5 Best LLC Services in North Carolina (2024 Expert Picks)

Jon Morgan
Published by Jon Morgan | Co-Founder & Chief Editor
Last updated: June 20, 2024
FACT CHECKED by Lou Viveros, Growth & Transition Advisor
Methodology
We diligently evaluate each service provider showcased in our reviews and guides. By interacting anonymously with their business formation and services, and leveraging the insights of an independent review team, we strive to offer unbiased, evidence-based suggestions. Learn more

According to the North Carolina Secretary of State, The online LLC formation service market, encompassing North Carolina services, is expected to grow annually by 7% over the next five years.

Starting a limited liability company (LLC) can be difficult, especially if you're unfamiliar with the procedures in North Carolina.

To provide you with the most reliable and comprehensive guidance, I partnered with legal experts and attorneys to evaluate 12 different LLC services meticulously.

Our focus was not just on the basic features but also on the nuances of cost efficiency and exceptional customer service.

Company LLC Packages LLC Fees Registered Agent Price Same & Next Day Filing Money-Back Guarantee Free Package Features BBB Accredited Advisory Services
ZenBusiness
(Best Overall)
3 From 0$ $199 Pro & Premium Package 60 days LLC Filing & 100% Accuracy Guarantee Yes Accounting Consultation
Northwest
(Best Premium)
1 $39 (using our link) First year free with LLC purchase / $125 from 2nd year No 90 days None No, A rating No
Bizee
(Most Affordable)
3 From $0 First year free with LLC purchase / $119 from 2nd year Platinum Package Order refundable before state payment (usually 24h), minus $30 fee. LLC Filing, FREE Registered Agent (1 year), EIN, Operating Agreement, Business Tax Consultation & more No Tax: Free 1-hour
Consultation
LegalZoom
(Best Essentials)
3 From $0 $299 No 60 days LLC Filing, Digital welcome packet, Customizable website Yes, A+ rating Attorney Consultations (Premium Plan)
Swyft Filings 3 From $0 $199 Premium Package 60 days LLC Filing & Lifetime customer support No No


5 Best LLC Services in North Carolina (July 2024)

1 - ZenBusiness (Best Overall)

Rated 4.88/5
ZenBusiness logo with a background of a business man using a laptop
4.9
Support
4.8
Price
4.8
Turnaround
4.9
Ease of Use
5.0
User Ratings
4.9
Features
Sign Up To ZenBusiness

Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Attractively priced from $0, plus state fees.
  • User acclaim for its user-friendliness and customer assistance.
  • Broad service spectrum, including LLC setup and compliance management.
  • Quick turnaround times for processing and filings.
  • Focused on social responsibility and community involvement.
  • Packages offer excellent value at competitive prices.
Cons
  • Restricted customer support hours.
  • Non-profit formation services are not provided.

Who is it for?

Who is it for?

  • For: Entrepreneurs needing affordable, comprehensive LLC services with great customer support.
    Not for: Those seeking face-to-face business formation services.

Who is it not for?

  • ZenBusiness is praised for its ease of use and comprehensive services, making it an excellent choice for small business owners who value simplicity and affordability. They offer strong customer support but may not be ideal for those looking for personalized in-person consultations.
Would you recommend ZenBusiness (Best Overall)?

ZenBusiness is not just our editor's choice but a clear leader in LLC formation services in North Carolina, setting the standard for excellence in this field.

Their low-cost options and fantastic customer relations make them the best overall choice for anyone looking to form an LLC in the state.

ZenBusiness distinguishes itself with its cost-effective approach to LLC formation. Their intuitive system simplifies the initial filing process to about 10-12 minutes, making it easy and affordable for anyone to start their LLC in North Carolina.

Our personal experience with ZenBusiness was positive. From the beginning to the end, they made registering our LLC in North Carolina seamless.

Their clear package choices, including essential features like an EIN, ensured a smooth experience. Our LLC was approved within four days, and we received a comprehensive New Business Kit.

The well-organized dashboard provided by ZenBusiness offers a clear post-filing timeline, which is incredibly helpful for new business owners.

Additionally, they offer many resources for business management, making the post-formation journey as smooth as the setup.

Based on our experience and the outstanding service we received, we highly recommend ZenBusiness to anyone in North Carolina looking for reliable, efficient, and affordable LLC services.

