Minnesota LLC Name Search – How to Name Your LLC

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Forming an LLC requires a different business name, which must be unique and adheres to the guidelines. The great thing is Minnesota’s Secretary of State page includes a name availability checker. Check out LLC Name Search to learn more.

Meanwhile, if you’re interested in learning more about starting a Minnesota LLC or forming an LLC in general, you can check out How to Start an LLC.

How to Name an LLC in Minnesota

Time needed: 5 minutes.

There are guidelines to follow in doing a Minnesota LLC name search. To learn more, check out LLC Naming Guidelines or read Foreign LLC Application for Registration if you’re planning to register a foreign LLC.

  1. Check Name Availability

    Search the Business Entity Records in Minnesota’s Official Secretary of State page to check if your chosen business name is available. You may also try typing your trademark, business, or domain name on any search engine to generate businesses with similar names and to ensure your trademark is unique and meets the state’s requirements.

    Check out How to File a DBA to learn more about registering a DBA or trademark. For social media pages, use Social Searcher to avoid using similar page names.

  2. Check Domain Availability

    If your business name is still available, you must register for a domain name using Namecheap, Google Workspace, or other domain name sites. So customers can easily find your business over the Internet. Use the Kinsta app to manage your domains efficiently.

  3. File Name Reservation

    A Name Reservation Certificate is required along with a Certificate of Formation. You can reserve a name online, by mail, or in person with a $25 filing fee (plus tax for online).

    File your Certificate of Formation and Name Reservation online on the Secretary of State Online Services page of Minnesota. You may also download the pdf file of the Name reservation form and submit it with the processing fee to the Minnesota Secretary of State – Business Services, Retirement Systems of Minnesota Building, 60 Empire Drive, Suite 100, St Paul, MN 55103.

Guidelines to Follow in Naming LLC

  •  Use a business name with the abbreviation “LLC” or the phrase “Limited Liability Company.” 
  • Your decided business name must not coincide with any existing government entity. Otherwise, you might have to face legal lawsuits when filing your LLC.
  • Use the LLC name availability checker to ensure your business name is unique.
  • Get a license first if you plan on using restricted words to avoid any complications.

Note that you must put adequate effort into naming your LLC because this name will be with your business for a long time. Making your LLC name unique is vital as it would prevent people from confusing your business with others, not to mention it would be easier for them to recall your business, products, or services.

How To Do a Minnesota LLC Online Name Search

As a part of your LLC registration process, it is important to have a suitable name for your LLC in accordance with the State naming guidelines. So, when you select a name for your LLC, you also need to run a quick search on the Minnesota Business Entity Search page to check whether the name is unique and there is no other business running in the State with the same name.

1. Access the Business Entity Search tool on the State website

The Minnesota Secretary of State website offers a Business Entity Search Tool to assist you in finalizing a name for your business LLC. This tool is helpful in deciding the uniqueness and availability of the name. Also, keep a list of backup names ready, so you can select a final name in a few attempts.

2. Run the Search

After you navigate to the Search page, you can run the search by Business name. To begin the search process, you need to enter the name in the blank space and then click on the “Search” tab. You can also conduct the search using another option, i.e., File Number.

3. Perform the Search

To finally search the name, there are different types of strategies available on the search page. The first type of strategy is the one where you can type in the keyword and you have to check the option “Begins with”. This way, it will show the names of the competing businesses in Minnesota starting with the same name as your proposed name. Or, there is another option “contains”. So, if you type in the words that your business’s name contains or exactly matches, this will give the results for all the competing businesses. You can also search by adjusting the filing status, i.e., Active or inactive. After the results are displayed on the screen, you can click on “Details” to find more information about all the registered business names.

While conducting the search, you can exclude usage of identifiers such as “LLC” to access wider results from different forms of business structures running in a similar name. Conduct thorough research of the name by using the provided filters before filing it with the Authorities. 

If you also wish to use a Trademark for the distinct identity of your business in the State, you can run a trademark search on the Trademark Database of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office to see whether the chosen name is already in use by any other business entity.

If you also plan on conducting your business online through a website, you should also check if a domain name similar to your chosen business name is available or not.

How Do I Reserve an LLC Name in Minnesota

There are a few different ways to reserve an LLC name in Minnesota. The first option is to visit the state office in St. Paul. After you’ve created your account, you can use the website to search for available names. Within 24 hours, you will receive an email confirming your reservation. The next step is to fill out an application form and drop it off in person or mail it. Then, you can submit your completed application.

The next step is to register a business name. You can start by searching the Minnesota Business Entity Search to find a name that matches your company’s purpose. You will then need to file the Request for Reservation of LLC Name in the state. If you choose to file by mail, the fee is $50. If you choose to file online, the fee is $55. You can also file your application for the business name reservation at the same time as registering your company.

When filing the formation documents, you need to make sure that your chosen name is not already registered as a trademark in the state. You can check to see if any other business is using the same name. If the name you choose is not available, you can apply to register it as a trademark instead. You can also use the same business name for both your LLC and your sole proprietorship. Once you’ve filed your application, you can start the formation process.

F.A.Qs

What is a Trade Name?

A trade name (doing business as (DBA) name) is the official name under which a proprietor or company chooses to do business.

Is having a domain name necessary?

Having a domain isn’t necessary, but it is recommended. If you have a domain name, customers will find you more accessible through online means with your online website.

What if my name is unavailable?

For domestic LLC, you can simply brainstorm for another name if the one you pick is no longer available. For foreign LLC, you must think up a “fictitious name,” which you’ll use only in the state.

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