Nolo was founded in 1971 as a publisher of do-it-yourself legal books and guides. Over the years, it’s evolved into creating a suite of DIY legal software, online documents, and a lawyer directory. Its bestselling business products include an online trademark application and an online guide to filing an LLC application.
At first, Nolo may seem to lack some of the breadth and bells and whistles that you see with competitors. Perhaps its biggest flaw is the format of the site, which doesn’t walk you through processes and questions but requires you to already know what you’re looking for. It makes up for these shortcomings with its longstanding and tried-and-true, easy-to-follow documents and guides that have been positively reviewed by media outlets and customers for over 40 years. Like all the other sites, though, Nolo isn’t a substitute for an attorney. It’s a reliable tool for the basics (setting up an LLC, drafting standard contracts), but you may want to consider forming a more long-term relationship with a lawyer near you.
How it works:
Legal forms: Nolo’s huge catalog of customizable legal forms are available for download at a fee ranging from about $15-$35 each.
Legal guides & filings: Nolo’s more detailed legal guides, which walk you through the full process of a filing, are competitive with other sites. Forming an LLC ranges in price from $99-$299, but includes far more benefits in its premium option than the higher-end LegalZoom. Similarly, filing an online trademark application starts at $139.00. It has also partnered with Quicken to create its Legal Business Pro software for $44.99.
Lawyer directory: Nolo also has a lawyer directory, organized by topic and state. The site asks for some basic information about your business and your legal needs, then matches you with a legal attorney to give you a free evaluation. After that, it’s up to you whether you want to hire the lawyer on your own.