Starting a New Mexico LLC, step-by-step
Starting a New Mexico LLC costs $50. And it takes 3 days to get an LLC in New Mexico.
Here are the 6 steps to forming an LLC in New Mexico:
- Choose an LLC Name
- Select a Registered Agent
- File Articles of Organization
- Create an Operating Agreement
- Get an EIN
- Register for a New Mexico Tax ID Number
If you want to form your LLC yourself, follow our free guide below.
If you want someone to take care of it for you, we recommend hiring Northwest Registered Agent
(We recommend Northwest. We've reviewed all the top companies in the industry. And Northwest is our #1 pick for prices, customer support, and address privacy. Check out Northwest vs LegalZoom to learn more.)
How much does it cost to start an LLC in New Mexico?
It costs $50 to start an LLC in New Mexico. This is the fee to file the Articles of Organization – the document that creates an LLC.
To learn more about LLC Costs, see LLC Costs in New Mexico.
How long does it take to get an LLC in New Mexico?
If you file your LLC by mail, it will be approved in 15-20 business days.
But if you file online, your LLC will be approved in 1-3 business days.
Please see How long does it take to get an LLC in New Mexico to check for any delays.
Here are the steps to forming an LLC in New Mexico
1. Search your LLC Name
Search your New Mexico LLC Name to make sure it’s available in the state.
You need to do this because two businesses in the state can’t have the same name.
First, search your business name and compare it to existing businesses in New Mexico. You can make sure the LLC Name you want is unique from existing businesses using the NM Secretary of State: Business Search.
Second, familiarize yourself with the naming rules in New Mexico (so your New Mexico LLC gets approved).
We’ll explain both in more detail here: New Mexico LLC Name.
2. Choose a New Mexico Registered Agent
The next step is to choose a New Mexico Registered Agent.
A New Mexico Registered Agent is a person or company who accepts legal mail and state notices on behalf of your New Mexico Limited Liability Company.
Who can be an LLC Registered Agent?
You have 3 options for who can be the Registered Agent:
- A friend or family member
- A Registered Agent Service
The Registered Agent for your LLC must have a physical street address in New Mexico. PO Boxes aren’t allowed.
And the Registered Agent’s name and address will be listed on public records.
If you don’t have an address in New Mexico, or you want more privacy, you can hire a Registered Agent Service for your LLC.
We recommend Northwest Registered Agent
Our favorite feature about Northwest is they’ll let you use their office address throughout your LLC filing. This way, you can keep your address off public records.
They’ll also scan any mail sent to your LLC and upload it to your online account.
Northwest has excellent customer service, and they’re who we trust to be our own Registered Agent.
3. File New Mexico LLC Articles of Organization
To start an LLC, you need to file the New Mexico LLC Articles of Organization.
This gets filed with the New Mexico Secretary of State.
The New Mexico Articles of Organization costs $50 if you file online.
This is a one-time fee to create your LLC.
If you want to file this yourself, see our step-by-step guide: New Mexico LLC Articles of Organization.
Or, you can hire a company to do it for you.
4. Create a New Mexico LLC Operating Agreement
A New Mexico LLC Operating Agreement serves as a “companion” document to the Articles of Organization.
The Articles of Organization creates your LLC, and the Operating Agreement shows who owns the LLC.
Additionally, some banks require an Operating Agreement when you open an LLC bank account.
And having an Operating Agreement will be very helpful if you ever end up in court. Reason being, it helps prove that your LLC is being run properly.
That’s why we recommend that all LLCs have an Operating Agreement – including Single-Member LLCs.
Furthermore, an Operating Agreement is an “internal document“. Meaning, you don’t need to file it with any government agency (like the New Mexico Secretary of State or the IRS. Just keep a copy with your business records.
You can download a free template below.
Then, learn how to fill it out by watching our step-by-step New Mexico Operating Agreement video.
5. Get an EIN for your LLC
The next step is to get a New Mexico EIN Number from the IRS (Internal Revenue Service) for your LLC.
Note: An EIN Number is also called a Federal Tax Identification Number or Federal Employer Identification Number.
An EIN Number is used to:
- identify your LLC for tax purposes
- open a business bank account
- apply for business licenses and permits
How much does an EIN cost?
Getting an EIN Number from the IRS is completely free.
How long does it take to get an EIN?
If you apply online, it takes 15 minutes.
If you apply by mail or fax, it can take 1-3 months.
How can I get an EIN?
US Citizens/US Residents: If you have an SSN or ITIN, you can apply for an EIN online. Follow these instructions: Apply for an EIN online.
Non-US Residents: You can’t get an EIN online, but you can still get one by fax or by mail. Follow these instructions: How to get an EIN without an SSN or ITIN.
6. Register for a New Mexico Tax ID Number
All LLCs must register with the Taxation & Revenue Department and get a New Mexico Tax Identification Number.
This state tax ID is required to do business in the state, and is different from your LLC’s federal EIN number.
You can register online through Taxpayer Access Point.
And you can read more about the New Mexico Tax ID requirement from the New Mexico Taxation & Revenue Department: Who must register a business?
What do I do after my LLC is approved?
After your New Mexico LLC is approved, there are some additional steps.
