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How to Start an LLC in New Mexico – 2024 Guidelines

How to Start an LLC in New Mexico
(Last Updated On: April 19, 2024)

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Starting an LLC in New Mexico is a streamlined process that offers entrepreneurs a flexible and efficient way to structure their businesses. With its business-friendly environment and straightforward regulations, forming a Limited Liability Company (LLC) in the Land of Enchantment involves a few key steps. 

From selecting a unique business name to filing the necessary documents with the New Mexico Secretary of State, the process is designed to be accessible to both first-time business owners and seasoned entrepreneurs. 

This guide will walk you through the essential steps to help you establish your LLC in New Mexico and embark on the journey of building a successful business.

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How to Start an LLC in New Mexico: 7 Basic Steps

Establishing an LLC in New Mexico is a relatively uncomplicated process. The Secretary of State’s website provides a useful checklist to guide you through the necessary steps. 

If you prefer guidance without the expense of hiring an attorney or accountant, an LLC formation company can assist with your New Mexico business registration for a fixed fee, ensuring the acceptance of your paperwork. 

Whether you choose to navigate the filing process independently or with professional support, the following are the steps you will undertake.

1. Naming Your New Mexico LLC

The initial step in establishing your business involves choosing a name for it. Your official business name must incorporate one of the following designations:

You have the option to condense “limited” and “company” to “Ltd.” and “Co.,” respectively. It’s crucial that your chosen name is distinct from other business names within the state. Verify the availability of your preferred name by conducting a search on the secretary of state’s website.

If you have settled on a name but are not ready to proceed with the remaining steps, you can reserve the name for future use. The filing fee is $20, and the name reservation lasts 120 days. Complete the reservation by submitting the necessary form through one of the following methods:

  • By mail or in-person at NM Secretary of State, Business Services Division, 325 Don Gaspar, Suite 300, Santa Fe NM 87501
  • Through the online business portal

Pro Tip: When naming your LLC, especially if you intend to engage in marketing, it’s beneficial to think creatively. Ensure that your chosen business name is available for a website or any other distinctive online presence by checking domain availability for free.

>> Choose Your New Mexico LLC Name With ZenBusiness >>

2. Appointing a Registered Agent

Now that your business has a designated name, it requires a physical presence in New Mexico—a tangible address where correspondence can reach you. Every business is obligated to assign a “registered agent,” constituting a physical address (excluding P.O. boxes) and a contact (either an individual or entity) capable of receiving legal documents during standard business hours.

For a New Mexico LLC, explore online options to enlist a registered agent at a cost-effective yearly rate. While you can serve as your registered agent, you might find it more practical to engage a service that receives, scans, and electronically delivers documents to you. This allows you to concentrate on the day-to-day operations of your business.

Pro Tip: While it may be tempting to opt for the most affordable registered agent service available, exercise caution against potential scams or poorly managed registered agent businesses. Trustworthy entities will safeguard your information, promptly respond to your requests, and swiftly forward documents to you. 

Dealing with an unresponsive agent or one who divulges your information to advertisers can be frustrating.

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3. Submit Your Articles of Organization

The pivotal document in the establishment of your business is the articles of organization, a comprehensive disclosure of your business details to the state of New Mexico. The filing fee for this crucial step is $50, and the requisite forms can be completed either through the online portal or by printing and mailing them. Be prepared to furnish the following information:

  • LLC name
  • Street address of the registered office and the name of the registered agent
  • Street address of the principal place of business
  • Fixed period of duration, if applicable
  • Description of the LLC’s management structure if it’s manager-managed
  • Declaration that the LLC will operate as a single-member LLC, if relevant
  • Any other provisions deemed pertinent by the organizers

Upon filing, ensure that you provide the secretary of state with the following:

  • A signed original and one copy of the articles of organization
  • A statement from the registered agent accepting the appointment
  • Any additional documents as required

You should receive a stamped copy of your documents by mail or email upon acceptance.

Entities outside the state (foreign entities) cannot submit filings online. Instead, they’re required to send their Certificate of Registration forms to the Secretary of State via mail. Foreign LLCs must also include a certificate of good standing from their home state. 

