Brief Synopsis on Inc Authority
Our Inc Authority review examines their business formation service, including prices, plans, features, add-ons, customer reviews, support, and company history.
Inc Authority is not the most well-known name formation service, but they have a long and impressive track record. You can also find excellent reviews on Trustpilot and Google for Inc Authority.
Inc Authority’s most popular service is its free LLC formation and incorporation filing. This service also includes a free year as a registered agent.
Inc Authority is small, but it offers many business-related services through partners and third parties. Inc Authority also tends to sell unnecessary services, and its bundles can be pretty expensive.
|Service||Entry ($0)||Standard ($399)||Executive ($499)||Tycoon ($799)|
|LLC or Corporation Filing||Included||Included||Included||Included|
|Operating Agreement Drafting||$89||Included||Included||Included|
|Business License Search||Not available||Not available||Included||Included|
|Registered Agent Service||Free for one year, then $99/yr||Free for one year, then $99/yr||Free for one year, then $99/yr||Free for one year, then $99/yr|
|Expedited (next business day) Filing||$49||$49||$49||Included|
Inc Authority Analysis
Inc Authority is a Nevada-based business formation company. The company, which has been in existence since 1989, is a much longer time than most of its competitors. Inc Authority employs 25 people and offers many services through its partner companies.
Inc Authority offers packages for business formation. It provides free filing in its entry-level package. The company also provides other services related to formation. These include its search for a business license, its Operating Agreement drafting, and registration service (offered by a third party).
Inc Authority offers services through its partners and third-party suppliers that are not often associated with the formation companies. Inc Authority offers similar services such as its “credit and funding evaluation” and other similar services focused on exploring possible lines of credit or loan opportunities through its partners.
The three premium bundles available from the company are $399, $499, and $799. Each bundle includes many additional services beyond the ones listed in the chart.
Inc Authority’s Entry package is entirely free, but you’ll be offered several options for payment when you get to checkout.
A summary of the services included in each bundle.
Entry Formation – $0 + state Fees
Inc Authority’s basic bundle is entirely free and includes many essential services like Articles of Organization filings and registered agent service.
This bundle is an excellent choice for those looking for a low-cost bare-bones option.
The bundle for entry formation includes:
Verification of business name: This search verifies that your business name has not been taken before you file. This feature is available on most state Secretary of State websites.
Filings: Articles of Organization filed with the state (LLC), or Articles of Incorporation filed (Corporation), are the official founding documents of your LLC or corporation. They must be filed with your state’s secretary of state office.
Registered agent service is free for one year. Registered agents (RAs) must be available during regular business hours to receive legal/official correspondence. While some people prefer to do it themselves, there are many benefits to using an RA.
INC Care support: Customer support is available during business hours, Monday through Friday, 8 am to 5 pm PST.
Optional S-corp election form: Through IRS Form 2553, you can choose to have your LLC or corporation given S-corp status. This could offer tax and organizational benefits.
Tax planning consultation: One-hour consultation with a tax expert. This consultation will address all tax-related questions you may have and offer suggestions to increase your net earnings. A third party performs this consultation.
Credit and funding analysis for businesses: Advice about credit and financing options tailored to your industry and business needs.
Starter Bundle: $399 + state fees
Inc Authority’s starter package is a significant price increase over its Entry bundle. It includes valuable services and unnecessary extras like EIN filing and company record book and seal.
This plan is not recommended as the $399 extra value is not worth it.
We recommend purchasing the Operating Agreement add-on to the Entry bundle if you require an Operating Agreement.
The Starter includes all the Entry bundles plus:
Operating Agreement for LLCs/bylaws to corporations: The Operating Agreement is a key document for LLCs. It outlines the business’ structure as well as ownership. For corporations, the bylaw is a similar document.
Record book and company seal: This is a personalized record book that can be used for official correspondence. It is not legal, but it looks great.
Minutes and resolutions for the initial meeting: This template is suitable for businesses with multiple stakeholders/members who plan to hold regular meetings.
Stock or membership ownership certificates: These personalized certificates signify your LLC or corporation ownership shares. This is a nice touch but not legally required.
EIN (Employer Identification Number): Apply for an EIN (Employer Identification Number) from the IRS. EIN is your company’s social security number. An EIN is required to hire employees and open a bank account for your business. You can do this online for free at the IRS.
INC Care Success Advisory Services for One Year: According to Inc Authority, advisory services include customer support:
- IRS audits and notifications
- Accounting and Tax
- Licenses for State and Local Businesses
- Lawsuit Defense
- Payroll and Business Financing
- Business Banking and Credit Cards
Executive Bundle $499 + State Fees
Inc Authority’s Executive Bundle is $100 more expensive but adds only a few services. Although the business license report can be helpful, we recommend consulting specialists in domain hosting and website setup.
