New Hampshire Name (Restricted Words)

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Restricted Words and Restricted Names for LLCs in New Hampshire

How to form an LLC in New Hampshire
This Quick Start Guide is a brief overview of how to form an LLC in New Hampshire.

Detailed Lessons:

 

New Hampshire LLC costs:
LLC formation: $100 (one-time fee)
Annual report: $100 (every year)

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Hire a company to form your New Hampshire LLC:
Northwest ($39 + state fee) or LegalZoom ($149 + state fee)

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When forming an LLC in New Hampshire, there are certain words which are “restricted”. You either cannot use these words, or you must get approval from a certain state agency.

Please review the words and phrases listed below, which are provided by the New Hampshire Secretary of State.

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Word/PhraseRequirementRequired DocumentationStatute
Architect/Architecture or any derivative thereof regardless of the intended meaningThe filing containing these words in either the name or the purposes regardless of the intended meaning must be accompanied by a certificate from Joint Board of Licensure saying entity is licensed. Their website is http://www.nh.gov/jtboard/home.htm

Example intended meaning: "software architect" - they don't intend to mean true architecture - but the law specifically says "containing the word" so we have to have the certificate
Copy of their license issued by the Joint Board. Be sure the licesne says the entity is licensed not the individual person.RSA 310-A:42-a V
Auction; Auctioneer; or AuctioneeringThe secretary of state shall not issue a certificate of incorporation to an applicant for incorporation or for registration as a foreign business organization which includes the words "auction,'' "auctioneer,'' or "auctioneering'' or any modification or derivative thereof in its corporate or business name or which includes the practice of auctioneering among the objectives for which it is established unless the board shall have issued, with respect to such applicant, a certificate of authorization, a copy of which shall have been presented to the secretary of state.Approval from the Auctioneers BoardRSA 311-B:4
BankAny filing with the word Bank in either the name or purposes, and which indicates it is performing services as a Bank, non-depository, depository bank or a NH guaranty trust company (as opposed to a NH Investment Trust) must have approvals from the Banking Department and/or Board of Trusts which accompany the filing with us.

Federal Savings Banks or National Banks do not register with our office
Usually there is either a certificate from the Board of Incorporation or they stamp approvals within the document and signed by the Bank Commissioner.RSA's 383-394
City/Municipality or any government agencyIf the name suggests it's part of or associated with a city/town office or any government agency, a letter of consent from that office/ department is required. For example: Manchester Mayors Fund would require a consent letter from the Manchester Mayor's Office.
Cooperative"Cooperative" is a protected word and cannot be used unless it is formed under either RSA 301 or 301-A.
A cooperative formed under RSA 301 is an agricultural/rural electrification cooperative. These types of cooperatives must be accompanied by an approval from the attorney general or assistant attorney general.
NEW HAMPSHIRE ELECTRIC COOPERATIVE, INC. or THE NEW ENGLAND FAMILY DAIRY FARMS COOPERATIVE are examples of Cooperatives formed under RSA 301 which required Attorney General approval.
RSA 301:43 &
301-A:34
College/UniversityIf there is an indication they are granting degrees we need approval from the Department of Education / Div of Higher Education for direction.RSA 188-D
Cooperative"Cooperative" is a protected word and cannot be used unless it is formed under either RSA 301 or 301-A.
A cooperative formed under RSA 301-A is a Consumer cooperative.
Example: PINE GROVE MHP COOPERATIVE, INC.
RSA 301:43 &
301-A:34
Credit UnionAny filing with name or purposes suggesting it is a NH Credit Union must have approvals from the Banking Department and/or Board of Trusts which accompany the filing with us.
"Credit Union" is a protected term and cannot be used unless it is formed under 394-B.
Federal Credit Unions do not register with our office
Usually there is either a certificate from the Board of Incorporation or they stamp approvals within the documentRSA's 394-B
DartmouthAny Filing with the word Dartmouth should be given to either Robyn or Deb for special handling.Requires consent from Dartmouth College and submitted to the secretary of state or deputy for review.
Engineer/Engineering
or any derivative thereof
regardless of the intended meaning
The filing containing these words in either the name or the purposes regardless of the intended meaning must be accompanied by a certificate from Joint Board of Licensure saying entity is licensed. Their website is http://www.nh.gov/jtboard/home.htm