LLC Formation Packages:

  • Starter Package ($0 + $128): This North Carolina LLC services package offers expense and deduction tracking, standard filing speed (two to three weeks), and a 100% accuracy guarantee. You'll also enjoy worry-free compliance for the first year (optional, with renewal at $199/year), banking and bank account services, website builder, and Money Pro Bookkeeping service.
  • Pro Package ($199 + $128): With this package, you will get everything from the Starter package plus the fastest rush-filling speed (1-2 working days), an EIN, and a guide operation agreement (at $99).
  • Premium Package ($349 + $128): You'll have all Pro package features, domain name, email address, and business document templates.
  • North Carolina Registered Agent Service ($199): ZenBusiness offers North Carolina registered agent service as an add-on at $199, which is charged after the business is formed and can be renewed annually at the same price.

2 - Northwest Registered Agent (Best Premium)

Rated 4.75/5
Two men shaking hands as a sign of agreement
4.8
Support
4.7
Price
4.7
Turnaround
4.8
Ease of Use
4.8
User Ratings
4.7
Features
Sign Up To Northwest Registered Agent

Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Ensures your address stays undisclosed, a Northwest advantage.
  • Flexibility in selecting services as per your needs.
  • Customer support highly regarded for its responsiveness and expertise.
  • Special discount for Venture Smarter followers.
  • Established for over a quarter-century, indicating a stable history.
Cons
  • Basic services are priced reasonably, but extras can be costly.
  • Mandatory to use their registered agent service for LLC formation.

Who is it for?

Who is it for?

  • For: Businesses prioritizing privacy and personalized support during LLC formation.
    Not for: Budget-conscious startups looking for the lowest possible cost.

Who is it not for?

  • Northwest is known for exceptional support and privacy protection, making it ideal for businesses concerned with data security. However, its services come at a premium price compared to some competitors.
Would you recommend Northwest Registered Agent (Best Premium)?

Northwest Registered Agent sets the standard for premium LLC formation services in North Carolina.

Known for its exceptional customer service and a user-friendly, interactive website, Northwest makes the process of registering a limited liability company both straightforward and efficient.

Working with Northwest Registered Agent was a seamless and positive experience. Their website's user-friendly design made navigating the complexities of LLC registration simple and intuitive.

The initial filing process was impressively quick, taking just 9 minutes, and our filing was ready in a mere 72 hours.

The ease of use of their online platform significantly streamlined the LLC formation process for us.

Their commitment to efficiency was evident in the rapid turnaround time for our filing, ensuring that our business was up and running without any unnecessary delays.

Northwest Registered Agent ensures that your LLC formation or incorporation is completed efficiently and effectively. Their attention to detail and focus on customer satisfaction make them a standout choice for businesses seeking a premium service.

LLC Formation Packages:

  • Basic Package ($39 + $128 State Fee): This Basic Plan may be used to form nonprofits, corporations, and LLCs. Additionally, a year of free registered agent service and an operating agreement is included.
  • Full Service LLC Formation Package ($225 + $128 State Fee): This package comes with mail forwarding, same-business-day filing, a client account with free forms and tools, and an operating agreement.
  • Northwest Registered Agent Services ($125): If you choose Northwest to create your LLC, the first year's registered agent service fee is free. It includes free mail forwarding, privacy, and corporate guides.

3 - Bizee (Most Affordable)

Rated 4.65/5
bizee
4.7
Support
4.6
Price
4.6
Turnaround
4.7
Ease of Use
4.7
User Ratings
4.6
Features
Sign Up To Bizee

Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Competitive pricing, starting at $0.
  • Reliable and established for 25+ years.
  • User-friendly dashboard and website.
  • Free Registered Agent service.
  • Quick turnaround within one working day.
Cons
  • Expensive add-ons can increase costs.
  • Limited customer support on weekends.

Who is it for?

Who is it for?

  • For: Startups and entrepreneurs looking for cost-effective, straightforward LLC registration.
    Not for: Businesses needing extensive legal services and support beyond basic LLC formation.

Who is it not for?

  • IncFile offers an easy and affordable path to LLC formation, suitable for those on a tight budget. It lacks the breadth of additional legal services provided by more comprehensive platforms.
Would you recommend Bizee (Most Affordable)?

Bizee (formerly Incfile) has established itself as the most affordable and efficient service for online business creation, particularly for those looking to form an LLC in North Carolina.

Their competitive pricing and range of essential services make them a top choice for entrepreneurs on a budget.

Bizee's standout feature is its ability to offer high-quality services at some of the most competitive rates in the industry.

Their packages are designed to cater to various business needs without compromising on the essentials required for a successful LLC formation.

Our experience with Bizee strongly reflected their dedication to providing affordable, high-quality service. We were particularly impressed with the full year of free registered agent service included in their package, which significantly streamlined our LLC formation process.

Despite their lower rates, the quality of customer service was exceptional, providing us with a sense of security and confidence throughout the process.

For those seeking an affordable yet reliable LLC formation service in North Carolina, Bizee is the go-to provider.

LLC Formation Packages:

  • Silver Package ($0 + $128 State Fee): Silver Package files the articles of organization in your name, and offers you a free registered agent service for a year, name searches, and support.
  • Gold Package ($199 + $128 State Fee): In addition to Silver Package, Gold Package will provide you an EIN Business Tax Number and an IRS Form 2553, along with an online access dashboard, business banking account & business tax consultation, banking resolution, operating agreement, lifetime and company alerts.
  • Platinum Package ($299 + $128 State Fee): This plan includes the Gold Package plus business contract templates, a domain name, and free next-day filing.
  • Registered Agent Services ($119): You don't have to pay within the first year if you form your LLC with Bizee. After the first year, you will have to pay $119 per year for the registered agent service.

4 - LegalZoom (Best Essentials)

Rated 4.53/5
Legalzoom logo with a person doing work in the background in a library
4.6
Support
4.5
Price
4.5
Turnaround
4.6
Ease of Use
4.5
User Ratings
4.5
Features
Sign Up To LegalZoom

Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Free access to a variety of business templates.
  • Comprehensive legal offerings for both individuals and companies.
  • Website easy to navigate with clear instructions.
  • High-quality customer assistance and support.
Cons
  • LLC services priced above other providers.
  • Persistent promotion of extra offerings.

Who is it for?

Who is it for?

  • For: Small business owners looking for a range of legal services beyond just LLC formation.
    Not for: Those who need the cheapest service without extra legal help.

Who is it not for?

  • LegalZoom provides a wide array of legal services which makes it a good fit for businesses that might grow into those needs. It is less cost-effective for those who just need basic LLC formation without the additional legal services.
Would you recommend LegalZoom (Best Essentials)?

LegalZoom emerges as the best North Carolina registered agent seeking essential services for LLC formation.

Known for its competitive pricing and a wide range of additional services, LegalZoom simplifies the legal complexities of starting and running a business.

LegalZoom offers a diverse array of judicial products and solutions, catering to the unique needs of company executives and owners. Their services are designed to help you navigate the legal challenges of establishing and operating a firm with ease and confidence.

Our interaction with LegalZoom was a testament to their expertise in the field. Their experienced staff guided us through every step of the LLC formation process.

The welcoming and supportive approach of their team made it easy for us to seek further assistance whenever needed. This level of customer care and support sets LegalZoom apart as the best provider of essential LLC services.

For those in North Carolina looking to form an LLC, LegalZoom offers the best essential services. Their combination of competitive pricing, comprehensive solutions, and experienced staff makes them a standout choice.

LLC Formation Packages:

  • Basic Package ($0 + $128 State Fee): The features include articles of organization, name search services, and a customizable business website from Wix. You'll also get a complete digital welcome packet.
  • Pro Package ($249 + $128 State Fee): Includes everything in the Basic package. It also adds an EIN to facilitate bank account creation and tax filing, an operating agreement for dispute settlement and organization guidelines, and an in-depth license business guide. You also have the benefit of tax and insurance consultations.
  • Premium Package ($299 + $128 State Fee): Comes with all Pro package features plus countless 30-minute consultations from a professional attorney regarding emerging legal topics, applied changes to your formation documents within 90 days of the first subscription, and engaging personalized guidance for a North Carolina attorney.
  • Registered Agent Services ($299): This is a yearly subscription, but if you decide to let LegalZoom take care of your LLC formation in the first year, you will pay $50 less for the registered agent.

5 - Swyft Filings

Rated 4.43/5
Swyft Filings logo with an office worker in the background
4.5
Support
4.4
Price
4.4
Turnaround
4.5
Ease of Use
4.4
User Ratings
4.4
Features
Sign Up To Swyft Filings

Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Affordable options for LLC formation.
  • Simplified website interface.
  • Positive customer service reviews.
  • Quick and efficient document filing.
Cons
  • Additional charges for certain features.
  • Registered Agent cost escalates beyond year one.

Who is it for?

Who is it for?

  • For: Business owners looking for fast and straightforward LLC services.
    Not for: Those who might need more robust and personalized legal consultation.

Who is it not for?

