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Northwest Registered Agent Review [Registered Agent & LLC Formation Services]

March 19, 2021

When it comes to LLC formation and registered agent services, Northwest Registered Agent without a doubt belongs in the conversation as one of the top tier companies out there.  

They have an extremely positive track record of over two decades, and frankly, they knock it out of the park when it comes to customer service.

If you're considering using Northwest Registered Agent for an entity formation, registered agent service, or for other legal services, you've come to the right place.  Our Northwest Registered Agent review covers all of their top services and everything you need to decide whether they are a good fit for your business.

I currently use Northwest Registered Agent's registered agent service for one of my businesses, so stick around until the end to see a step by step walkthrough of what their on-boarding process is like (and how easy it is!).

Northwest Registered Agent - Overview

It's worth pointing out here at the beginning that Northwest is known for having elite customer service.  When it comes to online entity formation and registered agent services, they are the best in terms of customer service by a decent margin.

All of their service staff, known as Corporate Guides, are real people who are very knowledgable about all things having to do with starting and maintaining a legal entity.

As you might pick up on from their name, Northwest Registered Agent is probably most well known for their registered agent services.  However, that is far from the only type of service they can provide for you.  Below is a look at a few of the services that they offer.

Registered Agent Services

Elite Customer Service and FREE local scans, mail forwarding, and more

$125/year: 1-4 states

$100/year: 5+ states

Every business entity has to designate a registered agent to the state in which it forms, and in each state where the entity has a business presence.

At the most fundamental level, registered agents exist so that states have a contact point with every business that can be held accountable to receive due process, which the way that a business is notified of a legal action that is being taken against them.

Most registered agent services out there simply collect your money every year and you probably won't hear from them ever, unless your business does in fact become party to a legal action.  Even then, many of the other services out there use archaic systems and still forward crucial documents via snail mail.

Simply put, Northwest Registered Agent blows competition out of the water with their customer service and technology forward platform.  It's difficult to overstate how great it is to have access to exemplary customer service, especially when it comes to legal and compliance matters.

On the technology side, every single document that is sent to them for your business is scanned and stored in the cloud.  They provide a reminder each year to file your annual report.  Not to mention free mail forwarding, same day local scans, and access to a bunch of free online tools.

Registered Agent Service Pricing

Registered agent services at Northwest are $125 per year.  If you are changing from a different registered agent, they will also file a change of registered agent form with the state for free.

Their pricing model works so that if your entity needs a registered agent in multiple states, there is a chance you will qualify for a per state discount.  At the time of this writing, pricing for multiple states works like this:

  • 1 to 4 states: $125/year per state
  • 5+ states: $100/year per state

It's important to note that Northwest does not increase their rates year over year, so your rate will remain flat as long as you are a customer.

Furthermore, they do not attempt to up-sell you on a bunch of extra services that you probably don't need throughout the process - which is unfortunately common amongst other registered agent services.

LLC Formation Services

Same day filings and excellent service

LLC Formation Plans start at $225 + state fees (includes first year of registered agent service)

If you choose to start an LLC with Northwest, you're treated with a white glove level of service for all aspects of the entity formation process.  This is particularly good if you do not have your own LLC formation document templates or an operating agreement template.

No matter how many members are in your LLC or what the purpose of your entity is, they have the appropriate forms and templates to help get you set up properly with your state of formation.

