1. How to Reserve a Florida LLC Name
2. How to Reserve a Fictitious Florida LLC Name

Florida LLC names are the words or phrases chosen by Florida business people to refer to their limited liability companies and distinguish them from one another. In Florida, as in all other states, this distinguishing is quite literal, as no LLC may have the same name as another LLC, but there are other name requirements for Florida LLCs, as well. These include:

  • That suffix, singular, plural, possessive, and numerical differences (“1” versus “one”) do not constitute distinguishability.
  • That the words “Corporation” and “Incorporated,” as well as the abbreviations “Corp.” and “Inc.” cannot be used, since an LLC is not a corporation.
  • That the words “Limited Liability Company,” or some variation thereof, like “LLC,” must be included in the name.
  • That some words, like “Attorney,” are restricted to those who are qualified to use them, while other words, like “Secret Service,” are forbidden from use.

Checking for whether or not a name is available and allowable for use can be done through the Florida LLC name search.

How to Reserve a Florida LLC Name

Once you have chosen a name for your LLC, you need to register it so no one else can take it for their own. To do this, you can go to the Florida LLC name search web page and take the following steps:

  • In the “Entity Name” field, type your desired name and press “Search Now.”
  • If this search yields results that are not similar to yours, then the name you desire is available and you can register it.
  • If you see your name as you have typed it, your name has already been taken and is not available. You will have to come up with a new name or some variation of your existing name, keeping in mind the above-listed criteria for uniqueness.
  • Similarly, if the search yields a name that is similar enough to yours to be considered a deceptive variation, then you will need to think up a new name or a more unique variation of your current name.

If you are not sure that your name is unique, you can file paperwork with the state, and if the state returns your filing, you will know your name is not acceptable.

Also, while conducting your search, you may want to see if your desired LLC name or some variation of it is available as a web address (URL) and e-mail address. You may not feel you want them now, but that may change in the future.

How to Reserve a Fictitious Florida LLC Name

If you desire to run a sole proprietorship or small business in Florida under a fictitious LLC name, or DBA designation, this name must be registered with the Florida Division of Corporations to protect it from infringement, an act which is not required of LLCs, limited partnerships, or corporations operating under their true name.

Also, the law in Florida requires you to publish a notice stating your fictitious name and legal business name in a general circulation newspaper in the county that you intend to principally be doing business in. Until you do this, you cannot register your name.

To register your fictitious name in Florida, you must take the following steps:

  1. Go to the Florida Fictitious Name Registration page, click on “Register a Florida Fictitious Name,” and after you have read and acknowledged the disclaimer, complete the required fields and “sign” at the bottom by typing in your name.
  2. Carefully review the information you have entered, as you cannot change your fictitious name once you have registered it. If you see any errors, even those as minor as a punctuation mark, you should cancel the registration and start over.
  3. Once you have determined there are no errors, you can click “Continue” at the bottom of the page. You will then receive a document tracking number and the amount of the fee you will have to pay to register.
  4. You can then pay the fee. Fee payment options include check by mail, credit card, and Sunbiz E-File account payment.

Once you have selected your payment type and made your payment, the registration process will be done. Then, when your payment clears, the fictitious name you selected will be yours. Online registration can be finished within 48 hours, while check payments can take up to two weeks.

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