Since it opened in 2003, Direct Incorporation has served 80,000+ customers. Direct Incorporation is best known for its feature-rich LLC formation packages, although the extra features it provides come at a cost. Direct Incorporation charges at least $174 to form an LLC, while ZenBusiness will do it for free (you’ll pay your state’s required fee either way).
✔ From trademark protections to full-service web design to logos and graphic design, Direct Incorporation can handle a wider variety of business needs than some competitors.
✔ With their Executive Club service, which can be added to your formation for $13.99 per month, you can create custom corporate documents, manage your company dashboard, and track tax filings and other government compliance requirements. It also includes asking legal questions to qualified business attorneys.
✔ Every one of their LLC formation packages includes a federal tax ID number or EIN. This allows you to open business checking and/or savings accounts, hire employees, file business taxes, and much more. Most businesses need an EIN.
✖ You can purchase LLC formation services from other providers for less money. Direct Incorporation’s base rate of $174 plus state fee is higher than other LLC services that can form an LLC for free (just pay your state’s required fee), like us at ZenBusiness.
Direct Incorporation offers four different options for LLC formation packages: Standard, Premier, Elite, and Venture. If you’re interested in reviewing the details, check out the breakdown below.
➢ Business Name Availability Check: They will search your state’s business database to ensure that your desired company name is available and isn’t already taken by another company.
➢ Preparation and Filing of Articles of Organization: This is the form that you need to submit to your state to officially create your company. Direct Incorporation will draft this document for you, then file it with the appropriate state agency.
➢ Six Months of Registered Agent Service: Every LLC operating in America needs to designate a registered agent. This is a person or entity that receives service of process and important document deliveries from the Secretary of State on your behalf, then forwards them to you. Direct Incorporation includes this service for six months.
➢ Federal Tax ID Number (EIN): An employer identification number (EIN) is a numerical code much like a Social Security number that allows you to open business bank accounts, hire employees, file business taxes, and more. They will acquire this number for you from the IRS.
➢ S Corp Tax Designation: If you want your LLC to be taxed like an S corp instead of like a partnership, Direct Incorporation will file the relevant tax forms with the IRS.
➢ Executive Club Trial: The Executive Club is Direct Incorporation’s legal services subscription service. You’ll be able to create business documents, track IRS filings, keep an eye on state compliance deadlines, ask attorneys legal questions, and more. After your trial, Executive Club costs $13.99/month, although you are under no obligation to continue the service.
➢ Domain Name Registration and Two-Week Web Hosting Trial
Everything from the Standard package, plus…
➢ Operating Agreement: This document is highly recommended for all LLCs, as it lays out the ground rules for how your company will be run, as well as defines your ownership structure. Direct Incorporation will provide an operating agreement for your business.
➢ Corporate Suite CD and Form Templates: A disc full of document templates and helpful guides. You will also receive several customizable employment forms, like NDAs, contracts, etc.
➢ LLC Kit and Seal: A records binder with 20 membership certificates and an embossed LLC seal with your company name on it.
Everything from the Premier package, plus…
➢ Do-It-Yourself Website Builder Software: Create your own basic business website with Direct Incorporation’s website builder tool.
➢ Business Email Account
Everything from the Elite package, plus…
➢ Web Design Service: Instead of designing your own website using their DIY website builder tool, they’ll build a basic business website on WordPress for you.
➢ Trademark Protection: Direct Incorporation will run an extensive conflict search for your intellectual property and prepare a thorough report. They will also provide three months of their Trademark Protection Monitoring service.
➢ One Year Executive Club Subscription
➢ Five Business Email Accounts
Identify the LLC package and services that fit your needs and then get started.
Obviously, no one service is going to be ideal for every entrepreneur, so to finish this review we’ll go through some scenarios where you might want to use their services and also some that might make you want to look elsewhere.
If your company wants to take advantage of the advanced features in the Venture package, it can be a decent deal for features like web development and graphic design. It’s a lot of services to kickstart your business bundled into one package.
If you just want the standard ingredients of LLC formation, you might want to use another service. Several competitors offer basic LLC formations for lower rates than Direct Incorporation charges.
Direct Incorporation approaches limited liability company formations a bit differently than most competitors in this industry. In addition to forming your company, they offer advanced features in the areas of logo design, web hosting, trademark protections, and more ― some of which aren’t always available with other LLC formation services.
However, there are other services that can save you quite a bit of money on LLC formations, so whether Direct Incorporation is a good choice for you depends on your company’s unique needs.
Start your LLC with ZenBusiness
Pricing starts at just $0 + state fee
FAQs About Direct Incorporation LLC Service
Direct Incorporation keeps its support in-house, which is an advantage compared to some competitors who outsource their customer service to anonymous call centers. You can reach Direct Incorporation’s helpful service reps from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET on weekdays.
Direct Incorporation has been around since 2003, and they’ve served more than 80,000 customers over the years. They only have a few dozen reviews available online, and although they’re somewhat mixed between positive and negative feedback, a majority of their reviews are positive.
