How To Start An LLC In New Hampshire
To start an LLC in New Hampshire, you must file a Certificate of Formation with the New Hampshire Corporation Division. You can file the document online or by mail. The Certificate of Formation costs $100 to file. Once filed with the state, this document formally creates your New Hampshire LLC. However, to actually ready the LLC to do business, you must complete several additional steps.
Starting a New Hampshire LLC Guide:
New Hampshire LLC Filing Options
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New Hampshire LLC Certificate of Formation free download. When you're done filling out the form, submit it to your state.
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2 Day New Hampshire LLC
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NH Certificate of Formation Requirements
To form a New Hampshire LLC, you must complete and file the Certificate of Formation with the New Hampshire Corporation Division. See the document below and click on any number to see what information is required in the corresponding section.
You must include “Limited Liability Company” or an abbreviation. Most businesses go with “LLC.”
This includes your official business address (where you’ll receive official mail besides legal notifications). Maintain your privacy and avoid having to update multiple addresses by using our address here when you hire Northwest. A phone number is optional, so there’s no reason to include it—you’ll just end up on telemarketing lists. An email address is required for online filings, but at Northwest, we allow our clients to use our email address so yours doesn’t get clogged with spam.
Your purpose may be to make money, but don’t put that in your Certificate of Formation. “Purpose” here is what your business actually does. Include a few words that describe your specific business activities, like “cosmetics sales and manufacturing” or “dog grooming.”
You can list an individual (such as yourself) or a business that offers registered agent services (such as Northwest). We’re a fan of Northwest.
Your LLC can either be managed by members or managers. Most LLCs are managed by members, but if you don’t plan to oversee the day-to-day operations, you can turn over decision-making powers to one or more managers.
How much does it cost to start a New Hampshire LLC?
The New Hampshire Corporation Division charges a $100 filing fee for your Certificate of Formation. If you file online, there’s an additional $2 processing fee.
Hire Northwest and your total out-the-door cost is $327, including state fees, a year of registered agent service, and loads of forms and resources to help get your New Hampshire LLC up and running.
How long does it take to start a New Hampshire LLC?
When you file online using a New Hampshire Secretary of State QuickStart account, you get your approval in two business days. Have between one and three weeks to kill? Save two dollars in processing fees and file your Certificate of Formation by mail. Maybe go skiing for a few days. Or weeks. Eventually someone will process your form by hand.
If you hire Northwest to start your LLC, we file online and typically have your New Hampshire LLC formed within 2 business days.
Does a New Hampshire LLC need a registered agent?
Absolutely—the State of New Hampshire requires LLCs to have and maintain a New Hampshire registered agent. This doesn’t necessarily mean you have to hire someone. You could be your own registered agent. The title, however, comes with a couple major drawbacks. If you list your own address on public documents like your Certificate of Formation, that information becomes a part of the permanent public record for your LLC—goodbye privacy and hello junk mail. Also, odds are you won’t be in the office all the time. You’ll have meetings, appointments or just time off to go hiking. And when you eventually have to update your address or change your agent? You’ll be stuck paying a $15 fee each time to submit a Statement of Change to the New Hampshire Corporation Division.
“Live Free or Die” is more than the state motto; it’s a way of life. Don’t tie yourself to the desk—leave yourself free to run your business how you want. Hire Northwest, and we’ll be ready and waiting to accept your legal notifications, so you don’t have to be. We’ll even scan and send them the same day. Plus, our address will go on your public documents (and stay the same even as your LLC grows and changes).
Create the New Hampshire LLC Operating Agreement
Do I need an Operating Agreement?
Your operating agreement is the most important internal document of your New Hampshire LLC—of course you need one. Is it an actual state requirement? No, but neither is prepping for deer flies before you go camping in the summer. It’s basic preparation and protection.
Why is an Operating Agreement important?
Your operating agreement puts in writing how your business actually functions—how much each person invested, how profits and losses are allocated, and what happens if the whole business comes to a close. Members and managers will want to see this information. It’s also useful for the other people you do business with. Lenders, investors, and potential business partners will all want to see your operating agreement. Odds are you won’t even be able to open a business bank account without one.
Do I have to write the Operating Agreement?
You don’t have to reinvent the wheel to write your operating agreement. When you hire Northwest to form your New Hampshire LLC, we give you a free operating agreement, specific to your management style. We also give you free membership certificates, resolutions and more. We were the first website to give out free LLC forms. While other websites have since pushed out a lot of garbage forms, we’re proud of our forms—we’ve spent years refining and improving them. Over 1 million LLCs have used our free LLC forms to help form and maintain their businesses.
Get a New Hampshire LLC EIN
Do I have to get a tax ID number (EIN)?
If you have employees or file certain federal excise taxes, you’ll need an EIN. Plan to open a business bank account? Nine times out of ten, you’ll need an EIN. Just to file some local taxes, you may need an EIN as well. Generally speaking, it’s best to get an EIN even if you don’t think you need it right now. They’re free from the IRS (and a better option than handing out your personal social security number). If you don’t want to fill out the application, you can even hire Northwest to get one for you when you sign up for our services.
Open a Bank Account for Your New Hampshire LLC
To open a bank account for your New Hampshire LLC, you will need to bring the following with you to the bank:
- A copy of the New Hampshire LLC Certificate of Formation
- The LLC operating agreement
- The New Hampshire LLC’s EIN
If there are multiple members in the LLC, you may also want to bring an LLC resolution to open a bank account that states that the person going to the bank is authorized by the members to open the account in the name of the LLC.
We recommend calling your bank ahead of time before going in and asking what their requirements are. Most banks don’t open business accounts nearly as frequently as personal accounts, so some bankers may be unfamiliar with their own bank’s requirements. As frustrating as that may be for you, calling ahead will help save you from being super annoyed when you walk into the bank.
Obtain a Business License
Does a New Hampshire LLC need a business license?
The State of New Hampshire doesn’t have a general business license (and neither do most cities and counties), but LLCs may need professional licenses for certain occupations (such as accountants, electricians and psychologists) or permits for specific business activities like food handling.
File New Hampshire LLC Reports
What is a New Hampshire LLC Annual Report?
Your New Hampshire LLC Annual Report is essentially a $102 hit to your wallet each year. More specifically, it’s a form you’re required to file by April 1st ever year in order to update the state on your contact and ownership information (even if nothing has changed). And if you file late? There’s an additional $50 penalty. When you sign up with Northwest, we’ll help you remember to file by sending you reminder notifications. You can even hire us to file your report for you each year.
How much does an LLC in New Hampshire cost each year?
There’s a $102 fee to file the mandatory New Hampshire LLC Annual Report. The base fee is actually only $100, but you can only file online, which requires a $2 processing fee.
Pay the LLC Taxes
What are the New Hampshire LLC taxes?
New Hampshire has no statewide general sales tax and only a limited personal net income tax (taxing investment income such as dividends and interest at 5%). Before you order a cake to celebrate, however, it’s important to note that New Hampshire does have a few other unique (and hefty) business taxes: a business profits tax and a business enterprise tax.
The business profits tax is basically an income tax. Technically, it’s a tax on income from “conducting business activity in New Hampshire.” The rate varies by year but is around 8%, and only businesses with more than $50K in gross receipts have to file.
The business enterprise tax is a tax on “enterprise value.” What the heck is enterprise value? It’s compensation (such as wages, interest or dividends) paid or accrued. This tax rate also varies by year between 0.5 and 0.7%. Who has to pay? Luckily, most small businesses are off the hook, as only businesses with an enterprise value of more than $104K or gross receipts over $208K have to file.