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LegalShield Review: Features, Cost, Pros & Cons

Written by:

Natalie is a business writer with experience in operations, HR, and training & development within the software, healthcare, and financial services sectors.

Edited by:

David has been writing and learning about business, finance and globalization for a quarter-century, starting with a small New York consulting firm in the 1990s.

LegalShield Review: Features, Cost, Pros & Cons

Navigating the intricate maze of legal systems is a daunting task for many, especially for budding businesses. LegalShield aims to address this issue, promising affordable, accessible legal services, with a significant focus on business formation.

In this concise review, we explore LegalShield’s value proposition, particularly for entrepreneurs needing assistance with business setup. Is LegalShield really the game-changer it claims to be in providing cost-effective legal counsel and simplifying business formation? Let’s delve into the specifics and assess the truth behind the promises.

Service Overview

Business Formation Service
Plans and Pricing
One plan: Launch by LegalShield, $149 + state filing fees
Registered Agent Service
Not included, $129 first year, then $99 annually
Operating Agreement
Included as part of 3 months of legal services
Annual Report Service
Not included
Processing Time
Same-day processing, standard state times apply
Customer Support
Chat, email, phone; Mon – Fri 7am – 7pm CST
Business Documents Online Library
Other Services Offered
Subscription-based legal services with matters like estate planning, family law, and business formation
Number of Businesses Served
Money Back Guarantee
60 days

Our Verdict on LegalShield

Overall, LegalShield provides extremely valuable services for aspiring business owners, especially when it comes to legal advice. Their Launch product contains all you need to form your business.

If you’re looking for additional personal legal services along with your business formation, LegalShield might be the right product for you. At the same time, several competitors offer a more robust platform at the same price point and are better suited for new business owners. 


Turnaround Time

Help and Support

Customer Satisfaction

Ease of Use

Overall Score: 3.4/5

Legal Shield’s Launch product contains all you need to form your business, including expert legal advice. We recommend this service to entrepreneurs looking for basic business formation filings.
Visit LegalShield

Pros and Cons


  • Competitive business formation price
  • Quick and easy purchase process
  • Mobile app available
  • Various legal services
  • Access to a large team of experienced lawyers


  • Less business formation/maintenance services compared to competitors
  • Inconsistent customer service
  • Some customers complained about the complicated cancellation process

LegalShield Services

Business Formation Service

Before forming your business, it’s essential to confirm that your preferred business name is not already taken. A LegalShield provider lawyer will handle the entire name search and business formation process as a part of the Launch by LegalShield program, which costs $149 + state filing fees.

Your LLC must be formed with your state by filing articles of organization, sometimes called a certificate of organization or a certificate of formation. This can be done online or by mail. Legal Shield handles the filing for you online, and the LLC approval time varies by state. 

This can be a time-consuming and difficult process for an entrepreneur, and getting customer support from your state government office is often a challenge. With Legal Shield, you have access to customer support during normal business hours, Mon – Fri, 7am – 7pm CST. 

Once your LLC is approved and official, you can access your formation documents on the Legal Shield website at any time.

Operating Agreement

The lawyers at LegalShield can assist you with creating an operating agreement customized for your state. An operating agreement for an LLC is an important legal document that details who owns the business and provides essential information on member duties. 

An LLC operating agreement establishes the financial relationship between business owners (“members”) and the basics of the working relationships between those owners and the managers who oversee daily operations. 

Access to business formation attorneys who can draw up an operating agreement for you is included in the Launch plan.


An employer identification number (EIN) is a tax-identifying number for your business. It’s required if your LLC has more than one member or has employees. It’s obtained by applying through the IRS.

LegalShield will handle the application process for you and send you your EIN as soon as it’s approved. Obtaining an EIN is included in the Launch by LegalShield plan. An attorney will guide you through the process every step of the way and prepare and file an EIN paperwork for you.

Business Permits

Every business permit has its own rules, fees, and processes for applying. Launch by LegalShield can significantly save you time by providing guidance from lawyers who can precisely identify the permits required to start your business and assist you in the application process.

Online Document Library

Instead of a library of documents, you’ll actually get a consultation with a business attorney as well as three months of ongoing legal support to assist with getting your venture off on the right foot. They can assist you with any documents you may need. 

Plans and Pricing

Launch by LegalShield
Price$149 + state filing fees
Formation of Single-member LLC
Consultation W/Business Lawyer
Business Name Check
Federal Tax ID (EIN)
Legal Document Filing
Articles of Organization
3 Months Ongoing Legal Support
Business Permit Assistance

Launch by LegalShield

LegalShield’s Launch plan takes care of all of the basics when it comes to forming your LLC. It includes the formation of a single-member LLC and a business name check to make sure your desired name is available before officially filing. The plan also includes a federal tax ID number, which is often sold as a separate service in many other competitor plans.

