How Do I Find Out if a Business Name Is Available in Illinois?

If you’re planning to start a business in Illinois, one of the first things you need to do is make sure the business name you want to use is available. Here’s how to check availability and reserve a business name in Illinois.

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1. Introduction

Businesses in Illinois must have a unique name that is different from any other business registered with the state. You can check to see if a name is available by searching the business registry on the Illinois Secretary of State website.

To register your business in Illinois, you will need to choose a legal structure for your business. The most common legal structures for businesses are sole proprietorships, partnerships, limited liability companies (LLCs), and corporations. Each type of business has different requirements for registration.

Sole proprietorships and partnerships do not need to register with the Secretary of State, but there are still some requirements you will need to meet. LLCs and corporations must file articles of incorporation or organization with the Secretary of State.

2. Naming your business- the first step

The first step in starting a business is naming it. You want to choose a name that reflects the type of business you will be running and is memorable to potential customers. Once you have chosen a name, you need to make sure it is available to use in Illinois.

You can check for the availability of a proposed business name by searching the Secretary of State’s business name database. The database will return results for any business entity that contains the search term in its entity name. The database does not provide information on trademarks.

If the name you want is available, you can reserve it for 120 days by filing a Business Entity Name Reservation form with the Secretary of State’s office.

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3. Why it is important to have an available business name

It is important to have an available business name because it:

– Prevents others from using your business name
– Helps you establish and maintain a professional image
– Makes it easier for customers and clients to find you
– Helps you avoid trademark infringement issues

4. How to check if a business name is available in Illinois

You can check if a business name is available in Illinois in several ways:

1. online
2. by mail
3. in person
4. by phone

1. Checking online: Visit the Business Services Department of the Illinois Secretary of State’s website at www.cyberdriveillinois.com. Click on the link for “Business Services,” then scroll down to the section titled “Name Availability Searches and Requests.” Here you will find a link to an online name availability search tool. You can also request availability reports for up to 10 names at a time.
2. Checking by mail: Print and complete the Business Service Request Form, which can be found on the Secretary of State’s website under the heading “Forms.” Include a check or money order for $15 made out to the Secretary of State, and mail both to: Business Services Department, Room 353
Secretary of State
Springfield, IL 62756
3. Checking in person: You can come to Room 353 in the Secretary of State’s office in Springfield, IL during normal business hours (Monday – Friday, 8:30am – 5:00pm) and use our public computers to check name availability or request an availability report for up to 10 names. There is no fee for this service.
4 .Checking by phone: Call 217-782-7017 Monday – Friday, 8:30am – 5:00pm CST and ask for the Business Services Department. A staff member will be happy to run a name search for you over the phone or take your request for an availability report for up to 10 names.

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5. Illinois Secretary of State- the ultimate authority

The Illinois Secretary of State is the ultimate authority on whether a business name is available for use in Illinois. You can search the Secretary of State’s database of registered names to see if your desired name is available. The Secretary of State’s website also has a name availability tool that will allow you to check up to three names at a time. If your desired name is unavailable, you may be able to register it as a “fictitious” or “assumed” name.

6. Other ways of checking for an available business name

There are other ways of checking for an available business name. You may:
-contact the Illinois Secretary of State’s office
-check with the county clerk in the county where you will be doing business
-check with the city clerk in the city where you will be doing business, or
-search online business name databases.

7. What to do if the business name you want is not available

If the business name you want is not available, you can:
-Check with the USPTO to see if the name is trademarked. If it is, you can’t use it.
-See if a fictitious name registration already exists for the name in Illinois. Fictitious name registrations are filed with the Secretary of State’s office and are available online.
-Check with your county clerk’s office to see if there is a local business already using the name.

8. The process of registering your business name

The process of registering your business name is simple. First, you need to choose a name for your business. Once you have chosen a name, you will need to check with the Illinois Secretary of State’s office to make sure that the name is available and has not been registered by another business.

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To check the availability of a business name, you can either visit the Secretary of State’s office in person or search online. If you search online, you will need to fill out a Name Availability Inquiry form. Once you have submitted the form, the Secretary of State’s office will conduct a search of its records and get back to you within five business days.

If the business name you have chosen is available, you can then register it by filing a Certificate of Assumed Business Name with the Secretary of State’s office. The fee for filing a Certificate of Assumed Business Name is $150.

9. The benefits of having an available business name

There are many benefits of having an available business name in Illinois. The first and most obvious is that it allows you to operate your business without the risk of infringement. Additionally, an available business name can help you build a strong reputation and brand identity. It can also make it easier for customers and clients to find and remember your business. Finally, an available business name can give you a competitive edge in the marketplace.

10. Conclusion

If the business name you have chosen is not available in Illinois, you can either try to register it as a fictitious name or choose a new name. If you decide to go with a new name, make sure to check that it is available before moving forward with your business.

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