4 Best Registered Agent Services in Illinois to Try in 2024

Jon Morgan
Published by Jon Morgan | Co-Founder & Chief Editor
Last updated: February 29, 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

Based on the insights from the Office of Advocacy, in Illinois's thriving economy, an impressive 99.6 percent of businesses are classified as small businesses. Furthermore, these small businesses employ 2.5 million individuals, underscoring their significant contribution to the state's employment landscape.

If you want to start an LLC in Illinois, you need a registered agent who serves as your company's point of contact for all legal concerns and receives letters from the state.

As seasoned business professionals and legal consultants with experience supporting numerous startups in Illinois, we understand the importance of finding the right registered agent service for your needs.

To provide you with the best options, we collaborated with our legal advisors and conducted hands-on evaluations of various registered agent services in the state.


Top 4 Illinois Registered Agents (May 2024)

1 - Northwest Registered Agent Service (Best Overall)

Rated 4.9/5
Northwest Registered Agent Service logo with a businessman signing paperwork in the background
4.9
Support
4.8
Price
5.0
Privacy and Security
4.9
Compliance Alerts
4.9
User Ratings
4.9
Features
Sign Up To Northwest Registered Agent Service

Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Northwest ensures your address remains private.
  • Customize services to meet your specific needs.
  • Exceptional customer support known for expertise and responsiveness.
  • Exclusive discount offered to Venture Smarter readers.
  • A well-established track record of over 25 years.
  • Strong commitment to data privacy, no customer data sales.
Cons
  • Limited refund process available only via phone.
  • Potential for higher costs with certain add-on services.

Who is it for?

Who is it for?

  • Businesses prioritizing privacy and comprehensive state compliance support.

Who is it not for?

  • Not for those seeking the cheapest option.

The Verdict

Offers excellent privacy and personalized services, making it ideal for businesses that value confidentiality and extensive support. Known for its responsiveness and thorough handling of legal documents.

Would you recommend Northwest Registered Agent Service (Best Overall)?

Northwest Registered Agent is one of the leading LLC service providers in Illinois.

They have assisted thousands of business owners in achieving their objectives by offering business formation services and related solutions.

They provide a variety of LLC options to Illinois entrepreneurs and business owners.

Drawing from our experience, we can say that their seasoned staff demonstrated proficiency in every facet of LLC formation and upkeep, delivering great service.

Their prompt assistance enabled us to set up our business within just a few days.

We strongly endorse Northwest Registered Agent for their expedited turnaround times and remarkable customer support.

They provide assistance through phone, email, or chat, ensuring timely and informative responses.

Service Features:

  • Registered Agent Services ($125): It provides free mail forwarding, expert business advice, and default privacy. The first year of registered agent service is free if you form your LLC with Northwest.
  •  Basic LLC Formation Plan ($39 + $154 State Fee): This package includes articles of incorporation, an operating agreement, and a one-year complimentary registered agent service with standard and accelerated processing rates.
  • Full Service LLC Formation Plan ($225 + $154 State Fee): This bundle includes a registered agent service for a year, same-day filing and your operating agreement, and a client account with free forms and services.

2 - ZenBusiness (Best Essentials)

Rated 4.8/5
Logo of ZenBusiness with a background of a woman writing down notes in front of a laptop
4.8
Support
4.7
Price
4.8
Privacy and Security
4.8
Compliance Alerts
4.8
User Ratings
4.8
Features
Sign Up To ZenBusiness

Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Promotes social responsibility and community involvement.
  • Assists small businesses with services and grants.
  • Speedy and uncomplicated purchase process.
  • Choice of annual report filing service.
Cons
  • Incurs an extra charge for annual report filing.
  • Limited availability of customer support.

Who is it for?

Who is it for?

  • Small to medium-sized businesses needing affordable, all-encompassing service packages.

Who is it not for?

  • Larger corporations requiring highly customized services.

The Verdict

Provides a cost-effective solution with essential features for compliance and ease of use, ideal for new companies looking to streamline their legal processes.

Would you recommend ZenBusiness (Best Essentials)?

ZenBusiness is an LLC formation service that provides all the services you would expect from a registered agent, such as taking service of process on your behalf and assisting you in keeping your LLC in good standing with the Illinois Secretary of State.

ZenBusiness offers an intuitive client dashboard with information on how to launch and manage any kind of business successfully.

Their signup process was fairly easy and took us less than 20 minutes.

