How to Form a New Jersey LLC
By Bazal Razzaq
Updated: September 14, 2023, 12:30pm
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- Name your New Jersey LLC
- Create a business plan for your company
- Assign a registered agent
- Register your LLC for Taxes
- Prepare and file your Certificate of Formation report with the Secretary of State
- Apply for an EIN(Federal Employer Identification Number) from the IRS
- Draft an Operating Agreement
- Submit your Annual Report(periodic report/statement of information) annually
- Final Word
- How To Form An LLC In 50 States
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Looking for ways to start an LLC in the Garden State? You’re at the right place! Our detailed guide discovers how you can create a New Jersey LLC in the best and most efficient way possible.
#1 Name your New Jersey LLC
The very first step in your New Jersey LLC formation journey is to choose a name for your company. The name should be unique, memorable, and relevant to your LLC’s brand image. It should also be legally compliant and different from other registered business entities.
Here are some basic guidelines you must keep in mind before naming your LLC:
- Your company’s name must have the words “limited liability company” or their short forms (LLC or L.L.C.) to basically indicate its limited liability status.
- Don’t use words that could make people think your company is a government agency (like the FBI, Treasury, State Department).
- Certain words (like Bank, Attorney, University) might need more forms and a licensed person, like a doctor or lawyer, to be in your company.
- Your name must be different from other businesses in New Jersey that are limited liability companies, partnerships, or corporations.
- Completely avoid using words that suggest illegal activities or mislead the public. Similarly, you shouldn’t use vulgar or obscene words that may land you in legal trouble.
- Before officially registering your LLC’s name, you can use the New Jersey Business Record Service’s business name database to check its availability. This will help you make sure that the name you want is not already in use. You can also check the US Patent and Trademark Office’s site for federal trademarks.
- If your LLC provides any professional services like legal or medical, specific requirements might apply. You’ll also have to include designators like “PLLC,” “Professional Limited Liability Company” in your business name.
Still confused? Here’s a complete list of NJ’s naming rules and regulations.
If you already have a unique and legally compliant name in mind but just aren’t ready to register your LLC officially yet, you can consider reserving your name by filing an Application for Reservation of Name (UNRR-1) with the New Jersey Division of Revenue & Enterprise Services. The expected filing fee is $50 and it needs to be submitted online at New Jersey’s Business Charter Amendment Service website. Using the form above, you can hold your chosen name for up to 120 days.
Note: While it isn’t a mandatory requirement in New Jersey to use a fictitious name(more popularly known as “DBA”), you can still consider it. If you want to use a trade name, you need to officially register it with the New Jersey Division of Revenue & Enterprise Services. You need to file a Registration of Alternate Name online, or by mail. The Form C-150G (the Registration of Alternate Name) is available in the Complete Business Registration Packet and costs $50. Once you’ve filed the form, your name is good for up to five years.
It’s important to follow these naming requirements to ensure a smooth registration process for your NJ LLC.
#2 Create a business plan for your company
Once you’ve named your business, it’s time to draft a detailed, clear, and straightforward business plan to help sort your daily operations, finances, roles, and responsibilities of members/owners and due governance of your New Jersey LLC.
A well-drafted business plan will help you,
- Map Your Path: It guides you on what steps to take and when like a roadmap for your business journey.
- Attract Support: It impresses investors and lenders, showing them your idea is worth supporting.
- Stay on Track: It keeps you focused on your goals and how to achieve them like a captain steering a ship.
- Make Smart Decisions: It helps you see challenges ahead and make wise choices to overcome them.
- Save Time and Money: It prevents mistakes by thinking ahead, saving you from costly errors.
- Communicate Clearly: It lets your team and partners understand your vision and work together smoothly.
- Adapt and Grow: It helps you change your plan when needed, like a flexible strategy for success.
#3 Assign a registered agent
Like every other state in the US, Nebraska also requires you to assign a registered agent for your LLC. A registered agent accepts and receives all legal, official, and financial documentation and notices on behalf of your LLC. It can either be an individual or a business entity and is basically your business’s point of contact with the state.
You have the following options when it comes to choosing a statutory agent for your Nebraska LLC:
- Be your own registered agent.
- Another business entity.
- Hire a registered agent service.
- An individual within the company(manager/employee/member)
- An Attorney, lawyer, or legal facility.
That wasn’t it, to be a registered agent for a New Jersey LLC, one should:
- Have a physical street address in New Jersey.
- Be a resident of the state.
- Be at least 18 years old.
- Have the legal authority to accept legal documents on behalf of the company and forward them to the appropriate parties within the company.
- Be available during regular business hours(9:00 AM-5:00 PM) to receive legal documents.
- Consent to act as the LLC’s registered agent.
Note: A PO Box is not sufficient as a business address.
The filing fee could be anything between $49 and $300 annually. Most registered agent companies in New Jersey offer their services for a cost of $100 per year.
