Your New York business entity needs the perfect name, and we’re here to help. In this section we’ll guide you through searching the NY Department of State business register, tell you about the rules for naming your business, describe “Assumed Names” and get you started with registering your LLC.
You need to check whether there’s already another New York LLC registered with your desired business name. That means searching the New York Department of State website using their Corporation and Business Entity Database. You can easily look up NY LLCs and corporations by name and other details.
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.
Once you’ve decided on a name for your LLC and checked business name availability, you’ll need to meet New York Department 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 NY.
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 New York LLC.
The business name you have chosen cannot be used by any other LLC or corporation in the state of New York. This is why you should check business name availability on the NY DOS website.
It’s not enough for your NY LLC name to be unique; it also cannot be similar to the name of another corporation or LLC in New York. 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.
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.
Most states will not allow you to form LLCs with names that:
Are very similar to the name of a federal or NY agency or organization (e.g. FBI, FDA, New York Department of Taxation and Finance, New York 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
In addition to the general rules listed above, the New York Department of State has some specific business naming rules for your LLC. You will need to follow these rules if you want to name your NY business appropriately.
Restricted words include: "America Espirito Sport Fraternite," "Citius Altius Fortius," academy, acceptance, annuity, arboretum, assurance, bank, benefit, blind, bond, casualty, college, conservatory, council, doctor, education, elementary, endowment, exchange, fidelity, finance, guaranty, handicapped, historical, historical society, history, indemnity, industrial organization, industrial organization, institute, insurance, investment, kindergarten, labor, lawyer, library, loan, mortgage, museum, Olympiad, prekindergarten, preschool, savings, school, secondary, surety, title, trust, underwriter, union, United Nations, university
Prohibited words include: attorney, board of trade, chamber of commerce, community, cooperation, cooperative, corporation, incorporated, partnership, redevelopment, state police, state trooper, tenant relocation, urban development, urban relocation
You might choose to do business under a different name from your legal LLC name. In New York, doing business under a different name is known as an “Assumed Name.” You might choose to use a different name from your NY formal LLC name for a variety of reasons.
For example, your LLC might be called “New York Real Estate Holding Company LLC,” and you have a chain of properties called “East Side Luxury Apartments.” You should file an assumed name to let the New York Department of State know. In New York, you do that through a Certificate of Assumed Name form, or you can have Incfile do it on your behalf through our Assumed Business Name service.
Once you’ve searched for your New York business name, checked availability, followed the naming rules and decided whether you need a fictitious name, you can register your NY LLC name. There are a couple of ways to do this.
If you don’t want to form your New York LLC right now, you can reserve the business name with the New York Department of State. You will need to complete an Application for Reservation of Name and file it with the NY DOS. You do not need to reserve a name if you are forming your business right away.
New York DOS LLC name reservation form
If you’re ready to start your New York LLC, you can file your Articles of Organization with the New York DOS, or let Incfile take care of it for you.
You might find the following answers useful.
Just go to the business name search tool and enter your proposed business name. You can search the register of the New York Department of State, which will tell you if there are any NY corporations or LLCs with that name.
Yes. Most LLCs will be bound by general rules (applicable to all LLCs) and specific rules (applicable in the state of New York). We’ve detailed these rules above.
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.
Yes. The New York Department 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.
You might find these resources helpful.
You must be careful that your New York 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.
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
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This report is mandatory and must be filed within the specified time frame in order for the entity to remain in good standing with the state. Failure to file this report can lead to the company being revoked or administratively dissolved.
Due Date: During anniversary month of organization.
Filing Fee: $9
Important: Section 206 of the New York State Limited Liability Company Law requires that within 120 days after the effectiveness of the initial articles of organization, a limited liability company (LLC) must publish in two newspapers a copy of the articles of organization or a notice related to the formation of the LLC. The newspapers must be designated by the county clerk of the county in which the office of the LLC is located, as stated in the articles of organization. After publication, the printer or publisher of each newspaper will provide you with an affidavit of publication. A Certificate of Publication, with the affidavits of publication of the newspapers attached, must be submitted to the New York Department of State, Division of Corporations, One Commerce Plaza, 99 Washington Avenue, Albany, NY 12231. The fee for filing the Certificate of Publication is $50.
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