The representative we communicated with didn't attempt to upsell LLC services as some other businesses might do but instead offered honest advice on the most suitable package for our needs.

ZenBusiness also supplied additional services beyond basic LLC formation, including a business operating agreement form and an invoicing tool.

Service Features:

  • Registered Agent Service ($199): This registered agent service renews for $199 annually.
  • Starter LLC Formation Package ($0 + $154 State Fee): With this plan, you can reach your documents on the ZenBusiness site, and you will get LLC filing service. They'll help you with the basic paperwork for your company, including checking if your chosen name is available. The filing process usually takes about 2 to 3 weeks, and they promise 100% accuracy. If you want, you can also choose to have worry-free compliance assistance for the first year, without any extra charges.
  • Pro LLC Formation Package ($199 + $154 State Fee): The Pro Package takes what you get in the Starter option and adds some more benefits. It speeds up the filing process to 1 to 2 business days, which is great if you're in a hurry. You'll also get an EIN, which helps to build your business credit, legally identify your company, and even hire people to work for you. Pro Package also includes an Operating Agreement. You can use it to clearly say who does what, how decisions are made, and how everything fits together. It's a helpful tool to keep things organized and smooth.
  • Premium LLC Formation Package ($349 + $154 State Fee): The Premium Package builds on Pro plan and adds a fully customizable business website that comes with a variety of mobile-friendly templates. This online website builder provides you with a secure area and advanced SEO tools to boost your online visibility. Plus, there are scheduling widgets to make your online presence even more robust. And to save you time and streamline your operations, you'll also have access to business document templates that can help you avoid repetitive tasks and speed up your procedures.

3 - Bizee (Most Affordable)

Rated 4.7/5
bizee
4.7
Support
4.6
Price
4.7
Privacy and Security
4.7
Compliance Alerts
4.7
User Ratings
4.7
Features
Sign Up To Bizee

Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Get a free 1-year Registered Agent service.
  • Demonstrated credibility spanning 25 years.
  • Affordable Registered Agent priced at $119.
Cons
  • Document scanning may experience occasional delays.
  • Customer support is limited to weekdays.

Who is it for?

Who is it for?

  • Startups and small businesses looking for low-cost incorporation services with compliance support.

Who is it not for?

  • Established businesses that might need more robust and personalized services.

The Verdict

Known for its budget-friendly pricing and effective service, making it a great choice for new entrepreneurs looking to minimize initial costs while ensuring compliance.

Would you recommend Bizee (Most Affordable)?

Bizee (formerly Incfile) is one of the more well-known Illinois registered agent services, offering the bare essentials for running and managing an LLC.

In our experience, Bizee's registered agent services filed our articles of organization, gave our business a physical address in Illinois, and took mail and service of process on our LLC's behalf.

Their user-friendly online order form enables swift and straightforward incorporation within minutes. Bizee provides dependable registered agent services throughout Illinois, alongside their incorporation offerings.

In addition, if you don't own a company but would like to enjoy free features during the startup process, Bizee offers good free LLC creation services in Illinois.

Service Features:

  • Registered Agent Services ($119): This amount is payable every year. However, if you let Bizee create your LLC, the registered agent is free in the first year.
  • Free Silver LLC Formation Package ($0 + $154 State Fee): In this package, the following features are included: a year of free registered agent service, articles of Organization, and unlimited name searches.
  • Bizee Gold LLC Formation Package ($199 + $154 State Fee): The silver package is included in this plan. In addition to this, the firm will get an EIN business tax number, IRS Form 2553, an operational agreement, banking resolution, an internet access dashboard, and tax counseling.
  • Platinum LLC Formation Package ($299 + $154 State Fee): Platinum has all the features from the previous bundles, and also provides domain registration, free company websites, and business contract templates.

4 - LegalZoom (Best Premium)

Rated 4.6/5
Legalzoom logo with a person doing work in the background in a library
4.6
Support
4.5
Price
4.6
Privacy and Security
4.6
Compliance Alerts
4.6
User Ratings
4.6
Features
Sign Up To LegalZoom

Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Offers expert legal counsel and support.
  • Convenient cloud storage for document management.
  • Diverse collection of free business templates.
Cons
  • Relatively higher LLC service costs.
  • Top-tier registered agent service, but pricey.
  • Continuous efforts to upsell extra services.

Who is it for?

Who is it for?

  • Entrepreneurs needing a broad range of legal services in addition to registration and compliance.

Who is it not for?

  • Those on a tight budget who do not require extensive legal services.

