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How To Do An Idaho Business Name Search

How To Do An Idaho Business Name Search

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How To Do An Idaho Business Name Search

If you are forming an LLC or a corporation in Idaho, the first thing you need to do is a business name search. Like all other states, Idaho requires each LLC or corporation registered in the state to have a unique business name. You can do an Idaho business name search on the Idaho Secretary of State website to see if the business name you want to use is available.  

Related: Guide to starting a business in Idaho

Steps For Searching Corporation and LLC Names In Idaho

Step 1: Visit the Idaho Entity Name Database

Go to the Idaho Secretary of State website.

Step 2: Search your Business Name

Enter the name you would like to use in the “Business Search ” field.  In this example, we will do an Idaho LLC name search by looking up “Lawn & Order” to see if it is available to register.

How to do an Idaho Business Name Search


Step 3: Review Results

When we search the registered names, we get a list of all the businesses with the words “Lawn & Order.”  In order to register a business name with the Secretary of State, the name has to be unique from other corporation or LLC names. Assumed names do not have the same requirement.

To find more information about each of the registered business names, click on the business name.  In this example, we will look up “Lawn & Order LLC.”

Idaho Business Entity Search 1


Clicking on the link for “Lawn & Order LLC” brings a detailed report. In addition to the information below, you can also click on the “View History” button and see an image of the original Certificate of Organization.

Idaho LLC Name Search

To see an example, search for a name that isn’t being used, such as “Cowboy Cleaners.” This search brings no results. While final approval is still with the Secretary of State, it is likely available to register. 

Business Entity Search - No Results

These are the basics of searching for a business name in Idaho.  Even when the name of the business you want is available, the Secretary of State will make a final determination at the time of filing to ensure the name you picked isn’t too similar to other registered names. 

What information can be found on the Idaho business entity database?

An Idaho business entity search can uncover several pieces of information about registered businesses in the state. Some of the highlights include:

  • Filing Type: Corporation, Limited Liability Company. Etc.
  • Status: Active-Existing means the business is in good standing with the Secretary of State, and all reports and filing fees are up to date
  • Term of Duration: The business entity intends to operate indefinitely
  • Principal Address: This can be either the physical address of the business or an address where business records are stored
  • Registered Agent Information: An Idaho registered agent is the singular point of contact for the entity should a legal, or tax notice need to be sent to the business.  This is often one of the owners, and if their home address is used, that address becomes public information.  Many people find this concerning and use a Registered Agent service like Northwest Registered Agent, so their home address isn’t publicly listed.  
  • Initial Filing Date: The date the entity was filed with the Secretary of State

Something to keep in mind is that even though each Corporation and LLC name must be unique, it may not stop someone else from using that name since business names for a sole proprietorship are not required to be unique.  To protect your business name, consider getting a trademark.

Related: Should I trademark my business name?

Idaho Business Name Search FAQs

How do I find the business name of an Idaho sole proprietorship?

An Idaho sole proprietorship or partnership can use the business owner(s) full first and last name as the business name, but many will want to operate under a specific business name. To register the business name, they will register for an Idaho Assumed Name, which is also known as “Doing Business As,” DBA, Assumed Name, or Fictitious Business Name.

Similar to corporations or LLCs, