Washington Business Name Reservation

In this article, we will be discussing steps involved to reserve a business name in Washington.

Generally, Name Reservation is done to protect the business name from being registered by someone else till the time business is officially registered. Name reservation requests are handled by Washington Secretary of State.

The business name can be reserved for the period of 180 days. The reservation cannot be renewed but it can be transferred during the holding period.

Washington Business Name Requirement

Washington Secretary of State has mandated certain requirements which you must keep in mind while selecting a business name.

The business name must be unique and distinguishable from any existing business entity name registered with Secretary of State. Also any difference in grammar, similarly sounding business name, or using stop words does not make the business name unique and it will lead to the name being rejected.

For example following names are not distinguishable:

  • Justin Plumber LLC vs The Justin Plumber LLC
  • Mango Farm LLC vs Mango Farms LLC
  • Jake & Mary Corporation vs Jake and Mary Corporation

Required suffix in the business name:

  • For Corporations:
    Must contain either “Corporation”, “Incorporated”, “Company”, “Limited” or an abbreviation of one of such words.
  • For LLC
    Must contain either “Corporation,” “Incorporated,” “Association,” “Limited,” “Limited Partnership,” “Limited Liability Limited Partnership”

Prohibited words:

  • Special businesses such as bank, insurance, trust etc need prior permission from the certifying body.
  • Language stating or implying the business is organized for an impermissible purpose
  • LLC name cannot contain words like  “Corporation,” “Incorporated,” “Association,” “Limited,” “Limited Partnership,” “Limited Liability Limited Partnership” or abbreviations thereof

Checking the Availability of a Business Name

Washington Secretary of State provides an online tool to check the availability of any business name. You can use this tool to find and research name for your business. We have written an in-depth tutorial on how to search for a business name in Washington.

How to Reserve Business Name

Business name reservation can be done either Online or by Mail. Filing for name reservation online is recommended as its more convenient and business name can be reserved instantly.

By Mail

Download FormLink
Fees
  • Limited Liability Company (LLC) $30
  • Profit Corporation $30
  • Non-profit Corporation $20
  • Limited Partnership (LP) $30
  • Limited Liability Partnership (LLP) $30
    Expedite fee: $50
AddressSecretary of State
Corporation Division
801 Capitol Way S
PO Box 40234
Olympia WA 98504-0234
Processing TimeAround 3 days after the receipt

  1. Download the Washington Name reservation form – Link.
  2. Fill the form with the requested details.
  3. Include the money order/check/credit card payment.
    Check/money order must be drawn in name of “Secretary of State“.
  4. Send the filled form to:
    Secretary of State
    Corporation Division
    801 Capitol Way S
    PO Box 40234
    Olympia WA 98504-0234

Washington Secretary of State Contact

For any queries, you can contact the SOS at 334-242-5324 during business hours.


Reference:

07/2018

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