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Incorporate.com is a business formation service that boasts over a century of experience. They offer a wide range of services including incorporation and LLC formation, business compliance, and registered agent services. Despite its long-standing experience in the industry, Incorporate.com falls short in comparison to the top contenders in the market. Read this review to find out why.
Comparing Incorporate.com to The Best Online Legal Services
Incorporate.com brings over 120 years of experience to the business formation market. It’s helped to form some 750,000 businesses in their time and can easily say it is a market leader when it comes to customer volume.
But unfortunately, outside of this, Incorporate.com falls rather short in comparison to some of today’s market leaders. Its packages are expensive, lack key inclusions, and therefore lack high value. Excessive upselling during the application process also puts a lot of people off its services.
We put together a list of some of the best online legal services in the market today that can help you form your business. We highlight key considerations to make when choosing the best provider for your needs and also guidelines as to when the right time to invest in these services may be. See all our top picks.
Incorporate.com: The Good and The Bad
Incorporate.com brings a lot to the table in the way of business formation services. We’re going to take a look at the key pros and cons of Incorporate.com’s offerings to help you determine whether they are the right provider for your business.
Industry Experience: Incorporate.com is owned and operated by the Corporation Services Company which has been around since 1899. With well over a century of experience, Incorporate.com has helped form over 750,000 corporations and LLCs. This makes it a clear industry leader in terms of experience, longevity, and sheer customer volume. There is no other provider that can boast the same amount of experience.
Large Suite of Services: Having been around for quite some time, Incorporate.com has the experience and resources at its disposal to offer a considerable amount of services to help you form and maintain your business in comparison to others in the market. Some of the services offered outside of their core business formation services include operating agreement and bylaws drafting, business license and permits research, certificate of good standing filing, and annual report preparation and filing services.
Good Customer Support: Incorporate.com offers phone, email, and chat support to new and existing customers. While it doesn’t specify the certain hours that customer support is available, it does promise a response within one business day for all email inquiries. Real customer reviews also suggest that the customer support is generally quite helpful, attentive, and detailed which goes down as a positive for us.
Easy to Use: Starting your business and forming your corporation is a breeze with Incorporate.com. The website is really easy to navigate and is useful in helping you decide what type of entity you should form. Once you’re ready to start your application, you simply select your state and entity type, choose your preferred business formation package, and enter your business details online. The whole process can be done in 10 minutes if you’re prepared!
Transparent Turnaround Time: Incorporate.com doesn’t promise same-day or next-day filing like some other formation services do. But when you reach the end of your application process, you will receive detailed turnaround time estimates for both standard and expedited filings, so you’ll have a good idea of when you can expect to be receiving formation documents.
Corporate Compliance Guarantee: Many formation services offer some sort of satisfaction guarantee, but Incorporate.com really stands out in this area. They promise that if your formation documents are filed incorrectly due to the fault of Incorporate.com, they’ll resolve the issue or will pay you up to $75,000. Having such an explicit service guarantee behind you is a huge positive of working with Incorporate.com and will be extremely reassuring for any new business owner.
Online Learning Center: Incorporate.com flexes its position as the most experienced business formation provider in the market with its online learning center. The online learning center offers tons of comprehensive guides covering a range of topics from the benefits of incorporating to how to protect your investments.
Lack of User Reviews: Although Incorporate.com has been around for over a century, there are hardly any real customer reviews available online. We had to dig incredibly deep to find some and even then, there were only a few dozen reviews available on third-party sites.
Furthermore, most of the reviews we found were not great. Customers complain of excessive pricing and hidden fees in the business formation process. They also suggest that using Incorporate.com’s registered agent service is expected and heavily forced upon customers who didn’t opt for one in the first place.
Very Expensive: In comparison to other contenders in the market, Incorporate.com is expensive. Its lead-in plan starts at $99 which is almost double the average lead-in cost for competing providers. Furthermore, the inclusions of Incorporate.com’s packages lack significant value, which means customers are not getting the best value for their hard-earned money.
Misleading Inclusions: On top of the expensive package pricing, some of the “inclusions” in Incorporate.com’s packages are flat-out misleading. Two of its key features–the CSCNavigator and the annual report service–are listed as included features. However, these features are not actually included unless you also purchase Incorporate.com’s registered agent service as an add-on, which costs an additional $235 per year.
No Free Registered Agent Services: Many competing business formation services include access to free registered agent services for the first 12 months of business. Incorporate.com doesn’t offer this feature and instead charges quite heavily for this service, as mentioned above.
Furthermore, if you sign up for Incorporate.com’s registered agent services, your yearly contract will automatically renew 90 days before your current contract expires. With this in mind, if you plan to cancel your subscription to Incorporate.com’s services, you need to be on the ball to avoid facing any further loss to non-refundable fees.
Incorporate.com Pricing and Options
Incorporate.com offers three pricing plans to suit a range of different businesses and budgets. Similar to most business formation services, Incorporate.com’s packages are the same price regardless of whether you’re forming an LLC, C Corporation, S Corporation, or nonprofit.
