Northwest Registered Agent is a popular choice among startups that want to form an LLC, but it’s important to do your due diligence before making the selection. Here’s what you should know about Northwest Registered Agent, how it stacks up against competitors, and whether or not it’s the right LLC formation partner for you.

Advantages | Disadvantages | Alternative Services | FAQs 

Advantages of Northwest Registered Agent

  • Annual registered agent service is included for the first year. You won’t have to pay a separate fee for filing your LLC and then again to retain your registered agent for the year.
  • Client privacy is heavily protected. Few registered agents take the security of clients as seriously as Northwest Registered Agent. Your business information will never be given or sold to third parties for advertising, solicitation, etc. This is not the case for alternative service providers.
  • Customer service is readily available. Not many registered agents still offer live customer support that is easy to reach. You won’t have to submit a help desk ticket and wait days for a response; Northwest Registered Agent has a team of customer service agents standing by to take your call.

Disadvantages of Northwest Registered Agent

  • Their refund policy is convoluted. You can cancel your service with Northwest Registered Agent anytime fairly easily, but getting a refund for services you didn’t use is much more challenging.
  • It’s expensive for new startups. If you’re on a tight budget getting your business off the ground, there are much cheaper registered agent services you can use for less than the $225 charged by Northwest.

How Much Does It Cost to File an LLC With Fees?

When you’re starting a business, it’s critical to pay close attention to every expense. However, it’s also easy to get confused when there are a lot of options. Northwest Registered Agent offers a single comprehensive service option at $225 with a handful of valuable add-ons.

What’s Already Included

  • Confirmation your business name is available. Northwest Registered Agent will search all business records in your state to ensure that your selected LLC name is not already in use.
  • Operation agreement. An operation agreement documents the organization of your LLC structure and outlines how your LLC will be operated. It’s not necessary to file for an LLC, but it is recommended for new businesses.
  • Preparing and submitting your articles of organization. Northwest Registered Agent will prep and file all necessary paperwork for your LLC, reducing hassle and potential mistakes.
  • Expedited filing. Expedited filing is offered, so you can get your LLC up and running as quickly as possible.
  • One year of registered agent service. All U.S. Limited Liability Companies must designate and keep a registered agent. A registered agent handles legal documents related to your LLC and forwards them to you. For the first year of your service with Northwest Registered Agent, your agent is included at no cost. The annual renewal of a registered agent is $125, unless you choose to switch agents.

Optional Add-Ons

  • Federal Tax ID Number (EIN) — A Federal Tax ID, or EIN, is important for businesses that want to be able to hire employees, file company taxes, and purchase wholesale supplies. Northwest Registered Agent can help you secure an EIN for $50.
  • Second telephone line — Northwest Registered Agent offers additional telephone lines at $9 each that can be forwarded to your primary line.
  • Annual compliance filing — Leave the annual renewal paperwork to Northwest Registered Agent for $100 per year, non-inclusive of state fees.
  • S Corporation — If your LLC prefers to be taxed as an S Corporation, Northwest Registered Agent can file the paperwork for you for $50.

Our Rating on Price: (6/10)

While there are certainly much less expensive options out there, the simplicity of having one service offering with several included features and a few custom add-ons is hard to beat.

Customer Support & Refund Policy

Ideally, the LLC service you select will have a good refund policy that you can use if needed with little to no penalty and robust customer support that is easy to get in touch with. Here’s a summary of Northwest’s refund and customer support initiatives.

Northwest Registered Agent Customer Support

Northwest Registered Agent is known for some of the best customer support and service in the industry. Instead of sending emails to a general help desk inbox, Northwest has a dedicated customer service line with live agents available to answer your questions.

Refund Policy

Unfortunately, Northwest Registered Agent’s refund policy is complex and difficult to understand. You may not be able to obtain a full refund for services you paid for but did not receive, or you may simply be out the cost to have discovered that Northwest isn’t the ideal LLC formation partner for your business.

Our Rating — Customer Service & Refunds: (8/10)

We think Northwest Registered Agent has top-tier customer support that many other registered agents lack, however, the complicated and inconsistent refund policy makes it difficult to recoup any costs if you decide Northwest Registered Agent isn’t right for you.

Customer Reviews and Reputation

Online reviews are an important part of assessing a business’s reputation. Be sure to check the most common places reviews are found for both positive and negative reviews. Too many negative reviews is a red flag, but so is too many positive reviews.

Look for a relatively even balance, ideally skewed toward the positive, with any bad reviews being minor complaints that were quickly resolved by the business. All businesses have the potential to make a mistake, however, you want to be sure that any LLC service you’re considering hiring owns up to any mistakes they’ve made and is in the habit of taking the extra initiative to ameliorate issues with customers.

