Your company name is important. It’s your first impression, and it’s how people will remember you.
You don’t want to be the business with a forgettable name. So, when you’ve got that perfect name in mind, that clever alliteration or meaningful acronym, you might think about reserving it before someone else does.
Naming your company is one of the first official steps when starting an LLC in Arizona. In certain situations, it may be necessary to reserve a business name while you’re preparing to bring your business idea to life.
In this article, we’ll explain when reserving a business name is necessary and guide you through all the steps involved.
Don’t forget to get your business domain name so nobody else can use it. This will protect your brand and make things much easier for you later. Secure it easily through GoDaddy.
Are You Required to Reserve a Business Name?
While you have the option to reserve your business name in Arizona, the state doesn’t require it before forming your LLC. You can simply register your name at the time that you submit your Articles of Organization.
Should You Reserve Your LLC Name?
Maybe it took you sleepless nights of brainstorming, or maybe you thought of it while sitting at a traffic light. No matter how you came up with your memorable LLC name, you’ll want to make sure that it’s available and ready to use when you file your Arizona LLC registration.
You have the option to reserve your LLC name, but it’ll cost you $10 by mail and $45 online. Overall, it’s cheaper to skip this fee and simply start your business, which will lock in your name.
However, there are cases where you may not be ready to officially start your business. Filing an application to reserve your business name gives you “dibs” and ensures that competitors aren’t able to snag it while you’re preparing for launch.
If your business name is unique, including unusual spellings or characters and/or family names, it may not be necessary to reserve a Arizona business name ahead of time. Plus, paying the extra state fee to reserve your business name could be a waste of resources if you’re planning to launch your business soon after.
How Long Does a Arizona Business Name Reservation Last?
Anyone planning to do business within the state of Arizona can reserve an entity name. Filing your name registration prevents another entity from using that name to conduct business in the state during the time of your hold. An entity name reservation in the state of Arizona will hold your business name for 120 days. But be careful! Once a reservation expires, it can’t be renewed by the same person again. When you apply, make sure you’re prepared to launch your LLC within the 120-day window or you could lose your name to someone else.
You may, however, transfer your name reservation to someone else by filing a Notice of Transfer of LLC Name Reservation on the Arizona Corporation Commission website. You must file this form within the reservation’s 120-day window. It doesn’t extend or renew the reservation; it simply files it under a different name.
Maybe that name you had in mind wasn’t as clever as you originally thought, and you came up with something better. No sweat! You can withdraw your reservation at any time by filing a Notice of Cancellation of Approved LLC Name Reservation.
How do I Reserve a Business Name in Arizona?
Got a name in mind? Perfect. Follow these steps to reserve it.
Before submitting your application to reserve your business name, you first need to check name availability. The Arizona Corporation Commission makes it pretty easy. Simply enter your LLC name into the Business Entity Database and click “Name Availability Check.” Don’t forget that you also need to comply with other business entity name restrictions from the state of Arizona (find them all here). All good? Then check to see if your LLC name is available. If it is, let out a sigh of relief—you’re ready to reserve it.
We recommend filing online for multiple reasons, but mostly because it’s incredibly quick. On the A.C.C. eCorp page, click register to create your account. Then, follow the onscreen instructions to complete your application. It will be processed and take effect immediately. The fee for online filing is $45 and can be paid by credit card.
By comparison, the $10 filing fee for a paper application initially looks pretty good. But consider this: the expedited processing fee for mailed applications is and additional $35, so if you want it done quickly, the cost is the same. Additionally, keep in mind that the state of Arizona requires you to submit a Cover Sheet with any paper document.
But if you want file via mail, it’s a totally valid option. You’ll want to complete an Application to Reserve LLC Name (see here for detailed instructions from the A.C.C.) and mail it, along with your cover sheet and $10 or $45 payment to:
Arizona Corporation Commission
1300 W. Washington St.
Phoenix, Arizona 85007
If you’re local to Phoenix, you can also deliver your materials to the same address.
Here are the payment options accepted for each type of filing:
Online: Credit card
Mail: Check or money order
In-Person: Check, cash, money order, or credit card
And that’s it! Your name has been reserved. It’s important to remember that reserving a name does not launch or register your LLC in Arizona; you’ll need to file an Articles of Organization for that. Check out our guide on it.
Wrapping up and Choosing the Best Route
Your LLC name is an important part of the business. If you’re not ready to launch your business, but you’ve got a perfect name and you think someone else might claim it, consider reserving it.
However if your business is ready for takeoff, use our comprehensive guide to forming an LLC in Arizona to get started instead. This way, rather than paying an additional $10-45 for the name reservation application, you’ll only pay the one-time $50 Arizona LLC formation fee to claim your name and form the LLC at the same time. $45 isn’t a fortune by any means, but this will at least save you the hassle of reserving a name and registering an LLC separately.
Save Time by Using a Professional LLC Service
As a business owner, you have a lot to think about. Pile on the responsibility of handling state correspondence, tax information, and more while keeping your LLC compliant, and you’ve got yourself a pretty full plate. Sometimes the best move is to let someone else take care of the paperwork for you. This way, you can sleep easy knowing you’ll never miss a deadline or compliance requirement with the state of Wyoming.
While LegalZoom is by far the most well-known LLC formation service and has decent overall value, we highly recommend looking into ZenBusiness or Northwest Registered Agent. We’ve done the research so you don’t have to, and these two are reliable, professional, and efficient.