If your goal is to raise funding and become a public company on the stock exchange, you’ll want to learn more about incorporation in New Hampshire. By setting up a New Hampshire corporation, you can protect your personal assets–home and cars–from lawsuits and creditors, and separate your personal and business bank accounts.
To launch your business off the ground and to get registered visit the QuickStart link through the New Hampshire Department of State website. You’ll need to choose a unique business name to get the process in motion.
Choosing a Corporate Name for Your Business
The name of your New Hampshire corporation must contain the words, “Limited,” “Incorporated,”, or “Corporation,” or an abbreviation, such as “Ltd.”, “Corp,”, or “Inc.” It should not be similar to other corporation names in the state.
Each registered or reserved name, or the fictitious name of a domestic or foreign corporation, should be distinctly different. Also, make sure your business name does contain language to the effect that your company is organized for a purpose not allowed by the Articles of Incorporation.
You can get this first step sorted out by using the services of an incorporation company.
New Hampshire also imposes certain requirements or allowances for corporation directors. These details include the following:
- Incorporation in New Hampshire requires one or more directors
- Directors may reside inside or outside of the state
- The state does not specify age requirements
- Director names and addresses do not have to be listed in the Articles of Incorporation
Articles of Incorporation: What to Include and What Can Be Omitted
The Articles of Incorporation in New Hampshire specify the following inclusions or exclusions:
- Again, officer names and contact details are not required in the Articles of Incorporation.
- Authorized stock shares and their par value must be listed in the Articles of Incorporation. Any increase in the share number or par value will not affect the corporation’s filing fees.
- A corporation must list the name and address of a registered agent – a company or person who will serve as the contact point for the delivery and receipt of the company’s tax and legal paperwork. The registered agent must be available during the business week during normal business hours and must reside at a physical location (not a P.O. box address).
Professional Service Businesses
All professionals in New Hampshire, such as lawyers, physicians, or accountants, may form a professional corporation or PC.
Maintaining Compliance with the State
After you incorporate, you must perform certain steps each year to keep your company compliant with the state’s mandates. Doing so will protect your personal assets and prevent the dissolution of your company by the state.
For example, as a New Hampshire corporation, you must file an annual report by April 1. The filing fee currently (2022) is $100. You must also file the proper taxes to keep in good standing as a company.
Creating the Company Bylaws
A version of an operating agreement, the bylaws of a corporation can be used to settle disputes and keep everyone operating on the same page.
Moreover, bylaws often include provisions for succession-planning. If an owner dies or the founder leaves a company, these details can prevent a company’s closure.
Maintaining Corporate Records
One of the primary activities of corporations is to keep and maintain corporate records. The following items should be part of your recordkeeping system.
- The Articles of Incorporation and any changes or amendments
- The Bylaws of the company
- The minutes of director and shareholder meetings
- The names and addresses of current directors
- The current annual report
Corporate Taxation and Fees
New Hampshire companies that incorporate also have certain obligatory taxes, fees, and tax filing requirements.
- As noted, you’ll need to file your annual report by April 1 of each year and pay a $100 fee.
- You’ll need to obtain an employer identification number (EIN) to pay employees and open a business bank account. (You don’t need a state tax identification number, however, to pay business taxes in New Hampshire.)
- Business LIcensing. You’ll need to find out what permits and licenses are required for incorporating in New Hampshire.
S and C Corporation Elections: What You Should Know
It’s important to note that New Hampshire will not recognize the federal designation for an S corporation election, nor does it require this type of corporate election. While you can still set up an S corporation, you can only do so for federal income tax purposes – not for state tax reasons. For state purposes, your corporation will be recognized as a traditional C corporation.
To get a better grasp of how to structure your corporation, legal advisors recommend you consult with your accountant first. You can then set up your company by using the services of a corporation formation company.
Call the Corporation Center about Incorporation in New Hampshire Today
While incorporation in New Hampshire is somewhat involved, you can make the process easier by contacting a company that understands all the steps to follow for forming this entity.
To make things go faster, call the Corporation Center at (800) 580-4870 now. Make sure you’re following the guidelines set out by the state in which you want to incorporate. Contact the Corporation Center today.