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How to Perform an Ohio LLC Name Search

If you’re thinking about starting a business in Ohio, you’ll need to choose a name for your LLC. And before you can do that, you’ll need to perform a name search to make sure the name you want is available. Here’s a step-by-step guide to doing an Ohio LLC name search.

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Overview

Go to the website of the Ohio Secretary of State

To perform an Ohio LLC name search, go to the website of the Ohio Secretary of State at www.sos.state.oh.us. Click on the link for Business Services, then select the option for performing a Business Entity Search. You will be taken to a page where you can search for business entities by name, number, or officer/resident agent information.

Enter the proposed LLC name in the search field

The first step is to go to the Ohio Secretary of State website and enter the proposed LLC name in the search field. If the name is available, you will see a message that says “The name you have selected is available for use.” If the name is not available, you will see a list of similar names that are available.

Review the results of the search to see if the name is available

If the name is available, you can file the Articles of Organization with the Ohio Secretary of State to form your LLC. The filing fee is $99. Note that you may also need to reserve the LLC name with the SOS if you intend to form the LLC at a later date.

If the name is available, proceed with the filing of the LLC formation documents

Performing a name search is the first step in formation an LLC in Ohio.3 min read

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An LLC, or limited liability company, is a business structure that offers both the benefits of a corporation — personal asset protection and tax flexibility — and the benefits of a partnership — ease of formation and operation.

To form an LLC in Ohio, you must first select a unique name for your LLC and then file your Articles of Organization with the Ohio Secretary of State. An important part of choosing your LLC name is making sure that it’s available and not already being used by another business entity in Ohio. This article will walk you through how to perform an Ohio LLC name search and reserve your desired name if it’s available.

How to Perform an Ohio LLC Name Search
The best way to search for an available LLC name in Ohio is to use the Business Entity Search tool on the Secretary of State website. You can also conduct a name search by visiting the Business Services Division in person or by sending a written request by mail or fax.

When searching for an available LLC name, keep the following considerations in mind:
-Your LLC name must include the phrase “Limited Liability Company,” “L.L.C.,” “LLC,” or “ltd.”
-Your LLC name cannot include language stating or implying that your company is organized for any purpose other than permitted by state statute.
-Your LLC name cannot include language that would confuse your company with a government agency or cause people to mistakenly believe that your company is connected with federal, state, or local government entities.
-The use of certain words, such as “bank,” “attorney,” “university,” and “city,” may require additional paperwork and/or a licensed individual, such as a banker, attorney, etc., to be part of your company before you can use those words in your company name.

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After you’ve performed a thorough search of available names and found one that meets all the requirements outlined above, you can proceed with filing your Articles of Organization with the Ohio Secretary of State to officially form your LLC.

If the name is not available, try searching for a similar name

If the name you want is not available, try searching for a similar name. To do this, go to the Ohio Business Gateway and search for the name you want. If the name is not available, try adding or removing words. You can also try searching for a different spelling of the word. If you can’t find a similar name, you can try searching for a different type of business entity, such as an LLC or corporation.

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*This applies to Virginia residents too!

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