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 New Jersey. 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, reserving a name is not required in New Jersey. In some states, name reservation is a necessary first step in the LLC formation process, but not here. Ready to launch your business right away? Go ahead and file your Certificate of Formation online.
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 New Jersey LLC registration.
You have the option to reserve your LLC name, but it’ll cost you a $50 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 New Jersey 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 New Jersey Business Name Reservation Last?
Anyone planning to do business within the state of New Jersey can reserve an entity name. The good news is that you can reserve a name for as long as you want by successfully renewing your application. The bad news is that you need to file a new form and pay another $50 fee each time.
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 New Jersey holds that name for 120 days. If you haven’t formed your LLC within that window, you’re allowed to renew your reservation by filing a Form UNRR-3 online, which will run you another $50.
Decided against your reserved name? That’s fine! You can cancel it with a Form UNRR-6 or transfer it with a Form UNRR-2 (both found here by clicking under “File a Business Name Reservation”).
How do I Reserve a Business Name in New Jersey?
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 New Jersey Division of Revenue and Enterprise Services makes it easy. Just search your desired name in their Business Name Availability database. Don’t forget that you also need to comply with other business entity name restrictions from the state of New Jersey (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.
Name reservations must be filed online, so head over to New Jersey’s online filing portal. Once there, select “File a Business Name Reservation” from the section labeled “Business Filings.” The next page will present you with six different forms, including the name renewal, transfer, and cancellation forms mentioned earlier. Choose the first one, Form UNRR-1, and follow all the subsequent directions. You’ll need to pay a $50 fee at the end, and you can do so via card or eCheck. Cards incur a $2.50 service fee, and eCheck a $1 fee.
Pretty easy, huh? The 120-day reservation will begin as soon as your form is processed, which generally takes just one business day. Once your name is reserved, it’s time to start thinking forward to filing your Certificate of Formation. 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 New Jersey to get started instead. This way, rather than paying an additional $50 for the name reservation application, you’ll only pay the one-time $125 New Jersey LLC formation fee to claim your name and form the LLC at the same time. $50 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.