We don’t recommend this package.
Executive includes all the other bundles plus:
Report on business licenses: Software that allows you to search quickly for all licenses and permits relevant to your company.
Website domain: A third-party (GoDaddy) provides domain hosting for a website.
Tycoon Bundle $799 + state fees
The Inc Authority Tycoon bundle, one of the most costly formation bundles available, is offered by Inc Authority. Most of the added services are partner-related and relate to lines of credit or loans provided by third parties.
We recommend that you go directly to a bank or lender who is trusted for such services. However, we do not recommend purchasing the Tycoon bundle.
Tycoon includes all the Executive bundles plus:
Express processing: This means that your application will be processed faster because it is prioritized within Inc Authority’s systems. It means that your documents will be sent to the state authorities within one business day. This is equivalent to Inc Authority’s expedited add-on option, purchased with other packages for $49.
Business credit coach: Three-month credit coaching service for companies that provides information on building creditworthiness.
Multi-tiered credit construction system: This process is designed to increase your creditworthiness quickly. Unfortunately, there are not many details about this process.
LaunchPad for business credit: LaunchPad is similar to the other services, but it uses software that provides information to help you understand how to build credit.
D&B Credit Bureau registration: Register with a reputable agency for credit rating. D&B (Dun & Bradstreet), one of three major credit bureaus, provides business credit scores – functions in the same way as an individual credit score.
Which bundle offers the best value?
Inc Authority’s entry-level bundle, which is free, is the clear winner in value. This bundle is an excellent choice for anyone looking for a basic formation.
Unfortunately, the Entry bundle does not include an Operating Agreement. You can still purchase the Operating Agreement separately for $89. Although not completely free, it’s still a reasonable price.
Inc Authority’s premium bundles include valuable services but too many unneeded services that add to the cost.
A handy tool is the business license search. It is essential to have Operating Agreements and Corporate bylaws.
Most people don’t need stock certificates or a company record. You can, however, file for an EIN free of charge. Specialist providers can provide web hosting.
Worst of all, services such as the Inc CARE success advisory service and the multi-tiered credit construction system are lacking in detail. There are too many third-party upsells available that offer little value.
We don’t recommend any Inc Authority premium bundles.
Canceling Inc Authority Services
Inc Authority’s terms & conditions page states that cancellations for ongoing services can be made within 14 days of purchase. If you cancel within this time, you will receive a full refund. You can cancel by calling 877-684-28336.
Inc Authority cannot offer refunds for past services such as individual filings with state authorities. Make sure you are confident about your purchase, especially if you’re purchasing one of Inc Authority’s more costly bundles.
Inc Authority Strengths
These are our top picks for Inc Authority’s services.
1. No cost LLC incorporation or formation
Inc Authority Free LLC
It is hard to beat the free. Inc Authority places a lot of emphasis on the free Entry LLC formation package – there are links to “start now” on every page of the website that does not have anything to do with LLC formation.
Instead of creating an LLC, you can incorporate a corporation using Inc Authority’s Entry bundle.
The Entry bundle includes both necessary and optional services. There are many benefits to the Entry bundle, including customer support, business name-checking, filing for formation, and digital file storage.
Although the additional option to file for S-corp elections (through Form 2553) won’t apply to all, it is an excellent addition for those who desire S-corp status. This bundle also includes a year of free registered agent service.
Inc Authority is unique in that it offers essential filing services for free. There are few competitors, such as Active Filings or Incfile.
As you get closer to checkout, they will be offering you many paid add-ons. Some of the “bonus” features, such as the free tax consultation, seem to be designed to encourage you to purchase other services. It is also a disadvantage that an Operating Agreement, which costs $89, is not included.
However, you can still file your taxes for free if you desire.
2. Top Customer Reviews
Customer reviews are a strong indicator of quality in this business. Like LegalZoom, even the most reputable companies only have fair reviews on review sites.
Trustpilot Rating 4.8/5
Google rating at 4.5/5 (with more than 784 reviews).
These are just a few examples of Inc Authority reviews. Although there were some negative reviews, these were few and far between compared with other competitors.
Many customer reviews were focused on the company’s outstanding customer service. Many customers referred to their particular customer reps in the reviews.
Although we would like to see extended hours for support (Inc Authority support cannot be reached over the phone on weekends), it is impressive that an organization as small as Inc Authority has achieved such high customer service ratings. Other small operators in this industry rely heavily on chatbots and automation.
