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How to reserve your business name prior to registering your LLC

On Behalf of | Dec 4, 2023 | Business Law |

Building a strong brand starts with choosing the right name for your business. This name doesn’t just define what you do — it also influences how your clients will perceive you. If you’re planning a business in Massachusetts and have a name in mind, but you aren’t ready to file your LLC immediately, reserving your business name becomes essential. Here’s how to go about it:

  1. Start by verifying the availability of your desired business name in Massachusetts. Make sure you understand the naming rules, and decide whether you need a “doing business as” (DBA) name. Once you’ve completed these steps, you can proceed with reservation.
  2. After ensuring your chosen name is available and aligns with Massachusetts’ naming guidelines, you can move to reserve your LLC name. This involves submitting an Application of Reservation of Name to the Massachusetts Secretary of the Commonwealth.
  3. Once you have filed the application, the state will reserve your selected business name for 60 days. If you do not establish your LLC within this period as per Massachusetts regulations, make sure to renew your name reservation 30 days before it expires. Each reservation is renewable and can be extended for another 60 days at the end of each term.

Remember, holding a business name differs from registering an LLC or corporation. For a business to become valid as an LLC on paper, you must proceed with a business registration. This means filing the Certificate of Organization under the state of Massachusetts.

Importance of securing your business name

Securing your business name ensures you preserve your unique brand identity and avoid exploitation by others in the market. This prevents customer confusion and strengthens your trademark rights, ultimately contributing to a strong and distinct presence in your business arena. However, the process does not stop there. In addition to reserving a business name, you should consider registering your business, obtaining the necessary licenses and permits and ensuring compliance with business laws.

Going through these processes can be complex. So, it could be helpful to consult with an attorney experienced in business law to help you work through these processes and start your business on a solid legal foundation.