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Does the designator “LLC” or “Inc.” always need to be included in your company name?

When filing the Articles of Organization for an LLC or Articles of Incorporation for a corporation, the state requires that a designator such as “LLC” or “Inc.” be included to signify that the company is organized as an LLC or incorporated as a corporation. Many business owners often omit the designator for marketing or advertising purposes.

Leaving the word “LLC” or “Inc.” off the company name may have unintended consequences for the company’s owners. It should always be clear that the company is a limited liability company or corporation, in its absence the courts could rule that the owners have entered into a transaction in an individual capacity, and not on behalf of their company. This may result in personal liability for the owners of a company and it is therefore advisable to always include the company designator on all marketing, business cards and websites. Following this basic rule will indicate the existence of an incorporated entity and provide limited liability protection to the owners. It is also highly recommended that the owners of a company always enter into contracts as members of an LLC or as officers of a corporation, and never as individuals.

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