2021 Filenow Review: Your Insider’s Look To Forming An LLC

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Filenow Rating

Pricing – 4/5
Ease of Use – 4/5
Reputation – 4.5/5

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Quick Reference

Forming a new LLC can be complicated. Each state has specific forms and sequence of steps to complete that while not impossible to figure out on your own, there is always a nagging question asking whether you did everything right and better ways to spend your time.

Fortunately for today’s ambitious entrepreneurs, you don’t have to decide how to do it yourself or hire an expensive attorney. LLC formation companies like Filenow bring ventures to life by offering a team of business and tax professionals that will guide you through the process of forming a new business entity. With Filenow, you can register your new business as an LLC, C corporation or S corporation in no time.

Filenow Review Summary

Filenow helps companies to start new companies to properly complete all the legal documentation and paperwork.

While there are a lot of choices for business formation companies, is Filenow the best one to start your enterprise?

Let’s find out.

What we like:

  • Easy to use and affordable way to register as a Limited Liability Company or corporation
  • Free registered agent for 1 year (Usually $119 per year)
  • Free Employer Identification Number (EIN which is the Federal Tax ID number) included with all business formation packages (this usually costs $70)
  • 24-hour order processing (Companies like LegalZoom often hold the order if you’re on a lower-priced tier)
  • All documents are securely kept on the cloud, so you can access them whenever you need.
  • Unlimited phone, chat and email support is available at no extra cost.
  • 100% money-back guarantee if you’re not happy

What we don’t like:

  • Though it’s affordable, other options like IncFile are more appealing for companies on a budget (IncFile is free to use)
  • Add-ons in the Premium package only comes with a couple of extra features, like a banking resolution document (for opening a bank account in your company’s name) and a company kit aren’t worth the upgrade for the price
  • Filenow doesn’t include many additional services such as annual reporting for LLC company owners

Plans and Pricing:

Filenow offers two pricing options:

Starter: $49 plus your state fee: includes 24-hour order processing, error free guarantee, free EIN, 1 year of free registered agent use, company alerts, complete phone, email, and chat support, online status tracking, electronic delivery and FedEx express shipping.

Premium: $149 plus your state fee: includes everything in the Starter package, plus a company kit and banking resolution.

Setting up an LLC with Filenow

Filenow is dedicated to making it quick and easy for entrepreneurs to establish their business. The quick 7-step process only takes about 15 minutes in total to complete the steps.  

To start, all you have to do is open a Filenow website, and click the big orange Start Company button.

Once you select your business entity and state, you get to choose between the Starter or Premium plan. When you make up your mind, clicking “Get Started” on one of the plans will take you to a 7-step process.

The process starts by entering personal information such as the name, address, and phone number – but it got interesting on the second step!

The second step requires you to choose your company name and input the company information.

In the third step, the registered agent, which is one of the requirements to form an LLC, is selected. Luckily, Filenow offers a 1-year free registered agent service. But keep in mind that it’s going to cost you $119 after the first year. Filenow also allows you to personally take on all agent responsibilities as well if you don’t like to use Filenow’s service.

Halfway through the process, you choose how the Limited Liability Company will be managed and whether you want to allow Filenow to obtain the EIN for the company. The EIN is like the social security number for a business. If you’re forming your first company ever – I’m pleased to say that Filenow explains everything in the shortest yet most efficient way possible so you understand exactly why EIN and the registered agent is required to form a company.  By using Filenow, you will save an additional step of registering an EIN with the IRS.

On the sixth step, I felt there is a bit of an upsell going on. I was asked to choose whether I’d like to receive a company kit which will cost me $100.  

The company kit includes:

  • Custom vinyl binder & matching slipcase
  • Banking resolutions
  • Custom bylaws or operating agreement
  • IRS S election forms
  • Stock ledger
  • Meeting & waiver of notice template

You can get a company kit for $50 on Amazon.

At first, I thought this might be useful for someone starting their first company. Saying no then opens the door for two more “upsell” offers for an operating agreement and banking resolution each costing an additional $25. Most people will likely not need either of these.

Why?

An operating agreement isn’t required in all states for single-member LLCs, but only required for multi-member LLCs in some states.  Even those states it isn’t required, it’s not a bad idea to prepare one for all multi-member LLCs at this document lays out how the business will be run.  While there may not be conflict between members today, this document can help save you from expensive member disputes down the road.

Banking resolutions are often provided by banks at no additional cost at all, so there is no need to spend money for this document. 

In the final step, you are asked whether to use the expedited service. This same day filing is only good for LLCs forming in Delaware and New York.

What We Like About Filenow

So, why might you consider using Filenow for your company formation services?

Entity Formation Wizard

We really like the company formation wizard, so if you’re not sure what kind of entity you need, you can get some extra help from the “Help me choose” option.  This is where Filenow excels at. Their process is simple for everyone – whether you’re the first-time small business owner or you’re about to register a second or even third company.

Filenow site offers complete guidance through the process of entity formation where you won’t end up with a stack of papers, clueless on their meaning.

Just answer a few quick questions like “how many owners/shareholders will your business have,” and “how will you finance your company?” In no time, the formation wizard will tell you which business structure can deliver the most benefits for you.

Most people will be able to create an LLC formation for a business in only 15 minutes regardless of their previous business experience. But if it wasn’t for Filenow? You may end up spending hours, if not days hoping it was done right.

In my opinion, whether you’re in a hurry or not – Filenow’s 7-step process has very good guidance and it even has the ability to teach you about the requirements instead of simply asking for the information.