Open an LLC business bank account
You’ll want to open a business bank account for your LLC.
This makes accounting and record-keeping much easier for your business finances.
Having a separate business bank account also maintains your personal liability protection. This is because it keeps your business entity finances separate from your personal finances.
Get New Mexico business licenses and permits
Good news, New Mexico doesn’t have a state general business license.
However, depending on where your LLC is located, you may need a local business license or permit.
For example, if you want to start a daycare, you may need a business license from the city or county.
You can learn more on our New Mexico LLC Business License page.
File and pay taxes
LLCs don’t pay federal taxes. Instead, the LLC Members pay the taxes for the LLC.
Said another way, the owners pay taxes for the LLC as a part of their personal tax returns.
How will my LLC be taxed?
By default, a New Mexico LLC is taxed by the IRS based on the number of owners your LLC has:
- A Single-Member LLC is taxed like a Sole Proprietorship.
- A Multi-Member LLC is taxed like a Partnership.
Alternatively, you can ask the IRS to tax your LLC like a C-Corporation or S-Corporation.
Married Couples: Instead of having your LLC taxed as a Partnership, married couples can elect to be taxed as a Single-Member LLC (aka Qualified Joint Venture). This is allowed in New Mexico because New Mexico is a community property state.
Besides federal taxes, there are also state and local income taxes – and gross receipts tax.
Learn more in New Mexico LLC Taxes.
How to Start an LLC in New Mexico FAQs
Can I start an LLC online in New Mexico?
Yes, you can file your LLC online in New Mexico. The Articles of Organization filing fee is $50.
When you start your LLC online, it will be approved 1-3 business days.
What are the benefits of an LLC?
The first benefit of an LLC is protecting your personal assets. Meaning, if your business is sued, your personal assets – like your home, cars, and bank accounts – are protected.
This protection applies to all LLC owners (called LLC Members). It doesn’t matter if you have a Single-Member LLC or Multi-Member LLC. All of the LLC owners are protected from the business debts and liabilities.
This type of protection wouldn’t apply if you operate as a Sole Proprietorship or Partnership. With these types of informal business structures, the owners aren’t protected in the event of a lawsuit. For that reason, Limited Liability Companies (LLCs) are a much more popular business structure.
Another benefit is LLC pass-through taxation. This means the LLC itself doesn’t pay federal income taxes. Instead, the profits “pass through” to the LLC Members. And the Members pay the taxes on their personal tax return.
And New Mexico state income taxes are very similar, since the state honors the federal tax structure of your LLC.
To learn more, please see How are LLCs taxed.
Is New Mexico a good state to start an LLC?
Whether New Mexico is a good state to start an LLC depends on where you live – and where you’re doing business.
Meaning, if you live in or do business in New Mexico, then you should start your LLC in New Mexico. While many websites talk about tax rates and advantages of certain states, none of that applies if it’s not the state where you live and do business.
For example, if you form an LLC in Nevada, but live in and conduct business in New Mexico, you’ll also need to register your Nevada LLC in New Mexico (and pay extra fees). And you’ll end up paying New Mexico taxes anyway. This ends up leading to more costs and more headaches with no advantages.
In summary, if you live in and conduct business in New Mexico, then yes, New Mexico is a good state to start a business. If you don’t live in and do business in New Mexico, then no, New Mexico isn’t a good state to start a business.
Real estate exception: If you’re purchasing real estate outside of New Mexico, you should form your LLC in the state where the property is located.
For more information, please see Best State to Form an LLC.
Do I need to file a New Mexico LLC Annual Report?
New Mexico LLCs don’t have to file an Annual Report or pay an annual fee.
Although most states have annual reports and fees, New Mexico is one of the few states that doesn’t require LLCs to file (or pay) an Annual Report.
For more information, see: New Mexico LLC Annual Report.
What is the difference between a Domestic LLC, a Foreign LLC, and a PLLC?
The main differences between Domestic LLCs, Foreign LLCs, and Professional LLCs are where they are formed and their business purpose.
A Domestic Limited Liability Company is an LLC that is formed in its “home state”, meaning, where the business owner lives and does business.
For example, if you live in and do business in New Mexico, you would form your Domestic LLC in New Mexico.
A Foreign Limited Liability Company is an LLC that is formed in a state that isn’t its home state. In this case, the term “foreign” simply means that the LLC is foreign to its “home state”.
For example, if you live in and do business in New Mexico, you would form your Domestic LLC in New Mexico. If you later expand into Arizona, you would register your existing New Mexico LLC as a Foreign LLC in Arizona.
Said another way, LLCs are created at the state-level.
And if you want your LLC to do business in two separate states, you have to form or register an LLC in both states.
This works by forming a Domestic LLC in your home state, and a Foreign LLC in the other state.
What is a PLLC?
A Professional Limited Liability Company (PLLC) is a type of LLC formed for the purpose of providing “professional services”.
In this case, “professional” refers to business types that require special permissions (like a license, registration, or certification from the state) in order to do business legally.
For example, architects, attorneys, and social work counselors, doctors, and veterinarians are required to register their businesses as PLLCs.
You can read more about PLLCs, their availability, and their stricter requirements in: What’s a Professional LLC?
And for more information on Foreign and Domestic LLCs, please see: