom’s 15-day turnaround. Still, LegalZoom does offer a deluxe, physical organizer along with printed certificates of ownership and an official company seal. This can add a degree of professionalism to your new business.

Ultimately though, your business would save $508 by going with Northwest at these price points, assuming you were to order the EIN, operating agreement, and registered agent service from LegalZoom.

Side-by-side: Top Tear

Order Processing Time

A legal document that declares the name or names of an LLC’s owners, their percentage of ownership, and operating procedures for the company.

NorthWest
Guaranteed same-day processing
LegalZoom
15 days
Registered Agent

The company will act as your legal point of contact for the government to receive important notifications or mailings on your behalf.

Northwest
Free for one year, then $125/year
LegalZoom
$159 extra per year
Operating Agreement

A legal document that declares the name or names of an LLC’s owners, their percentage of ownership, and operating procedures for the company.

Northwest
Not included in this package
LegalZoom
$99 extra
EIN Registration

Employer Identification Number (EIN) works essentially the same as an individual’s social security number, except for businesses. It’s how the government is able to keep track of your business’ tax status.

Northwest
Included in this package
LegalZoom
$79 extra
Annual Compliance

The company will keep you notified of upcoming legal filing requirements, such as your annual reports.

Northwest
Included with their free registered agent
LegalZoom
One month free, $320/year after

Top Tier Highlights

Finally, LegalZoom’s Express Gold adds faster shipping and processing as well as access to a 7 day a week customer support line. By comparison, Northwest offers same-day order processing to get the formation process started as soon as possible.

Our Recommendation: Northwest Registered Agent

Form an LLC
with Northwest

($49 + State Fees)

Key Considerations


Northwest's base price and low cost for additional features, like an operating agreement and EIN number, adds substantial value to their package.

These same features are an additional $159 on top of any package cost with LegalZoom. Once you also account for the base price of LegalZoom’s middle tier offer, ordering the same services from them will cost you an extra $500.

Northwest's customer service is the best among the LLC formation services we’ve reviewed.

The customer support reps we talked to from Northwest are extremely knowledgeable and consistent, and they always answer the phone. You can even choose to work with a rep you’ve worked with before if you had a good experience.

Northwest's turnaround time beats LegalZoom’s even at the highest tier.

While you will be subject to the filing timelines of the state you’re forming an LLC with, Northwest beats LegalZoom in processing time on their end. LegalZoom’s $349 Express Gold price package only guarantees a 7-day processing time, where Northwest’s has guaranteed same-day processing for the $199 Premium package.