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How Do I Check or Reserve a Name for a New Business Venture in Pennsylvania?

Being a business owner remains part of the “American Dream” for many people. If you are planning to become an entrepreneur you will need to make a number of important decisions regarding your new business in the near future. One of the most important decisions you will make is deciding on a name for your business. The right name, after all, can be an extremely important asset to a fledgling business. Unfortunately though, you are not free to pick any name you wish for your business because someone else may have already chosen the name you have settled on for your business. To find out if your chosen name is available you need to know how to check or reserve a name for a new business venture in Pennsylvania.

The name you choose for your business should be a decision that is only made after careful and thoughtful consideration, After all, assuming your business is a success, the name you choose will be associated with your business for many years to come. The right name can tell people much about your business whereas the wrong name can lead to confusion or lack of interest on the part of potential clients of customers.

If you plan to incorporate your business you will be required to conduct a name search prior to submitting your incorporation documents. Even if you do not plan to incorporate your business you may still wish to register your chosen name so that no one else may use it. In the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania name searches as well as registering a business name is done through the Department of State, or DOS. The first step is to conduct a name search on the

DOS’s website to determine if the name you wish to use, or a similar name, is already in use. The name search will tell you if any other business is already using your chosen name, or one that is substantially similar to yours. If the name is already in use it will tell you whether it is being used by an active corporation, an inactive corporation, or has simply been registered as a fictitious name by a non-incorporated business.

Once you settle on a name that is not currently being used you can then register that name with the DOS. Registering the name, however, only gives your rights to the name. It does not incorporate your business or otherwise form a legal business entity. To do that you must officially incorporate, form a partnership, or establish another type of structure for your business. Although you can submit incorporation documents through the DOS and Department of Labor and Industry websites, it is best to consult with an experienced Pennsylvania business law attorney first to ensure that you have completed the documents correctly and that you have not omitted an important step in the formation of your business.

If you need assistance with forming a business, or simply wish to discuss your business entity options, contact an experienced Conshohocken, Pennsylvania business law attorney as soon as possible. Contact the business law attorneys at Curley & Rothman, LLC by calling 610-834-8819 today to schedule your free consultation.