Inc Authority Logo

Registered agent:

 

Free for one year

Operating agreement:

 

$89 (included in paid plans)

EIN registration:

 

$49 (included in paid plans)

Annual compliance:

 

No

Editorial Rating

Inc Authority Logo

Editorial Rating

Inc Authority Review

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Registered agent:

 

Free for one year

Operating agreement:

 

$89 (included in paid plans)

EIN registration:

 

$49 (included in paid plans)

Annual compliance:

 

No

Advisory service:

 

Yes

Price starts at:

 

Free LLC formation + state fees

Website domain:

 

Depends on the plan

Express Processing:

 

$49

Inc Authority Logo

Editorial Rating

Inc Authority is probably one of the few online legal services companies that offer free LLC formation.

To any aspiring entrepreneur, this sounds like an unsustainable business model or a scam.

So, is there a catch? Is Inc Authority free as advertised?

As can be seen from many Inc Authority reviews online, this seems to be the case. Yet, the company has some premium offers.

In our review, we will discuss which Inc Authority LLC services are free and which cost extra. Also, can the company really provide the startup assistance you need?

Let’s dive in!

Overview

Inc Authority LLC has been around since 1989. It has helped form more than 150,000 businesses and is among the most popular in the industry. Is it worth its salt?

Services

Inc Authority offers a free LLC setup, as well as other paid business formation services. Let’s check them out!

LLC filing

Inc Authority will prepare the documents needed to create an LLC meeting the state-specific requirements and submit them to the authorities. This is a free service, and you will only need to pay the state fees. Of course, you can also get one of the paid packages with extra services included.

Business name availability search

This is another service included in the free package. Inc Authority will check whether your business name is available in your state.

Registered agent service

The first person to hire or appoint, the registered agent is the one who’ll be dealing with all the legal documents on behalf of your company when it comes to its formation.

You can act as your own registered agent and save money. Or opt for the Inc Authority registered agent service. It’s free for one year. After that, you will have to pay in full.

In some Inc Authority reviews, customers complained that they had to pay a fee when they wanted to cancel this service.

Storage of legal documents online

The Inc Authority login gives you access to their client portal and a digital copy of your documents.

S-election form

Inc Authority can prepare and file this document with the IRS. This service is included in the free package.

Tax planning consultation

You get a tax planning consultation for free to discuss tax benefits and the best tax option for your business.

Employer Identification Number (EIN)

You can obtain a federal tax ID number from the IRS on your own for free, but this service costs extra with Inc Authority.

LLC operating agreement

This is one of the aspects where Inc Authority falls short as a free LLC online service. To get access to an Inc Authority LLC operating agreement template, you will have to pay extra.

Meeting minutes

This service is only included in the paid Inc Authority bundles.

Free business checking account

If you start your business with them, you can get an Inc Authority business checking account for free from Bank of America.

Plans & Pricing

Now, let’s discuss the cost of the starter business bundle – Inc Authority offers one free and three paid packages.

The Free Package — $0 + State Fees

Here’s the list of features included in this plan:

  • Filing formation documents with the state
  • Business name check
  • One year of free registered agent
  • Business checking account
  • Business funding analysis & tax planning consultation

Despite being virtually free, the LLC services included in this package have various fees depending on the state-specific requirements. Also, once you sign up for it, IncAuthority will try to upsell you. While this may be annoying, the company needs to make money and that’s its way to operate as a free services provider.

So, here’s the list of add-ons offered:

  • EIN — $49
  • Operating agreement — $89
  • Legal Documents Package with Ownership Certificates, and Seal  — $99
  • Express Processing — $49
  • Website Registration (Domain Registration) + Business Email — $10
  • INC Success Advisor — $27/month or $16.42/month if paid annually

2. Starter Business Bundle — $660 full price ($399 discounted price)

Here’s what you get with this upgrade plan:

  • Verify business name availability
  • Custom state filed articles
  • Complete operating agreement/bylaws
  • Record book & company seal
  • Initial meeting minutes & resolutions
  • Ownership certificates
  • IRS tax ID number (EIN)
  • Business credit & funding evaluation
  • Tax consultation
  • 1 year Inc protection advisor

3. Executive Business Bundle — $789 full price ($499 discounted price)

The Executive Business Bundle offers all the free LLC services and those from the Starter plan plus:

  • Business license report
  • Website domain

3. Tycoon Business Bundle — $1,286 full price ($799 discounted price)

And the most expensive, yet comprehensive plan includes all the services listed above and the following extras:

  • Express processing
  • BizCredit Express
  • Business credit coach
  • Multi-tiered credit building system
  • Business credit LaunchPad
  • D&B credit Bureau registration

As we can see, the Executive bundle has only two extra services, whereas the Tycoon has eight extra services compared to the Starter bundle.