3. Record of 31+ years
It’s rare to find a business that has been in existence for more than three decades in an industry filled with young entrepreneurs. Inc Authority was founded in 1989 and has over 30 years of experience.
Quality does not necessarily come with longevity. Inc Authority’s track record is impressive when combined with its excellent reviews ratings.
It is remarkable that a business such as theirs has survived all industry changes and continues to serve thousands of customers each year.
Inc Authority’s lengthy tenure has allowed them to build stronger partnerships with Intuit and Bank of America. This could lead to better deals and more seamless service than the third-party offerings offered by other companies.
Inc Authority Weaknesses
Inc Authority has its problems, however. These are the main drawbacks that we discovered.
1. Transparency in pricing
The first thing you will notice is that Inc Authority’s website seems odd. It is tough to find a price on anything.
Inc Authority’s entry-level bundle is completely free. However, you will be presented with several expensive add-ons as you get closer to checkout.
Inc Authority’s “Additional Services,” which includes trademark filing, business plans drafting, and many other services, does not list any prices for any of these services. They all have a “click-to-call” button.
Inc Authority’s Formation Bundles page doesn’t list prices. The Tycoon bundle may seem appealing until you call to find out it is $799.
There are not many details about the individual services. You won’t find information about the expected turnaround time for filings until you get to the end of checkout.
ZenBusiness and Swyft Filings also list their bundle prices and provide details on additional services.
Inc Authority offers several reasonably priced services, such as its registered agent service (provided by Registered Agents Inc.). You shouldn’t need to call a sales representative to quote a basic or bundle service. We don’t like the difficulty of finding prices.
2. Filing delayed
As is the case for its prices, Inc Authority is slow to respond to its turnaround times.
Many of their competitors indicate expected turnaround times for their bundles. Even if turnaround times are slow, you can still trust that companies are honest and transparent.
Inc Authority offers an “Express Processing” option for $49. They claim that Express Processing “bumps your LLC up to the front line to have your order sent TODAY to the state.”
This is not the same thing as expedited filing with the State. You pay a fee, and the state prioritizes your application with expedited state filing.
You can pay for Inc Authority to prioritize your application with “Express Processing.” Inc Authority may take up to a week to process your application if you do not pay for this additional service.
This adds to the average time it takes for Articles of Organization to be processed by states: 2-3 weeks.
The standard procedure is to have your application sent to the state within one or two days. This should not be considered an additional fee.
Information about how long it takes to send documents to the state by a company should be displayed prominently and not hidden at the checkout.
3. Third-party services and upselling
Inc Authority’s flagship service, the Entry formation bundle, is entirely free. They can’t make money from this service if they don’t make profit.
Many formation companies sell services that are not very useful and are guilty of it. Inc Authority is no exception. For example, when you complete your purchase of a formation bundle, you will be asked if EIN filing is something you wish to pay.
EIN filing is required, but it can be done quickly, and free of charge – Inc Authority will only charge $49
IncAuthority places a lot of emphasis on its partners, including banks, credit card companies, and credit rating agencies. While they might offer some insight, the “credit and financing evaluations” and tax consulting they offer are only meant to help you purchase their services.
Although some of the partnerships it offers can be very beneficial, it is best to research and shop around for specialized services and products—lines of credit, loans, and web marketing.
4. Formation Bundles are expensive
Inc Authority’s Entry bundle is a good deal. However, the other bundles in its range are more expensive. Their Standard bundle at $399 is more costly than many mid-tier formation packages.
While the Standard bundle offers valuable services such as Operating Agreement drafting and other essential services, it also contains many add-ons most startups won’t need.
Although stock certificates and an official seal of the company are excellent, they are not essential. The same goes for resolutions and minutes of initial meetings.
We’re most impressed with the Executive and Tycoon bundles at $799 and $499, respectively. They also include valuable services like a search for a business license and contain third-party add ons.
Inc Authority Services
Inc Authority provides a variety of services to new businesses in addition to core LLC formation services. These services include operating agreement drafting, EIN filing, and trademark registration.
We’ll be discussing these services and explaining why they might be needed. You’ll also find out how Inc Authority offers these services (as part of a package or as a separate service). Inc Authority’s charges.
Packages vary between $0 and $799.
LLCs can be formed at the state level. You can do this by filing Articles of Organization with your state’s Secretary of State Office. Filing through a formation service is a smart way to file. The filing process and rules vary from one state to the next.
Inc Authority’s online LLC filing service is the cornerstone of its business. Inc Authority makes it easy to file your Articles of Organization online. Most pages of the company’s website include links to their online formation setup. Links can also be found on pages that offer entirely different services.
