The Florida Division of Corporations has a searchable database of every Florida business entity, including all limited liability companies.
Our Florida LLC search guide will help you perform a Florida Secretary of State Business Search to determine if your desired name is available or if it's already taken.
Need help forming an LLC? Read our Best LLC Services review.
Florida Entity Search
1. Follow Florida Naming Guidelines
Make sure your business name meets Florida guidelines before performing a business name search in Florida. Taking this step ensures your Florida business name complies with the Florida Division of Corporations Florida business entities naming requirements so it doesn't get rejected.
Choosing a Florida company name is the first and most important step to take when starting an LLC. Be sure to choose a name that complies with Florida naming requirements and is easily searchable by potential clients.
Be sure to follow these naming guidelines:
Your name must include the phrase “limited liability company,” or one of its abbreviations (LLC or L.L.C.).
Your name cannot include words that could confuse your LLC with a government agency (FBI, Treasury, State Department, etc.).
Restricted words (e.g. Bank, Attorney, University) may require additional paperwork and a licensed individual, such as a doctor or lawyer, to be part of your LLC.
Not sure what to name your business? Check out our LLC Name Generator.
2. Do a Florida Business Name Search
The easiest way to perform the most effective search is to type in the name you would like to use, excluding entity type identifiers like “LLC, Corporation, Limited Partnership, Sole Proprietorship, S Corporations, etc.” This will return all Florida business entities (e.g., limited partnerships) using the same or similar names.
If your Florida company name has several words, you can search partial names to pull up search results for all possible similar Florida business entity names. For example, if your name is Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory, you could simply type Willy Wonka's, and everything related will appear in the results.
If you register a limited liability company or corporation online, the Florida Division of Corporations website automatically prompts you to do a business entity search first.
Once you have registered your business name, the Florida Secretary of State also requires you to advertise the business name in a newspaper. (Related Reading: Florida LLC Lookup)
3. Search Available Domain Names
Another important consideration to make when selecting a business name is whether or not your desired web domain name is available. Having a URL that clearly matches your business name is important. This seemingly small step can make a big difference in how prospective customers find your business.
The best way to determine if your desired URL is available is to search for it online using your preferred domain registry, such as GoDaddy.
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4. Reserve Your Florida Business Entity Name
The Florida Department of State handles all LLC naming questions and requests. Business names can be reserved for 120 days.
The Department of State does not provide a form for LLC name reservation. Instead, businesses must submit a letter to the Florida Division of Corporations indicating their desired name and their business entity's contact information.
After choosing a name for your LLC, take the next step and create a unique logo with our Free Logo Generator.
File Florida LLC Name Reservation
Request a Name Reservation by Mail With the Florida Department of State
Department of State
Division of Corporations
P.O. Box 6327
Tallahassee, FL 32314
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While reserving the name for your LLC is straightforward, there are some other things you should think about when choosing the best name for your business. You may want to do a Trademark and Social Media search for your name to see if it's available for use across the internet. This will help ensure you have full, unrestricted use of your business name.
Conducting a trademark search of your business name and associated slogans or logos before registering can help prevent costly litigation in the future. Discovering that another entity has trademarked your business name does not automatically disqualify you from using it.
However, it is important to know who is using the name, what industry they operate in, and where they are located to be sure you do not inadvertently infringe upon anyone’s intellectual property rights.
To complete this step:
Social Media Search
Just as important, or more so, than finding a domain name that fits your business is ensuring that your business name is available for use across social media platforms. You can do this by simply searching your business name on each major site, or use a tool such as Namecheckr to search across all platforms at once.
Having a name for your business is an important first step for creating a successful LLC, and one that is incredibly easy to do. Once you have found your preferred name using Florida's Business Entity Search, you'll want to secure your domain name so that your customers will be able to find your business online. Registering your name with an Application for Registration of Fictitious Name will help you stand out from the competition. With your name secured, you will be ready to take the next steps to formalize your LLC.
Florida LLC Search FAQs
How do I find out if a Florida LLC exists?
You can search for Florida LLCs by name or document number using the Department of State's Business Entity Search tool. Besides the document number or entity type, you can also search for national LLCs and limited partnerships by EIN on the IRS website.
Is it free to look up a Florida business?
Yes, it is free to look up a Florida business or corporation. The state of Florida requires businesses to register with the Division of Corporations, providing details about the business, its members, address, etc. This information is public record and can be accessed by anyone without having to pay for the details.
Can I search for a Florida business using the name of the owner?
You can search for the company or corporation by name using the owner’s name. This is made possible by the Department of Corporation's database. You will have to check Officer/Registered Agent box to conduct the search, but you will also need the officer's last name, first name, and middle initial if you want the most accurate information.
How do I get a copy of a Florida LLC's articles of organization?
You can request a copy of a Florida LLC's articles of organization from the Department of State by mail, fax, or in person. The fee for this service is $5.
How to find out information on a limited liability company in Florida?
A Florida LLC search can be conducted online through the state's Division of Corporation's website. You will need to provide the LLC's name, filing number, or registered agent's name. The search results will include the mailing address of the LLC, the document number, and all other legal information provided on file.
When forming an LLC in Florida, you must designate a registered agent and provide a physical street address in Florida. The mailing address can be different from the physical address, but both must be in Florida. The registered agent's address will be listed on public record.
If you move your LLC to a new location within Florida, you must update your registered agent information and notify the state of your new mailing address. You can do this by filing a Change of Registered Agent or Office form with the state.
Do I need to have a social security number to search for my LLC's name?
No, you do not need a social security number to search for your LLC's name. However, you will need it when you file your Articles of Incorporation with the state.
How to look up a corporation or business in Florida?
When searching for a corporation or business in Florida, the first place to look is the state’s Division of Corporations. The Division of Corporations is responsible for maintaining records for all businesses registered in the state of Florida. In fact, the same applies to most other states when looking up a business entity.
The easiest way to search for a corporation or company in Florida is by name. The Division of Corporations’ website has a searchable database of all businesses registered in Florida. Simply enter the name of the business you are looking for and hit “search.”
If you do not know the exact name of the corporation or company you are looking for, you can try searching by keyword. The Division of Corporations’ website allows you to search by keyword (e.g., type of business, city, county, etc.). This may be helpful if you only have partial information about the business you are looking for.
Is a corporation and company the same?
A corporation is a company that has been granted a charter recognizing it as a separate legal entity having its own rights, privileges, and liabilities distinct from those of its members. A company is an association of persons formed for the purpose of carrying on business. The term "company" may be used to refer to a business firm, or to a business organization of some kind such as a partnership or corporation.
What is an employer identification number?
An employer identification number (EIN) is a nine-digit number assigned by the IRS. It is used to identify the tax accounts of employers and certain types of organizations (a corporation, trade company, partnership, etc.).