The Verdict

Offers a comprehensive suite of services that go beyond basic registered agent duties, suitable for businesses that anticipate complex legal needs.

Would you recommend LegalZoom (Best Premium)?

LegalZoom can handle all the paperwork for you, including filing your articles of organization and providing you with a physical address in Illinois.

As your main point of contact, LegalZoom's registered agent accepts mail and service of process on behalf of your Illinois LLC during normal business hours.

We found LegalZoom's pre-filled Operating Agreement quite handy and were impressed with the knowledge and professionalism demonstrated by their support teams, who provided useful advice during the entire process.

Their basic package does have a reasonable price, but may not offer as extensive a range of features as some alternative options.

Service Features:

  • Registered Agent Services ($299): If you want to form an LLC with them, the first year costs $249, and the renewal costs $299. They also provide $1 M identity theft protection, important email alerts, and limitless cloud storage.
  • Basic LLC Formation Package ($0 + $154 State Fee): This package includes company articles of organization, a comprehensive digital LLC welcome packet, an intensive name search feature, and a website featured by WIX.
  • Pro LLC Formation Package ($249 + $154 State Fee): It includes the features from the Basic package, the company's operating agreement, an EIN, tax savings and insurance advice from a specialist, and an intensive licensing guide for your location.
  • Premium LLC Formation Package ($299 + $154 State Fee): It contains everything in the Pro package and a half-an-hour countless attorney consultations on legal matters and applied changes to LLC documentation within three months of the first subscription. You'll also enjoy diligent guidance from an Illinois business attorney.

Why Should You Trust Us

Venture Smarter team has extensively evaluated numerous LLC service providers across the state, dedicating significant time and resources to ensure quality. Combining legal expertise with business acumen, we've rigorously tested services, considering reputation, customer feedback, and the specific needs of Illinois entrepreneurs.

Venture Smarter's approach is rooted in firsthand experience and deep legal knowledge, providing reliable, tailored recommendations for Illinois's diverse small business landscape. Having navigated LLC formation complexities, we offer insights beyond the surface level. Venture Smarter prioritizes transparency, integrity, and your business's success.

Beyond formation, we're committed to ongoing support, ensuring compliance and prosperity in Illinois's dynamic business environment. Venture Smarter's detailed, unbiased suggestions reflect our dedication to your business's best interests.

Choose Venture Smarter as more than just an LLC service; select a partner invested in your growth and legal compliance. Our expertise, derived from legal and business backgrounds, guides you through starting and maintaining your business in Illinois.

How We Picked And Tested The Best Registered Agent Services In Illinois?

To identify the top registered agent services in Illinois, we meticulously reviewed and tested four leading providers. Our approach involved engaging with these services anonymously to ensure an unbiased evaluation.

We leveraged our team's expertise and insights from legal professionals familiar with Illinois's business environment.

Our assessment focused on key aspects such as pricing, service features, customer support, turnaround time, third-party reviews, confidentiality, ease of use, and the transition process.

1. Pricing

Different pricing structures may offer flexibility in terms of payment options, contract lengths, or scalability. Knowing the pricing allows you to choose options that align with your business's financial situation.

We found that Bizee offers the most budget-friendly option at $119 annually, making it an excellent choice for cost-conscious businesses. Conversely, LegalZoom, with its $299 annual fee, was rated lower due to its higher price point.

"Choosing the right registered agent in Illinois is like selecting the ideal teammate for a competitive game. You need one who's reliable, readily available, and understands the local 'plays'."

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

2. Customer Support

Registered agents are responsible for receiving and forwarding important legal documents, including service of process, tax notices, and official government correspondence.

Efficient and responsive customer support ensures that these documents are handled promptly and accurately, reducing the risk of missed deadlines or legal complications.

Northwest Registered Agent excelled with its personalized customer service, offering support via phone, email, and chat. Their responsiveness and availability were impressive.

In contrast, some services like LegalZoom lacked in either the speed of response or the availability of multiple communication channels.

3. Service Features

Features like online dashboards, compliance alerts, and additional services like mail forwarding are crucial for efficient business management.

ZenBusiness stood out with its comprehensive service package, including an intuitive client dashboard and additional tools like invoicing. Some services like Bizee, however, offered fewer advanced features, affecting their overall rating.

4. Turnaround Time

Registered agents are responsible for receiving and promptly forwarding legal documents.

