Ohio Secretary of State maintains a state corporation database where information about the registered business entities and filed documents are stored. Currently, information about LLCs, LLPs, Corporations, Partnerships, and name reservations are stored in the corporation database.
This database is available to the public to search for free and anyone can access it online on the SOS website. Searching for a business is especially helpful for new business owners/registered agent to check if the business name they have selected is available for registration or not.
On this page, we have described various ways to search for a business in Ohio.
Ohio Business Entity Search
One can conduct business entity search in Ohio in following ways:
- Search by Business Name (Keyword/Exact/Prior)
- Advanced Search
- Search by Registration Number
- Search by Incorporator Name
Search by Business Name (Keyword/Exact/Prior)
Step 1: Open Ohio Business Filing Portal web page – Link (opens in new tab).
You have 3 options to conduct a name-based search. These options have been described below:
- If you would like to search a business by partial name or a keyword then select ‘Search By Name‘ (Default option/Recommended).
- If you know the exact name of the business then select ‘Business Name – Exact’.
- If you are looking to search for a business by its prior/old name then select ‘Prior Business Name‘.
Step 2: Enter the name of the business you are looking to search in the text box and click on ‘Search‘.
- Remove all the puntuations from the search query.
- Corporate endings such as LLC, Corporation etc should not be entered.
- Use of wild card (%) is permitted.
For details on search tips visit this link.
Step 3: On the next page, you can view the list of businesses that matched the search criteria.
Following information will be available on the results page for each business entity:
- Entity Number
- Business Name
- Original Filing Date
- Expiry Date
- Business Location
Based on the information available, select the desired business.
Step 4: Click on the entity number of the business to view further information.
Step 5: On the next page, you can view following information about the business:
|Entity Number||Business Entity ID|
|Business Name||Business Entity Name|
|Filing Type||Business Type – LLC/LLP/Corporation (Profit/Non-Profit) (Domestic/Foreign)|
|Status||Business Status – Active/Inactive/Dissolved/Name Changes|
|Original Filing Date||Business filing date with SOS|
|Expiry Date||Business Expiry Date|
|Location/County/State||Location(city/village/township) details of the business including the county and the state|
|Agent / Registrant Information||Registered Agent name and address|
|Incorporation Information||Incorporator Name and Address|
|Filings||Filing type, filing date and the document image|
One can also view the copies of filed documents pertaining to the business under ‘Filings‘ tab.
Detailed Business Search
This option gives you the flexibility to filter out the search results based on a number of parameters.
- To find active business entities containing a certain term.
- To find businesses belonging to a certain location.
Step 1: Open Ohio business search page – Link.
Step 2: Click on ‘Detailed Business Search‘ link from the left sidebar.
Step 3: Enter the business name and set the required filters. Following options are available:
- Business type
Step 4: Click on the ‘Search‘ button.
Step 5: The search results containing the business entities matching the search terms are displayed on the next page.
Step 6: Choose the desired business entity and click on corresponding business ID.
Search by Number
Use this option if you have the registration number or the document id of the business you are looking for.
Step 1: To start, navigate to the search by ID page – Link.
Step 2: Enter a valid registration number or the document id in the text box.
- A valid registration number is of 7 digits. The registration number is assigned to a business by the SOS.
- A valid Filing number is of 12 digits. Filing number is assigned to each of the document filed for the business by the SOS.
Step 3: Click on the ‘Search‘ button.
Step 4: If the entered number is correct, you will be able to view the business information on the next page.
Search by Agent/Contact Name (Keyword/Exact)
Use this search option, if you would like to find out the list of business entities associated with a registered agent or incorporator.
- If you are not sure about the exact name of the person then use this link.
- If you know the exact name, then use this link.
Step 1: Select the desired option and enter the search term.
Step 2: Click on the ‘Search‘ button.
Step 3: The search yields the names of the businesses, with which the agent/incorporator is associated with.
You can find the following information in the search results page:
- Entity number
- Agent/Registrant/Incorporator Name
- Business Name
- Agent Effective Date
- Business Location
Based on the information available, you should be able to pinpoint the business entity you are seeking.
Step 4: Clicking on the entity number takes you to the next page which will have all the available information on the business.
Ohio Secretary of State
180 East Broad Street, 16th Floor
Columbus, Ohio 43215 (Directions)
|Contact Number||Business Entity-(614) 466-3910|
|Office Hours||9 AM – 5 PM (Mon to Fri)|
Sat/Sun – Closed
Links & References:
Last Updated on: 05/10/2018