Motivated by differences in new-firm survival across regions, this paper explores the impact of regional human capital on new-firm survival rates. New-firm survival is interpreted through formation rates of surviving versus closed firms in the service sector. By incorporating knowledge spillovers through a geographical variation model for Labor Market Areas, we empirically test the relationship between regional human capital stocks and new-firm survival. The expected positive relationship between regional human capital and new-firm survival is supported for the period 1993-1995, but is not as strong for the recession period 1990-1992. Controlling for human capital, the new-firm survival rate is negatively related to service sector specialization and positively related to all industry intensity, suggesting that city size and diversity may be an important determinant of new-firm survival in both periods.