5 Best LLC Formation Services in California (Dec 2023)

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 ZenBusiness - ($0 + State Fees) Online LLC Setup

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Best LLC Formation Service in California

Best California LLC Services for 2023: Ready to launch a business? Starting a California LLC is your first big move.

With so many LLC formation services out there, each claiming to be the top choice, it’s easy to feel lost.

What if you had a clear, easy-to-follow guide pointing you straight to the best options?

That’s where LLCBuddy comes in. Our team has researched and vetted the top LLC services in California just for you. Dive into our list, compare features and prices, and find the perfect fit for your business. Start your California LLC journey with confidence. Check out the best California LLC services from below.

Best LLC Formation Services in California

Here is the list of best LLC services available in California. The best thing about these services is starting your LLC for free. Some of the following services are offering LLC formation in California at $0. Other than the state fees and charges, you do not have to pay any charges to the service provider. You will get the basic formation package for free. Now, let’s check out the list of best LLC formation service providers in California-

LLC Service

Our Rating & Pricing

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$0 + State Fees

  • 100% accuracy guarantee

  • Worry-free service

  • Great customer support

  • Established reputation

  • Extras are bit more expensive

  • Good customer support

Below is the list of the best LLC formation services in California we picked for you.

  1. ZenBusiness – Known for its affordable packages and efficient service, ZenBusiness has become a favorite among new entrepreneurs.
  2. LegalZoom – With years of industry experience, LegalZoom offers comprehensive services and a vast array of legal resources.
  3. Northwest Registered Agent – Praised for its top-notch customer service, Northwest ensures personalized assistance and detailed compliance guidance.
  4. BetterLegal – Speed is BetterLegal’s forte, promising the fastest LLC formation process in the market.
  5. TailorBrands – Beyond LLC services, TailorBrands stands out with its branding solutions, making it a one-stop shop for budding businesses.

Our Editorial Team selects these companies through thorough research and market study. It is recommended that you cross-check all the factors before choosing the right one for your business.

1. ZenBusiness


ZenBusiness is a Texas-based company that provides services from formation to annual compliance to an LLC. It offers three plans, Starter, Pro, and Premium. The Starter plan starts from $0. That means you can form your LLC for free in California, though you must pay the state filing fee of $70 to the California Secretary of State. But, the company charges nothing to form your business in the state. 

ZenBusiness Plans

  1. Starter Plan at $0 + state filing fee
  2. Pro Plan at $199/year + state filing fee
  3. Premium Plan at $299/year + state filing fee

ZenBusiness Pros and Cons

Why You Must Get ZenBusinessWhy You Should Not Get ZenBusiness
100% accuracy rateDoes not form California nonprofit
Free LLC formation in CaliforniaAdditional cost for EIN
User friendly
Standalone Agent for Service of Process services

ZenBusiness Overview

ZenBusiness is one of those top-rated companies that provide business formation in California at a minimum cost (currently at $0). There is no charge to be paid to the company for forming your LLC in California. The state filing fee and other necessary fees must be paid, including the registered agent fee. 

ZenBusiness offers three plans, among which the Pro plan is recommended. The Pro plan has everything you need to start an LLC in California. Obtaining EIN, operating agreement drafting, name search, and all other services are available with the rush filing feature. 

2. LegalZoom


LegalZoom is one of the service providers in California that offers free LLC formation services. If you want to avoid spending money to form your LLC, then LegalZoom is for you. It offers various formation packages that include all types of LLC services. Aside from LLC formation, LegalZoom offers C and S corp formation. With over thousands of customers, the company offers basic LLC formation services at $0. 

LegalZoom Plans

  • Basic Package- $0 + State Filing Fees (Tax deduction may be applicable)
  • Pro Package – $249 + State Filing Fees (Tax deductible may be applicable)
  • Premium Package – $279 + State Filing Fees (Tax deduction may be applicable)

Apart from these packages, LegalZoom offers a bunch of add-on services as well. Add-on services include the following-

  • Registered Agent – $299 per year. Available as an add-on and not included in any packages
  • Trademark registration: Assisting with the US trademark application process
  • Copyright registration: Guidance on registering copyrights for creative works
  • Patent services: Support in obtaining utility, design, and plant patents
  • Estate planning: Offering personalized wills, trusts, and power of attorney documents
  • Legal advice: Access to a network of lawyers for consultations and legal guidance
  • Expedited Filing: With an additional $99, you can speed up your filing process.

