You did it. Your New Jersey LLC is officially up and running, ready to take on challenges, roll in the profits, and change the world.
There’s no doubt that this is an exciting time in your business journey. After starting your LLC, it’s easy to get carried away in all the excitement and expectations. After all, as a new business owner, you’ve got a lot on your plate.
But the state does too. They need to keep updated records on thousands of businesses so that they can effectively reach out with any important tax or legal communications down the road. How do they do it? With your cooperation, of course.
In New Jersey, an LLC’s annual report consists of two parts: a Franchise Tax and a Public Information Report. Each LLC must submit these filings to the New Jersey Comptroller every year to keep their information current. Unsure how to go about it? Never even heard of it? No worries at all. That’s why we’re here. Keep reading for everything you need to know.
For brevity’s sake, we’ll refer to these two combined filings as the “Annual Report” in this guide.
What is the New Jersey Annual Report? Why is it Important?
Consider an Annual Report the state’s yearly checkup on your LLC. It’s similar to a census in that its purpose is to collect the necessary contact and structural information about each New Jersey business.
Each state has its own annual reporting requirements, and some don’t even require them. But in most states, you’re required to submit one per year that includes your LLC name, principal office address, registered agent information, and member/manager names and addresses. Whether you run a domestic or foreign LLC, you should plan on submitting an Annual Report.
Don’t be intimidated, but it’s not something you want to take lightly. This is how the state updates your LLC’s record with the most recent information. They need to know how to reach you with important information about your business status, upcoming filings, taxes, and service of process.
For example, if you change your registered agent, or your current agent resigns, you’ll need to keep the state informed so they can update their contact information. Miss one of their communications and your LLC in New Jersey might end up falling out of good standing or, even worse, administratively dissolved.
Moreover, keeping your information current will help other businesses and potential customers find you. If the Division of Revenue has the most updated data on record, anyone – including future partners and clients – can find your business by performing a name search.
How Much Does the New Jersey LLC Annual Report Fee Cost?
If you’re putting together a budget for all your LLC’s costs – like formation costs, name reservation fees, and initial operating expenses – it’s important to include annual filings like this one, just so that there are no surprises.
Costs vary from state to state. Some are free while others can be several hundred dollars. New Jersey’s Annual Report is fairly reasonable – $75 per report. Remember that this is a fee you’ll be paying every year, so be sure to mark it in your annual budget.
Due Date and Frequency for an Annual Report in New Jersey
Remember when you started your LLC, because its Annual Report will be due by the last day of its anniversary month. So, if you filed your Certificate of Formation to start your business on June 14th, you would need to file your Annual Report every year before June 30th.
What Happens if You Don’t File?
You might be thinking, “that sounds like a pain. How bad could it be if I just fly under the radar?” The short answer: don’t try it. Failing to file your Annual Report can yield some serious consequences.
If the Annual Report slips your mind and you don’t file during your LLC’s anniversary month, don’t panic! New Jersey’s Division of Revenue doesn’t have a late fee, so go ahead and file it ASAP and you’ll be fine. Fail to file your report two years in a row, however, and the state will dissolve your business.
Is your LLC’s anniversary month coming up? Then it’s time to get ready for your Annual Report. Let’s get down to the practical details. Here’s the information you’ll need to file:
- Business ID Number – Don’t know your business ID? You can find it on your approved Certificate of Formation or by searching for your LLC.
- Business type (LLC, corporation, etc.)
- Month and year you formed your LLC
- Registered agent name and address
- Main business address
- Principal office address
- Name and address for each LLC member
- Proof of your LLC’s Workers’ Compensation Insurance
There you go! You’ll probably be able to find all of this information in your business files or in your online record. Once you have it, you’re ready to file.
The Division of Revenue requires that you file your Annual Report online, so there’s no paper form available. Fortunately, the online submission process is pretty straightforward and usually doesn’t take long at all. Plus, it’s much faster than mailing a document, as your report will be processed immediately.
You’ll complete the entire process through the Division of Revenue’s online filing portal. Click “File an Annual Report” and you will be directed through a series of pages where you can enter the required information. When you’re finished, you’ll be prompted to enter your payment information and submit your Annual Report. Once you do, you’re all set!
Does the State Send Reminders?
Reminders are always nice. They help you stay on top of your business requirements and ensure that you won’t fall out of good standing.
One or two months before your Annual Report due date, the Division of Revenue will mail a reminder to your registered agent. Plus, you can sign up for Gov2Go and receive reminders straight to your phone. Everyone has a scheduling and planning system that works for them – planners, digital calendars, setting phone reminders. We recommend working your Annual Report due date into whichever system you use to ensure that you don’t miss it.
Can I Hire a Service to Handle it?
You probably have a full plate as it is, and the thought of adding one more responsibility to your to-do list might make you shudder. You’re not alone.
Plenty of other LLC owners have outsourced their reporting duties to LLC services. These companies will take the entire process off your hands, handling your Annual Report each year. If that piques your interest, we recommend ZenBusiness, which is an experienced and trustworthy LLC company.
But their services aren’t restricted to forming an LLC or managing Annual Reports. They can also help you form your business, draft an operating agreement, handle registered agent responsibilities, and much more, all for a reasonably low price.
If thinking about your LLC responsibilities ties your stomach in knots, let ZenBusiness take some of those worries off your plate.
There you have it, everything you need to know about New Jersey’s reporting requirements. Follow this guide to a T and your LLC will be prepared to operate smoothly and in good standing long into the future.
And remember, if at any point it seems overwhelming, you’re not alone. A good LLC service like ZenBusiness (or LegalZoom) can be a valuable resource, taking care of all the little details, so you can focus on growing your business.