Included with Northwest LLC formation packages ($225 + State fees):
  • Filing of your Articles of Organization (Certificate of Formation).  Each state requires that you file an initial document that discloses basic information about your company.
  • First year of registered agent service included in the package price.  When you sign up for an LLC formation service with Northwest, the cost of the first year of registered agent service is also included in the package, so you know you will be taken care of on that front.
  • Filing within 24 hours (sometimes same day).  Northwest is extremely fast on turnaround times.  It is not uncommon for them to get an LLC formation filing out the door on the same day it was ordered, provided that all necessary information was given to them.
  • Name availability search.  Northwest makes sure that your LLC name isn't already taken by another entity in the state you want to form in.
  • Access to template forms.  Whether you need an LLC operating agreement, a membership certificate, or an initial resolutions, Northwest has free templates available for use.
Not Included - Optional Add Ons/Extras:
  • Annual report reminder & filing ($100 per year + state fees, if any).  Most states require that you file an annual report with the secretary of state.  Northwest will notify you when the deadline to file your annual report is approaching and can file your report on your behalf.
  • Obtain an EIN Tax ID for the IRS ($50).  Many business owners elect to get their own EIN, however if you want one less task on your plate, Northwest will file with the IRS to get an EIN for your business.
  • Second telephone number ($9 per month).  You can grab an extra phone number for your business, with any area code of your liking, that will forward to any phone number you want.  This way you can add a layer of privacy if you are using your personal phone to conduct business.
  • S Corporation taxation election ($50).  If you'd like for your LLC to be taxed as an S Corp, Northwest will prepare and obtain the election from the IRS.
  • Various other filings and ordering services (Most are $50).  You can also have Northwest obtain a certificate of good standing, certified copies of entity documents, and file other relavent state documents as needed on an a la carte basis.

All of the above services are available at any time in your dashboard too, so you don't need to make a decision up front.  They can always be added on later!

Northwest Registered Agent Pros and Cons

Northwest Registered Agent Pros:

  • Elite customer service.  It's already been mentioned in this Northwest Registered Agent review, but their customer service is the thing that truly sets them apart from the competition.  I can tell you from first hand experience that their Corporate Guides (professionally trained customer service agents) are extremely knowledgable and will help walk you through any question or issue your are facing.
  • Northwest never sells customer data.  Many competitors in the legal services space make A LOT of money selling your data as leads.  Northwest has taken a firm stance against this practice and will not ever sell your data to a third party.
  • You can use their office address on state records.  This is a feature that is unique to Northwest as most other national registered agent services will not allow for you to use their address on state records.  This adds another layer of privacy to your operation and minimizes the amount of occurrences where your information is made public record.
  • Your prices won't change.  They are up front and transparent when it comes to pricing.  Your prices won't increase year over year unlike many other services who jack up prices after the first year is complete.

Northwest Registered Agent Cons:

  • Price point is on the higher end of the spectrum.  They are by no means the most expensive service out there, but there are definitely other services out there that offer similar services for cheaper.  Of course, there is a trade-off.  Northwest doesn't supplement their revenue by selling your data as leads, so it makes sense that their base pricing would be a little more expensive.
  • Product suite isn't as extensive as some other services.  When it comes to registered agent services and entity formation packages, Northwest is great and they provide plenty of extras.  However, compared to some other services they do not offer quite as much on the legal side.

Northwest Registered Agent Customer Reviews

Here are a few samples of the positive feedback Northwest has received from real customers:

"I have been using their Registered Agency early this year and I took some time off to write this review out of my busy schedule to say that I am truly impressed with this Agency! Their customer service is exemplary and the services they offer are definitely what I need for my LLC! They have excellent customer service, prompt responses, very friendly corporate guides, they are delightfully prompt in notifying me of important documents coming in the mail. I could not ask for more. This is the best Registered Agency out there. Five stars and highly recommended!"

- Aurora D. (Better Business Bureau reviews)

"I have been working closely with this firm for over a year now (during a terrible pandemic) sorting my corporation requirements in the United States. They have proven to be EXEMPLARY; meeting and exceeding every standard possible. Communication is fantastic. The people they employ are incredible. If I don't understand something, they explain it until I do. I cannot more highly recommend Northwest for your incorporation needs."

- Darren E. (Google reviews)

"I had them create an LLC and it was painless. All my interactions with them went smoothly and they resolved my issues. Couldn't have asked for a better experience.I would definitely recommend them if you're looking to create an LLC or similar."

- Peter B. (Google reviews)

My Personal Experience With Northwest Registered Agent

I mentioned at the beginning of this review that I have personally used Northwest for their registered agent service, so I wanted to share what that experience was like!  In short, I think they definitely are one of the best registered agent services out there.

Overall, the process could not have been easier and smoother.  The checkout process was simple, intuitive, and I think took all of about 10 minutes.

This particular entity was a Delaware entity that was already a few years old and was using a different registered agent service at the time, so I also had Northwest file a change of registered agent form on behalf of my company (for free!).

Step 1: Enter Order Information

The first step in the process is to simply fill out information on which services you are requesting.  I only needed registered agent services in Delaware here, but you can select as many states as needed, if your entity happens to have a business presence in multiple states.

Step 2: Create an Account and Provide Company Information

Next, you enter an email address and create a password.  This is the email address you will use to log in to the Northwest dashboard and they will use to contact you if and when they need to.

Further, you let them know what the name of your entity is and what type of entity it is at this stage (LLC, Corporation, Non-Profit, etc.).

Step 3: Provide Contact Information

The third step is to enter some quick contact information.  This information is just so that Northwest can contact you and keep your contact information on file - the information you provide here will not appear on any registered agent documents that get filed with the state.

You can also select an option at this stage to have Northwest Registered Agent send a copy of legal notices and due process to your attorney, if you have one.  If you select this option your attorney will automatically be forwarded relavent legal documents.

Step 4: Choose Extras

Here's where you let Northwest know which extras you'd like, if any.  Here I wanted to let Northwest know that I'd like for them to file my annual report for me each year, so I have that option selected (it's $0 at checkout but a $100 filing fee when it's time for the report to actually be filed).

On the registered agent service, you can also add on premium mail forwarding and/or a second telephone number.  Here is a little more information on those services:

Step 5: Enter Payment Info and Access Your Dashboard

After you enter your credit card information, you're given immediate access to your account dashboard, where you can create new orders, get updates on current orders, and view documents that Northwest scans on your behalf.

That's it!  The entire process took about 10 minutes and was about as pain free as it gets.

And here is an example of that exemplary customer service I have been talking about.  I completed my order around noon.  At 2 pm, a Corporate Guide from Northwest called me to touch base and let me know that my order had been received and processed.

My guide let me know that my change of registered agent form had already been sent to the state of Delaware and the registered agent switch over to them would be official within 48 hours.  They got my order processed and out the door within 2 hours!

I had a couple of questions about the dashboard and how some of their other services worked, and my Guide was awesome and extremely helpful.

Who is Northwest Registered Agent Best For?

Ok, so that was a lot of information I just threw your way, but what does it all mean?

When it's all said and done, the perfect registered agent or entity formation service is largely dependent on you, your business, your preferences, and your budget.

Northwest Registered Agent is perfect for those who value quality customer service.  If you value being able to pick up the phone and right away be able to discuss your question or issue with a real, knowledgable person, then Northwest is a clear cut favorite.  

They are also great for businesses who operate in multiple states, and have an excellent platform to help organize and manage activity in multiple jurisdictions.

Northwest is probably not for you if you're looking for a bargain.  They are far from the most expensive registered agent service out there, however they are not the cheapest either.  There are other options out there that still provide solid service for a slightly better price point.

They are also probably not for you you if you are looking for your registered agent or entity formation company to be able to provide extensive legal services, simply because they do not have a super wide range of products they offer.  Within the spaces of entity formation, registered agents, and maintaining your entity, they are excellent.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Northwest Registered Agent Legit?

The very short answer is yes.  Northwest Registered Agent is legit, and they have been in business for over two decades.

They have enough of a history and track record to show that they put their money where their mouth is, and that they consistently satisfy the needs of their customers.

I am also a customer of Northwest Registered Agent and can confirm based on my personal experience that they have fantastic customer service and that they do what they say they will do.

Does Northwest Sell My Data?

