I’ve decided to get over my paranoia about crooked corporations by investigating the registered agent industry in the state of Delaware. This entire process took me 12 months to complete, but in the end, I came up with a list of 11 Delaware registered agent service providers for you to consider when establishing your business.
Here are the results of my findings.
Best Registered Agent: Northwest Registered Agent
- Easy sign-up process
- Mail scanning, uploading, and forwarding
- Alerts for important upcoming compliance deadlines
- $125 per state per year
- Corporate Guides who can answer your small business questions
- No dedicated account manager
Northwest Registered Agent is by far the best registered agent service in Delaware. This may sound like a bold statement, but hold on!
Wait till you hear what they have to offer.
To start with:
- They provide me with a new business name and a registered office in Delaware that is set up to receive official documents from the Delaware Division of Corporations.
- They handle Service of Process on behalf of my LLC.
- They assisted in filing my Certificate of Formation (they can also do a Certificate of Incorporation if that’s your business structure) during my Delaware LLC formation process.
- They scan, upload, and forward all my mail to a secure online account that contains important business documents.
- They send compliance notices that keep me apprised of forthcoming filing deadlines (such as filing my annual report).
You might be wondering, “What’s the catch?” with all of these wonderful offers.
There isn’t any catch. It gets even better because, in addition to these incredible services, Northwest Registered Agent also offers the greatest customer service in the North Carolina registered agent market.
As I peppered one of their customer service representatives with questions about their registered agent services, I was impressed by his calm and friendly attitude.
I later learned that each of their customer service representatives is an expert in a variety of industries, including accounting and marketing, and that they use their expertise to assist business owners in North Carolina with their business problems.
Visit Northwest Registered Agent today to discover more about their services and amazing customer care.
Best Budget Option: Harbor Compliance
- Simple online system
- Fast and prompt service
- All the basics
- Only $99*
- Dedicated account manager
- No small business advice
Before I came across Northwest Registered Agent, Harbor Compliance was my pick for the best registered agent service in the state of Delaware. This is because they provide reliable services and, on top of that, they also connected me with a dedicated account manager.
After signing up with them, Harbor Compliance assisted me with filing my Certificate of Formation with the Delaware Division of Corporations and provided a business name for my LLC and a registered office address in the state of Delaware that is open every day during normal business hours to receive legal communication from the Delaware Secretary of State.
They also issue my Delaware LLC compliance alerts so that I don’t miss any important filing deadlines.
But, just like Northwest Registered Agent, their customer support is their key selling point. Harbor Compliance provided my LLC with a dedicated account manager who understands the particular challenges it’s going through and offers solutions in accordance with the services offered by the agency.
The account manager does not provide the level of business advice you get from Northwest Registered Agent, but they’ll address any question regarding their services.
Before I started on my review journey, I had to formulate some guidelines that would help me through this entire process.
Since I started my Delaware LLC, I’ve had my fair share of ugly experiences with corporations that sell me substandard services or products—from suppliers trying to sell me damaged products to service providers who charge absurd prices for shoddy services. It’s really annoying because it eats up finances that would have been used in other aspects of running my LLC. My paranoia has reached such a level that I now thoroughly investigate every single company before I use any of their products or services.
When I decided to start a new Delaware LLC, I needed to find a trustworthy and reliable Delaware registered agent and once again, my paranoia was piqued. A simple Google search of the “best registered agents in Delaware” produces over 50 results with all these companies purporting to sell the best registered agent services in the state.
Therefore, I decided that the only way I was going to make up my mind was to sign up with all of them!
It’s a pretty drastic move and most people would question my sanity for doing this, but it all served a greater purpose. I needed to make it my mission to review every aspect of these Delaware registered agent service providers so that I could pass on my results to anyone who’s facing the same predicament that I am.
So I hesitantly keyed in my credit card details, came up with numerous names for my new fictitious Limited Liability Companies (LLCs), signed up for their services, and began my year-long mission to find out which is the best Delaware registered agent.
Before I began my registered agent service evaluation, I developed a set of criteria for assessing the service quality of each Delaware registered agent.