Example intended meaning: "software engineer" or "domestic engineer" - they don't intend to mean true engineering - but the law specifically says "containing the word" therefore they must either obtain the certificate or remove the word.
Copy of their license issued by the Joint Board. Be sure the license says the entity is licensed not the individual person. The Joint Board does automatically send us a copy when they license an entity. These certificates are filed in the Foreign pod.RSA 310-A:20 V
farmers' marketThis phrase is protected unless it is in compliance with the definitions contained under RSA 21:34-a, V
Federal Banks/Credit UnionsFederal Banks do not file with this office. Example: Granite State FSB could not register here as they are a Federal Savings Bank
Federal or StateWe cannot accept a filing if a name suggests or sound like it could be a federal or state program or department
Example: NH Bureau of Road Construction sounds like a division of the Highway Department - Federal Wildlife Refuge sounds like a federal program
Fire DepartmentIf the name suggests it's part of a fire department a letter of consent from the fire department is required. For example: Canterbury Firemen Funds or Friends of the Canterbury Firemen would require a consent letter from the Canterbuy Fire Department. However, a name such as New England Fire Fighters Uniforms would not need consent of a fire department as it is not implied that they are associated with a fire department
Forestry/Forester (or any derivative thereof)The filing containing these words in either the name or the purposes should be advised that individual licensure is required from the Joint Board of Licensure.
Their website is http://www.nh.gov/jtboard/home.htm
RSA 310-A:98 - 117
Health ClubMust register with the DOJ after filing with this office.RSA 358-S:2
Home Health CareAny filing which the name or the purposes suggests home health care must be accompanied by a letter from Bureau of Health Facilities saying the entity has applied for licensure. An example would be "visiting nurse", "in home hospice", "home health aid", "in home rehabilitation" "home therapeutic assistance" would require the letter.A letter from the Bureau of Health Facilities stating the entity has applied for license.RSA 151:2-c
Institute /Academy / SchoolIf the name or purposes indicate this is a school (grades 1 - 12 or K - 12 or within those grades), we need approval from the Department of Education. Example: A name like ABC Charter School will need approval from the Department of Education. A name like Academy Performances would not.Dept of Education has been sending us notices of schools they have approved, but are aware of our reciprocal requirement and will provide the school with the approval notification. Letters will indicate expiration, some are for 3 yrs. And some 5 yrs.RSA 194-B (Charter)
TITLE XV - General Education Statutes
Insurance (that is not an insurance "company")If the name or purpose indicate it's an insurance agency or insurance broker -
No prior approval requiredRSA 401:15
Insurance CompanyNH Insurance Companies must be accompanied by approvals form the Insurance Department. Foreign insurance companies do NOT register with our office.Insurance Department stamps and signs an approval or provide approval certificatesRSA 401:15
Martial ArtsMust register with the DOJ after filing with this office.RSA 358-S:2
P.A.C. (Political Action Committies) or any other political associationIf the name or documents sound like a form of a PAC (Political Action Committee), we need to contact our main office to be sure we can accept it - sometimes Election Laws prohibit it. Normally PACS are not registered here.
PoliceIf the name suggests it's part of a police department a letter of consent from the police department is required. For example: Concord Police Benevolent Fund or Friends of the Concord Police would require a consent letter from the Concord Police Department. However, a name such as Granite State Military & Police Supplies would not need consent of a police department as it is not implied that they are associated with a police department
Post Office / Postal / MailIf the name suggests or sounds like it's connected with the post office it requires consent of the United States Post Office.

Example: a name such as US Male sounds like US Mail so it would need consent. A name us as Concord Post Office Etc. would require consent of the US Post Office. However, Mail Boxes Etc would not require consent.
Professional Association / Professional CorporationProfessional Associations or Professional Corporations are formed under a combination of RSA 293-A and 294-A. (RSA 293-A makes them a corporation - RSA 294-A gives them the professional status) . The purposes are limited to only the professions allowed in RSA 294-A:2. The name must END in a professional designation (such as Professional Association, Professional Corporation, PC, PA).

