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 Connecticut. 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?
No, there’s no requirement to reserve a name before launching your LLC. In some states, a name reservation serves as the necessary precursor to your Articles of Organization, but this is not the case in Connecticut.
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 Connecticut LLC registration.
You have the option to reserve your LLC name, but it’ll cost you a $60 fee. 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 Connecticut 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 Connecticut Business Name Reservation Last?
Anyone planning to do business within the state of Connecticut 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 Connecticut gives you ownership of that name for 120 days, after which, the name will be open to anyone else. But be careful with this timing! After your reservation expires, you cannot renew it. So, if you think you’re more than 120 days from launching your business, hold off on reserving your name.
If you decide to transfer your name reservation to someone else, you can do so by filing a “Transfer of Reserved Name,” which comes with an additional $60 fee. This form, however, will only change the reservation’s owner; it will not extend or renew the hold.
How do I Reserve a Business Name in Connecticut?
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. See if your business name is already in use by searching it in the Connecticut Business Registry. If you get a message that no records were found, you’re in the clear.
Don’t forget that you also need to comply with other business entity name restrictions from the state of Connecticut (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.
The first step in the process is downloading the “Application for Reservation of Name,” from the Secretary of State’s Forms and Fees webpage. There are separate forms for domestic and foreign LLCs, so be sure you download the correct one. Find the domestic one here and the foreign one here. The second page of each document contains detailed instructions for its completion.
But unfortunately, you can’t do the whole process from your laptop. The S.O.S. website doesn’t offer an online filing option for either of these forms, so you’ll have to submit it by mail or in person. After you download and complete the appropriate form, mail it to:
Commercial Recording Division
Connecticut Secretary of State
P.O. Box 150470
Hartford, Connecticut 06115-0470
Or, if you happen to be in Hartford, you can stop by the Secretary of State’s office to drop it off at:
30 Trinity St.
Hartford, Connecticut 06106
Registering a business name in Connecticut is going to cost you a $60 fee as well. For payment, make a check out to “Secretary of the State” and include it with your completed document.
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 Connecticut to get started instead. This way, rather than paying an additional $60 for the name reservation application, you’ll only pay the one-time $120 Connecticut LLC formation fee to claim your name and form the LLC at the same time. $60 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.