Answering some questions about your business, such as an address, owner, industry, and so on, will help you understand its basics. You will be asked if additional services are required, such as EIN filing and Operating Agreement drafting.
Inc Authority’s entry-level formation package is free if you don’t want any add-ons.
The state fees are not included in the price. They can range from $50 to $400, depending on where you live. You will also receive a year of registered agent services through the Inc Authority, which you can find below.
Inc Authority doesn’t provide an estimated turnaround time for their entry-level packages. Click through to checkout. Average processing times will then be provided based on the state you filed. This average processing time is between 10 and 15 days for most states. However, there is a lot of variation.
The Tycoon Package includes “express processing.” However, it isn’t clear how this differs from their expediting filing, a $49 addition that guarantees documents will be sent within the next business day. States can still take some time to process your formation, sometimes taking several weeks depending on the state and the year.
Registered Agent Service
All packages include a free year and $99/year after that
All corporations and LLCs must nominate a registered agent when they are formed.
Individuals and businesses are designated to serve as registered agents (RAs). They can be contacted for official correspondence. This correspondence may contain important information from either the federal or state governments. Registered agents can also “service of process,” which is the receipt of legal documents such as court summons.
Registered agents must be available for business during all hours of the year. You could face penalties or lose good standing if you fail to appoint a registered representative.
Technically, you are allowed to appoint your RA. There are many reasons we don’t recommend this.
Business owners can feel overwhelmed by the requirement to have RAs available. Names and addresses of RAs are made public, posing privacy concerns for some. Many formation companies offer RA services – they will act as your registered agent.
Hiring a registered agent may be an intelligent decision if you have any of these conditions.
- You frequently travel, and you may not be at one address.
- You are not a citizen of the United States
- Your business may be located in several states
- Your name and address are not to be made public.
Inc Authority offers a free year of registered agent services with all its formation bundles. Its RA service costs $99/year after that. If you do not want to continue using this service, it will automatically renew.
Inc Authority does not perform this service. Instead, it will be a partner company, Registered Agents Inc., that will act as your registered agent.
Inc Authority does not provide much information about the registered agent service of their partner. Registered Agents Inc. does mention that they offer digital notifications. This means that important documents can be sent electronically to you instead of by mail.
Operating Agreements or Corporate Bylaws
$89 or included information packages
An Operating Agreement is a basic but essential document that outlines how a business will run. Operating agreements for LLCs often include the following information:
How to manage the LLC
How ownership will be divided between members
How are profits to be paid?
What happens if one of the LLC members wants to leave or if one member dies?
…and many more important questions
Only a few states, including New York, Delaware, Maine, and Missouri, require LLCs have an Operating Agreement. Even these states do not require that you send your Operating Agreement to them – you are only required to have it.
Although an Operating Agreement is not required, we recommend creating one. An Operating Agreement can increase the liability protections provided by your LLC.
People underestimate the possibility of disrupting events. It can be beneficial to have a written document that outlines what you should do during these events.
Inc Authority’s Entry bundle does not include Operating Agreement Drafting. You will need to purchase Operating Agreement drafting separately if you choose the Entry package. It costs $89.
All three Inc Authority bundles include operating agreement drafting.
Instead of creating an LLC when you incorporate, you can have corporate rules drawn up. These are for corporations and play a similar function to Operating Agreements.
$49 or included information packages
What is an EIN? If you purchase an Entry formation bundle, Inc Authority will add EIN filing to your checkout. All higher-level bundles include this service.
An EIN (Employer Identification Number) is a tax-related number the IRS assigns to businesses. Your EIN can be thought of as your company’s social security number.
EINs are required for businesses that hire employees or open a bank account. The IRS website makes it easy and quick to apply for an EIN.
Inc Authority charges $49 to file an EIN. It takes only a few minutes to apply for an EIN. This is why we don’t recommend paying any fees for the EIN filing process, regardless of price or service provider.
Inc Authority’s free LLC file service comes with a full year of registered agent service for partners. This is an appealing offering.
We are confident in recommending this service to anyone looking for an easy LLC formation due to its excellent track record and outstanding reviews.
We are less impressed with Inc Authority’s other packages. However, the company overall is not without its problems.
Inc Authority’s website lacks details. This includes basic information such as turnaround times and prices. You can only describe some of the more complex services they offer in a few sentences.
They have many “Call Now” buttons on their website. They want to make it easy for you to speak to a salesperson.
Inc Authority is a small business that provides various services to partners through third parties. When dealing with these services, we tend to avoid upselling. This is not necessarily a problem as the reps get high marks.