Google

I am so glad to be in business with them. They even have a service now that covers the upfront filing cost and just breaks down the total amount over months. And every person I’ve talked to or emailed with at Northwest was prompt, thorough, patient, and just genuinely pleasing to talk to. I even asked about one of the very few negative reviews they received and that representative knew exactly which one I was referring to and gave more insight into what happened. I’ve only been with them starting 2021, but this relationship looks promising!” — Genesis Omega Dynamics

Related Reading: My Impartial Swyft Filings LLC Service Review

“Amazing customer service. Several hours after I put in an expedited order, I found out that the corporation I was forming wasn’t going to work for the production company I was dealing with. I called Northwest, and they were so understanding and put the order on hold while I sorted out what I needed. They let me know the order hadn’t been processed yet so I could get a full refund if I needed. So honest and thoughtful. They have earned my business and loyalty for life now. I also love the lighthearted, humorous tone on their site—makes something laborious a lot more fun. Nice work, Northwest Registered Agent!” — Jill Johnson Mann

BBB

“I had a great experience with customer support at Northwest Registered Agent. After completing and paying for an LLC registration, I realized I needed to change the specifications of the LLC. Customer Support handled my request promptly by canceling my original registration, refunding my payment, and allowing me to create a new registration.” — Robert T.

“I contacted several registered agents while doing research on LLC formation. Northwest’s client support was the fastest and thoroughest in responding to all my emails and I felt that they were willing to answer all my questions before onboarding me, whereas a lot of other services promised to do it only after signup, which raised a lot of red flags. Very happy to have chosen to go with Northwest Registered Agent.” — Laurent W.

Reddit

“I use Northwest Registered Agent as well. No issues, live person answers all the time, no phone menu. They are a good way to get your LLC filed and off the ground while you figure out how to run a business. I’m about to renew with them as I still haven’t bothered to figure out how to do the paperwork. They also send a few reminders that your reports are due so you don’t forget, and help with that as well. Great value for the small fee.” — Reddit user

“I chose Northwest Registered Agent to form and serve as the registered agent for my company since they offered a year of service included and new entity filing fee was only $39 on top of state fees through a promo link. Next year it’ll be ~$125 probably. Paying anything more than that is probably not worth it for basic services.” — Reddit user

Our Rating: 10 out of 10

Northwest Registered Agent has a relatively good reputation among small business owners, especially those who are starting their first LLC. Apart from the minor glitch here or there, the majority of entrepreneurs that have used Northwest Registered Agent have had success in doing so.

Ease of Use and Customer Experience

Here’s what the process is like to form an LLC with Northwest Registered Agent. Based on my experience, this is one of the simplest checkout processes among LLC service companies.

The pricing is clear and there aren’t endless upsells like many of the alternatives. The company is also up-front about pricing and don’t force you to complete a form with dozens of questions before finally showing the price. I appreciate this approach.

The first step is to select the state you plan to file an LLC with the drop down navigation.

select state

Select the state.

After selecting your state, you’re given three different options to form an LLC. The first is a do-it-yourself option for $0 (you’ll still need to pay the filing fees per state). The second is a $35 per month option and includes an EIN, business address, and mail forwarding. There’s also a one-time pay in full for $225 (+ state filing fees) option that depends that includes EIN number, mail forwarding, and a registered agent.

llc formation options

LLC formation options with Northwest Registered Agent.

Next, you’ll be brought to a page with pricing and seven tabs of you’ll need to complete. Most of the questions are extremely straight forward like contact details, business address, and company management structure.

form a new company

Form a new company.

Here are the fields you’ll need to complete on this page.

  • Order
    • What type of business would you like to start?
      • LLC
      • Corporation
      • Nonprofit corporation
  • Where would you like to file?
    • Pick state
  • Filing time
    • 8 day filing time
    • 1 day filing time
  • How do you want to be billed?
    • Pay up front
    • Pay monthly
  • Company
    • Enter company name
    • Business purpose
      • Document the purpose / goals of your business or you can use a generic business purpose.
    • Physical Address You Want on Record with the State
      • Our registered agent address. You are using the service to serve as your registered agent to serve as a legal contact for the business. 
      • Your mailing address.
      • Other address.
    • Mailing Address on Record with the State
      • Our registered agent address. You are using the service to serve as your registered agent to serve as a legal contact for the business. 
      • Your mailing address.
      • Other address.
    • Management 
      • Member managed
      • Manager managed
      • How many members (owners) be in this company?
      • Address to record with the state
        • Registered agent address
        • Your mailing address
        • Specify other address
  • Account – Create an account. 
    • Email address
    • Password
  • Contact Details
    • First name
    • Last name
    • Mailing address
    • Zip code
    • City
    • State
    • Country
    • Phone
    • You can also choose to send a copy of legal notices to your attorney.
  • Optional items – These are additional items you can sign up for with an additional fee, but are not required to file for an LLC.
    • Have Northwest File Your Compliance Filing Each Year
      • $0.00
    • Federal Tax ID Number (FEIN)
      • Have a social security number: $50.00
      • Do NOT have a social security number: $200.00
    • S Corporation Election with IRS: $50.00
    • Premium Mail Forwarding: $40.00
    • Virtual office: $49.00
    • Certificate of Good Standing: $61.00
    • Certified Copy: $61.00
    • Apostille: $400.00
    • Second Telephone Number: $9.00
    • FMCSA BOC-3 Filing: $125.00
    • FCC 499-A Registration: $125.00
  • Payment: Enter your credit card / debit information and click the blue done button to complete the order.

Rating – Ease of Use / Customer Experience: 9 out of 10

I realize this looks like a lot of information to add, but the checkout process is straight forward. Compared to alternative services there aren’t a half a dozen upsells through the checkout process that can become annoying and confusing to determine whether or not you actually need an add-on.

Total Score: 34 out of 40 (Very Good!)

The price to file an LLC is transparent throughout the process. I appreciate the approach Northwest Registered Agent has taken in organizing their service even if they are slightly more expensive than competitors. This is a reputable company you can trust with your LLC formation.

Northwest Registered Agent Alternatives

It’s important to do your due diligence before choosing an LLC service. Here are some Northwest Registered Agent alternatives you can use to compare features between the services and providers to make the right choice for your new company.

Swyft Filings

Swyft Filings has robust access to legal experts and can answer nearly any question you have about your business. I gave Swyft Filings a 30 out of 40 in my review. The checkout process is more complex with this service.

ZenBusiness

In terms of cost, ZenBusiness offers LLC formation for just $39, including a full year of registered agent service for free. This is our top rated LLC filing service through a combination of low-cost and customer service with a score of 37 out of 40.

Harvard Business Services

Harvard Business Services has fewer bells and whistles than newer registered agents in the industry, however, it has helped form over 200,000 business entities since the early 1980s. It has a trusted reputation and provides LLC registration for $50 per business or company. We gave Harvard Business Services a respectable score of 34 out of 40.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are the top most frequently asked questions about forming an LLC with Northwest:

1. Do I Need an LLC?

You don’t have to have an LLC to start your own business. However, there are many benefits to doing so that far outweigh the small inconvenience of going through and having the paperwork done to start an LLC.

An LLC gives your business its own legal entity and any claims made against it may not be resolved via your personal assets. It provides you with similar legal protections as a corporation, however, without the additional rigid legal requirements. Any claim must be made against your business and its assets, and you may not be held personally liable for the debts of the business if you have an LLC.

2. Can I Form an LLC On My Own?

While it’s possible to complete and submit the necessary paperwork to start an LLC, unless you’re already a small business professional, this is unlikely to be in your best interests.

Getting expert help forming your LLC can help you make sure you don’t make any paperwork mistakes that could cost you or your company in the long run.

3. Do I Have to Pay for an LLC Every Year?

Yes. Any registered agent will have an annual filing fee.

4. Is Northwest Good for LLC Formation?

Many people select Northwest Registered Agent for their LLC formation services as they’ve been a trusted provider since 1998. They offer exceptional customer service and a variety of additional helpful services.

5. How Long Will It Take to Process LLC Formation?

Northwest Registered Agent typically processes LLC formation paperwork relatively quickly, although exactly how fast depends on what state you’re in. They do have an option to upgrade to expedited service if you need your LLC formation completed as soon as possible.

6. Where Is Northwest Registered Agent Located?

Northwest Registered Agent is located in Spokane, WA in the Freeman Center at 522 W Riverside Ave Suite N.

7. What Do People Online Have to Say About Northwest Registered Agent?

Most businesses who work with Northwest Registered Agent report having a positive experience, however, as with any business, there are a few negative reviews. What stands out is the company’s willingness to publicly reach out to unhappy customers to try to rectify the issue.

8. Is My Information Shared with Third Parties?

Privacy and security are highly valued at Northwest Registered Agent and your information is never sold or given to third parties for any purpose.

9. Does Northwest Registered Agent Have a Refund Policy?

While Northwest Registered Agent does have a refund policy, many customers have found it hard to understand and were unsuccessful at obtaining refunds for unrendered services. This is arguably the most significant caveat that Northwest’s service has.

10. How Do I Contact Northwest Registered Agent Directly for Support?

Northwest’s hours of operation are 6:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Pacific Standard Time (PST) Monday through Friday, and they can be reached by calling (509) 768-2249. Click here to start the LLC formation process with Northwest Registered Agent.