The Starter package is currently priced at $74 (usually $99) plus state fees and includes:
- Completion and filing of formation documents
- Access to CSCNavigator (online tool)
- $75,000 corporate compliance guarantee
- Online access to documents
The Essentials package is currently priced at $204 (usually $249) plus state fees and includes:
- Everything in the Starter package
- Annual report preparation and filing
- Corporate kit
- Employer Identification Number (EIN)
The Works package is currently priced at $294 (usually $349) plus state fees and includes:
- Everything in the Essentials package
- Business license research package
- LLC operating agreement
- Corporate bylaws
A really important thing to mention here is that some of the aforementioned “inclusions”, aren’t actually included unless you also use Incorporate.com’s registered agent service. The two inclusions this applies to are the CSCNavigator tool and the annual report preparation and filing service.
Unfortunately, this does reduce the value of Incorporate.com’s packages quite significantly.
To gain access to these inclusions, you’d need to include Incorporate.com’s registered agent services for an additional $235 per year, which is quite high in comparison to other providers in the market. Furthermore, Incorporate.com will also charge you $150 when the annual report filing is due (for Essentials or Works packages).
That’s a lot of extra fees to fork out for services that are supposed to be included in your package.
At the end of the day, if you are set on using Incorporate.com for your business formation purposes, it does make sense to also utilize its registered agent services too. Just be prepared to add the additional fee into your budgeting before you commit to a package.
Incorporate.com LLC Services
Incorporate.com can help business owners form their LLC (limited liability companies) in all 50 states. The process is quick and easy, leaving you more time to focus on running your new business.
First, you’ll select your location and entity type and choose your preferred business formation package. Then you’ll need to answer a bunch of questions about you and your business so that Incorporate.com can prepare your formation documents accurately.
Incorporate.com will then file all of your LLC formation documents with your Secretary of State. Once your filed paperwork is complete, Incorporate.com will give you immediate online access to your LLC documents. It’s as simple as that!
All plans include completion and filing of formation documents, access to CSCNavigator (a business compliance tool), and a $75,000 Corporate Compliance Guarantee to give you complete peace of mind.
Incorporate.com Incorporation Services
Incorporate.com also offers incorporation services for those looking to form S-Corps, C-Corps, and nonprofit organizations. Once again, the process is super straightforward–in fact, it’s almost exactly the same as the steps discussed above.
Jump on to Incorporate.com’s website, select your location and choose your preferred corporation type. You’ll then answer the same questions about you and your business, and Incorporate.com will prepare and file the incorporation documents with the Secretary of State.
When your filed documents are complete, you’ll get immediate online access to your incorporation paperwork.
If you’re not sure which corporate entity type is best for your needs, Incorporate.com has loads of helpful online resources to help you decide. And if you’re still struggling to pinpoint the best structure for you, you can contact their customer service team for personalized advice.
Regardless of the type of corporation you choose to form, all lead-in packages include completion and filing of formation documents, access to CSCNavigator, a $75,000 Corporate Compliance Guarantee, and access to the online dashboard.
If you upgrade to the Essentials package, you’ll also get a corporate kit and an EIN (employer identification number).
Incorporate.com Registered Agent Services
Regardless of the type of business you’re forming, you’ll need a registered agent.
Your registered agent will be there to accept service of process and official mail on behalf of your business. This includes things like legal or tax documents, notifications from the Secretary of State, government notices, and lawsuits. They’ll also help your business to maintain compliance.
If you choose to form your business with Incorporate.com, it makes sense to also utilize their registered agent services.
As we touched on earlier, you’ll also need to use Incorporate.com’s registered agent services to access some of the package inclusions such as the CSCNavigator and annual report and preparation filing.
The CSCNavigator is an online tool that offers:
- Filing alerts
- Calendar reminders of important filing dates
- Order status and related documents tracking
- Invoice management and settling
- Status updates on your current business standing with your state
While the CSCNavigator is a helpful tool, other business formation providers offer access to similar services via their own online dashboards, without the extra price tag.
Incorporate.com’s registered agent services are $235 per year and your plan will automatically renew 90 days before your current contract expires.
How Incorporate.com Ranks
Incorporate.com is as well-rounded as some of the top business formation services out there in terms of service offerings with the added benefit of long experience on its side. But with its expensive pricing, lack of transparency surrounding inclusions, and hidden fees, Incorporate.com unfortunately falls behind its competitors.
In our books, the key area in which Incorporate.com lets itself down is the pricing for both their formation packages and registered agent services.
Incorporate.com’s lead-in package starts at a steep $99 plus state fees, whereas some of the top formation services out there are charging as little as $49 plus state fees for a far more inclusive package. Furthermore, its registered agent services are a whopping $235 per year, when most other providers are charging anywhere between $99 and $150 per year.
If you want to read more about some of the best online legal services to help with your business formation, see all our top picks here.
- Rocket Lawyer – Best for most
- Incfile – Best for business formation
- LegalZoom – Best for flat fees and versatility
- UpCounsel – Best for complex legal needs
- Avvo – Best for free legal advice
- LegalMatch – Best for locating an attorney near you
Incorporate.com is a highly experienced business formation service that can help you to form your business quickly and efficiently. If you do choose to go with its services, there is no doubt that your business would be in reliable hands.
However, we can’t ignore the fact that there are many other providers in the market that offer much higher value. The services offered are exactly the same, but at a fraction of the price and usually with a few decent freebies thrown in. With this in mind, we wouldn’t rush to recommend Incorporate.com as your next business formation service provider.