In their own words: “If an order for any of our services is canceled after we have received payment then the full amount will be refunded less a $40.00 processing fee.”
Sure, you always have this option. In fact, quite a few entrepreneurs choose to form their own LLCs. The issue with this is that it can be quite time-consuming, especially once you figure out your formation state’s unique rules and regulations. On the other end of the spectrum, some entrepreneurs hire a lawyer to form a new LLC, but this is usually much more expensive than online LLC services.
There are only a couple of scenarios where this is a necessary step. First, if you’re not yet ready to enter the formation process itself, you can reserve a name to use at a later date when you form your business.
The other scenario is if you’re forming a business in Alabama, where reserving a name in advance is a requirement to form an LLC. Other than that, you most likely do not need to reserve a name in advance.
Yes, you can. Not only do you not need to be physically present in the United States to form an LLC, but you also don’t need to be a U.S. citizen or resident. Part of the reason the LLC is such a popular business entity is the fact that the requirements regarding who can form one are so loose.
It’s fine to be uncertain about which online LLC formation service is the right choice for your unique business. After all, there are a ton of options out there, and each of them has its own set of advantages and disadvantages.
However, we’ve done countless hours of research on this topic, reviewing and comparing all of the best LLC formation services. We invite you to check out some of our comparison guides, which take a head-to-head view of the competition between Direct Incorporation and their top competitors:
Direct Incorporation vs. ZenBusiness: While Direct Incorporation charges at least $174 (plus state fee) to form an LLC, we’ll do it for free! In addition, Direct Incorporation has formed around 80,000 businesses, while at ZenBusiness, we have [customer_count] formations under our belt.
Another major difference is in customer feedback. We only found a few dozen reviews of Direct Incorporation, but we have more than 12,000 mostly positive reviews just on Trustpilot. That said, Direct Incorporation does offer some advanced features that we don’t provide.
Direct Incorporation vs. LegalZoom: LegalZoom charges $0 (+ state fee) for LLC formations, but this package includes very little when it comes to features. However, LegalZoom has more experience than just about any other company in this industry, with more than 2 million businesses formed.
Compared to its alternatives, LegalZoom has a good reputation with its customers, as this company has thousands of positive customer reviews with only a small amount of negative feedback. The decision between these two likely comes down to the unique needs of your business. If the advanced features of Direct Incorporation appeal to you, they’re a solid choice. But if you want to save some money or if you value positive customer feedback, LegalZoom might be a better fit.
Direct Incorporation vs. Incfile: Incfile offers an LLC formation package for free, as long as you pay your own state fee. Seeing as Direct Incorporation charges at least $174, pricing is a win for Incfile, especially considering they include a year of registered agent service at no extra charge, compared to Direct Incorporation’s six months.
Compared to many of its alternatives, Incfile has good customer feedback as well, as they maintain high average rating scores with thousands of reviews. Incfile also has more experience than Direct Incorporation does, as they’ve served more than 1 million customers over the years.
We called Direct Incorporation to find out whether they tackle state-specific compliance requirements or not, and unfortunately, the answer was no. If you’re forming a business in a state that requires publication or other unique steps, you’ll need to handle those yourself. If you’re looking for a company that will take care of publication requirements on your behalf, check out our New York publication service.
You can contact Direct Incorporation’s support reps by calling 1-877-281-6496. If you want to email them, they don’t have a general support email address listed on their website, but they do have each employee’s email address posted on the “Our Team” page. You can select the employee whose job description best fits your needs and email them directly.
Even though Direct Incorporation offers a wide variety of services and features, they provide nearly everything in-house and therefore don’t have many areas where they would share your info with other entities.
Direct Incorporation has some additional business services, including doing business as (DBA) names, foreign qualifications, amendments, dissolutions, 501(c)(3) nonprofit applications, business compliance assistance, annual reports, tax programs, trademark protection, copyright service, logo design, and web design.
On one hand, Direct Incorporation does have plenty of opportunities for you to upgrade to its more expensive LLC formation packages. On the other hand, they’re never pushy about it, and once you’ve made your choice they don’t try to force anything extra on you. Overall, we don’t have a problem with Direct Incorporation when it comes to upsells, especially when compared to LegalZoom’s LLC service.
Unfortunately, we are not aware of any discount codes for Direct Incorporation. Trust us, it’s not for a lack of searching. We looked far and wide hoping to find a way for our readers to save money with Direct Incorporation, but we came up empty. Direct Incorporation has reasonable pricing, but it’s disappointing that there aren’t any ways to knock their rates down a bit.
Every package offered by Direct Incorporation has six months of free registered agent service. It will cost $159 per year when the trial expires. They also offer annual report services for $97.
Disclaimer: The content on this page is for information purposes only and does not constitute legal, tax, or accounting advice. If you have specific questions about any of these topics, seek the counsel of a licensed professional.
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