North Carolina 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 North Carolina’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 an LLC in NC or forming an LLC in general, you can check out How to Start an LLC.

How to Name an LLC in North Carolina

Time needed: 5 minutes.

There are guidelines to follow in doing a North Carolina 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 North Carolina’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 $10 filing fee (plus tax for online).

    File your Certificate of Formation and Name Reservation online on the Secretary of State Online Services page of North Carolina. You may also download the pdf file of the Name reservation form and submit it with the processing fee to the NC Secretary of State Business Registration, P.O. Box 29622, Raleigh, North Carolina 27626-0622.

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 North Carolina Business Entity Search

It is important that the LLC name matches the state guidelines. When naming your LLC, make sure that you search North Carolina’s state website to confirm that the name you pick is unique and not utilized by another organization. Look at the following points to guide you with the process.

Use the search engine for business entities in the state’s tool.

The North Carolina Secretary of State maintains a website for conducting business searches. This tool can assist you in determining whether or not the proposed name has already been taken. It is sufficient to have backup names so that you can quickly select an alternate.

Enter your name

When you reach the search page, you have the option of conducting various types of searches. You can conduct a search for an entity using its name or its unique identifier. A drop-down menu will appear to assist you in making your selections. Ensure that you complete the appropriate fields in the form for your search option.

Make the search

You only need to input a keyword to do a search. However, there are different filters you can choose like searching for names with any of the words you input. There is also one where all of the words you input are present and finding an exact match. To boot, you can search names using IDs.

How Do I Reserve an LLC Name in North Carolina

To reserve an LLC name in North Carolina you need to submit a name reservation request form to the North Carolina Secretary of State by mail or online by paying a filing fee of $30.

The first official step in setting up a North Carolina LLC is naming your business. While you may be tempted to use another name, it may be better for you to reserve your chosen name before someone else does. You can also file a DBA, or do-business-as name, with the county in which you will conduct your business. The advantage to reserving your business name is that no one else will be able to register a similar name. You have 120 days to use the name you have chosen.

To reserve your business name, you should first make sure that it is unique and not already used by another business. To do this, you can use the North Carolina Business Entity Search to see if the name is available for reserving. In addition, you should check whether the name you want is available as a URL. If it is not, you should purchase a domain name for your business.

Once you have chosen a name, you should file the reservation form with the Secretary of State of North Carolina. It must be a distinct name from any other business entity in North Carolina, or it will be considered invalid and unusable. You can also check for available business names through the Secretary of State’s website. You can also check the availability of the name in a business name checker. There are also a variety of other business entity restrictions in the state. If your chosen name is already taken, you should file an application for it before you start your business.

You can also reserve your LLC name by filling out the Application to Reserve a Business Entity Name for 120 days. This form is available online or from the Secretary of State’s website. The application must be submitted to the Secretary of State’s office in the state where you plan to operate your company. Alternatively, you can use the Business Entity Search website. You can also submit your LLC name through the website of the Secretary of State of North Carolina.

The process for reserving your business name is very simple. You can download a free application to reserve your LLC name from the state’s website and enter the information requested. When filing your application, you should also include a Cover Sheet that contains important information. You can use the PDF Upload Portal to save time. It is also recommended that you check whether your chosen name has already been trademarked. However, you will not be disqualified from using the name.

Once you have a registered LLC name, you will need to complete a few other legal steps before it can start operating. This includes establishing the rules for members and distributions. The Operating Agreement outlines the rules of the company and how the members will operate and who will be responsible for what. If you don’t have an Operating Agreement, the default rules will be those provided by the North Carolina Limited Liability Company Act.


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.

In Conclusion

LLC names are important as it is the main identity of your business. While naming your LLC make sure to choose the one that suits the nature of your business. Follow the naming guidelines before you start filing your LLC name

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