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(Note, picking a business name, or trade name, is different than picking a trademark or servicemark. A short explanation is at the end about the difference between a trade name and a trademark/servicemark.)
Businesses are registered with the State of Connecticut through business.ct.gov.
An initial step in the process of forming an LLC in Connecticut is deciding on a name for the LLC.
Search on the State of Connecticut Business Records webpage (https://service.ct.gov/business/s/onlinebusinesssearch).
You can also pick the advanced search option under the search bar which allows you to search only for business names.
You can also do a mock registration for a business and see if the name is available. You can do this by logging into ct.gov (make an account if necessary) then look for the tabs of “Start your business” and “Register your business”. Then, in the process of working through the steps you be prompted if the name is available.
When registering a name with the State of Connecticut all that is needed is a non-exact name as another business.
So even a slight variation will be allowed when registering the business.
But, in general, it’s best to pick a different name which won’t be confused with another.
Search for variations of the name:
In general, it’s best to search for variations of the name you plan to have -- to see what else is out there.
Variations mean: searching for –
a) only the first part of the first word in the proposed name;
b) only the first word in the proposed name; and
c) the second word only if the proposed name has multiple words
The above information to find a unique Connecticut business name is based on picking a trade name which is different than looking for a name which will be used as a mark – a trademark or servicemark – which will be used to indicate the source of the good or service sold.
The difference between a trade name and a trademark/servicemark is that a trade name is the name of a business or vocation -- and a trademark/servicemark is a word, phrase, or graphic which is used to indicate that the good or service is being sold by the owner of the trademark/servicemark and to differentiate their goods/services from another selling similar goods/services.
A trade name may or may not act as a trademark/servicemark.
The State of Connecticut Business Records webpage is a good place to look -- when doing a comprehensive search -- to determine if there is another company with a business name, which may cause a conflict when picking a name for a trademark/servicemark.
Many business filings were done through the CONCORD system but as stated on a CONCORD webpage on “June 17, 2021, CONCORD is no longer available for online business and UCC filings”
“CTData’s Business Search Engine has been disabled and will no longer be updated or available to use.” – as stated on their webpage (accessed 11/30/21).
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