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Is Your Business Name Available? How to Check Your Business Name Availability in Your State

Is your business name already taken? Here's how to search your state's records...

I Love Making Money Staff & writers

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Are you trying to register a business name in your state? The Secretary of your State will reject your application if it finds that the name of your company is the same as that of another entity. Pick a name for your company, and then search your state’s Secretary of State to see if it’s similar to existing entity names in your state.

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If you’re looking for help in filing paperwork, then our sponsored team at Incfile will help you fill out paperwork & answer any questions for free. You’ll just pay the state filing fees. Click here to get started.

Don’t worry if you don’t get the exact LLC name, because you can form an LLC under one name and then, use a DBA to conduct business.

Free Help Available 👇👇👇👇👇👇

If you’re looking for help in filing paperwork, then our sponsored team at Incfile will help you fill out paperwork & answer any questions for free. You’ll just pay the state filing fees. Click here to get started.

How to Check Your Trademark

When I first started checking trademarks, I noticed that my name would be trademarked a few times under different companies. That’s because it’s possible to have identical registered trademarks if the goods are unrelated. Think: Delta Airlines, Delta Faucets.

If your name is available in your state, then it’s time to do a nationwide search for your trademark.

Step 1: Search the USPTO’s trademark database and choose a search option here.

Step 2: If you are searching for your name, you can use the trademark name search. If you are searching for your logo / design, you will need to look up your design code using the USPTO’s Design Search Codes here.

Frequently Asked Questions About Name Search Available and Trademarks

Should I trademark my business name?

Yes. You’ll want to start a trademark application as soon as your LLC is setup. By filing prior to launch, you can be sure that your name is protected once you begin making money. Keep in mind, you get common law rights to a name as soon as it is used in commerce. As soon as you start selling a product or a service, you can claim common law ownership of that trademark without formally registering it. You’ll want to register it to easily win court cases against infringers.

What is the difference between a business name and a DBA?

The business name is the legal name of the entity. Owners often register a DBA that is different from the legal name. For example, Mary Johnson owns a small consulting business with a DBA as Mary Johnson’s Coaching.

How do I protect my business name?

You’ll want to register your trademark at the U.S. Patent and Trademark’s Office’s website at www.uspto.gov. Online trademark registration costs between $275 and $325 and requires date of mark’s first use and category of goods and services. It takes six months usually to receive a response.

Can two businesses have the same name?

Two businesses can have the same name because business names are registered on a state by state basis. There could be intellectual property issues and trademark problems in the future when two companies have the same name. That’s why it’s important to register your trademarks officially with the USPTO.

Can I use a name for a business that already exists?

If a business name is already registered with the USPTO, then it’s trademarked. You are prohibited from using it, even if the business operates in a different state.

Should I trademark my logo?

You can register your business name as a “standard character mark” which is any combo of letters & numbers with no reference to style, design, font or color. A “standard character mark” will provide protection for the name of the business or the slogan for the business and provides the right to use the name or a slogan (i.e. Just Do It)

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8 Comments

  1. Alex October 6, 2020
    • Kit Elliott October 12, 2020
  2. Yani October 28, 2020
    • Kit Elliott October 30, 2020
  3. Esle November 12, 2020
  4. Lee Horner December 2, 2020
    • Kit Elliott December 2, 2020

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