A quick turnaround time ensures that these critical documents reach you in time to take necessary actions, such as responding to lawsuits or complying with regulatory deadlines.

Northwest Registered Agent demonstrated exceptional efficiency in document processing and setup times with its same-day document delivery.

5. Third-Party Reviews

Third-party reviews often provide objective insights into the performance and reliability of a registered agent.

Unlike promotional materials or testimonials that the service provider controls, these reviews are typically independent and can offer a more balanced view of the service's strengths and weaknesses.

ZenBusiness garnered positive feedback across various platforms, indicating high customer satisfaction. Others like LegalZoom had mixed reviews, reflecting inconsistencies in service quality.

6. Confidentiality

Registered agents receive and handle sensitive legal documents on behalf of your business, including service of process, legal notices, and government correspondence. These documents can contain confidential information about legal matters, financial status, or business strategies.

Ensuring that your registered agent maintains strict confidentiality is vital to protect this sensitive information.

Northwest Registered Agent's commitment to not selling client data and maintaining privacy was a significant factor in their favor.

7. Ease of Use

A user-friendly platform provided by a registered agent allows for efficient management of legal documents. This includes easy access, filing, and retrieval of important documents like service of process notices, annual reports, and legal correspondence.

A platform that is difficult to navigate can lead to delays or mismanagement of these critical documents.

Bizee's user-friendly dashboard made it a top choice for ease of use, while some competitors like LegalZoom had more complex interfaces.

8. Transition Process

Ensuring there is no gap in service during the transition is vital.

If there's a period when you don't have a registered agent, or if documents are sent to the old agent after the switch, it could lead to missed legal notices or important government correspondence. This continuity is essential for maintaining legal compliance.

Services like ZenBusiness that ensured seamless transitions without coverage gaps were rated higher.

Check our article on how long it takes to form an LLC in Illinois.

How Much Do Registered Agent Service Providers Cost in Illinois?

Hiring a registered agent in Illinois costs anywhere between $119 and $299.

In case you don't want to pay this fee, you can act as your registered agent for free, provided you have a physical street address in Illinois and are of legal age.

If, for whatever reason, you need to change your current registered agent, please check our guide on how to change your registered agent.

Requirements for an Illinois Registered Agent

Two people pointing their finger to a tablet

The requirements for an Illinois registered agent include the following:

  • Must have an Illinois office address.
  • Must be 18 years of age or older.
  • Required to be available throughout regular work hours (9 AM to 5 PM).
  • It is necessary to guarantee that documents are delivered and processed promptly.

Related Articles:

FAQs

Why Do I Require a Statutory Agent in Illinois?

You require a statutory agent in Illinois because all LLCs, corporations, and nonprofit organizations are necessitated by state law to elect and maintain a registered agent and office to form an LLC in Illinois.

How Much Does it Cost to Change My Registered Agent?

It costs $0 to $50 to change your Iregistered agent, depending on the number of states your LLC is registered in.

Can I Use My Residential Address as My Registered Address in Illinois?

Yes, you can use your residential address as your registered address in Illinois when you form the company; however, you may later change it and add an official business address.

Our Verdict on the Best Registered Agent Service in Illinois

While compiling and searching for the best Illinois registered agent services, we have realized that Northwest Registered Agent is your best pick.

Their commitment to privacy, exceptional customer service, and comprehensive service offerings truly set them apart. We found their approach to handling legal documents and providing timely support invaluable.

Their expertise in managing all aspects of LLC formation and maintenance, coupled with their dedication to not selling client data, gave us a sense of security and trust.

While they may not be the cheapest option out there, the value they offer is undeniable. For anyone in Illinois looking to start an LLC or change their registered agent, we wholeheartedly recommend Northwest Registered Agent.

Our #1 Recommendation

Northwest Registered Agent Service (Best Overall)

Northwest Registered Agent Service logo with a businessman signing paperwork in the background
Rated 4.9/5
4.9
Support
4.8
Price
5.0
Privacy and Security
4.9
Compliance Alerts
4.9
User Ratings
4.9
Features
Pros
  • Northwest ensures your address remains private.
  • Customize services to meet your specific needs.
  • Exceptional customer support known for expertise and responsiveness.
  • Exclusive discount offered to Venture Smarter readers.
  • A well-established track record of over 25 years.
  • Strong commitment to data privacy, no customer data sales.
  • Get the BEST PRICE until the end of May
Cons
  • Limited refund process available only via phone.
  • Potential for higher costs with certain add-on services.

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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