Reputation

Next, it’s worth noting that despite Filenow only being in operation for a few years thanks to its transparent pricing, affordable packages, and excellent customer service. Since opening, they have built a solid reputation with an A rating with the Better Business Bureau and other positive online customer reviews like the 4.8 out of 5 score on Shopperapproved.com.

A selection of testimonials:

  • Easiest business sign up I’ve ever had! Will recommend! Great overall business filing!
  • Quick and easy to start the process in filling the papers for starting my LLC.
  • This was a quick and easy process to form my LLC. It took less than 10 minutes to complete.
  • Was quick and easy. Even selected a name that wasn’t available, and they were very polite in working with me.

Excellent Customer Service

Filenow goes above and beyond to make launching your company as simple as possible. You’ll get company alerts sent immediately to your email to ensure that you remain compliant in your state. What’s more, if you have any issues or questions, the team is always ready to help.

Filenow’s site is really efficient at guiding you through the whole process, but if you ever get stuck – they have decent live customer support that operates between 9 AM – 7 PM on workdays.

A Free EIN Included with All Formation Packages

An EIN (Employer Identification Number) can be expensive when purchased through other business formation companies ($70-$75), though they are free to register with the IRS.  Learn how to create an EIN at no cost with the IRS.

Registered Agent Free for a Year

A registered agent is another valuable add-on that Filenow provides for free. This feature is worth $119 per year, so combined with the EIN, you’re already saving almost $200 just by filing with this company.

A member, accountant or family member can act as the LLC’s registered agent, but using one can be useful in keeping the member’s names and physical address private in most states.

Related: When is a Registered Agent Needed?

24-hour order processing

Filenow offers 24-hour processing to send the paperwork to the state.  Depending on the state, it will take between one day and three weeks to process the LLC paperwork.  Filenow is one of the fastest entity formation companies to process the order.

100% money-back guarantee if you’re not happy

Filenow is committed to keeping customers satisfied. This means that every package (including the cheaper standard package) comes with a 100% money-back guarantee. If you’re not happy with the way that your documents are filed, or there’s an error in your content, you get a full refund.

We couldn’t find a lot of evidence that Filenow regularly makes errors with its applications, so it’s unlikely that you’ll need to use this service. Still, it’s nice to know that if your application is rejected for any negligence or errors, you’ll be protected.

Easy to Use and Affordable

Most companies will be able to launch with the Starter package from Filenow, which is available for only $49 plus the state fee. This makes getting started with Filenow pretty affordable. To put that into perspective:

While Filenow might not be as cheap as Incfile, it does offer competitive pricing compared to other formation services. On top of that, the service is incredibly straight forward. All you need to do is spend about 15 minutes filling out the website to get your LLC formed.

Files Saved on the Cloud

Filenow sends you your business information in the mail and securely online.

Your documents stay safe within your Filenow account, so you can securely access anything that you need on the cloud. This is great if you’re in the middle of moving to a new office, and you’re worried about losing important documents.

What We Don’t Like About Filenow

So, where does Filenow fail to live up to the market?

One issue that can be worrying to some customers is that Filenow is still a very young business. The brand has only been around since 2018, which means that it doesn’t have the heritage of companies like Incfile, Swyft Filings, and LegalZoom. This means there aren’t as many reviews available online if you need a little guidance on which company to trust.

When compared to other entity forming companies – Filenow is a bit more expensive than others. A great competitor is an Incfile which has no starting fees yet it starts by charging you only state fees. Filenow’s starting fee is $49 for a Starter and $149 for a Premium package.

The starting fee might be one of the reasons to turn some business owners away from Filenow, but when you consider that Filenow offers free EIN for every business along with the 1-year free registered agent – the starting fee can provide a lot of value.

The main difference between the Starter and Premium packages are premium add-ons such as the company kit and banking resolution. So, is Premium really worth an additional $100? Not really for most, but if you aren’t on a tight time schedule these add-ons are one less step to figure out.

However, one of the things I noticed when running a company through Filenow is that they don’t offer as many additional services. This means that I won’t be able to generate an annual report. While many states make this easy, many formation companies offer this as an additional benefit.

Bottom Line

Filenow is an affordable, easy to use and attractive option for setting up your business. Added freebies like a free EIN and registered agent service for the first year can save you a lot of money. While this might not be the cheapest product on the market, it is still one of the best values.

Although Filenow hasn’t been around for as long as some of its competitors, it’s gaining a very positive reputation. You should definitely consider this service if you’re looking for an affordable and straightforward company that can handle all of the stressful parts of forming an LLC. What’s more, Filenow offers one of the quickest turnaround times around, so if you’re in a hurry, then this company could be ideal for your needs.

Filenow is a very simple and straight-forward entity formation service and the best thing is that you don’t need to have any previous business experience. Their website is very smooth with many informational pages that can help you learn what it actually takes to create an LLC, yet they can even help make sure the LLC is the right choice for you.

Should you use Filenow? Yes, you should if you are looking for a reliable company that could help you create your own company at a very minimal cost.

Click to visit Filenow.

 

  • Free plan offers a lot of value (state filing fees still apply)
  • Lifetime customer support
  • Free registered agent in the first year
  • Free 1-hour tax consultation
best value
  • Free plan offers a lot of value (state filing fees still apply)
  • Lifetime customer support
  • Free registered agent in the first year
  • Proactive customer service called to discuss next steps
best value
  • No free plan, but pricing is fair and upfront
  • Lifetime customer support
  • Free registered agent in the first year
  • Free business name availability check
easiest