How to Do a Business Name Search in Indiana

To form an LLC in Indiana, the first step is to search for your preferred name and ensure it is available.

References

Indiana LLC Act: Section 23-18-2-8
Indiana Secretary of State: An Entrepreneur’s Guide to Starting A Business in Indiana

Step #1 – Check the Indiana LLC Name Requirements

There are some requirements that you must know before searching for your Indiana LLC name:

1. The abbreviations “LLC” and “L.L.C. must be added to the end of your Indiana LLC. The most commonly used abbreviation is “LLC”.

2. An Indiana LLC is not a Corporation. Your desired LLC name cannot use the words “Corporation”, “Incorporated,” and their abbreviations (“Corp.” or “Inc .”).).

3. The name of your LLC must be distinctive. It must be distinct from all other Indiana businesses.

Differentiability is not created by differences in designators (identifiers at end of business names) or in grammar.

  • LLC, L.L.C, Inc., Corp.
  • Single, plural, and possessive
  • A, An, The
  • and, or, &
  • hyphens, slashes, periods, commas
  • Three vs.

Step #2 – Search the Indiana Name Database

1. Visit the Indiana Database

Go to the INBiz: Department of Business Services Database

2. Choose defaults

You will find the “Business search” section at the top of this form. Select “Starts with” or “Business Name”. They may be the defaults.

The bottom half of “Advanced Search” can be ignored. It is not necessary.

3. Find your LLC

In the “Business Name Search Box, enter your desired LLC name.

  • You can leave out the “LLC” ending and punctuation.
  • Capitalization doesn’t matter.
  • To ensure that you are thorough, enter only the first or two words of your LLC name. This will allow you to see all information that could be similar. If your Indiana LLC name is Johnny Apple Farm LLC, enter “Johnny Apple”.
  • You can only enter a portion of the first word to make it more detailed. If your Indiana LLC name is Printing Solutions LLC, enter “print”.

4. Check out the Results

To browse the Indiana business listings, click the “Search” button at the bottom.

  • A “No Data Found” message will indicate that your chosen LLC name is available.
  • If you see names that are similar to yours (meaning they are distinguishable), your chosen LLC name can be used.
  • Your desired LLC name is unavailable if it appears in the list. It is possible to come up with unique names or creative variations.
  • Your desired LLC name cannot be used if the results show a similar name. It is possible to come up with unique names or creative variations.

Tip Don’t worry if your Indiana LLC name isn’t unique. You can still file paperwork with the state. The state will notify you if your name isn’t available and send your file back.

Next Step

After you have chosen an LLC name that is distinctive and unique, you can now choose your LLC’s Registered Agent.

Contact Information for the Indiana Secretary of State

You can reach the Indiana Secretary Of State at 317-234-96768 for any questions (8:00 AM to 4:30 PM, M-F).

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