How to Check Corporation Name Availability in Florida

Woman doing a Florida corporation name search on her computer.

Before you form a corporation, you’ll need to complete a business name search with the Florida business entity search tool to check if your corporation name is available.

We'll show you how to check corporation name availability in Florida in this guide.

Or, use a professional service:

4.7 out of 5 stars ZenBusiness ($49 + state fee)

Florida Corporation Name Search

The Florida Department of State requires all business names to be distinguishable from other business entities in the state. So, you’ll want to search and make sure no other businesses in the state are already using your name.

It is also useful to see if your corporation name is available as a web domain (URL).

SKIP AHEAD:

  1. How to Register a Corporation Name in Florida
  2. Florida Corporation Name Requirements
  3. Florida Corporation Name Search FAQ

How to Search Available Florida Corporation Names

Once you know your corporation name meets Florida business name guidelines, make sure it’s available by using the Florida business entity search tool.

Want to learn more about corporations? Check out our What Is a Corporation guide to get started.

How to Check Available Domain Names

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

Find a Domain Now

How to Register a Corporation Name in Florida

Register Your Name

A corporation name is officially registered when you file your Florida Articles of Incorporation. You can hire a professional service to form a corporation for you or start a corporation yourself.

Ready to register your corporation name? Use our Form a Corporation guide to get started.

If you want to register a DBA in Florida, known as a fictitious name, that’s a separate process that requires filing a separate form with the Department of State.

Reserve Your Name

While not required, you have the option to reserve your corporation name in Florida for up to 120 days before you register it. This prevents other businesses from registering your name until you are ready to register it yourself. 

Name reservations must be submitted in writing to the Department of State and must specify the desired entity name, the applicant’s name, and their address. The filing fee is $35.

Need Help Forming Your Corporation? ZenBusiness will get you started.

Florida Corporation Name Requirements

Key Guidelines

Florida has official requirements for its corporation names.

The name must contain one of the following words or abbreviations: corporation, company, incorporated, Corp., Inc., Co., Corp, Inc., or Co.

There are also restricted words, such as “FBI” or “Treasury,” that you cannot use in order to keep your LLC from sounding like an official institution.

Florida corporation names also cannot contain language implying that the corporation is organized for an unlawful purpose or one not stated in its Articles of Incorporation.

For more information, check out the Florida state statute on corporation names.

Distinguishability

Your name must be distinguishable from all other Florida business names. In Florida, a distinguishable name is one that is substantively different from all other existing or reserved business names in the state.

The following differences do NOT make a name distinguishable in Florida:

  • Business type suffixes (e.g., Inc, Corp, etc.)
  • Articles (e.g., the, a, an, etc.)
  • The word “and” and ampersands (&)
  • Plural or possessive forms of words
  • Punctuation and symbols
  • Abbreviations

If your corporation name isn’t distinguishable, your Articles of Incorporation filing will likely be rejected.

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

For a list of brainstorming tips, check out our guide to naming your business.

Florida Corporation Name Search FAQ

How do I check if a corporation name is taken in Florida?

You can use the Florida business entity search tool to see if your business name is available.

Learn more about business entity name availability in the Florida Corporation Name Search section.

Should I name my corporation after myself?

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

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

To explore other naming options, use our free AI-powered business name generator.

What words can’t be used in a Florida corporation 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.

Additionally, Florida corporation names cannot contain language implying that the corporation is organized for an unlawful purpose or one not stated in its Articles of Incorporation.

Learn more about corporation naming requirements in the Florida Corporation Name Requirements section.

Should I use a business name generator?

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

Do I have to include ‘corporation’ in my name?

Florida corporation names must contain one of the following words or abbreviations: corporation, company, incorporated, Corp., Inc., Co., Corp, Inc., or Co.

Learn more about corporation naming requirements in the Florida Corporation Name Requirements section.

Do I need to renew my business name in Florida?

Florida doesn't require corporations to renew their legal name, but fictitious names must be renewed by December 31 of the fifth year after registration and every five years after that.

Can my business name be different from my corporation name in Florida?

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 fictitious name in Florida. 

In Florida, fictitious names for corporations are filed with the Department of State.

Learn more about fictitious names with our Florida DBA guide.

Does my corporation need a DBA name?

Your corporation doesn’t need a DBA name unless it plans to do business under a name other than its legal name. Learn more with our Florida DBA guide.