How to Register a Business Name in Wyoming

To register a business name in Wyoming, you must first check to make sure your name is available by doing a business entity name search, domain name search, and a Federal Trademark search. Afterward, you must figure out what you need to do with that name for your business, whether you’re going to reserve it, file for a business with it, or file for a DBA using our step-by-step instructions.


Steps to Register a Business Name in Wyoming:

Follow these three steps to register a business name in Wyoming:

  1. Make sure the business name is unique
  2. Determine your business entity naming needs
  3. Register the business name in Wyoming

If you don’t have a business name in mind or find out the one you had in mind has already been taken by another business, check out our How to Name a Business guide to learn what makes a good name. You can also use our Business Name Generator to get some help coming up with one.

Step 1: Make Sure the Business Name is Unique

The first step in registering a new business name is to make sure it's unique, meaning that no one else in your state has formed a company with, or reserved, that name. You can do this by searching the following things:

Wyoming Business Name Search

The first search you will need to perform is with the Business Entity Search on the Wyoming Secretary of State website. This is the most important step in the process because if you try to file for a name that is already taken, your filing will be denied.

Search requirements can vary depending on your business needs. For example, a unique name and available is required for:

  • Filing for formal business structures like LLCs and corporations
  • Filing a name reservation for an LLC or corporation before filing
  • Filing a DBA for an existing business, both formal and informal

Domain Name Search

We recommend that you check to see if your business name is available as a web domain (URL) too. Even if you don't plan to make a business website today, you may want to buy the web address to prevent others from acquiring it. It’s free to search.

Find a Domain Now

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After registering a domain name, consider setting up a professional email account (@yourcompany.com). Google's G Suite offers a business email service that comes with other useful tools, including word processing, spreadsheets, and more. Try it for free

Federal Trademark Search

Next, a quick search on the U.S. Trademark Electronic Search System will tell you whether someone else has already trademarked your name. Once you know the name is available, you can choose to apply for a trademark for your business, although the cost is sometimes too high for a startup or fledgling business.

Regardless of whether you will be registering, it’s good to know if your name is already taken.

To learn more about trademarks and the steps you will need to get one, read our How to Trademark Your Business Name article.

Search the Web

Finally, when doing your research, it’s a good idea to check and see what else comes up when you search your prospective business name online on sites like Google, Bing, Yahoo, Yelp, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and more. Doing this will show you who else will show up on these platforms, whether they have a large online presence, and how tough they may be to compete with while you’re building your brand. 

It’s also smart to see if anyone else in your industry already has a similar name to the one you want to use. You can do this by looking up some search terms related to your industry and brand. You may decide on a different business name to make yourself stand out.

Step 2: Determine Your Business Entity Naming Needs

Now that you know how to find a unique name, you’ll need to know what to do with one. This will be different based on your chosen business entity.

If you haven’t already chosen one, choosing the best business structure for your new venture is an important step because different business structures have different benefits, disadvantages, and naming rules.

Business structures can be formal or informal and are the way that your business is set up, operated, and taxed. We cover all the following naming needs for the following business structures:

Limited Liability Companies (LLCs)

An LLC, or Limited Liability Company, is the simplest way of structuring your business to protect your personal assets in case your business is sued. LLCs require unique names in Wyoming that must follow certain naming requirements:

  • Your name must include the phrase “limited liability company” or “limited company” or one of their abbreviations (LLC, L.L.C., LC, L.C.). The word “limited” can be abbreviated as “ltd.,” and the word “company” can be abbreviated as “co.”
  • A low profit limited liability company must contain one of the following: L3C, l3c, low profit ltd. liability company, low profit ltd. liability co., or low profit limited liability co.
  • Your name cannot imply that the LLC is organized for a purpose other than one outlined in its articles of organization.
  • Your name cannot contain a word or phrase that implies the LLC is organized under the Wyoming Business Corporation Act, the Wyoming Statutory Close Corporation Supplement, or the Nonprofit Corporation Act.
  • You must have approval from the state Division of Banking to include any of the following words (or words of similar meaning): bank, banker, banc, bancorp, bancorporation, banque, banquers, banco, banca, trust.
  • You must have approval from the state Department of Education to include any of the following words: academy, college, educate, education, educational, institute, institution, school, or university.
  • The Wyoming Secretary of State requires an additional review of names that begin with the letter “A” followed by a space or punctuation, contain special characters, or are in a language other than English.
  • Your name must be distinguishable from any existing business in the state. This includes Wyoming reserved names.

You can read the Wyoming state statute about LLC naming guidelines on Justia.com or read the Secretary of State’s name distinguishability guide for more information.

