Formation and Registration
Depending on the type of business you operate, you will need to take one or two steps.
If your business is a domestic (located in NJ) or out-of-state (foreign) legal entity such as a corporation, limited partnership, or limited liability company, you must file formation or authorization documents for the public record. General partnerships and sole proprietors are not subject to this first step and may go directly to Step 2 below.
Legal entities are subject to annual report filing requirements. Corporations will also be subject to the corporation business tax from the date of formation through to the legal date of dissolution.
The filing process for Step 1 can be completed online. All profit businesses (domestic and foreign) and foreign non-profits must pay a statutory filing fee of $125. The statutory filing fee for domestic non-profits is $75.00.
Step 2: Registering for Tax and Employer Purposes
Step 2 applies to all businesses. You must file Form NJ-REG to be registered for tax and employer purposes (Step 2). Online registration is available.
Filing Form NJ-REG ensures that your business is registered under the correct tax identification number and that you will receive the proper returns and notices. Normally, you will use your federal employer identification number (FEIN) as the New Jersey tax identification number. A business with employees must obtain a FEIN. If you do not have a federal employer identification number for your business, you may apply for one directly from the IRS online.
If you are subject to the entity formation/authorization filing in Step 1 above, you may submit both the business entity and the tax registration filings together, or file the NJ-REG later. If you file the NJ-REG after forming/authorizing, you must file the NJ-REG within 60 days of filing the new business entity pursuant to Step 1.
Businesses planning to contract with any public agency in New Jersey, including state agencies, local governments, colleges/universities and local school boards as well as with casino licensees will be required to provide a Business Registration Certificate as proof of registration. To obtain a Business Registration Certificate, you must have filed Form NJ-REG (Step 2), but be mindful that if you operate a legal entity like a corporation or LLC, you must also form/authorize in accordance with Step 1.
Out-of-state businesses that believe they do not have state tax nexus should file a paper form NJ-REG in order to obtain a Business Registration Certificate. Business entities that file form NJ-REG only will be subject to a nexus review, initiated and conducted by the Division of Taxation.
If you only need to withhold payroll taxes for an employee(s) who reside in NJ and you are not conducting business operations in this State, go to the online service and select “Register a non-New Jersey Business Entity with employees residing in New Jersey.”
For information on tax exempt status for non-profits, consult the Division of Taxation’s Starting a Non-Profit in New Jersey page.
Choosing a Name for Your Business
Reviewing Names on File
Before choosing a name, you may review business names on file with New Jersey online free of charge. If you want assistance in checking the availability of a business name, you may call the Division at 609.292.9292. Fees apply for this service.
A business formed outside of New Jersey must use the exact name that is on the formation document in its home state. If that name is already being used by another business entity in this state, the foreign (non-New Jersey) business will need to establish a secondary or 'doing business as" name for New Jersey purposes. Only foreign businesses may use a "dba" name. When a "dba" is designated, online registration is not available. File using a paper form. The downloadable form (pages 23 and 24) is available. Remember to attach the business’ resolution adopting the dba name to the filing.
Name Availability Check and Name Reservation Services
You may check on the availability of a business name by calling the Division at 609.292.9292. Fees apply for this service. You may also reserve an available name prior to filing a formation/authorization document. The length of time the reservation is in effect depends on the type of business
These types of names may also be used to conduct business in this state. Alternate/Fictitious names must be registered. Complete the request form online.
Trade names for sole proprietorships should be filed at the county level at the County Clerk's office.
HELPFUL LINKS FOR NEW BUSINESSES