The completed form and a filing fee of $100 should be sent to the New Mexico Secretary of State, Business Services Division, 325 Don Gaspar, Suite 300, Santa Fe, NM 87501.

Pro Tip: At this juncture, you can decide whether you want your LLC to be “member-managed,” meaning collective decision-making by the LLC members in day-to-day operations, or “manager-managed,” indicating delegation of management to a non-member individual or entity. This information can also be incorporated into the operating agreement in step 4.

>> File Your Articles of Organization With ZenBusiness Now >>

4. Draft an Operating Agreement

To preempt future confusion, it’s advisable to create an operating agreement for your LLC. While not mandated by law, these agreements delineate the management structure of an LLC, decision-making processes, and the protocols for member departures or the inclusion of new members.

Consider this scenario: If one member contributes double the capital to the LLC compared to another, should their voting power differ during decision-making? Addressing such nuances in your operating agreement can prevent unnecessary disputes and potential legal complications.

Pro Tip: Maintain either the signed original or a copy of the operating agreement at your principal office. In a dispute, having ready access to the agreement is crucial for resolution.

>> Create Your LLC Operating Agreement With ZenBusiness Today >>

5. Obtain the Requisite Tax Identification Numbers

Running a business entails fulfilling tax obligations, and your New Mexico LLC must submit taxes to both state and federal authorities using distinct identification numbers, analogous to Social Security numbers for individuals.


Secure your New Mexico state tax identification number by registering your LLC with the Department of Taxation and Revenue. Depending on your business nature, additional tax obligations may apply. For instance, cannabis retailers must register for a Cannabis Excise Tax account.


Additionally, you’ll require a federal employer identification number (EIN) for handling employment taxes, a process that can be initiated for free on the IRS website. This identification may also be necessary for various business activities, such as opening a business checking account with certain banks. 

While New Mexico doesn’t mandate an EIN for single-member LLCs without employees, having one is prudent if you anticipate adding members or hiring employees.

Pro Tip: Even if you’re the sole member of the LLC and have no plans to hire employees, avoiding the use of your Social Security number for business purposes is advisable. Requesting an EIN adds an extra layer of protection for your personal information from public exposure.

>> Secure Your EIN With ZenBusiness >>

6. Licenses and Permits for New Mexico Businesses

In order to run your LLC, adherence to regulations from federal, state, and local governments is essential. The fees and prerequisites for licenses and permits depend on the type of business license required.

7. New Mexico LLC Tax Filing Obligations

For New Mexico LLCs, the necessity for annual reports is absent. However, the requirement to pay taxes on a yearly basis or submit quarterly reports may be applicable, depending on your business’s nature and whether it employs personnel. 

Gross Receipts Tax

Most businesses must register for New Mexico’s Gross Receipts Tax, akin to a sales tax, with the New Mexico Office of Taxation & Revenue. The tax rate varies between 5% and 9.3125%, contingent on your county and potentially your municipality.

Employer Taxes

If your business has employees in New Mexico, you must register for Unemployment Insurance Tax via the New Mexico Department of Workforce Solutions. Additionally, you need to sign up for Employee Withholding Tax on the New Mexico Department of Taxation and Revenue website.

Income Tax

  • State:

New Mexico employs a graduated-rate individual income tax table, ranging from 1.7% to 5.9%. Your LLC’s income determines your tax bracket. State tax returns are due annually by April 18. Refer to the New Mexico Office of Taxation & Revenue website for tax calculations or to determine your bracket.


  • You must also report your federal income tax using either Form 1065 (for multi-member LLCs) or Form 1040 Schedule C (for single-member LLCs).

Hiring Employees

If your plan involves hiring employees, adhere to legal compliance by following these steps:

  • Verify that new employees are eligible to work in the US
  • Report employees as “new hires” to the state
  • Provide workers’ compensation insurance for employees
  • Withhold employee taxes
  • Display workplace compliance posters in visible areas of your workspace

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How to Start an LLC in New Mexico – Buyer’s Guide

What Is an LLC?