LegalZoom Pros and Cons

Why You Must Get LegalZoomWhy You Shouldn’t Get LegalZoom
Free LLC formationExpensive add-ons, such as Registered Agent
Trustworthy and established reputationHigher pricing compared to some competitors
Quick turnaround timeLess number of add-on options
Access to legal professionalsSome additional fees not included in plan prices
Customer support available through phone or chatMixed customer reviews

LegalZoom Overview

LegalZoom is one of the oldest companies in USA. This company is a service provider offering LLC formation at $0. It offers three broad packages, Basic, Pro, and Premium. The Basic package costs $0. Though you must pay the California filing fee while filing the Articles of Organization with the California Secretary of State. The filing fee depends on which method, mail, online, or any other method you choose. 

LegalZoom offers vast add-ones like others. Hence, the chances of getting diverse services are comparatively high. The best part about the company is there is an access to legal documents and legal consultation. The registered agent service is a bit expensive. If you want to hire Agent for Service of Process from LegalZoom, you must purchase that service separately, it does not come with any formation plans. 

3. Northwest Registered Agent

northwest registered agent

Northwest Registered Agent is a family-owned business based in Spoken, Washington state. The company offers LLC formation, registered agent service, annual compliances, and other business-related services in all 50 states, including California. It offers LLC formation at $ 39+ state fees and registered agent service at $125 yearly. 

Northwest Plans

Northwest does not have conventional packages. It offers Core, Business maintenance, and business development services. Under these categories, various services are available at a flat rate. Some of the services offered by Northwest in California are listed below-

  • LLC formation in California at $39 + state filing fee
  • Registered Agent at $125 yearly
  • Annual report filing at $100 + state filing fee
  • Obtaining EIN at $50
  • Northwest offers National Agent Service. If you operate your LLC Agent for Service of Process in 5 or more states, you can pay $100 + state fees (if applicable) to get a single agent for all states.

Northwest Registered Agent Pros and Cons

Why You Must Get NorthwestWhy You Should Not Get Northwest
DIY Packages for your LLC in CaliforniaNot BBB accredited
No plans, flat rate for all servicesAdditional charges to obtain EIN in California
Purchase only the service you need to form California LLC.The operating agreement draft is not included in the Core services
Northwest offers standalone Agent for Service of Process service in California

Northwest Registered Agent Overview

Northwest is one of those service providers that offer DIY packages. Northwest is not for you if you want a wholesome formation package in California. It does not have conventional LLC formation packages. It is simply like a departmental store for you. You don’t need to buy everything, but the only thing you need. 

Northwest has in-house corporate guides to guide you through the formation process. It offers LLC formation at $39 plus the state filing fee ($70). If you have already formed your LLC in California and are willing to appoint Agent for Service of Process only, then Northwest can provide a standalone registered agent service at $125 per year.

Northwest offers single flat rates for all services in California and other states. The best part about the company is it does not outsource any of its services. Northwest offers corporate guides to help you through the steps of LLC formation. 

4. BetterLegal


BetterLegal is a comparatively new company than other competitors. But this company has successfully grabbed a large portion of the market in the United States. Serving in 51 states, BetterLegal has been in business since 2016. Unlike other experienced companies, it does not have a list of packages and plans for LLC formation.

BetterLegal Plans

BetterLegal offers one single plan at a flat $299 + state filing fees. It has a list of add-on services as well. BetterLegal is an online service that started off with a very small team. However, even after being in the business for so long, they didn’t increase their team size much. They have transparent pricing, and no hidden charge exists for any services they provide. 