It’s also evident that the Inc Authority pricing model is more costly compared to rival firms that offer online formation services.

And even if you choose the free package, you will still incur Inc Authority fees when the Registered Agent service is renewed.

Support

You can reach Inc Authority’s customer service team via email, live chat, and phone. They are all available Monday to Friday, from 8 am to 5 pm PST.

The main complaint customers discussed regarding the support team is about their insistence to upsell additional services.

Ease of Use

The IncAuthority website features a FAQ, blog, and Trustpilot company reviews.

The content is pretty informative and contains a lot of information on how to form an LLC using their free services.

What is lacking the most is a detailed list of the prices of the services not included in the package. Many services offered by Inc Authority cost extra unless you purchase one of their bundles. Customers would appreciate a little more transparency in this regard.

It would also be great if users could compare prices of any extra features they may want to purchase with Inc Authority competitors. The only way to find out is to use Inc Authority to start a business and then have their employees try to upsell these additional services.

Inc Authority User Reviews

Inc Authority doesn’t have a Better Business Bureau Profile (BBB).

There are numerous positive reviews on Trustpilot and Google, so the company has an excellent rating on both platforms.

What about negative feedback? There is one particular Inc Authority review in which customers complained about the paid services. Or, to be more specific, they had issues with the Inc Authority refund policy. Once they paid, getting their money back was next to impossible, even if they weren’t satisfied with the service.

Another complaint referred to the Inc Authority registered agent service. Most customers had taken advantage of the free package, but they didn’t notice that they would be charged for the service after one year passed.

The IRS tax ID number was also mentioned in the negative reviews of Inc Authority. The customers felt taken advantage of, as they later realized that they could obtain the ID number on their own for free from the IRS.

Overall, however, most of the Inc Authority LLC reviews were positive, and the customers were satisfied with the services they received.

Our Verdict

If all you need is to start an LLC, then Inc Authority is a good option. The company offers the best-rated online LLC formation service you can get for free. It also includes a lot of extra perks in their free package that you can take advantage of.

The downside is the fact that clients may be roped into paying for a service they don’t need. For example, the registered agent. It’s a free service for one year, after which customers have to pay the full fee.

Besides that, Inc Authority is among the best LLC service companies online.

Inc Authority Alternatives

Let’s see how Inc Authority compares to other companies offering business formation services.

Inc Authority vs LegalZoom

LegalZoom is also a legal online technology company, but unlike Inc Authority, it does not offer free services. Nevertheless, they have served more than a million customers.

Its LLC packages start at $79 (minus the state fees). The cheapest plan, the economy package, also includes Articles of Organization.

A registered agent will cost you $159 with the LLC package or $299 for the first year as a standalone service.

Inc Authority vs ZenBusiness

ZenBusiness is deemed by many to be the best LLC website. This is because it offers the cheapest LLC formation packages, starting at $49 per year, excluding state fees.

The company also offers a registered agent service at $99 per year.

If you can shell out a few more bucks a year, we definitely recommend ZenBusiness. The formation packages are a good value for money.

For more details, check out our ZenBusiness review.

Wrap Up

All in all, Inc Authority is a good alternative if you want to register an LLC for free but don’t want to do all the legwork.

While some pricing transparency would be appreciated, Inc Authority reviews suggest that customers are satisfied with their service in general.

Strengths

  • Free LLC filing
  • Tax consultation
  • Business name check
  • Digital storage of documents
  • Free registered agent for one year

Weaknesses

  • Expensive add-on services
  • All sales are final — no refunds
Inc Authority Logo

Editorial Rating

FAQ

What is Inc Authority?

Inc Authority is a company based in Reno, NV. It offers business formation services with both free and paid packages.

How much does Inc Authority charge to be a registered agent?

If you use their free package for forming an LLC, the first year is free. After that, you will be charged $99 per year.

How do I get a free LLC?

The cheapest LLC registration is the one you do on your own. Otherwise, you can use a free online professional service such as Inc Authority. Keep in mind, though, that either way, you will have to pay the state fees. The LLC formation process is never entirely free.