You can do a Kentucky LLC search for business name availability online by going to the Secretary of State website. The system will populate names based on the keywords you enter. You can search with whole words or with a least four characters of a word.

Once you type the name you want to search, the results page will appear. You can see the following information about the business entities listed:

  • Type
  • Name
  • Active or inactive status
  • Organizational number
  • Recent annual report
  • Filing date
  • Standing
  • Name and address of registered agent
  • Directors
  • Current officers
  • Organization date

People conduct a business entity search also to find out whether a business has been legally formed and its address. You can also use the search tool for doing administrative tasks needed for your LLC such as:

When using the Secretary of State's search database, you search by organization, registered agent name, and founding or current officer. As mentioned above, you can also check name availability on the site.

What Is Next if Your Desired LLC Name is Available?

If after searching in the database the result shows there is a "deceptively similar" name to the one you desire already registered, you will need to think of a new name. However, if you discover that your name is distinguishable from all other registered companies after doing a Kentucky LLC search, then reserve it. To do so, download a name reservation form on the Secretary of State's website. You can mail the completed form to the state office, with a $40 payment for processing to:

Division of Business Filings
Business Filings
P.O. Box 718
Frankfort, KY 40602

Other Important Things to Know About Name Availability Searches

When you form an LLC, checking to see if the name you want for your LLC is not in use is one of your first steps. You have to follow a few rules when deciding on a name for a limited liability company, but mostly you can choose whatever name you want. You can review the name guidelines by visiting this site, which outlines the requirements and limitations. Nevertheless, searching with the Secretary of State's name availability tool is crucial to the LLC formation process as you need to know your business name is available.

Another thing that many business owners do is check URL availability. You might not be ready to create a website, but if you can get your LLC name as a URL, then buy it before someone else takes it. Also, think about an email address when picking a name.

If you do not want to do the check for your desired name using the online tool, you can also call and have the state search while you are on the phone. Dial 502-564-3490. Calling and using the FastTrack Business Organization Search Station are the only ways to search for a limited liability company name in Kentucky. 

Even if you do not have complete confidence your LLC desired name is available, you can still file paperwork. If the state discovers that your name is not distinguishable and unavailable for use as your LLC's name, the Secretary of State will contact you to pick something else.

How Do You Form an LLC?

After you have done a name search and found no other business entity with the desired name you have chosen, your next step is to download the Articles of Organization forms. Once completed, mail the documents and appropriate filing fee to the office for the Secretary of State at:

Division of Business Filings
Business Filings
P.O. Box 718
Frankfort, KY 40602

You will get notified in the mail once your LLC gets formed. Your next step is to get an employer identification number or EIN with the IRS. This number allows you to open a bank account under your company's name. Applying for the EIN is a simple and straightforward process which you complete online in approximately 10 minutes. After answering all the questions asked, you will receive the employer identification number right away following the successful session.

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