The Launch package also includes the filing of your articles of organization as well as any other legal documents required by the state, such as an operating agreement. You’ll get a consultation with a business attorney and three months of ongoing legal support to assist with getting your venture off on the right foot. LegalShield will also assist with determining which business permits you might need to stay in compliance with state and local regulations.

Turnaround Time and Cancellation

According to the LegalShield website, membership applications are typically processed the same day information and payment are submitted, but it can take up to 48 hours, excluding holidays and weekends. During the checkout process, you’ll be asked to select a time for your small business lawyer to contact you. 

Once your membership application is processed, a lawyer will reach you in as little as four hours or at the time you’ve selected. After your consultation, the rest of the filing process takes three to five business days. Keep in mind that each state has its own turnaround times, which vary greatly.

Launch by LegalShield offers a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee. If you are not satisfied with their services, contact customer service at (844)-699-7076 during normal business hours, or send an email to [email protected]. They will work to correct the situation, provide a refund, or offer credit toward future LegalShield orders.

All requests must be made within 60 days of purchase for refunds to be honored. Requests will be processed within two business days after they’ve received all related documents. LegalShield is unable to refund or credit any money paid to government entities, such as filing fees or taxes, or to third parties with a role in processing your order.

You must return all of your LLC documents to LegalShield upon cancellation, and they will take over the LLC that was formed. 

This is an important note:

“Launch by LegalShield guarantee covers satisfaction within our control. It does not cover matters out of our control which include but are not limited to, legal services and representation, a change in situation or state of mind or government backlog. For example, if you decide you no longer want to form an LLC, but Launch by LegalShield has fulfilled our obligation, then this guarantee is void.”

Signing Up Process

When you first go to the LegalShield website, click on the Start a Business menu at the top of the page, then click Forming an LLC.


Next, click on the Form Your LLC Now button. You will notice the service has been added to your shopping cart. You will also receive LegalShield’s Personal Legal Plan and Home Business Supplement packages for three months at no additional charge. Review your selections, then click Checkout.


You will then be prompted to create an account to continue the purchase process. Enter your contact information, then click Sign Up. 


You’ll then be asked to input your personal information. LegalShield collects your date of birth and the last four digits of your social security number to verify your identity. After you enter your information, click Save and Continue. 


The final step is to submit your payment information to complete the process.


Note that when you purchase the Launch product, you are also enrolled in LegalShield’s monthly subscription, which costs $44.90. However, at checkout, you are only responsible for the one-time payment of $149 and applicable state filing fees.

The purchase process itself was quick and easy and could be completed by providing less information than some competitor services. But it’s unclear what happens after you submit payment unless you do a good amount of research or reach out to customer service. There is a page called How Our Program Works that details the process, but it is separate from the payment process, leaving the customer unsure. 

After your purchase, you get access to an account portal where you’ll provide more detailed information to prepare in advance of your first attorney consultation. According to LegalShield, you can schedule your appointment within four hours of signing up and completing your purchase.

Overall, the site is easy to use if you’re ready to go and just want to complete the process. Otherwise, information can be difficult to find. The website isn’t as user-friendly as some competitor sites, and we found customer service to be inconsistent, especially when it came to helping us understand registered agent services. 

Customer Support

We tested all the customer service options by asking real questions through chat, email, and phone. 

Chat support

When we tested the customer service response time through the online chat option, we received a response within three minutes. We asked the first agent if registered agent services were included in the Launch plan, but the agent left the chat a few minutes later without responding.

We refreshed the chat and asked another agent the same question, who told us that LegalShield no longer offered registered agent services. However, there is a lot of information on the website about the services, so we decided to ask the same question over the phone as well. 

Support Rating:

Response time:

Very quick

Phone support

We called LegalShield, and after moving through a prompt, we reached a customer service agent right away without being put on hold. We asked the agent about the registered agent services and let her know that the agent we spoke to in live chat said that they were no longer available. 

A phone representative also told us that the company no longer offers registered agent services.

We also asked about the operating agreement and whether it’s included in the Launch plan or only as a separate a la carte service. The agent said that, through the legal consultation services included with Launch, an attorney would be able to assist us with drafting a custom operating agreement. 

The customer service representative was very professional and polite. She tried to get us to form an LLC with her assistance over the phone but wasn’t pushy when we told her we’d come back to it later.

