How to Check LLC Name Availability in Massachusetts

A laptop with a search engine open that says "LLC Name Search"

Before you form an LLC, register a business certificate, or start a corporation, you'll need to complete a business name search with the Massachusetts Business Entity Search tool to see if your name is unique.

In our Massachusetts LLC Name Search guide, we'll show you exactly how to check LLC name availability in Massachusetts.

Need help forming your LLC? Check out our Best LLC Services review.

SKIP AHEAD:

Complete a Massachusetts Business Entity Search

Complete a Domain Name Search

Register Your Business Name


Massachusetts LLC Name Search

The Massachusetts Secretary of the Commonwealth requires all business names to be distinguishable from other business entities in the state.

It's also important to search for a matching domain name (URL).

What if my LLC name is already taken? Our AI-powered LLC name generator will give you thousands of new ideas.

How to Search Available LLC Names

You can check your business name availability by searching Massachusetts’ two online databases: the Business Entity Search database and the Business Name Reservation Search database.

How to Check Available Domain Names

When deciding on a name for your LLC, you should make sure that a similar or exact domain name is available. A matching URL will help potential customers find your LLC faster.

Find a Domain Now

How to Register Your Business Name

Register Your Name

An LLC name is officially registered when you file your LLC application documents and form an LLC.

Ready to register your LLC name? Use our Massachusetts LLC guide to get started.

Registering a DBA in Massachusetts (also known as a business certificate) is a separate process that requires filing in the city or cities where your LLC does business.

Reserve Your Name

You can optionally reserve your LLC name in Massachusetts for up to 60 days before you officially register it. This prevents other businesses from registering your name until you have the opportunity to register it yourself. 

Name reservations can be filed via hard copy with the Massachusetts Secretary of the Commonwealth. The filing fee is $30.

You can also renew your name reservation for an additional 30 days. The filing fee is $30.

Massachusetts Naming Requirements

Some key guidelines for Massachusetts LLC names include:

  • Your name must include the phrase “limited liability company” or “limited company” or one of their abbreviations (LLC, L.L.C., LC, or L.C.).
  • Your name cannot be the same as or deceptively similar to any existing business in Massachusetts. This includes reserved names.

Keep an eye out for restricted words. These words, such as “FBI” or “Treasury,” are often restricted to keep your LLC from sounding like an official institution.

Massachusetts also has the following restrictions for LLC names:

For more information, check out Massachusetts’ official state statutes.

Distinguishability

It is important that your name be distinguishable from all other business names. In Massachusetts, a distinguishable name is one that is substantively different from all other existing or reserved business names in the state.

Failure to use a distinguishable name could result in your formation filing being rejected.

Is your name already taken? Our free AI-powered LLC name generator will generate thousands of new ideas.

Massachusetts LLC Name Search FAQ

How do I check if an LLC name is taken in Massachusetts?

You can use Massachusetts’ Business Entity Search tool and Business Name Reservation Search tool to see if your business name is available.

Learn more about business entity name availability in the How to Search Available LLC Names section.

Should I name my LLC after myself?

While there’s no rule against naming an LLC after yourself, most experts advise against doing this. 

One of the benefits of starting an LLC is the ability to choose a different name for your business, which can make it sound more professional.

To explore other naming options, use your free AI-powered LLC Name Generator.

What words can’t be used in a Massachusetts LLC name?

Business names generally can’t include words that imply the company is a banking or financial institution or that it’s affiliated with a local, state, or federal government agency.

Learn more about LLC naming requirements in the Massachusetts Naming Requirements section.

Should I use an LLC name generator?

If you’re having trouble choosing a name for your LLC, an LLC name generator can help you come up with some ideas.

What is a brand name?

A brand name is a name a company gives to a product or line of products. It can be the same as the company’s name or something different.

Learn more about branding with your business entity name with our How to Name an LLC guide.

Do I have to include LLC in my name?

Yes. Massachusetts requires that its LLCs use “Limited Liability Company” or one of its abbreviations (e.g., LLC or L.L.C.) in their legal name.

Learn more about LLC naming requirements in the Massachusetts Naming Requirements section.

Do I need to renew my business name in Massachusetts?

Massachusetts does not require LLCs to renew their legal name, but DBAs must be renewed every four years. 

The renewal process varies by city. Check with your city clerk’s office for forms and fees.

Learn more about business certificates with our Massachusetts DBA guide.

Can my business name be different from my LLC name in Massachusetts?

Some companies choose to operate under a name that’s different from their legal name. This can either be called a “doing business as” (DBA) name or a business certificate in Massachusetts.

In Massachusetts, business certificates are filed with the city or cities where the LLC does business.

Learn more about business certificates with our Massachusetts DBA guide.

Does my LLC need a DBA name?

Your LLC doesn’t need a DBA name unless it plans to do business under a name other than its legal name. Learn more about Massachusetts DBAs by reading our guide to filing for a DBA and selecting Massachusetts from the dropdown menu.