The first item on my list was the types of LLC services offered by each Delaware registered agent service. They were required to provide a comprehensive suite of services at a defined price, and it was critical that there were no hidden fees, small print, or aggressive upsells in their marketing material that’s meant to dupe me into purchasing additional and costly Delaware registered agent service elements I didn’t need.
These comprehensive features must include, but aren’t limited to, the following services:
- Providing a business name and street address for my new LLC
- Submitting my Certificate of Formation with the Division of Corporations in Delaware
- Providing top-tier protection for my personal information and documents
- Scanning and forwarding mail on my behalf
It was also critical that a Delaware registered agent be accessible every day of the week during normal business hours to accept Service of Process and other legal documents, and that they inform me when filing dates with the Delaware Secretary of State were approaching.
I crossed off any registered agent that didn’t supply these services, or that included some of them in their more costly packages. It’s a case of all or nothing.
The second criterion was to identify a Delaware registered agent service with some “mileage,” that is, a firm with a track record of dependability and delivery. It’s pointless to hire a Delaware registered agent only for them to go out of business after a year owing to bankruptcy. They had to be someone I could trust with my important and sensitive business documents.
Then there was their online registration process. Some Delaware registered agents use clumsy, antiquated web platforms that take a long time to get through. As a result, my third criterion was that the registered agent’s sign-up system be simple to use and provide pre-filled forms so that I don’t have to type the same general information over and over again.
The level of customer support services supplied by each Delaware registered agent service was my last criterion. It’s aggravating when you call a company’s customer service department only to be put on hold for an extended amount of time or sent to an online forum to solve your problems. Their customer service had to be available at all times and able to guide you through your challenges in a kind and professional manner.
I had my job cut out for me with over 50 registered agents to sort through. But I was able to eliminate about a third of this number during my initial round of searching for the finest Delaware registered agent service.
This stage entailed reviewing hundreds of comments posted by satisfied and unsatisfied consumers alike and sifting through web reviews. Some people were upset about the lack of essential services, others disliked the pricing structures, and yet others had experienced bad customer service. This procedure allowed me to eliminate the bulk of registered agents who simply provided terrible services, leaving me with roughly 16 firms that showed some promise.
For the following phase, I went to the websites of the remaining registered agents primarily to go over their claims and promises, and I quickly found enough grounds to exclude a few more from my list of candidates.
Some Delaware registered agents marketed their lack of experience as their most desirable feature, which does not inspire much trust. I don’t recommend you entrust your Service of Process to an inexperienced Delaware registered agent. Then there are those registered agents that entice you with a low-cost service just to hook you on their more pricey services. These all had to go.
After weeding out all the unworthy Delaware registered agent service providers from my list, I was left with 11 agencies that exhibited some potential.
After months of arduous research, I had finally come up with a list of the 11 best registered agent service providers in Delaware. I have ranked them in order of preference:
My Favorite Registered Agent Service: Northwest Registered Agent
Northwest Registered Agent is a dependable and cost-effective registered agent in Delaware that equipped me with everything I needed to complete my legal obligations while also protecting my privacy.
Northwest Registered Agent filed my Certificate of Formation with the Delaware Division of Corporations on behalf of my Delaware LLC and provided a registered office and street address that is set up to receive important legal documents, such as Service of Process.
They scan, upload, and forward my mail and other business documents to a secure online account, and they send frequent compliance alerts that remind me of important filing dates for my LLC, such as my annual report.
Their Corporate Guides are truly a godsend to my Delaware LLC. They not only assisted me during my LLC formation process, but they’ve also been ready to address any of my questions regarding the management of my Delaware business entity, such as guidance about my LLC Operating Agreement. From marketing advice to legal counsel, they have always provided the best business advice.
If you are looking for a hassle-free Delaware registered agent service that provides all the LLC services you need to start your corporation or LLC in the state, I strongly suggest that you consider Northwest Registered Agent.
Their online systems are highly intuitive and easy to navigate. Their Corporate Guides are perhaps the most experienced customer service personnel in Delaware. They provide great small business advice that will assist you in growing your Delaware business entity.
To learn more about their LLC services, visit Northwest Registered Agent today.
My Budget Pick: Harbor Compliance
Harbor Compliance was the frontrunner for the premier registered agents in Delaware before I picked Northwest Registered Agent because they made sure that my legal requirements were met and they supplied a dedicated account manager who assisted me with my new LLC formation process. All of this while charging the industry’s lowest rate.