Support Rating:

Response time:


Email support

We asked the same question via email about registered agent services and received the same response as the agent on the phone call provided. We got a response within a few hours of submitting the initial inquiry.

Support Rating:

Response time:

Very quick

Customer Reviews

The best way to learn about LegalShield is to see what real customers thought of their experience. We visited Google reviews, the Better Business Bureau, and Trustpilot. 

LegalShield has an A+ rating from the BBB, yet only 1.56/5 stars based on more than 160 customer reviews. They have been an accredited BBB business since 1995. LegalShield has received 366 complaints, which were closed in the last three years, and 113 complaints, which have been closed in the last 12 months.

The Trustpilot score for LegalShield is 4.6/5 stars based on more than 4,500 customer reviews, and 79% rated the service as excellent.

Calculate Your LLC Formation Expenses

Use our dropdown calculator to check how much LLC formation will cost using LegalShield. Simply select the Launch Package plan and the state where you want to form an LLC to calculate the exact cost based on your needs and preferences.

Expenses Calculator

Note that when you purchase the Launch product, you are also enrolled in LegalShield’s monthly subscription, which costs $44.90.

Registered Agent Service

The registered agent service is an annual subscription that costs $99 every next year.

State Fee


Annual Payment


One Time Payment




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Disclaimer: This calculator is meant to provide a helpful cost estimate for forming your LLC. Step by Step Business makes no guarantee regarding the actual price you’ll pay using LegalShield services.

Alternatives to LegalShield

LegalShield does a good job in terms of offering exactly what is needed to form your new LLC, but it pales in comparison to competitors with a more robust line of services and a la carte offerings.

LegalShieldZenBusinessSwyft FilingsIncfile
Plans and Pricing1 plan, $1493 plans, $0 – $3493 plans, $0 – $2993 plans, $0 – $299
Registered Agent ServiceNot included, $249 annuallyNot included, $199 annuallyNot included, $199 annuallyIncluded for one year, $119 annually
Processing TimeSame day processing, standard state timesStandard, RushSame day, standard, or expressStandard state times, expedited with top tier plan
Money-Back GuaranteeYes, within 60 days 60 days60 days, 60 days, 100% satisfaction guarantee, minus state feesNo
Our Rating3.
Our ReviewFull ReviewFull ReviewFull Review
WebsiteLearn MoreLearn MoreLearn MoreLearn More


ZenBusiness has three packages of services:

  • Starter – $0
  • Pro – $199
  • Premium – $349

ZenBusiness is a subscription service, while LegalShield’s package is a one-time fee.

Swyft Filings

Swyft Filings charges a one-time fee of $0 for basic business formation services, and other ongoing services can be added. The differentiating factor for Swyft Filings is their speed. Their signup process is quick, and they have faster business formation turnaround times.


Incfile has very competitive pricing. Their basic plan, called the Silver package, is free and includes registered agent services for a year. Their Gold package is only $199 and includes the operating agreement as well as a banking resolution. Their Premium package is $299.

Company Background

LegalShield is an American corporation that sells legal service products directly to consumers throughout the United States and Canada. LegalShield develops and markets pre-paid legal service plans through a network of more than 6,000 independent provider attorneys across the U.S. and Canada.

The company was founded by Harland Stonecipher in Ada, Oklahoma, in 1972, where it remains headquartered today. In 1976, it was incorporated as Pre-Paid Legal Services, Inc., and made its initial public offering in 1984. In 2011, Pre-Paid Legal went from being traded on the New York Stock Exchange back to being a private company when it was acquired by MidOcean Partners, which changed the name to LegalShield.

Current Leadership Team:

  • Warren Schlichting (CEO)
  • Kathy Pinson (COO)
  • Scott Grissom (CFO)

Our Approach

As an entrepreneurial advisory site, we take our responsibilities seriously. We understand that countless entrepreneurs, and potential entrepreneurs, rely on our judgments and insights, particularly when it comes to creating their business.

As a result, our writers do their utmost to gain a comprehensive understanding of the services offered and the actual customer experience. In this case, we:

  • Examined every page of the LegalShield website
  • Reviewed all of their offerings, from a la carte products to packages
  • Put ourselves in the customer’s shoes, creating an account
  • Communicated with customer service via chat, email, and phone
  • Gained a full understanding of the customer experience and service value

Thanks to this full immersion in the actual customer experience, our reviewer and team are able to provide the most complete and insightful review of LegalShield LLC formation services.


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LegalShield Review: Features, Cost, Pros & Cons