4 Best LLC Services in Michigan (2023) Tried & Tested
If you’re a Michigan-based entrepreneur or small business owner who handles everything in your firm, it can be challenging to deal with laws and regulations and run your business at the same time.
This is why many business owners decide to hire a reliable LLC service to handle their legal work.
To help you decide which LLC service to employ, our panel of legal experts conducted an in-depth comparative analysis of top companies in Michigan. To validate their ranking, our criteria included general service features, costing, turnaround time as well as the advantages and disadvantages of each.
4 Best Michigan LLC Formation Services (November 2023)
1 - ZenBusiness (Best Overall)Would you recommend ZenBusiness (Best Overall)?
ZenBusiness provides three subscription tiers for LLC formation to accommodate your specific business needs at a price that fits any budget.
Their intuitive system facilitates a speedy 10-12 minute filing. They lay out clear package options, underscoring key inclusions like an EIN.
When I formed my LLC using ZenBusiness, it was validated in just four days. I was pleasantly surprised when I received a comprehensive New Business Kit. Using their dashboard, I found a wealth of insights that clearly guided me on the next steps.
Their client-centric ethos is evident in their billing practices. ZenBusiness is a beacon in the LLC formation domain, deserving of my strong endorsement.
Beyond LLC formation, ZenBusiness offers a range of other services, such as amendment filings, business license reports, and domain name registration, to support the various needs of a growing business.
LLC Formation Packages:
- Starter Formation Package ($0 + $50 State Fee): Starter Package offers basic mandatory features that one needs to start an LLC. This includes LLC filing service covered by standard filing speed of 2 to 3 weeks. To support wider legal side, this package offers free monthly trial of banking, bank account, and Money Pro bookkeeping. Choosing Starter Package brings optional worry-free compliance free of charge first year.
- Pro Package ($199 + $50 State Fee): Pro Package features the LLC formation service options above plus faster-expedited filing speed of 1 to 2 business days on average. (4 to 6 days), Employer Identification Number (EIN) is included in this package, to enable running fully legal business and support hiring employees - without and EIN hiring employees is not possible. An operating agreement here helps with defining internal procedures.
- Premium Package ($349+ $50 State Fee): Premium Package has the Pro Package LLC formation service features plus business document templates, designed to cut time and dealing with repetitive tasks. Domain name registration, domain name privacy, and business email address, next to business website builder are included to help business build professional online image.
- Registered Agent Service ($199): You may renew it for $199 after the subscription expires.
- Provides affordable formation packages
- High-quality customer support
- They feature a Worry-free Compliance package
- They have a quick business formation process
- Thousands of excellent customer reviews
- Without non-profit business formation
2 - Northwest Registered Agent (Best Premium)Would you recommend Northwest Registered Agent (Best Premium)?
With Northwest Registered Agent you can be sure that professionals will handle your formation process.
They have highly qualified employees, and we can attest to it because we had a lot of law-related questions and they provided an instant answer to each.
In our experience, they have highly trained customer service operators to assist you through each stage of the formation process, which will guide you through every formation step.
When I used Northwest Registered Agent for my business, I was amazed at how quick the process was. I completed the initial steps in just 9 minutes, and the entire formation was done in 72 hours, despite having a 5-day option available.
Partnering with Northwest Registered Agent for your Michigan LLC formation gives you the perks of contacting them anytime if you have questions or require assistance.
LLC Formation Packages:
- Basic Plan ($39 + $50 State Fee): Some of many Basic Plan features are the formation of LLCs, articles of organization, corporations, nonprofits, an operating agreement, a year of cost-free Michigan registered agent service, with two processing speeds available: standard and expedited.
- Full-Service LLC Formation Plan ($225 + $50 State Fee): In Full Service Plan you will receive all features from Basic Plan plus limited mail forwarding for free, business filing on the same day, and client account filed with tools and free forms.
- Registered Agent Services ($125): Using any Michigan LLC formation service plan with Northwest will get you a cost-free first year of registered agent service. Some of the features you get are professional corporate guides, privacy, and cost-free email forwarding.