Example: Accountants 101 PC can form as a professional corporation because accountants are in the list of allowable professions in RSA 294-A:2. However, Real Estate Professional Corporation cannot not register as a PC as the "realtors" are not in the list of allowable professions. The name cannot say "professional corporation" if it's not formed under RSA 294-A because "professional corporation" is a pc/pa designation.

If they form as a regular corporation they cannot amend to become a PC - the PC must be FORMED under the two laws. On the other hand, a PC may chose to stop rendering "professional services, they can file and amendment - they have to state they are no longer rendering professional services, and are thereby deleting any reference RSA 294-D and changing the name" (they have to change PC designation to a corporation designation)
Professional LLCProfessional LLC are formed under a combination of RSA 304-C and 304-D. (304-C makes them a LLC status and 304-D gives them the Professional status). The purposes are limited to only the professions listed in RSA 304-D:2. The name must END in a professional designation (such as Professional Limited Liability, PLLC, P.L.L.C.)

Example: Accountants 101 PLLC can form as a professional LLC because accountants are in the list of allowable professions in RSA 304-D:2. However, Real Estate Professional Corporation cannot not register as a PC as the "realtors" are not in the list of allowable professions. The name cannot say "professional corporation" if it's not formed under RSA 304-Dbecause "professional corporation" is a pc/pa designation.

If they form as a regular LLC they cannot amend to become a PLLC - the PLLC must be FORMED under the two laws. On the other hand, a PLLC may chose to stop rendering "professional services, they can file and amendment - they have to state they are no longer rendering professional services, and are thereby deleting any reference RSA 304-D and changing the name" (they have to change PCdesignation to a Inc. or other corp designation)
RSA 304-D:1 VI
Rail RoadIf the name or purposes suggest it's a rail road, approval is needed from the NH Railroad Services (which is part of NH Department Transportation)

Example: Hobo Railroad or Seacoast Scenic RR would need approval from DOT.
RSA 228:54 +
Surveying/Surveyor
or any derivative thereof
regardless of the intended meaning or includes the practice of land surveying in the purposes
The filing containing these words in either the name or the purposes regardless of the intended meaning* must be accompanied by a certificate from Joint Board of Licensure saying entity is licensed. Their website is http://www.nh.gov/jtboard/home.htm
*intended meaning as in - Polical Surveying Services
Copy of their license issued by the Joint Board.RSA 310-A:69
Trust (that is not a trust company)You need to determine what kind of "trust" If it's a realty trust or foreign business trust the word "trust" is ok - as long as the name does not indicate it’s a bank. Example: Green Realty Trust would not need anything but Green Mutual Trust would indicate it's a bank so it would need approval from the Banking Department.
Trust CompanyA trust company is a bank. Any document with Trust Company in name or purposes must have approvals from the Banking Department and/or Board of Trusts which accompany the filing with us.RSA 390
Visiting NurseAny filing which the name or the purposes suggests Visiting Nurses or nursing, or home health care must be accompanied by a letter from Bureau of Health Facilities saying the entity has applied for licensure. An example would be "visiting nurse", "VNA", "home health care", etc. would require the letter.A letter from the Bureau of Health Facilities stating the entity has applied for license.RSA 151:2-c

Source: New Hampshire Secretary of State

New Hampshire Secretary of State Contact Info

If you have any questions, you can contact the New Hampshire Secretary of State at 603-271-3246 (Monday – Friday: 8am – 4:30pm).

Next Step

Either return back to the New Hampshire LLC Name lesson or go forward to New Hampshire Registered Agent lesson.

Matt Horwitz
Founder & Educator, LLC University®
Forming an LLC shouldn't be so complicated. Our step-by-step guide will make the process a breeze – and no complex legal jargon! LLC University® teaches people how to form an LLC for free in all 50 states. We hope you find our free guides and resources helpful in your business journey.

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