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 must be filed by the end of its anniversary month, and it helps the state keep its records up-to-date regarding business activity within its borders. 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.
If you’d like to hand off this responsibility to save time and focus on running your business, affordable LLC services are a great solution. Not only will they form your business in the first place, but they’ll also manage ongoing requirements like ongoing report filing. Once you're ready to lock it down, have ZenBusiness file all the paperwork.
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, plus $3 for credit card processing or $0.50 for e-check processing. 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 (if your LLC has employees)
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. 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.
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.
Frequently Asked Questions
About Filing the New Jersey LLC Annual Report
Should I use an Annual Report service, hire an attorney, or prepare and file my own reports?
This question largely comes down to personal preferences, but we do have some general insights. The DIY route can be quite a bit of work, as you’ll need to keep track of your due dates and complete the entire report on your own with no assistance. As for hiring an attorney, this can be prohibitively expensive for many businesses, as a lawyer can charge hundreds or even thousands of dollars to prepare and file your Annual Reports.
You can think of business services companies as a middle ground between these options. While most of these companies charge a fee to prepare and file your Annual Reports, that fee will be significantly less expensive than an attorney’s fee. At the same time, you still aren’t going it alone. Instead, you have an experienced professional guiding you through the entire process.
I’ve heard the most about LegalZoom. Are they the best Annual Report service?
LegalZoom is the most well-known of all business services companies, thanks to its long track record and extensive advertising campaigns. That said, all of that brand power comes at a cost, as LegalZoom’s pricing and features don’t always compare advantageously to its competitors. While we do appreciate LegalZoom’s Annual Report filing service, it isn’t our top choice.
When is my Annual Report due each year?
The answer to this question depends on when you originally formed your LLC or registered it in New Jersey. Each New Jersey LLC must file its Annual Report by the last day of its anniversary month each year. Therefore, if you formed your business on March 1, your Annual Report due date is every subsequent year on March 31.
Does New Jersey require LLCs to file initial reports?
In some states, LLCs are also required to file initial reports. These reports are typically quite similar to Annual Reports, with the difference being that an initial report either accompanies your formation documents or follows their filing within a couple of months.
In New Jersey, there is no initial report requirement. Instead, this state gathers all of the information it needs for your LLC’s first year in business from your Certificate of Formation filing.
What if I need more time to complete my Annual Report?
While New Jersey does not technically offer extensions for late Annual Reports, this state is much more lenient than most in this regard. New Jersey charges no late fees for Annual Reports, and it won’t administratively dissolve your LLC unless you have an Annual Report that’s at least two years past its due date.
Where can I find more official information about New Jersey’s LLC annual reporting requirements?
To be perfectly honest, New Jersey does a poor job of providing official info about its Annual Report requirements online. Most states have some sort of FAQ or instructions for these filings, but New Jersey offers very little assistance. If you have a question that this guide can’t answer, you might need to call the Division of Revenue and Enterprise Services for more help.