An Arizona business registration search on the Secretary of State's website lets you find information on any business entity or corporation registered in Arizona. There's no charge, and it's the first step to form an LLC in Arizona.

Searching For an LLC Name in Arizona

Your name must have the abbreviation LLC or L.L.C. at the end. It can't use the words Incorporated, Corporation, or any of their abbreviations. The name must be distinguishable, which means it needs to be different from existing

  • Businesses, limited partnerships, LLCs, and nonprofits incorporated in Arizona
  • Reserved names
  • Fictitious names
  • Trade names
  • Foreign corporations, LLCs, limited partnerships, and nonprofits that do business in the state.

These differences aren't considered to be distinguishable in most cases, in case there are variations in

  • Designators like L.L.C. and LLC
  • Words like a, an, and the
  • Hyphens
  • Slashes
  • Commas
  • Periods
  • Singular vs. plural or possessive words

You should:

1. Use the Arizona Corporation Commission's business entity search.

2. Choose "Starts With" as your search type.

3. Type your desired name in the Entity Name field without LLC at the end or any punctuation. Check just the first word or two as well to see everything that could be similar.

4. For entity type, choose All.

5. Click on Search or Name Availability Check

If the name you want or a similar name doesn't appear, it's available. If you're not sure if your LLC name is distinguishable, go ahead and file your paperwork. If it's not available, the state will let you know. According to Arizona's Corporation Commission, names are sometimes distinguishable when:

  • Prepositions or conjunctions change the meaning of the name. For example, Into the Deep LLC is distinguishable from To the Deep LLC. Of Mice and Men LLC is different from Mice and Men LLC
  • The same words are in a different order. House Party LLC isn't the same as Party House LLC
  • Words are spelled differently or creatively, like Krispy Kream compared to Crispy Cream
  • Abbreviations are present. Computer Solution Technology is not the same as Computer Solution Tech or CS Technology
  • Single letters or symbols are present. For example, Dollar Cleaners is different from $ Cleaners.
  • A new name adds the word Arizona
  • The name has Roman numerals. They're distinguishable from words for numbers or numbers, but words and numbers are legally the same
  • The name has words in a foreign language. Rio Verde is distinguishable from Green River

DBAs or Trade Names

In some circumstances, you can use a DBA or doing business as statement without registering it. However, unregistered names can't go on some official documents. A trade name is illegal if another company already uses it. You should conduct an Arizona business registration search to make sure the name you want isn't already in use. Then, file a DBA with the state of Arizona to use a name that's not the name of your company. Registering a trade name secures it for your company. You can use it as an official name to open bank accounts, enter into contracts, and complete other tasks.

To register for an Arizona DBA, you'll need to complete the Arizona Trade Name Registration Application. If you need more information on all the forms and paperwork you need for maintaining or dissolving a DBA, you should look at Arizona's Trade Name and Trademark Handbook. Registration requirements for an Arizona DBA or trade name can change from county to county. The County Clerk in most locations can help you with filing DBAs. Registration usually requires:

  • The name of the company
  • Its business address
  • The possible new DBA name
  • The business's general mission or purpose
  • The date that the DBA was first used in Arizona
  • Proof of incorporation for LLCs and corporations and LLC's
  • The signature of the applicant or of members or officers of the entity
  • Notarization
  • A fee
  • A stamped, self-addressed envelope for people who choose to file with paper through the mail instead of filing file electronically
  • A renewal process every five years

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