Georgia Secretary of State Business Search, Naming and Registration
We’re here to help you find the right business name for your Georgia LLC. From searching for a business name with the GA Secretary of State to understanding naming rules or creating a “Doing Business As” name to register your entity, you’re in the right place.
Georgia Business Entity Search
You should start naming your business by completing a “Georgia business entity search” with the secretary of state. They have a helpful tool on their website that lets you search the register of GA LLCs and corporations to see if someone already has your desired business name. Just enter the GA business name you want to search for and see if the name is already in use by an LLC or corporation in Georgia.
If the business name is already used, that means it’s not available and you won’t be able to register it. Try searching for a different business name instead.
Georgia Secretary of State business name search tool
Rules on Georgia LLC Name Availability
Once you’ve decided on a name for your LLC and checked business name availability, you’ll need to meet Georgia Secretary of State naming rules. These do vary from state to state — we’ve got general naming rules below, as well as naming rules specific to LLC businesses formed in GA.
Standard LLC Naming Rules
These rules typically apply to all LLCs, no matter what state they are formed in. You will need to pay attention to these rules, as they will influence the name you choose for your Georgia LLC.
Your LLC Business Name Must Be Unique
The business name you have chosen cannot be used by any other LLC or corporation in the state of Georgia. This is why you should check business name availability on the GA SOS website.
Your LLC Business Name Must Not Be Confusable With Another Business Name
It’s not enough for your GA LLC name to be unique. It also cannot be similar to the name of a corporation or LLC in Georgia. For example, you cannot use the following factors to say your name is different from the name of another business:
Suffixes, such as Corporation, Company, Incorporated, Incorporation, Limited, Corp., Co., Inc., Ltd., LLC, etc.
Definite articles like “A,” “And,” “An,” “&,” “The,” etc.
The singular, plural or possessive forms of a word
Abbreviations, punctuation, symbols, fonts, typefaces, etc.
Your LLC Business Name Must Contain Certain Words
All LLCs must have the words “Limited Liability Company,” “L.L.C.” or “LLC” in their name. These words should normally come at the end of the name.
Your LLC Business Name May Have Other General Restrictions
Most states will not allow you to form LLCs with names that:
Are very similar to the name of a federal or GA agency or organization (e.g., FBI, FDA, Georgia Department of Revenue, Georgia Police, Treasury, etc.)
Suggest affiliation with a federal or state agency or organization
Use the term “Olympic” or any terms that are trademarks of the Olympic organization
Imply a purpose that it would be illegal for your business to carry out
Specific Georgia Business Name Rules
In addition to the general rules listed above, the Georgia Secretary of State has some specific business naming rules for your LLC. You will need to follow these rules if you want to name your GA business appropriately.
Use of the following terms in an entity name requires the written approval of the Office of Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner: “insurance,” “assurance,” “surety,” “fidelity,” “reinsurance,” “reassurance” or “indemnity”
Use of the following terms or any variation of the word “bank” in an entity name requires the written approval of the Department of Banking and Finance: "bank," “banc,” “banque,” “banker,” “banking company,” “banking house,” “bancorp,” “bankruptcy,” “credit union,” “savings & loan,” “trust” or “trust company”
Use of the following terms in an entity name requires the written approval of the Georgia Nonpublic Postsecondary Education Commission: “college” or “university”
Read more about Georgia Secretary of State business naming rules.
Georgia LLC Fictitious Names
You might choose to do business under a different name from your legal LLC name. In Georgia, doing business under a different name is known as a “Fictitious” or “Doing Business As (DBA)” name. You might choose to use a different name from your GA formal LLC name for a variety of reasons.
For example, your LLC might be called Georgia Orchards Holding Company LLC and you have a chain called “The Peach Pit Stop.” You should file a Fictitious/DBA name form. You should register a fictitious name with the Clerk of the Superior Court in the county where you conduct business, or you can have Incfile file it on your behalf through our Assumed Business Name service.
Incfile’s Assumed Business Name service
Register Your Georgia LLC Business Name
Once you’ve searched for your Georgia business name, checked availability, followed the naming rules and decided whether you need a fictitious name, you can register your GA LLC name. There are a couple of ways to do this.
If you don’t want to form your Georgia LLC right now, you can reserve the business name with the Georgia Secretary of State. You will need to complete a Name Reservation Request and file it with the GA SOS. You do not need to reserve a name if you are forming your business right away.
Georgia SOS LLC name reservation form
If you’re ready to start your Georgia LLC, you can formally file your Articles of Organization with the Georgia Secretary of State, or let Incfile do it for you.
Register and incorporate your Georgia LLC now
FAQs on Naming Your Georgia LLC
You might find the following answers useful.
How Do I Search for My Georgia LLC Business Name?
Just go to the business name search tool and enter your proposed business name. You can search the register of the Georgia Secretary of State, which will tell you if there are any GA corporations or LLCs with that name.
Are There Any Rules on Naming My Georgia LLC?
Yes. Most LLCs will be bound by general rules (applicable to all LLCs) and specific rules (applicable in the state of Georgia). We’ve detailed these rules above.
Can I Do Business Under a Different Name Than My LLC Name in Georgia?
Yes. Known as “assumed names,” “fictitious names,” “doing business as names” or “trade names,” you can choose to conduct business under a different name. Details are above.
Can I Reserve a Name for My Georgia LLC?
Yes. The Georgia Secretary of State allows you to reserve a name if you don’t want to start your business immediately. Details are above. If you are ready to start your business now, you do not need to reserve a name.
Useful Resources for Naming Your Georgia LLC
You might find these resources helpful.
Trademarks and Service Marks
You must be careful that your Georgia LLC name does not infringe on the trademark or service mark of another business. The easiest way to make sure your proposed business name does not infringe is to carry out a trademark search through Incfile. If it doesn’t infringe, you can even register it as a trademark yourself.
Incfile Trademark Search and Registration service
Find the Perfect Name for Your Georgia LLC
The perfect business name can be elusive. We have a complete guide to choosing the right business name, but basically, you'll want to choose a name that will:
Appeal to your customers
Be memorable enough to stand out
Best represent your product or services
Not be used by another business
Incfile guide to choosing a business name