  • Swyft Filings provides speedy service and is ideal for entrepreneurs who want to start their businesses without delay. It’s less suited for those who need in-depth legal guidance or custom solutions.
Would you recommend Swyft Filings?

Swyft Filings is an affordable North Carolina business entity formation service with some of the quickest response times on the market!

The company remains one of the finest options for some simple LLC forms or incorporations due to its efficient price plan and fast delivery periods, so we had to test it first.

Swyft Filings is an expert in the industry and is informed about rules and laws that apply to LLCs in North Carolina, which was helpful.

During the process, customer support offered us the right direction. All in all, this assistance made the entire procedure easy and stress-free.

LLC Formation Packages:

  • Basic Package ($0 + $128 State Fee): Basic Package is ideal if you want LLC incorporation plus document filing.
  • Standard Package ($199 + $128 State Fee): Includes everything from the previous package and Federal Tax ID (EIN), and the most important documents you need to start your business.
  • Premium Package ($299 + $128 State Fee): Premium Package includes all the basic services, plus free domain and business website hosting and customized digital corporate kit.
  • Registered Agent Service ($99 per three months ): This will be an ongoing quarterly subscription for the registered agent services.

Why Should You Trust Us

Trust Venture Smarter for your North Carolina LLC formation needs because our team, led by seasoned professionals, has conducted extensive research and analysis on the leading LLC service providers in the state. The Venture Smarter team, consisting of legal experts and business formation specialists, has meticulously evaluated each service provider to ensure our recommendations meet the highest standards of reliability and trustworthiness.

Our commitment to your business's success is reflected in our rigorous evaluation process. The Venture Smarter team interacts anonymously with each service provider, leveraging the insights of our independent review team to offer unbiased, evidence-based suggestions. This thorough approach ensures that our recommendations are not only reliable but also tailored to meet the unique needs of North Carolina businesses.

The Venture Smarter team is dedicated to your business's growth and legal compliance in North Carolina. We evaluate each service's features, customer support, affordability, and efficiency, ensuring they meet the high standards necessary for your business's success in the state. Our selections are not just based on generic criteria; they are informed by the specific legal requirements and business environment of North Carolina.

Our dual commitment to transparency and quality means that when you follow a Venture Smarter recommendation, you're choosing a partner dedicated to your success. Our reviews are a testament to our mission: to guide you towards making informed decisions that propel your business forward.

How We Picked And Tested The Best LLC Services In North Carolina

A businessman presenting in front of his colleagues

In our quest to determine the top LLC services in North Carolina, we undertook an extensive evaluation. This included the formation of 12 LLCs to assess the capabilities of each service provider.

Additionally, we sought insights from attorneys and legal professionals to gain a deep comprehension of the unique requirements in North Carolina. Our analysis covered various aspects such as cost, range of services, dependability, user-friendliness, state-specific knowledge, processing speed, and the quality of customer service.

1. Pricing

Affordable pricing is crucial as it allows businesses to allocate more resources to other essential areas like product development, marketing, and operations.

Additionally, transparent pricing structures are important to avoid hidden fees that can unexpectedly increase the overall cost.

In our pricing analysis, we compared the costs of various packages offered by each LLC service. Considering the initial fees and ongoing costs, we looked for options that provided value for money.

For instance, we found that Bizee was the most affordable, offering initial filing services at no cost.

We also noted the availability of premium packages for those seeking more comprehensive services.

Northwest Registered Agent, while slightly pricier with its Basic Package at $39 plus the state fee, compensates with the added value of a free year of registered agent service through our link.

2. Services Offered

The range of services offered by an LLC formation company is crucial because it determines the value you get for your money.

We evaluated the range of services offered by each provider, both included and additional. Our focus was on essential services like EIN registration, operating agreements, and registered agent services.

We also considered the availability of additional services, such as business document templates and website hosting, which can be crucial for a growing business.

ZenBusiness offered comprehensive services, including EIN, while Bizee provided a free registered agent service for the first year. LegalZoom, despite higher costs, offered a range of legal services.

"Choose an LLC service that offers clear pricing models, regular updates on your business filings and compliance status, and responsive customer support. This level of transparency fosters trust and ensures you stay informed about your legal obligations."

- Delina Yasmeh, J.D./Tax LL.M, Distinguished Expert in Mergers & Acquisitions

3. Local Expertise

Local expertise is paramount when selecting an LLC service, especially when establishing a business in North Carolina. Understanding the state's specific laws, regulations, and requirements is crucial for the accurate formation and management of an LLC.

