Tennessee Business Entity & Corporation Search

Tennessee state shapeIn this guide, we’ll be sharing step-by-step instructions on how to search for business entities like LLCs, Corporations, etc on the Tennesee Secretary of State website. We will also be sharing few tips to help you out with the search.

Let’s Begin:

The Tennessee Secretary of State (SOS) maintains a public database of all the registered businesses in the state. The database is available online on the secretary of state website and anyone can access it for free.

Conducting a business entity search can help you:

  • check business name availability
  • filing/downloading business documents
  • view details of any business registered in Tennessee

In the next section, we have shared the instructions on how to go ahead with the search.

Tennessee Business Entity Search

You can search for a registered business in Tennessee in two ways – by name or Secretary of State Control Number.

By Name

Step 1: Open the Tennessee Business Information search page – Link.

Step 2: Enter the name of the business in the ‘Search Name’ text box.

You can use the filters – ‘Starts with‘ or ‘Contains‘ refine the search result.

To search for only active entities, check the ‘Active Entities Only‘ box.

Step 3: Complete the captcha challenge and click on the ‘Search‘ button.

Step 4: On the next page, you can view the list of companies which matched the search criteria along with the details such as the Entity Type, Status and Filing date.

In this example, we searched for business names containing the phrase ‘automobiles’ and checked the box ‘Active entries only’.

Tennessee Business Name Search

Step 5: Next, click on the control number of the entity to view further information.

Step 6: On the next page, you can view the complete information about the business which is available with the secretary of state.

NameBusiness Entity Name
Initial Filing DateDate of Business Filing with Division of Business Services
Delayed Effective DateDate on which business incorporation will be processed
AR Due DateAnnual Report Due Date
StatusBusiness Status – Active/Inactive/Dissolved/Merged
Inactive DateDate of on which Business was termed Inactive
Formed inState of Incorporation
Fiscal Year CloseFiscal year ending month
Term of DurationDate of expiry of the business license
Principal OfficeBusiness Communication Address
Mailing AddressMailing Address
AR ExemptAnnual Report Exemption
Managed ByBusiness Managed by – Members/Manager
Obligated Member EntityAny 3rd party obligated member/entity for the business (ref)
Number of MembersNumber of business members

Under ‘Available Entity Actions‘, business owners/agents can file the following documents:

  • File Annual Report
  • Certificate of Existence
  • Cease Business in Tennessee
  • Change Registered Agent
  • Register an Assumed Name
  • Reinstate the Business
  • Update Mailing Address

At the bottom of the page, you can check if the business has any assumed/fictitious name, view history of filed documents, and registered agent information.

By Control Number

All the businesses registered with the Secretary of State are assigned a unique 9-digit control number. Using this number you can directly conduct the search.

Step 1: Open Tennessee business entity search page.

Step 2: Type in the 9-digit control number in the control# text box, and click on the ‘Search‘ button.

Step 3: On the next page, you can view the business entity associated with the control number. Click on the control number to view further information.

If the control number is invalid, you will receive an error.

Secretary of State Contact Information
AddressDivision of Business Services
312 Rosa L. Parks Avenue, Snodgrass Tower, 6th Floor
Nashville, TN 37243
Phone Number(615) 741-2286
Office Hours8:00 AM – 4:30 PM Monday – Friday (except for Official State Holidays)

Links & References

  1. https://sos.tn.gov/
  2. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Secretary_of_State_of_Tennessee

Last Updated on: 03/05/2019

  • Will Jacobs says:

    Hey Meredith,

    I have a query around trademark? When do I register the trademark. Do I register it before formation of the LLC or after formation?


    • Meredith Karter says:

      Will, great question. I always recommend registering LLC first and then trademark. If you register the trademark name first and somehow your LLC filing gets rejected then you would end up in a tricky position.

      Keep in mind to run the trademark availability check before finalizing the LLC name.
      I hope that was helpful.


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