- Over 20 years of experience of Michigan LLC formation service
- Does not sell client data to third parties
- Their service fees are always transparent
- Formation packages include a registered agent
- Their package deals are pricey
3 - IncFile (Most Affordable)Would you recommend IncFile (Most Affordable)?
IncFile is one of your best options if you're on a tight budget but still want to push your Michigan business.
They provide free Michigan LLC formation services, so you only have to pay the state fees and other minor charges due to the Michigan Secretary of State.
Based on our observations, if you only need your formation documents filed as quickly as possible, IncFile is the way to go.
IncFile is promoted as one of the top web services to use when creating your business online, so we decided to test it. It is fair to say that we were not disappointed. They provided us with a full year of guaranteed free registered agent service, making the process smoother.
Just like Northwest Registered Agent, they offer privacy protection, by using Norton Web Security, which gave us peace of mind, but they were missing business experts for support and some basic features such as document scanning, which is helpful and can speed up some processes.
LLC Formation Packages:
- Silver Package ($0 + $50 State Fee): Many great features such as unrestricted name searches, drafting and submitting organization articles, the first year of cost-free registered agent services, email support, and the unlimited phone is included in the Silver Package.
- Gold Package ($199 + $50 State Fee): Gold Package is equipped with all Silver Package features plus banking resolution and banking business accounts. This great Package also comes with IRS Form 2553 and tax consultation for your business, EIN Business Tax Number, access to an online dashboard, and lifetime company alerts with an operating agreement.
- Platinum Package ($299 + $50 State Fee): Many business contract templates, next-day filing, domain name, and business email addresses are features you get with the Platinum Package on top of all of the Gold Package features.
- Registered Agent Service ($119): The first year is free of charge for buying any LLC formation package. If you want to continue with Registered Agent Services for next year, the renewal will cost you $119 per year. A great feature of getting Registered Agent Services is a personalized dashboard with access to your documents online.
- Provides free LLC formation service
- Includes one-year registered agent service in every LLC formation package
- Lower price than competitors
- Reliable customer support over the phone and email
- Excessive number of upsell services
4 - LegalZoom (Best Essentials)
LegalZoom provides every legal service you might need.
Business formation with them is more expensive compared to their competitors, but they justify it with a 60-day money-back satisfaction guarantee.
We never had to request this guarantee from them, as their service was reliable and professional. They even provided us with regular access to an attorney.
Their entry-level plan is affordable, but it lacks the feature set of ZenBusiness and IncFile.
LLC Formation Packages:
- Basic Package ($0 + $50 State Fee): This package has some great features, including an LLC welcoming packet, a name check, and an article of organization. It also offers WIX website optimization.
- Pro Package ($249 + $50 State Fee): The Pro package has an all-inclusive Basic package with a personalized notebook, founder’s kit, and tax-saving consultation. You'll also get an EIN and a comprehensive business licensing guide.
- Premium Package ($299 + $50 State Fee): The Premium package includes an engaging professional business attorney guide and unlimited 30-minutes consultation. The package also adds an applied changes service for your LLC formation document in the first 3 subscription months.
- Registered Agent Services ($299): If you choose LegalZoom to create your startup, you will pay $50 less for the registered agent. After that, renewing would cost $299.
- Established brand in LLC formation services
- Extended customer support hours
- Extensive legal services for your Michigan LLC
- No registered agent service is included in the package
- Many upsell to high-priced add-on services
How We Picked And Tested The Best LLC Services In Michigan
Our team conducted an extensive review of various LLC service providers in Michigan. We evaluated over 10 companies, engaging with their services anonymously to ensure an unbiased assessment.
Our approach included consulting with legal experts who are well-versed in Michigan's business landscape.
In our evaluation, we focused on several key aspects of service features, costing, and turnaround time. A comprehensive analysis of the pros and cons of each service was also conducted to determine their overall effectiveness and value.
1. Customer Support
Good customer support contributes to client retention. Clients are more likely to stay with a service provider that offers reliable and responsive assistance, fostering long-term relationships.