Harbor Compliance submitted my Certificate of Formation (or, for you, perhaps a Certificate of Incorporation) to the Delaware Division of Corporations, and they provided a registered office in Delaware that is open every day during normal business hours to receive Service of Process or any other legal communication from the Secretary of State. They gave me an online account where I can save my business documents and best of all, they connected me with a dedicated account manager.
The account manager does not provide the level of business advice your LLC gets from Northwest Registered Agent, but did address questions I had about their registered agent service in Delaware, even going as far as suggesting additional services that might protect my fledgling LLC.
Harbor Compliance is a solid choice if you are looking for a cheap registered agent in Delaware that provides all necessary services required to start a new business entity in the state.
Their online systems are easy enough to navigate, which saves you a lot of time during your business registration, and if by any chance you get stuck, the dedicated account manager is always available to guide you through the entire process.
If you already have a business advisor and all you need is a Delaware registered agent to take care of your business needs, then Harbor Compliance is a sure choice.
The Other Registered Agent Services
As part of my research, I included the following nine Delaware registered agents in my journey to find out which is the best Delaware registered agent service. Here they are in no particular order.
Rapid Registered Agent—A few fun features
With their auto-complete forms, Rapid Registered Agent assisted me in completing the time-consuming paperwork required to guarantee my new Delaware LLC is in good standing with the law. Their customer support is adequate but they don’t offer the same degree of service you get from the Corporate Guides at Northwest Registered Agent.
They’re a good service that meets all of my needs, but they’re still more expensive than Harbor Compliance given that they charge $120 for their services.
Rocket Lawyer—Great for online services
For $149, Rocket Lawyer provides online legal services as well as a few basic agent services. These include storing legal papers in an online document repository and submitting my Certificate of Formation with the Delaware Division of Corporations.
If you require legal paperwork, assistance with contract enforcement, or even a session with a lawyer, they’re absolutely worth a look. But their Delaware registered agent services can do with a bit of improvement.
Team ‘Nothing Special’
The four Delaware registered agent service providers listed below are so similar that it isn’t essential to write about them individually. Jumpstart Filings ($150 plus filing fee), SunDoc Filings ($159 plus filing fee), Registered Agents Inc. ($200 plus filing fee), and Incorporate.com ($235 plus filing fee) are okay, but not remarkable.
These are LLC formation services that dabble in the Delaware registered agent service sector and provide what a new corporation or LLC needs from a registered agent service without giving anything new or notable. If you need help drafting your new Delaware LLC Operating Agreement in addition to registered agent services, these Delaware corporations might be useful.
Team ‘Big Brand’
They’re quite content to charge outrageous fees, not even including Delaware state fees, for what is effectively the same product as everyone else’s. They all have a nice-looking website with all the bells and whistles and competent marketing professionals who supply whatever general information you need about their services, so they think they can get away with it.
Not to mention that they all offer additional services (such as an LLC service or other Delaware incorporation service), but for an extra fee. Their customer service is adequate, but Northwest Registered Agent and Harbor Compliance provide better customer support services for less than half the price.
Wrapping It All Up
After putting each Delaware registered agent service on our list through rigorous testing, I can definitely conclude that for the best registered agent, Delaware business and LLC owners should look no further than Northwest Registered Agent. They are the finest registered agents for your corporation or LLC in Delaware.
Northwest Registered Agent was able to provide basic Delaware registered agent services, such as a registered office in Delaware open during regular business hours to accept my legal documents, including Service of Process, filing of my Certificate of Formation (or Certificate of Incorporation, depending on your business structure) on behalf of my Delaware LLC, processing and forwarding of ALL my mail and legal documents, and a Delaware street address. They also kept me out of trouble with the Delaware Secretary of State’s office by supplying compliance alerts to remind me of my annual report.
Their Corporate Guides will assist you with the formation of your Delaware LLC as well as address your concerns and provide excellent business advice that will benefit you in your everyday business operations. They are the real reason I put Northwest Registered Agent at the top of the list.
If you want to establish your LLC in the state of Delaware and need registered agents that provide all the services you need, including expert business advice, visit Northwest Registered Agent today and learn more about their services.
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