BetterLegal offers a list of add-on services. Following are the additional services they offer- 

  • Registered Agent service – $10/month or $90/year
  • State Annual compliance services – $10/month or $90/year
  • Permit & License Search Service – $125
  • Amendment & document research – Free with the core formation service package

BetterLegal Pros and Cons

Why You Must Get BetterLegalWhy You Shouldn’t Get BetterLegal
No refund; all sales are finalThe basic package does not include registered agent service
Quick Turnaround timeAdditional charge for EIN
A+ BBB AccreditedThe basic package does not include a registered agent service
Single plan for all incorporation

BetterLegal Overview

Even though the company is called BetterLegal, no attorneys or legal services are available. The company offers a single plan for all types of business formation. Hence, if you are planning to form a corporation, you can pay $299 + incorporation fee ($100 for filing online and by mail. $115 for in person filing in California). It offers comparatively better turnaround time at a reasonable price than other companies. You can file your LLC within 10 minutes with BetterLegal. 

It offers a resource center for new entrepreneurs. They provide guidance to make things easier when it comes to filing your business. Their small team sometimes fails to cater to their customers on time. Reaching out to their customer support team is very difficult. Another disadvantage is it does not have a refund policy. All sales with BetterLegal are final, and at any stage, upon cancelation, no refund is made. However, basic LLC formation and registered agent services are much cheaper in BetterLegal than in other close competitors.

5. TailorBrands


Do you want to create a brand for your business in California? Here is the LLC formation service provider, TailorBrands, for you. The company was established in 2015 in New York, and since then, it has offered several incredible services to set up your business. TailorBrands has a single LLC formation plan that starts at $49 a year. You can choose different other add-on services at an additional cost. 

TailorBrands Services

TailorBrands offer a single plan for forming an LLC at $49. There are some basic services that TailorBrands offer, including starting an LLC, filing it, California name availability search, priority support, and so on. You can use their add-on services as and when required. Add-ons are-

  • Registered Agent Service – $199/year
  • Employment ID Number (EIN) – $99 (one-time pay)
  • Annual Compliances – $299/year
  • Operating Agreement – $29
  • Expedited Filing – $49
  • Business bank account – Free

TailorBrands Pros and Cons

Why You Must Get TailorBrandsWhy You Shouldn’t Get TailorBrands
Low-cost LLC formationNot BBB Accredited
Free business bank accountsNo business domain packages
Hassle-free LLC formationAdditional charges to obtain EIN
Additional services like logo, website, domain

TailorBrands Overview

TailorBrands does not have vast LLC formation packages. Instead, it has a single package that includes the formation of LLCs. The name availability search is unlimited, and you don’t have to pay any additional fees. The state filing fee of $70 must be paid apart from the charges you pay for add-ons. 

TailorBrands offers other business services such as logo making, domain, website, business bank account, merchandise, and other business services. As a small or start-up business, you must go for TailorBrands.

How to Form an LLC in California

California, popularly known as The Golden State, is a business-friendly state with a population of 40,223,504. The Nominal Gross Domestic Product (in millions) of California is $3,634,821 according to a 2022 study, which has been said to be increased over the past year. Hence, starting your business in California will always be a good option. If you choose the state capital, Sacramento, to start your LLC, you might get more tax and other benefits. 

To form an LLC in California, you need to follow some basic steps, including getting an LLC name, appointing your California Agent for Service of Process, filing the California Articles of Organization, creating California LLC operating agreement, and finally getting an EIN for filing required taxes. 

You can do that on your own. However, it is always recommended to get a professional person on board to guide you through. These steps are crucial and sensitive. You must complete everything to avoid canceling your formation process. Hence, having a professional LLC formation service for your LLC is better. 

