Filing the New Hampshire Certificate of Formation is Easy!
Step 1: Get Your Certificate of Formation
You must download and mail in your New Hampshire Certificate of Formation or file online.
OPTION 1: Create an account on the New Hampshire Secretary of State website. From the user dashboard, select “Create a New Business” from the QuickStart panel. Then, indicate that you are creating a new domestic business and select “Limited Liability Company” from the dropdown.
- OR -
OPTION 2: Access the Certificate of Formation PDF from the New Hampshire Department of State website. This form will need to be mailed to the Corporation Division.
Step 2: Fill Out the Certificate of Formation
In this step, we will help you complete the New Hampshire Certificate of Formation form.
You will need to know the following information to complete each Article:
- Entity Name and Address
- Business Purpose
- Registered Agent Name and Registered Office Address
- Governing Authority Type
Entity Name and Address
Having a creative and smart business name is important but not as important as having a legally correct name.
When you choose a name for your business, you have to make sure the name:
- meets New Hampshire naming guidelines.
- is not already in use by another business in New Hampshire.
Follow the New Hampshire Naming Guidelines:
- Your name must include the phrase “limited liability company” or one of its abbreviations (LLC or L.L.C.).
- Your name may contain the name of a member or manager of the LLC.
- Your name cannot imply that the LLC was organized for any non-permitted purpose or one not outlined in its certificate of formation.
- Your name cannot include words that could confuse your LLC with a government agency (FBI, Treasury, State Department, etc.).
- Your name cannot include the name of a political party without authorization.
- In some states, certain restricted words (e.g., Bank, Attorney, University) may require additional paperwork and a licensed individual to be part of your LLC.
- Your name cannot include the words "farmers' market" unless the LLC meets the definition of a farmers' market.
- Your name must be distinguishable from any existing business in the state. This includes New Hampshire reserved names.
Check Name Availability:
Is your name available in New Hampshire? Make sure the name you want isn't already taken by doing a name search on the New Hampshire Secretary of State website.
To learn more about naming your business, including best practices and creative branding, visit our How to Name a Business in New Hampshire guide.
Not sure what to name your business? Check out our Business Name Generator.
Register Your Domain Name:
We recommend checking to see if your business name is available as a web domain. Even if you don't plan to make a business website today, you may want to buy the URL to prevent others from acquiring it.
In New Hampshire, you can form a limited liability company for any legal or non-prohibited activity. Briefly describe the nature of your business here, and if known, list the NAICS Code and Sub Code.
Keep in mind that a business purpose that involves licensing, tax-exemption, or tax-deductible status requires specific language from the IRS or a professional license.
Registered Agent and Registered Office Address
A registered agent accepts and sends legal documents on your LLC’s behalf. When you register your New Hampshire LLC, you are required to list your registered agent and your registered office.
Your registered agent can be anyone 18 years or older that lives in New Hampshire. Your registered agent must always be available at the registered office during regular business hours.
To learn more about choosing a New Hampshire registered agent, read our How to Choose a New Hampshire Registered Agent guide.
To learn more about what a registered agent does and how to choose one, read our What is a Registered Agent guide.
You must state whether or not your LLC will have managers. Then, list any managers or members that can be placed on record.
To learn everything you need to know about choosing your management structure, read our Management by Members or Managers guide.
Step 3: File the Certificate of Formation
To register your LLC, you will need to file the Certificate of Formation with the Department of State.
There are two ways to file your Certificate of Formation:
- Complete the form online.
- Submit a hard copy by mail.
OPTION 1: Create or log into your account on the New Hampshire QuickStart website. After indicating that you are registering a new Limited Liability Company, fill in the required fields and submit.
- OR -
OPTION 2: Download and mail in the Certificate of Formation PDF to the New Hampshire Department of State.
State Filing Cost: $100
Corporation Division, NH Dept. of State
107 N. Main St., Rm 204
Concord, NH 03301
Create an Operating Agreement
In New Hampshire, you aren’t required to have an Operating Agreement to officially form an LLC, but it's still a good idea to have one. You can start your operating agreement before, during, or after you file your Certificate of Formation.
Your operating agreement will be kept in your LLC’s private business records; you do not file it with the state.
Use our free Operating Agreement Tool to draft a customized operating agreement for your LLC.
Get an EIN
An Employer Identification Number (EIN) is like a social security number for your LLC. You will need an EIN if you want to hire employees or open business bank accounts.
You can get your EIN for free through the IRS website, via fax, or by mail. If you would like to learn more about EINs and how they can benefit your LLC, read our What is an EIN article.
Open a Business Bank Account
Using dedicated business banking and credit accounts is essential to protect your business' corporate veil. When your personal and business accounts are mixed, your personal assets (your home, car, and other valuables) are at risk in the event your LLC is sued.
For reviews on some of our most trusted business banks, visit our Best Banks for Small Business review.
Get Licenses and Permits
When you are registering an LLC, you need to determine if your business needs any licenses or permits in order to remain compliant. On the federal level, there are a handful of business activities that require licenses and/or permits.
Find out how to obtain necessary licenses and permits for your business or have a professional service do it for you:
- Federal: Use the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) guide to federal business licenses and permits.
- State: Apply for or learn more about licenses, permits, and registration with New Hampshire's Business Information website.
- Local: Contact your local county clerk and ask about local licenses and permits.
Brand Your Business
The strongest and most memorable businesses are built on a solid brand. When developing your brand, think about what your business stands for. Customers and clients are looking for companies that have a compelling brand, as much as they are shopping for high-quality products and services.
Creating a logo for your business is vital for increasing brand awareness. You can design your own unique logo using our Free Logo Generator. Our free tool can help you design your own unique logo for your new business idea.