An LLC, or “limited liability company,” provides legal protection for its owners, known as “members,” safeguarding their personal assets from risks associated with the business. This business structure is conducive to individuals taking the entrepreneurial leap without exposing their personal assets to potential liabilities.

Multi-member LLCs operate akin to partnerships, involving more than one member. In contrast, single-member LLCs, designated as “disregarded entities” by the IRS, consist of only one member. For tax purposes, the entity is “disregarded as separate from its owner,” and the LLC’s income is treated as the member’s personal income.

Compared to corporations, LLCs are generally simpler to establish and maintain, with fewer administrative requirements, such as the need for a board of directors and regular meetings. Unlike corporations, which face “double taxation” – taxation at both the corporate and personal income levels – LLCs only incur taxes if they choose to be treated as a corporation. Some LLCs opt for this treatment by filing Form 8832 with the IRS.

Is New Mexico a Viable Hub for Business Ventures?

The Land of Enchantment may ignite the flames of your entrepreneurial spirit. New Mexico emerges as a state that welcomes business initiatives, offering avenues for potential growth. As is the case with any state, both advantages and drawbacks exist when considering the prospect of conducting business in New Mexico.

New Mexico LLC: Merits and Drawbacks

Merits: Initiating an LLC in New Mexico proves advantageous due to the state’s affordable cost of living, naturally stunning landscapes, moderate climate, a notable presence of women-owned businesses, and a diverse cultural environment. Furthermore, New Mexico’s regulatory framework doesn’t necessitate LLCs to file annual reports, and owners can opt for anonymity if desired.

Drawbacks: Crafting an operating agreement becomes imperative to shield your assets from fellow LLC members, as New Mexico’s legal framework doesn’t automatically confer this protection. The state also contends with above-average rates of poverty and unemployment. Nonetheless, this scenario presents an opportunity for positive transformation in the state’s economic landscape, with your LLC potentially contributing to such improvements.

Is Residence in the State a Requirement for Initiating a New Mexico LLC?

For those inclined to engage in business in New Mexico while maintaining a residence outside the state, the question arises: is a New Mexico LLC necessary? Non-resident entrepreneurs have two avenues to explore. One option involves establishing a New Mexico LLC and enlisting the assistance of an individual with a physical presence in the state to manage it. 

The alternative is to register a foreign LLC in New Mexico. Essentially, a foreign LLC is an LLC formed in another state that obtains certification to operate in New Mexico concurrently.

What Do New Mexico’s LLC Regulations Entail?

The regulations governing LLCs in New Mexico are outlined in the state’s business laws. Typically, you have the flexibility to create a business operating agreement that outlines the operational preferences for your business. In the absence of such an agreement, New Mexico’s LLC laws serve as the default rules in the event of any issues. Some key provisions include:

  • The LLC, not individual members, bears responsibility for business debts, obligations, or liabilities (unless there is a distinct legal basis for individual member liability).
  • LLCs can be managed by members or non-member managers, with the manager being either a natural person or a business entity.
  • By default, members’ votes are weighted proportionally to the capital they contribute to the LLC.
  • Profits and losses are allocated based on the share of capital contribution, adjusted for any withdrawals.
  • Membership interests are transferable to others.
  • In the event of a member’s death, incompetence, or dissolution of a member that’s a business entity, the rights to that membership interest pass to the estate executor or a similar entity.
  • An LLC can be dissolved if a majority of voting interests decides to take such action.

The Cost of Forming an LLC in New Mexico

New Mexico is a compelling choice for forming an LLC due to its cost-effective initial filing fees. The LLC formation filing fee in New Mexico is a mere $50, providing an economical alternative when compared to numerous other states. This financially prudent approach can particularly appeal to startups and small business proprietors aiming to minimize their initial costs.

Nevertheless, it’s crucial to acknowledge that New Mexico mandates LLCs to file an annual report, accompanied by a fee that fluctuates based on the LLC’s income, typically falling within the $0 to $50 range. This yearly requirement introduces an ongoing financial commitment to your business operations.