Common LLC Naming Scenarios:

What you will need to do with your LLC’s name depends on if you are already in business or are forming a new LLC. For step-by-step instructions of common LLC naming scenarios, skip ahead to:

Corporations

A C Corporation (C Corp) is a separate legal entity from its owners with a basic operational structure consisting of shareholders, officers, directors, and employees. A C Corp business structure will protect your personal assets. Corporations require a unique name in Wyoming and must meet certain naming requirements:

  • Your name cannot imply that the corporation is formed for any unlawful purpose or one not outlined in its articles of incorporation.
  • You must have approval from the state Division of Banking to include any of the following words (or words of similar meaning): bank, banker, banc, bancorp, bancorporation, banque, banquers, banco, banca, trust.
  • You must have approval from the state Department of Education to include any of the following words: academy, college, educate, education, educational, institute, institution, school, or university.
  • The Wyoming Secretary of State requires an additional review of names that begin with the letter “A” followed by a space or punctuation; contain special characters; or are in a language other than English.
  • Your name must be distinguishable from any existing business in the state. This includes Wyoming reserved names.

You can read the Wyoming state statute about corporation naming guidelines on Justia.com or read the Secretary of State’s name distinguishability guide for more information.

Common Corporation Naming Scenarios

What you will need to do with your corporation’s name depends on if you are already in business or are forming just forming the business. For step-by-step instructions of common corporation naming scenarios, skip ahead to:

Sole Proprietorship

A sole proprietorship is the simplest business type in Wyoming. A sole proprietorship is an informal business structure that doesn’t provide personal asset protection and does not need to be filed with the state.

This business structure must operate under the surname of the owner. To use a different name, the business owner must file for a DBA (Doing Business As), known in Wyoming as a trade name

General Partnership

General partnerships are similar to sole proprietorships. The difference is that a partnership consists of two or more people. A general partnership is an informal business structure that doesn’t provide personal asset protection.

General partnerships must include the surnames of the partners. To use a different name, business owners must file for a DBA (Doing Business As), known in Wyoming as a trade name.

Step 3: Register the Business Name in Wyoming

Now that you know your business name is unique, and what you want to do, here’s how to get the following actions done:

How to File a Name Reservation in Wyoming

A name reservation is not required to be filed to open a new company or file for a DBA in Wyoming.

However, there are benefits to filing a Wyoming name reservation, like if you find a unique name for your business, but do not want to form your LLC or corporation right away.

You can file for a Wyoming name reservation by either filing an Application for Reservation of Corporate Name or an Application for Reservation of Limited Liability Company Name. Both must be mailed in with the $50 filing fee.

How to Form an LLC in Wyoming

Registering a business name is part of the LLC filing process: once your LLC is filed in the state, your name is registered. While the name can be reserved beforehand, this is not necessary to file for an LLC.

Forming an LLC in Wyoming is easy and only requires five simple steps:

  1. Naming Your Wyoming LLC (If you’ve gotten this far, you should already be set!)
  2. Choosing a Registered Agent in Wyoming
  3. Filing the Wyoming Articles of Organization
  4. Creating an Operating Agreement
  5. Getting an EIN
A cube with LLC printed on its sides

Recommended: Form an LLC in Wyoming using our free step-by-step guide, or have a professional service form your LLC.

How to Form a Corporation in Wyoming

Registering a business name is part of the corporation filing process: once your corporation is filed in Wyoming, your name is registered. While the name can be reserved beforehand, this is not necessary to file.

Forming a corporation in Wyoming is easy and only requires a few steps:

  1. Naming Your Wyoming Corporation (If you’ve gotten this far, you should already be set!)
  2. Choosing a Registered Agent in Wyoming
  3. Choosing your Corporation's Initial Directors
  4. Filing the Wyoming Articles of Incorporation
A cube with LLC printed on its sides

Recommended: Form a Corporation in Wyoming using Startup Savant’s free step-by-step guide, or have a professional incorporate your business.

How to File a DBA in Wyoming

Filing a DBA (Doing Business As), known as a trade name in Wyoming, allows your existing or new business to do business as a name other than your legal business name. This can be helpful for getting a brand name established, or to change the name of a business without having to file an amendment to the original filing.

A cube with LLC printed on its sides

Recommended: Read our full guide on How to Get a DBA in Wyoming.

Or, use a professional service to file your DBA for you.

Submit an Amendment to the Legal Name of an Existing Business

To change the legal name of your business, file the Amendment to Articles of Organization or the Profit Corporation Articles of Amendment with the Wyoming Secretary of State along with the $50 filing fee.

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