How to Choose the Best LLC Formation Service in California

It is important to choose the best service for your business carefully. Before you select the best one, make sure you thoroughly research on following points-

  1. Reputation: Look for a company with a good reputation. Check reviews and ratings from previous clients to see how they feel about the services offered.
  2. Experience: Choose a company with years of LLC formation experience. This ensures that they have knowledge of the process and can provide quality services.
  3. Cost: Compare prices between different companies. Choose a company that offers affordable pricing for the services you need.
  4. Customer Service: Ensure that the company has good customer service. They should be responsive, helpful, and willing to answer any questions.
  5. Services Offered: Look for a company that offers a range of services, including entity formation, registered agent services, and ongoing compliance support to ensure your LLC remains in good standing.
  6. Ease of Use: Choose a company with a user-friendly website and easy-to-use online platform. This makes the process of forming an LLC simple and straightforward.
  7. Guarantees: Check if the company offers a satisfaction guarantee or a refund policy. This gives you peace of mind that you are getting the best possible service.

Also Read

Why California is One of the Best Places for Business

California: A Haven for Businesses

When it comes to finding the ideal location for businesses to thrive, one name that tops the charts is undoubtedly California. From the sprawling metropolises to the picturesque coastal towns, the Golden State offers an irresistible blend of opportunities and advantages that make it one of the premier places for business across the globe.

One of the many reasons California stands above the rest is its robust and diverse economy. The state boasts an abundance of industries that range from technology and aerospace to entertainment and agriculture. Nowhere else can you find such a vibrant hub of innovation where groundbreaking ideas merge seamlessly with cultural influences and boundless creativity. This unique blend has propelled California’s economy to new heights, making it a magnet for entrepreneurs and startups aiming to make it big.

Nurturing such a thriving business ecosystem is an array of excellent universities and research institutions. California is home to some of the world’s top educational establishments, attracting top talent from across the globe. These institutions not only produce remarkable graduates but also provide ample research and development opportunities, producing groundbreaking advancements in various fields. Successful businesses are built on the foundations of such cutting-edge knowledge and expertise, and California undoubtedly delivers.

Moreover, the state presents stunning opportunities for networking and collaboration. With numerous industry clusters catering to specific sectors, like Silicon Valley for technology and Hollywood for entertainment, businesses in California enjoy unparalleled access to a vibrant community of like-minded professionals and companies. In an atmosphere where innovation and entrepreneurship flourish, the possibilities for partnerships and collaborations are endless.

California’s investment in infrastructure is another feather in its cap, aiding steady business growth. From well-maintained transportation networks to well-established communication systems, the state offers businesses a seamless experience. This solid infrastructure allows for the smooth movement of people, products, and ideas, further fostering a conducive environment for businesses to thrive.

One cannot overlook the natural splendor and exceptional quality of life that California has to offer. The state is renowned for its stunning landscapes, diverse climates, and breathtaking coastal views, drawing talent and entrepreneurs from all corners of the globe. The allure of a balanced lifestyle, where work-life harmony is comfortably attained, is a treasured benefit for those running a business. California’s enchanting beauty merely adds to the decision of why entrepreneurs flock here from all over the world.

Finally, but perhaps most importantly, the well-balanced approach to societal concerns elevates California’s business appeal. The state has continually taken significant strides towards embracing sustainability and ecological responsibility. California’s environmental initiatives and policies are reforming traditional business practices, attracting enterprises that prioritize sustainability and innovation. Additionally, the state’s commitment to social issues and cultural diversity fosters an environment where individuals from diverse backgrounds and perspectives can contribute their unique ideas to the business landscape.

In conclusion, California’s virtues as an ideal location for businesses are unparalleled. With a robust, diverse economy, top-class institutions, networking opportunities, state-of-the-art infrastructure, exceptional quality of life, and a commitment to sustainability, it is no surprise that countless entrepreneurs and businesses choose to call this state home. California undoubtedly shines bright as a beacon for success, offering a comprehensive package for businesses looking to thrive and make a mark on the world.

Why California is One of the Best Places for Business

One of the key reasons why California thrives as a business hub is its unparalleled economic strength. The state boasts the world’s fifth-largest economy, surpassing even some developed nations. Whether it’s in the technology sector, entertainment industry, agriculture, or aerospace, California leads the way in numerous sectors, providing a wealth of opportunities for businesses to flourish.

Furthermore, California breeds innovation like no other place in the world. From Silicon Valley, the world’s epicenter of technological advancements, to Hollywood, the heart of the entertainment industry, the state fosters an environment that embraces risk-taking, creativity, and forward-thinking. The culture of innovation that permeates everything in California not only attracts top talent from around the globe but also provides businesses with the resources and support necessary for growth and success.

Moreover, California’s commitment to sustainable practices and environmental stewardship sets it apart from other states. The state has long been a pioneer in adopting and promoting environmentally friendly technologies and policies. This not only positions businesses operating in California as leaders in sustainability but also allows them to tap into the fast-growing green market, which presents abundant business opportunities.

In addition to a supportive business environment, California offers a superb quality of life, making it a desirable place for employees to live and businesses to thrive. The state’s stunning natural landscapes, from its iconic coastlines to magnificent national parks, provide residents with ample opportunities for outdoor enjoyment. California’s diverse communities, cultural richness, and world-renowned art and entertainment scenes make the quality of life in the state second to none.

The state’s excellent educational institutions, including renowned universities, ensure a steady stream of highly skilled professionals, allowing businesses in California to tap into a well-educated talent pool. The proximity to elite educational facilities, combined with a culture that fosters innovation, translates into a strong research and development environment, continuously fueling cutting-edge advancements across various industries.

While critics argue that the cost of doing business in California is high, it’s essential to consider the benefits that go hand in hand with those costs. The state offers businesses unparalleled market access, granting them unparalleled access to consumers both within the state’s massive population and globally. Additionally, California benefits from robust transportation infrastructure and trade partnerships, making it well-positioned for both domestic and international trade.

In conclusion, California undeniably excels as a hotbed for business. Its diverse and prosperous economy, coupled with a culture of innovation, ensures that businesses in the state can flourish in various industries. The state’s commitment to sustainability and high quality of life further reinforces its status as an advantageous place for businesses to set up shop. California’s position as one of the best places for business is well-deserved, and it shows no signs of fading any time soon.

Why California is One of the Best Places for Business

First and foremost, California’s strong and diverse economy sets the stage for business success. The state boasts a GDP that would be the envy of many countries, rivaling even the largest global economies. This economic powerhouse attracts a range of industries, from technology giants like Apple and Google to entertainment giants like Warner Bros. and Disney. California’s economic vitality fuels growth not only within the state but also has a significant impact on the national economy, reinforcing its position as a business hub.

Another crucial aspect that sets California apart is its exceptional workforce. The state is home to a pool of highly educated, skilled, and motivated professionals. Its world-renowned universities, such as Stanford and UC Berkeley, consistently produce top talent that companies can tap into. Moreover, California’s strong culture of innovation and entrepreneurship fosters a can-do attitude among its citizens, making it an ideal place for nurturing and leveraging talent.

In addition to a strong workforce, California breathes innovation like no other place. The state has a well-established infrastructure that supports groundbreaking research and development. Many companies and research institutions in tech, biotech, and clean energy sectors call California home. The collaborative nature of these industries, with individuals and companies constantly pushing the boundaries of innovation, continuously fuels progress. This confluence of innovation, entrepreneurship, and a favorable business climate has made California the epicenter of technological advancements and the birthplace of many groundbreaking ideas.

Furthermore, there is much more to California than just its bustling urban areas. The state offers a diverse landscape, stunning natural beauty, and a pleasant climate throughout the year. This unique combination of metropolitan areas with idyllic surroundings lends itself well to promoting a work-life balance that is often conducive to productivity and employee well-being. The accessibility to pristine nature, whether it be the breathtaking coastline or serene National Parks, can also inspire creativity and help attract and retain a skilled workforce.

California’s commitment to sustainability and clean energy also makes it an attractive destination for businesses. The state consistently implements environmentally friendly policies and invests in renewable energy sources. These efforts not only benefit the environment but also enable a greener, more sustainable business ecosystem. Emphasizing corporate responsibility, California can attract companies invested in creating a positive societal impact and adapting to the challenges posed by climate change.

In conclusion, California has rightfully earned its reputation as one of the best places for business. Its robust economy, exceptional workforce, commitment to innovation, natural beauty, and sustainable practices combine to create an environment that fosters growth and success. Entrepreneurs, corporations, and startups gravitate towards this state rich in opportunity. California exemplifies the American Dream and continues to inspire individuals to chase their ambitions, helping reshape industries and change our world for the better.

Why California is One of the Best Places for Business

Firstly, California’s stunning landscape is an irresistible drawcard for businesses. From the iconic beaches of Malibu to the breathtaking redwoods of the north, this state offers unparalleled natural beauty. This not only enhances the quality of life for residents but also creates a destination that attracts tourists from across the globe. The tourism industry contributes significantly to the economy, presenting abundant business opportunities in hospitality, leisure, and recreation sectors.

Furthermore, California’s diverse population adds tremendous value to the business environment. The state is a multicultural melting pot that fosters creativity, innovation, and collaboration. Companies operating in California have access to an incredibly talented and diverse pool of human resources with a vast array of skills, languages, and perspectives. Such diversity fuels creativity, encourages out-of-the-box thinking, and serves as a fertile ground for businesses seeking to tailor their products and services to a global audience.

Moreover, innovation is deeply woven into the fabric of California. Recognized as the leader of technological innovation across multiple industries, California has nurtured some of the world’s most recognizable and successful companies. Silicon Valley, which needs no introduction, is home to global tech giants who continuously drive progress through cutting-edge research and development. Being in California allows entrepreneurs to tap into an intricate network of tech-savvy individuals and foster collaborations that can elevate their businesses to unprecedented heights.

California’s infrastructure is yet another element that sets the stage for business success. The state hosts a combination of advanced transportation systems, modern telecommunication networks, and cutting-edge research institutions. Californian businesses have access to extensive transportation links, such as international airports, ports, and a robust highway system. This strategic advantage enables them to easily connect with suppliers, customers, and markets across the globe. Furthermore, the presence of esteemed research institutions ingrained in Californian society encourages entreprenuers to innovate and buinesses to leverage a highly-educated workforce.

Additionally, California’s commitment to protecting the environment makes it a compelling location for businesses prioritizing sustainability. The state has set ambitious goals for reducing its carbon footprint and transitioning to clean energy sources. As the world increasingly recognizes the importance of sustainability, California’s dedication to eco-friendly practices positions businesses there at the forefront of initiatives both nationally and internationally. By operating in California, businesses can proudly align themselves with a shared vision for a better and more sustainable future.

In conclusion, California stands tall as one of the best places for business due to its exceptional resources, dynamic workforce, commitment to innovation, and environmentally conscious policies. The state’s unique combination of natural beauty and cultural richness offers an unparalleled lifestyle for entrepreneurs and business professionals. California is more than just a hub for commerce; it is a beacon of hope for innovation, diversity, and sustainable development.


Starting a business in California is a big step. It’s really helpful to have experts on your side. When you use a professional LLC service, you’re making sure everything is done right without any headaches. We’ve given you a list of the top choices in this article. Take your time to look at each one. Check their prices, see what they offer, and think about what’s best for your business.

Remember, picking the right California LLC service can make things smoother and better for your business as it grows. If you want the best for your business, check out ZenBusiness. With their compelling offer of $0 + state fee for LLC formation, combined with an impressive array of 5-star Trustpilot reviews, they’re our number one recommendation. Seize this exceptional opportunity for your business!

About Author & Editorial Staff

Steve Goldstein, founder of LLCBuddy, is a specialist in corporate formations, dedicated to guiding entrepreneurs and small business owners through the LLC process. LLCBuddy provides a wealth of streamlined resources such as guides, articles, and FAQs, making LLC establishment seamless. The diligent editorial staff makes sure content is accurate, up-to-date information on topics like state-specific requirements, registered agents, and compliance. Steve's enthusiasm for entrepreneurship makes LLCBuddy an essential and trustworthy resource for launching and running an LLC.

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