We favored services that demonstrated a strong grasp of local regulations and procedures. ZenBusiness and Northwest Registered Agent demonstrated strong local expertise, making them reliable choices for North Carolina businesses.

According to the North Carolina Secretary of State, 41% of North Carolina businesses seek additional services beyond the core LLC formation process. This indicates a growing demand for services that provide ongoing support and ensure long-term compliance.

4. Turnaround Time

Prompt turnaround time is essential for businesses aiming to accelerate their processes. It dictates the speed at which the LLC formation service can gather and transmit legal documents between your business and the Secretary of State (SOS).

We assessed how quickly each service processed LLC formations. Northwest Registered Agent excelled with a filing ready in just 72 hours. ZenBusiness offered expedited filing in 1-2 working days, while other services had competitive processing times.

5. Ease of Use

The user-friendliness of an LLC service is a pivotal consideration as it directly influences the overall user experience. Since forming an LLC can be unfamiliar terrain for many entrepreneurs and business proprietors, an intuitive online platform simplifies and streamlines the process.

We looked for services with user-friendly and intuitive platforms. ZenBusiness was praised for its intuitive platform, guiding users through filing in about 10-12 minutes. It offered a well-organized dashboard and abundant resources for business management.

6. Reliability and Reputation

Reliability and reputation are fundamental in entrusting your business formation and management to a service provider. Ratings and customer feedback are valuable indicators of trustworthiness.

To assess reliability and reputation, we examined customer feedback and the track record of each service. ZenBusiness and Northwest Registered Agent stood out for their exceptional reputation, boasting positive client feedback. Bizee also demonstrated reliability with its same-day filing and free registered agent service.

7. Customer Support

Effective customer support, accessible through various channels and prompt responses, is vital for addressing queries and ensuring a smooth LLC formation process.

ZenBusiness earned accolades for its outstanding customer relations and 24/7 availability. Bizee and Northwest Registered Agent also provided efficient support, while we noted LegalZoom for potential upselling despite experienced staff.

Steps to Start an LLC in North Carolina

The filing process of forming an LLC in North Carolina involves submitting paperwork to the North Carolina Secretary of State's office and paying a filing fee.

Here are the simple steps to start an LLC in North Carolina:

  • Step 1: Pick a unique name for the North Carolina LLC
  • Step 2: Acquire a registered agent
  • Step 3: File Articles of Organization
  • Step 4: Get an operating agreement set up for your North Carolina LLC
  • Step 5: Obtain an EIN and meet all tax and regulatory obligations
  • Step 6: Annual reports must be filed with the North Carolina Secretary of State

FAQs

Is North Carolina a Good State to Form an LLC?

Yes, North Carolina is a good state to form an LLC because the processing period is relatively short and straightforward.

How Fast Can I Get an LLC in NC?

You can get an LLC in NC in between 7-10 days if you register digitally.

Do North Carolina LLCs Have to Pay Taxes?

Yes, North Carolina LLCs have to pay taxes. The corporation tax in North Carolina is a fixed 2.5% of income taxes. Furthermore, North Carolina imposes a company franchise tax. This taxation could also apply to your LLC. All taxes must be paid to the Department of Revenue (DOR).

Our Verdict On The Best LLC Formation Services in North Carolina

If you're looking for an LLC filing service that suits your company, consider a firm with an impressive record of working with other businesses in your field that offers competitive rates.

ZenBusiness topped our list as an excellent choice for fresh entrepreneurs looking for help and comfort as they start their businesses.

Registering our LLC with ZenBusiness was an amazing experience. Their user-friendly platform made the entire process a breeze. Submitting our paperwork was simple and secure, and we got our documents quickly.

We recommend ZenBusiness to anyone looking for an efficient and cost-effective way to set up their LLC in North Carolina.

About The Author

Co-Founder & Chief Editor
Jon Morgan, MBA, LLM, has over ten years of experience growing startups and currently serves as CEO and Editor-in-Chief of Venture Smarter. Educated at UC Davis and Harvard, he offers deeply informed guidance. Beyond work, he enjoys spending time with family, his poodle Sophie, and learning Spanish.
Learn more about our editorial policy
Growth & Transition Advisor
LJ Viveros has 40 years of experience in founding and scaling businesses, including a significant sale to Logitech. He has led Market Solutions LLC since 1999, focusing on strategic transitions for global brands. A graduate of Saint Mary’s College in Communications, LJ is also a distinguished Matsushita Executive alumnus.
Learn more about our editorial policy

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