A New Hampshire professional limited liability company (PLLC) is formed to provide licensed professional services within the state. PLLCs require state registration and must have one or more licensed members.
This article provides detailed information to help you form a New Hampshire PLLC. But first, let’s see if a New Hampshire PLLC is the proper business structure for you.
Who can form a New Hampshire professional limited liability company?
Only licensed, registered, or legally authorized professionals wishing to perform their services in New Hampshire can form a PLLC. Members of the PLLC need to hold professional licenses in New Hampshire. New Hampshire statute RSA 304-D:1 VI outlines which professions may form a New Hampshire PLLC.
Should you form a professional corporation or a PLLC?
New Hampshire allows professionals to form both professional corporations (PCs) and PLLCs. Both provide essentially the same amount of personal legal liability and asset protection to individual shareholders or members.
A professional corporation comprises of shareholders who own shares in the corporation, while a PLLC’s ownership consists of members’ interests in the business. A PC is taxed as a corporation, while a PLLC can choose to be taxed as a pass-through entity or a corporation.
As PLLCs are easier to form and more flexible to operate, many professionals prefer the PLLC structure.
Choose a name for your New Hampshire PLLC
Your New Hampshire PLLC name must be unique and meet the following requirements:
- End with “Professional Limited Liability Company” or the abbreviation “PLLC” or “P.L.L.C.”
- Not contain language that indicates a purpose different from what your certificate of formation states
- Not contain the word “Corporation,” “Incorporated,” or their abbreviations, “Corp.” and “Inc.”
- Meet state licensing authority requirements that have jurisdiction over your PLLC’s professional services
You can do a search on the New Hampshire website to see if your preferred name is available. Once you’ve found an available name, you may want to reserve it until you’re ready to file to ensure no one else claims it. You can reserve it through the state site or use our name reservation service to reserve your name for 120 days.
After you do that, it’s the perfect time to find a domain name that aligns with your business name. When you do, let us secure it for you with our domain registration service.
Select a New Hampshire registered agent
A New Hampshire registered agent must be a business or individual who is available during regular business hours at a registered office in New Hampshire. The registered agent is required by law so that the business can receive legal notices (such as subpoenas) and official state correspondence.
ZenBusiness’s New Hampshire-based registered agent partners can provide you with this service so you don’t have to be tied to your office all day or receiving embarrassing notices of lawsuits in front of clients. They’ll accept legal documents on your behalf and can store them in your online dashboard. You can view, download, or print them anytime.
Complete and file your New Hampshire Certificate of Formation
Forming a PLLC in New Hampshire requires submitting a Certificate of Formation and a statement regarding security laws compliance. You can find both on the Secretary of State’s website, which now includes this addendum at the end of the official Certificate of Formation application. Upon approval, the state will legally recognize your PLLC.
One of the licensed professional members can complete and file these documents, as well as a lawyer, accountant, or any other authorized person. They will file the Certificate with the Secretary of State, either online or via mail.
You’ll need the following information to complete your Certificate of Formation:
- Registered name, email address, and business address
- A business description that includes a descriptive word
- State business license
- Expected duration of your PLLC, or choose “No specific date of dissolution is set.”
- Expected opening date, which can’t be more than 90 days from the filing date
- Registered agent’s name and office address
- Name, address, and signature of the filing member
- List of managers and members you wish to place on record
Will your PLLC be member-managed or manager-managed?
It’s important to decide if your professional LLC will be manager-managed or member-managed. Member-managed occurs when members oversee the day-to-day activities of your PLLC and make decisions on the PLLC’s behalf. Manager-managed occurs when you appoint a member(s) or hire an individual(s) from outside the PLLC with or without a stake in ownership to manage your PLLC.
Create an operating agreement for your New Hampshire PLLC
While not legally required in New Hampshire, it is a good idea for all LLCs (PLLCs included) to draft and sign an operating agreement. This is a contractual agreement approved by all members that dictates how the business will be run, as well as procedures for solving conflicts between members, sales and dissolution protocol, and more.
Handle New Hampshire tax obligations
Most New Hampshire PLLCs need a federal tax ID number — or Employer Identification Number (EIN) — even if you have no employees. This nine-digit personalized number allows the IRS to identify your business on tax returns and other financial paperwork.
This number allows you to hire employees and open a business bank account. You can easily get an EIN using ZenBusiness’s EIN service.
PLLCs in New Hampshire are subject to a business profits tax, with certain exceptions. Your New Hampshire PLLC may also be subject to additional state taxes, such as the business enterprise tax. For an overview of business taxes in New Hampshire, visit the Department of Revenue Administration’s website.
You can check with your city and county governments to confirm whether your PLLC has additional local tax obligations.
Obtain all New Hampshire business licenses and permits
NH doesn’t have a state-wide general business license, but there are many local and industry-specific requirements that may still apply to the PLLC, namely a recognized professional license.
Because licensing can take place on the local, state, or federal level, it can be difficult to determine which ones you need to be compliant. These requirements can vary widely based on location, activities, and industry, and there is no centralized resource that provides this information.
If you feel overwhelmed or need help finding the right information, ZenBusiness offers a business license report service that provides a list of licenses and permits you may need for your company’s operation.
Acquire insurance for your New Hampshire PLLC
It’s a good idea to contact an insurance agent to determine what type of insurance your PLLC needs. Below are three types of business insurance required in New Hampshire.
General business insurance
New Hampshire recommends that most business owners to hold general liability insurance, but doesn’t require it. It can help protect your business from liability claims resulting in bodily injury, property damage, as well as personal and advertising injury.
It covers damages caused by your business’s or employees’ actions that aren’t due to professional malpractice.
A New Hampshire PLLC doesn’t protect its members from their own malpractice. Therefore, each member needs professional liability insurance.
A PLLC will protect you personally from the malpractice of other PLLC members — vicarious liability. However, for some professions, PLLC members must have a minimum amount of malpractice insurance before qualifying for this protection.
Workers’ compensation insurance
New Hampshire law requires employers to provide workers’ compensation insurance for their employees. Information about this requirement is available on the New Hampshire Department of Labor’s website.
Open a business bank account
A business bank account separates your company’s assets from your personal assets, making accounting and tax filing easier and providing additional personal protection. To open this account, you’ll need some New Hampshire-based ID along with the following information:
- Your EIN
- A stamped copy of your filed Certificate of Formation
Ready to launch your business?
At ZenBusiness, we’re proud to support small businesses through a variety of different tools and services. Whether you need a registered agent service, want to reserve a business name, or are looking to register a domain name for your business website, our goal is to help you stay on the road to success. Check out our services and contact us today to see how we can help you grow your company.
New Hampshire PLLC FAQs
- What are the filing fees for a New Hampshire PLLC?
The filing fees for a New Hampshire PLLC are $100 for the Certificate of Formation/security laws compliance addendum. You also must file an annual report each year you are in business, which costs $100 each year.
- Do I need a lawyer to form a New Hampshire PLLC?
No, but a lawyer can help ensure the process is done correctly.
- Does New Hampshire have a professional corporation (PC) entity?
Yes, New Hampshire allows professionals to form both PLLCs and PCs.
- Can professionals from different fields form a New Hampshire PLLC together?
New Hampshire state law allows related professions to form PLLCs together if applicable state professional licensing laws allow it.
- How is a New Hampshire PLLC taxed?
All PLLCs in New Hampshire are subject to a business profits tax, with certain exceptions. Your New Hampshire PLLC may also be subject to additional state taxes, such as the business enterprise tax. For an overview of business taxes in New Hampshire, visit the Department of Revenue Administration’s website.