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 Idaho. 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.
Are You Required to Reserve a Business Name?
No. While some states require name reservation as the first step in the LLC formation process, Idaho does not. Feel free to jump straight into filing your Certificate of Organization, which will automatically register your business name.
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 Idaho LLC registration.
You have the option to reserve your LLC name, but it’ll cost you a $20 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 an Idaho 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 an Idaho Business Name Reservation Last?
Anyone planning to do business within the state of Idaho 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 registration in the state of Idaho makes that name yours for a period of four months, and you may officially form your LLC any time during that period to lock it in.
Here’s where you have to be careful. Your reservation is nonrenewable, so once it expires, you risk losing your name to someone else. Just make sure that you’re ready to launch your business within four months before filing for a reservation.
How do I Reserve a Business Name in Idaho?
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 Business Search tool on Idaho’s SOSBiz website makes this process quick and easy. All you have to do is search for your desired name and see if it’s already in use. Don’t forget that you also need to comply with other business entity name restrictions from the state of Idaho (find them all here). All good? If your LLC name is available and compliant, let out a sigh of relief—you’re ready to reserve it.
The SOSBiz website makes it easy to file an Application for Reservation of Legal Entity Name. On the left side of the page, click “Forms,” then scroll down to find it. You’ll need to create an account before filing.
A second option is to file by mail. Download the PDF form, complete it, and mail it to:
Office of the Secretary of State
P.O. Box 83720
Boise, Idaho 83720-0080
If you live near Boise and want to get out for some fresh air, you can also hand deliver it to:
450 N 4th St.
Boise, Idaho 83720-0080
Whether you file online, by mail, or in person, name reservation costs $20. Pay by credit card if you’re filing online and check (made out to “Idaho Secretary of State”) if by mail or in person. Typical processing time is 7-10 days, but you can request 8-hour expedited processing for an additional $20.
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 Idaho to get started instead. This way, rather than paying an additional $20 for the name reservation application, you’ll only pay the one-time $100 Idaho LLC formation fee to claim your name and form the LLC at the same time. $20 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.