#4 Register your LLC for Taxes
All LLCs in New Jersey need to register with the New Jersey Division of Revenue and Enterprise Services for their business registration certificate. Catch here is the process should be completed within 60 days of your LLC’s formation. Why? Because it ensures your LLC receives a tax identification number, allowing you to receive all returns and notices. You can do it online, or download the forms and then send it to the address listed below,
New Jersey Division of Revenue
P.O. Box 252
Trenton, NJ 08646
#5 Prepare and file your Certificate of Formation report with the Secretary of State
To formally register your LLC in New Jersey, you need to file and submit your Certificate of Formation document with the New Jersey Division of Revenue. This document is basically a legal document that lays out and registers all the basic information about your LLC.
Some details you can include in your form are,
- Name of your LLC.
- Address of main office.
- Purpose of the LLC.
- Start date.
- Duration (ongoing or limited).
- Effective date of articles.
- Registered agent’s name and address.
- Duration type (perpetual or specific).
- Initial manager/member info.
- Management Structure: whether member-managed or manager-managed?
- Organizer’s details and signatures.
You have the option to apply online using the Business.NJ.gov Navigator or by submitting a paper copy of the Public Records Filing for New Business Entity form by mail to the address listed below,
New Jersey Division of Revenue
P.O. Box 308
Trenton, NJ 08646
The filing fee is $125.
#6 Apply for an EIN(Federal Employer Identification Number) from the IRS
The next step in your New Jersey LLC formation journey is to obtain your nine-digit EIN from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). It’s basically like a Social Security Number(SSN) and is used for taxation purposes.
A federal employer identification number is important for a lot of reasons, including,
- Applying for business licenses and permits.
- Hiring new employees
- Paying off the state and federal taxes
- Opening a business bank account
- Conducting regular business operations
- Seeking funding/loans.
If you wish to mail it instead, you can use the address mentioned below:
Internal Revenue Service
Attn: EIN Operation
Cincinnati, OH 45999
Fax: (855) 641-6935
There is no filing fee involved.
#6 Draft an Operating Agreement
While it isn’t a legal requirement in the state, it’s always best to draft an operating agreement for your New Jersey LLC.
An operating agreement is an internal document that will outline your New Jersey LLC’s internal and external activities and management structure. It also defines the roles, rights, and responsibilities of its members/owners.
A basic operating agreement can include the following information,
- Name and main address of the LLC
- How long the LLC will exist
- Name and address of the registered agent
- Details about the Articles of Organization
- The main purpose of your LLC
- Members/owners and their shares/contribution
- Allocation of profits and losses.
- The whole process outlines how new members/owners will join, and old members will leave
- Meetings and Voting Rights
- How the LLC is run
- Dissolution and Winding Up
- Indemnification and liability clauses
- Dissolution and winding up
An amazing agreement is important for many reasons, like member/owner voting rights and the LLC’s dissolution. It’s also helpful during member/owner conflicts and specifying financial responsibilities.
Also, in case of any legal trouble, if your LLC doesn’t have an agreement, then the courts will make decisions on the basis of state laws and regulations, which may or may not align with what’s best for your LLC.
#7 Submit your Annual Report(periodic report/statement of information) annually
All LLCs in New Jersey are required to file an annual report with the New Jersey Division of Revenue. This report basically keeps your company’s basic information( like the details of your registered agent, LLC address, member/owner information, etc.) updated with the state.
You need to submit them online, with a filing fee of $75. Also, you need to submit it by the end of your formation month.
After forming your New Jersey LLC, don’t relax just yet but focus on maintaining your business and properly complying with the state agencies.
To maintain and properly run your LLC, you need to carefully follow these steps:
- Get necessary permits and licenses, like health or zoning permits and pro licenses.
- Register with the state’s tax agency.
- Open a professional business bank account.
- Get a company credit card.
- Buy business insurance.
- Protect your name and logo with a trademark.
Additionally, if you’re looking to hire workers for your company, make sure to stay within the legal guidelines by taking these actions:
- Confirm eligibility of new employees, whether or not they can work in the US.
- Report newly hired employees to the state as required.
- Offer workers’ compensation insurance.
- Deduct and manage employee taxes appropriately.
- Display workplace compliance posters visibly in your workspace.
For any more information, you can visit the State of New Jersey’s Employer Handbook.
And, that’s a wrap! That was all you needed to know before finally launching that LLC in New Jersey.
Frequently Asked Questions
An Operating Agreement is a legal document that outlines the ownership structure, management roles, and operating procedures of the LLC. While New Jersey doesn’t legally require an Operating Agreement, having one is highly recommended as it clarifies member responsibilities and reduces conflicts.
An Employer Identification Number (EIN) is required if your LLC has multiple members or employees. It’s used for tax purposes and opening bank accounts.
A New Jersey LLC is a legal business structure that combines the flexibility of a partnership or sole proprietorship with the limited liability protection of a corporation. It shields your personal assets from business liabilities.