>> Try Out ZenBusiness Now >>

LLC Formation Service in New Mexico

Online LLC services offer a cost-effective and convenient solution for startups, providing customizable pricing packages to suit individual business needs. Key features include a user-friendly dashboard for document management, registered agent services, help to obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN), live expert support during data input, and tax preparation and advisory services. 

Here, we spotlight some popular LLC formation services widely utilized by businesses:


You don’t have to worry about handling paperwork when you choose ZenBusiness. This company provides an extensive range of LLC services, primarily aimed at ensuring your business is established accurately with all the necessary paperwork completed and submitted to the appropriate department of your state government. While ZenBusiness does have service fees, customers attest that they receive excellent value for their money.

>> Try Out ZenBusiness >>

Swyft Filings

Swyft Filings is a dedicated LLC formation service recognized for its efficiency and straightforward approach to the LLC creation process. Providing a comprehensive array of services related to LLCs, their offerings span from incorporation to compliance and support for registered agents. 

Swyft Filings goes beyond by offering personalized assistance, guiding businesses through the complexities of LLC formation, and ensuring adherence to both state and federal regulations.

>> Start Using Swyft Filings >>

Tailor Brands

In contrast, Tailor Brands is an online service dedicated to branding and design aimed at assisting businesses in developing a refined and cohesive brand identity. Their services include diverse branding packages, encompassing tasks like logo design, business card creation, and social media branding. 

Tailor Brands provides businesses with design tools and resources, empowering them to customize and refine their branded assets according to their distinctive requirements.

>> Try Tailor Brands Now >>

How to Start an LLC in New Mexico – FAQs

What Are the Various Types of LLCs Available for Establishment?

When deciding how to initiate an LLC, several LLC types are available. Familiarity with these structures is vital for selecting a business model that aligns closely with your company’s nature and intended mode of operation. The available LLC structures include:

  • Single-member LLC: Owned and operated by a single individual, providing additional tax benefits and liability protection compared to a sole proprietorship.
  • Multi Member LLC: Standard LLCs with multiple members, often categorized as manager-managed or member-managed entities.
  • L3C: Also known as “low-profit liability companies,” serving as a hybrid between nonprofit and for-profit LLCs, prioritizing the business cause over earnings.
  • Series LLC: Tiered business structures where the topmost LLC owns a series of lower-tiered LLCs, operating independently with segregated assets.
  • PLLC: A specialized LLC available only to certain licensed professionals.
  • Restricted LLC: Exempt from taxation during the initial 10 years and unable to distribute profits to members, with this restriction explicitly stated in the articles of organization.

How Lengthy Is the Process of Establishing an LLC, and Is There an Option for Expediting It?

The timeframe for creating an LLC in New Mexico can vary, generally spanning several weeks. Expedited processing, which incurs an additional fee, is available and can significantly reduce the processing time to a matter of days. The specific timeframes and fees for expedited processing may change, so it’s crucial to consult the New Mexico Secretary of State for the most current information.

What if I Already Possess an LLC in Another State?

If you already have an LLC in a different state and wish to conduct business in New Mexico, you will typically need to register as a foreign LLC in New Mexico. This process involves submitting the required forms and paying the necessary fees to obtain legal recognition for business operations in the state.

Can I Submit My LLC Documents Electronically?

Certainly, you can electronically file your LLC documents in New Mexico through the website of the Secretary of State, streamlining the process for convenience and efficiency.

>> Launch Your New Mexico LLC With ZenBusiness Now >>

About the author

Dr. Gabriel O'Neill, Esq., a distinguished legal scholar with a business law degree and a Doctor of Juridical Science, is a leading expert in business registration and diverse business departments. Renowned for his academic excellence and practical insights, Dr. O'Neill guides businesses through legal complexities, offering invaluable expertise in compliance, corporate governance, and registration processes.

As an accomplished author, his forthcoming book is anticipated to be a comprehensive guide for navigating the dynamic intersection of law and business, providing clarity and practical wisdom for entrepreneurs and legal professionals alike. With a commitment to legal excellence, Dr. Gabriel O'Neill, Esq., is a trusted authority dedicated to empowering businesses within the ever-evolving legal landscape.