Do you have a name in mind for your Va LLC? During the Virginia LLC formation process, securing a proper and acceptable name is one of the most important steps. If you choose an improper name, your filing will be rejected. The name is important not only to your formation filing but for your business overall. Learn the rules and requirements for this important step in your starting your Virginia business. an LLC for an online business
There are several rules you should keep in mind when choosing a name during the Virginia LLC formation process.
RULE #1: The name must not be the same or similar to another name filed with Virginia
The Virginia Act requires that every limited liability company registered in Virginia have a name that is distinguishable on in the state records from the name of any other Virginia LLC, corporation, business trust, limited partnership or any entity registered to do business in Virginia.
In addition, there are names that others have reserved with the Virginia state. Those names are not available unless the reservation time expires and they have not used them with an official legal entity.
RULE #2: The Va LLC name must end with a proper LLC designation
During the LLC formation process, the articles of organization must state the name of the Va entity being organized. The name must contain one of the following phrases: Limited Company, Limited Liability Company, L.C., L.L.C., LC or LLC.
RULE #3: There are certain words that cannot be in an Va LLC name
The name cannot contain the following words: Corporation, Incorporated, Limited Partnership or the abbreviations Corp, Inc. or L.P.
RULE #4: Avoid Trademark Violations
Rules #1-3 are all enforced by the state agency that creates limited liability companies in Virginia. During the Virginia LLC formation process, your filing will not be accepted and processed if any of the first 3 rules are violated.
However, just because the Virginia agency accepts your filing and forms your limited liability company using your stated name does not mean that the Va LLC is protected from claims by third parties for trade mark or trade name infringement.
Trademark issues are governed by a totally different set of laws. In order to avoid trademark or trade name claims related to the use of the name chosen for your Va business, the best practice is to order a trademark search report to determine whether it is free for commercial use by your business in the industries and geographical areas where you plan on operating your business.
Choosing a name is just one of the several essential requirements to proper Virginia LLC formation. Make sure that you choose a competent attorney or a reputable and experienced online formation service form your Virginia limited liability company. Improper or incomplete formation will cause significant delays and potentially cause you to lose the limited liability and other protections afforded by a Va LLC.