We evaluated the availability of support through phone, email, and online chat. Our focus was also on how quickly these services respond to inquiries and their overall availability.
Based on this criterion, ZenBusiness and Northwest Registered Agent stood out for their responsive and comprehensive customer support. Customer support for these companies is available on weekdays during normal hours and you can reach them via phone, email, and live chat.
Understanding pricing helps you avoid overpaying for services that can be obtained at a more reasonable cost elsewhere. It ensures that you select a service provider that aligns with your budget.
ZenBusiness was rated 5/5 as it offers an affordable range of packages, starting at $0 plus state fees, making it a cost-effective choice.
In contrast, services like LegalZoom received a 2/5 rating because its features are priced higher.
3. Service Features
Different businesses have unique needs during the formation process. By looking at the service features, you can ensure that the LLC service you choose aligns with your specific requirements.
We looked for services offering essential features like operating agreements and EIN registration, as well as additional services like legal document drafting and compliance alerts.
Based on this, the two top services that stood out were ZenBusiness and IncFile which offer comprehensive basic formation services, legal advice, or additional services like tax consultation and ongoing compliance.
4. Reliability and Reputation
LLC formation can be complex, especially for first-time entrepreneurs. A reputable and reliable LLC service will have knowledgeable staff who can provide valuable guidance on various aspects of forming and running an LLC.
We looked at ratings on platforms like TrustPilot and other user reviews.
ZenBusiness and Northwest Registered Agent had strong 5-star ratings and reputations backed by positive customer reviews, especially for their comprehensive features, fast processing times, and efficient customer service.
5. Turnaround Time
Fast turnaround times can be critical for effective crisis management. It ensures that you have the necessary documents and legal support when you need it most.
We assessed how quickly each service processed LLC-related documents and communicated with state agencies.
Northwest Registered Agent and IncFile received a strong 5/5 recognized for their efficient same-day turnaround times. The staff responded to our calls within minutes.
6. Ease of Use
An intuitive website design is a key aspect of selecting a service provider that aligns with the client's needs and objectives when forming or managing a Michigan LLC.
Services like ZenBusiness offer intuitive online platforms that aid clients in quickly understanding the packages offered, finishing required formation tasks, and getting their LLCs up and running.
7. Local Expertise
Michigan has unique procedural requirements for LLC formation and operation, such as publication requirements, naming rules, and more.
Understanding these state-specific procedures is vital to ensure that clients navigate the process correctly.
Companies like ZenBusiness and Northwest Registered Agent demonstrated a strong understanding of Michigan local laws enabling them to offer accurate advice and guidance related to state-specific legal matters.
Steps to Start an LLC in Michigan
The process of starting an LLC is pretty simple. So, even if you use an LLC formation service, you must understand the six steps to form a Michigan limited liability company.
- Step 1: Register Your Company with the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA)
- Step 2: Name Your Michigan LLC
- Step 3: Find Yourself a Michigan Registered Agent
- Step 4: File Michigan LLC Articles of Organization
- Step 5: Formulate a Michigan LLC Operating Agreement
- Step 6: Fulfill Michigan LLC Employer Obligations
Is Michigan a Good State to Start an LLC?
Yes, Michigan is a good state to start an LLC because of its low formation costs and flexible taxation systems.
Is There a Yearly Fee for LLC in Michigan?
Yes, there is a $25 yearly fee for an LLC in Michigan to file the annual report to keep the entity active.
Do LLCs Pay Taxes in Michigan?
No, LLCs don't pay taxes in Michigan. Instead, LLC owners report taxes on their personal tax returns.
After diving deep into the world of LLC services in Michigan, I've come to a clear conclusion. ZenBusiness stands out as the top choice, and we can vouch for their excellence.
Their range of packages, tailored to fit any budget, made the process of forming our LLC smooth and stress-free.
What really impressed us was their quick filing time and their customer support which was always there when we needed them, even on weekends. The peace of mind that came with their 60-day money-back guarantee was the cherry on top.
In short, ZenBusiness combines affordability, efficiency, and excellent customer care, making them my top recommendation for anyone looking to start an LLC in Michigan.