No, Northwest does not ever sell customer data.  To further enhance privacy measures, they also go out of their way to partner with as few third parties as humanely possible to avoid as many instances as possible where your information might be made public.

Does Northwest Upsell You?

In my experience, no.  I hope the illustration above was helpful to show what their checkout process is like.  I found that they struck a nice balance of making you aware of what services they offer without being pushy about it.

When you go through the checkout process, all of the add ons are unselected by default and you can then choose to add services on, but only if you want them.

What Services Does Northwest Registered Agent Offer?

Their bread and butter is registered agent services and LLC formation services.

With that being said, they do offer additional services such as corporation formation, nonprofit formation, and filing services for various state compliance forms.

Is Northwest Registered Agent Worth the Money?

Value is one of those things that is in the eye of the beholder, but we think the answer is a resounding yes for their registered agent and LLC formation services.

Northwest isn't the cheapest service out there, but they knock it out of the park when it comes to customer service and user friendliness.  So if that is important to you and you don't mind paying an extra ~$25 per year compared to some other services, we think you will find that they offer excellent value.

Some of their extras are a little pricey, such as obtaining an EIN or filing an annual report for your business, but they can be worthwhile if it saves you a significant amount of time.

What Is Northwest's Turnaround Time?

For both registered agent services and LLC formation services, it's not unheard of that Northwest will get your paperwork out of the door same-day.  In most cases your paperwork will be submitted to the state within 24-48 hours.

Of course, how long it takes to truly form an LLC or to get your registered agent updated depends a lot on how long it takes your state to file the paperwork.

But when it comes to things that are in Northwest's court, they tend to get their tasks done very quickly.

Can I Be My Own Registered Agent?

Yes, you may be your own registered agent as long as you satisfy certain requirements with your state of formation.

The "catch" is that a registered agent's name and address becomes part of the public record in most states.

Plus, most states REQUIRE that a registered agent be open during normal business hours (9 am - 5 pm).

Since there are privacy and flexibility benefits, most people opt to hire a third party registered agent service for their business.

Can I Form My Own LLC?

You are also able to form your own LLC if you'd like to.  If you aren't aware of the ins and outs of entity formation in your state, however, it can be a time consuming and frustrating process.

Companies like Northwest are a happy medium between forming an entity on your own and paying top dollar for an attorney to form a business for you.

How Does Northwest Compare to the Competition?

Generally speaking, Northwest fares extremely well compared to other companies who offer similar services.

Compared to a LegalZoom or a RocketLawyer, you'll get better service AND better pricing for registered agent and entity formation packages.

However, companies like ZenBusiness are extremely competitive and offer better pricing with arguably similar levels of service.

With that being said, Northwest remains at the top tier when it comes to entity formation services.

Does Northwest Facilitate Arizona or New York Publications?

Kind of, but not exactly.  They currently do not offer a white glove service to satisfy the publication requirement for new businesses in either Arizona or New York.

However, they offer complete instructions on how to get it done yourself, and the Corporate Guides are there to help every step of the way with any questions you might have as you complete the process.

Northwest Registered Agent Alternatives

Northwest, even though we think they are great, are not the best solution for every single business owner, investor, and entrepreneur out there.

If you're looking for an alternative to Northwest, here are a couple of alternatives to compare with and consider:

Top Choice

ZenBusiness - outstanding value, convenience, and simplicity

Swyft Filings - great ease of use and extensive services offered

  • Secure storage of important mail
  • Reminders for important deadlines
  • Online dashboard is easy to use

Ready to Get Started?

I hope you found this Northwest Registered Agent review to be helpful!  If you're considering using them for either registered agent or LLC formation services (or both!) get started with the links below.

Registered Agent Service

$125/year: 1-4 states

$100/year: 5+ states

LLC Formation Service

LLC Formation Plans start at $225 + state fees (includes first year of registered agent service)

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Best Registered Agent Services in 2021

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