If you want to form a business in the United States, you’ll need to designate a registered agent. The role of the registered agent involves the usage of their address as your official business address, which means they’ll receive important document deliveries on your behalf, including service of process and official correspondence from your state government.

While you can legally serve as your own agent and still operate a compliant business entity, there are some other benefits of hiring a registered agent service. Having a registered agent makes it so that you don’t need to be available at your place of business during all standard business hours, and it also cuts down on the amount of junk mail you’ll receive.

There are many LLC formation services that also offer this vital service to businesses, and it can be difficult to discern which one is the best option for your company. In this review, we’ll take a close look at Harbor Compliance, one of the most popular service providers in the industry. Are they the right registered agent service for your business?

About Harbor Compliance

Harbor Compliance has served 40,000+ organizations since opening in 2012. You can find more experienced online formation services, but Harbor Compliance is finding success as a midsize company.

According to the mission statement on their website, they “simplify the licensing process to help your organization stay compliant. That means access to a team of compliance experts backed by our proprietary tracking software to ensure that no detail goes unnoticed. So you can proceed with confidence — and peace of mind.”

30-Second Summary of Our Review

Harbor Compliance offers affordable pricing for registered agent service, with volume discounts based on prepaying multiple years. They have positive customer feedback, albeit with a smaller volume of reviews than many competitors. They also offer good customer support.

However, some of Harbor Compliance’s services are only available to large enterprise clients that serve multiple businesses. In addition, their pricing for some services (like LLC formations) is uninspiring.

Harbor Compliance Strengths

  • Large collection of white papers, webinars, and how-to guides – Harbor Compliance’s free online information center includes thousands of guides, white papers, and other resources. Most competitors have some sort of learning center, but not many are this extensive.
  • Registered agent service at a fair rate – Harbor Compliance charges $99 per year for registered agent service. It also offers 5-10% off if you prepay for multiple years.

Harbor Compliance Weaknesses

  • Limited availability for some services – Harbor Compliance only offers some of its business services to large enterprise clients.
  • Mediocre pricing for LLC formations – Not only does Harbor Compliance charge $198 (+ state fee) for its LLC formation service package, but its pricing is a bit misleading as well. It says it only charges $99, but the order form for LLC service requires you to add employer identification number (EIN) acquisition for an additional $99.
  • Not as much experience as some competitors – Harbor Compliance is a relatively young company without a huge client volume.

Pricing and Additional Features

Their registered agent service is available for $99 per year, although if you pay for more than one year in advance, Harbor Compliance will provide a discount of up to 10%. Additionally, you’ll receive access to software that provides annual report reminders.

Harbor Compliance vs. Other Registered Agent Services

We like what Harbor Compliance has to offer for registered agent service. However, they have high pricing for business formations and limited availability for some other popular small business services.

We offer LLC formations for free (+ state fee) and annual reports for $100 — Harbor Compliance charges $198 for LLC service and up to $175 for annual reports. For more information on your other options, take a look at our guide to the top registered agent services available.

Online Customer Reviews

We found 130 customer reviews on Google for Harbor Compliance, with an average score of 4.3 out of 5 stars, along with a 4.6 score on Facebook (32 reviews). These are solid average scores, but we’d like to see more reviews. For example, ZenBusiness has 12,000+ positive reviews on Trustpilot.

Customer Service Quality

Harbor Compliance assigns account managers (they call them “Compliance Specialists”) to oversee your account. Their customer support phone number is 888-995-5895. You can also reach them by fax or email.

Main Reasons to Use Harbor Compliance

If you’re looking for a company that provides registered agent service at a reasonable rate, and you don’t need to form a business or order any other services, Harbor Compliance could be an option.

Main Reasons Not to Use Harbor Compliance

If you’re looking for a business formation service or annual reports, you’ll probably want to look elsewhere, as Harbor Compliance’s pricing can get pretty steep. We offer an LLC formation package for free (plus your state’s fee) while providing reasonable rates for registered agent service. We also have 12,000+ positive reviews compared to around 200 for Harbor Compliance.

Frequently Asked Questions About Harbor Compliance Registered Agent Service

  • Harbor Compliance doesn’t have as much experience as some competitors, but it has served 40,000+ customers since 2012. Additionally, most of its 150+ online reviews are positive. Harbor Compliance is a legitimate operation.

  • You can reach Harbor Compliance by phone at 888-995-5895, and its support email address is info@harborcompliance.com. You can also fax Harbor Compliance at 717-202-2576. We were unable to find any information regarding its hours of operation.

  • In short, yes, every LLC and corporation operating in America today needs to designate a registered agent. This person or business entity receives service of process and important document deliveries from the state, then forwards them to your business. It’s a crucial part of any LLC or corporation’s compliance. However, you don’t necessarily need to hire a registered agent service — you can serve in this role yourself, appoint a family member or friend, hire an attorney or accountant to handle it, etc.

  • Harbor Compliance’s refund policy varies based on what you purchase, but in general, it’s far from generous. It specifically mentions that it doesn’t offer refunds in any circumstances for registered agent service.

  • Harbor Compliance also offers business formations, amendments, annual reports, withdrawals, dissolutions, Certificates of Good Standing, certified copies, doing business as (DBA) names, foreign qualifications, and publication service (in states that require it).

  • Interestingly, we think that Harbor Compliance’s biggest pro and con is the same: pricing. For registered agent service, Harbor Compliance has a $99/year price point that compares favorably to many competitors. However, its pricing for other services isn’t great, as it charges at least $198 (+ state fee) to form an LLC and up to $175 (+ state fee) for annual reports.

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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Written by Team ZenBusiness

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