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 Nebraska. 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?
Nope. It’s great that Nebraska gives you the option to protect your desired business name, but you’re under no obligation to do so. If you’re itching to start your business and would rather jump straight into your Certificate of Formation, go right ahead.
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 Nebraska LLC registration.
You have the option to reserve your LLC name, but it’ll cost you a $15 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 Nebraska 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 Nebraska Business Name Reservation Last?
Anyone planning to do business within the state of Nebraska 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 Nebraska protects that name from would-be name poachers for 120 days. But if you don’t form your LLC within that 120-day window, you can’t renew your reservation, so be strategic about when you submit your application for reservation; otherwise, you risk losing that name to someone else.
Say you decide you don’t want your reserved name anymore, or you’d prefer someone else have it. You can transfer your reservation by filing a “Transfer of Reserved Name” form and paying a $15 fee. This doesn’t extend your reservation; it simply changes the owner.
How do I Reserve a Business Name in Nebraska?
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 Nebraska Secretary of State requires all name availability requests in writing. either via fax to (402) 471-3666 or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org or by mailing to Business Services Division at P.O. Box 94608, Lincoln, NE 68509. They will respond to let you know if your name is available.
Don’t forget that you also need to comply with other business entity name restrictions from the state of Nebraska (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.
Okay, name reservation, here we go. Start by downloading an “Application for Reservation” from the Secretary of State’s Forms and Fees page. There are separate forms for domestic and foreign LLCs, so make sure you get the right one.
The application is quick and straightforward. It only asks for your proposed name, name, and street address. When you’re finished, you can mail two copies of your completed form, with a $15 check (payable to “Secretary of State”, to:
Robert B. Evnen, Secretary of State
P.O. Box 94608
Lincoln, NE 68509
For anyone looking for an online submission option, the Secretary of State does not currently offer one.
That’s all there is to it! The 120-day reservation will begin as soon as your form is processed, which generally takes 1-2 days after receipt. Once your name is reserved, it’s time to start thinking forward to filing your Certificate of Organization. Check out our comprehensive guide here.
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 Nebraska to get started instead. This way, rather than paying an additional $15 for the name reservation application, you’ll only pay the one-time $100 Nebraska LLC formation fee to claim your name and form the LLC at the same time. $15 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.