Picking the right company name for your business is important. If you want to register your business as a limited company you’ll have to make sure that your desired company name isn’t already taken. Luckily, it’s never been easier with this article and our free Companies House name checker.
(If you already have an idea of what you want to name your company, you can skip straight to our free Companies House name checker by clicking here.)
What is the free Companies House name checker?
Our free, easy to use Companies House name checker is available for everyone to use to see if their desired company name is available to register as a limited company. It’s directly linked to Companies House and is completely up to date with all registered limited company names in the UK.
Are there any rules for naming a company?
Yes, there are. Your company name cannot be offensive, use sensitive words or imply a connection to government or local council, unless you have permission.
You also cannot use names that are too similar to existing names. These fall into two categories:
- ‘Same as names’ – If your company name already exists you won’t be able to change it by altering the name slightly with punctuation or special characters. For example, ‘Cats UK Ltd’ and ‘Cat’s Ltd’ would be considered the same name as ‘Cats Ltd’.
- ‘Names that are too like’ other names. For example, ‘Stars and Stripes Ltd’ and ‘St@rs & Stripes Ltd’ would be classed as the same.
If your name is too similar to an existing company’s name, Companies House will contact you and help you with the next steps.
How to use the Companies House name checker:
Now that you know the rules when choosing a company name, it’s time to see if your company name has already been registered.
All you need to do is click here and go to our free Companies House name checker. Simply type the name you want in the search bar and it will give you an instant response if your company name is available to register as a limited company.
The Companies House name checker says my company name is available, what now?
Once you have a company name that you can register, the next step is to form your limited company with it.
We’ve created company formation bundles to suit all types of businesses. All you have to do is purchase the one that’s most suitable for your business and then complete the application form.
We are a Companies House approved formation agent and are rated Excellent on Trustpilot. Our expert customer support team are on hand to answer any questions you might have during the process, so you know you’re in safe hands and your company will be formed ASAP.
What should I do if my company name is already in use?
If you’ve searched for your company name in our Companies House name checker, but it’s already taken, you still have plenty of options.
There’s no legal reason why your registered company name has to be the same as the name you trade under. For example, your company could be registered as ‘Jack Jones Plumbing Ltd’ but trading as ‘Water Works’.
If you plan to have a separate ‘trading as’, ensure both your registered name and ‘trading as’ name are not registered trademarks belonging to another company. At this point, it makes sense to secure your registered company name and ‘trading as’ name as trademarks.
What are the next steps after registering my limited company?
What happens next entirely depends on the nature of your company and what you already have in place. Below are some of the next steps our customers have taken once they registered their limited company with us:
Create an identity
Once you have your name sorted, add an extra dimension to your company’s identity by getting a logo designed. Once that’s done you can think about company stationery and decorating your premises.
Trademark your company
If you want to further your protection or secure your unique company logo, you can purchase a trademark. This will allow you to use the ® next to your company name, explicitly showing other companies that nobody can legally replicate that name or logo. You can even get a free initial consultation with an expert trademark attorney!
Once you have your logo, company name and trademark sorted, you should think about your online presence. There is a myriad of domain name registrars out there, so it can be difficult to know where to start. This guide can help you pick the best service for you.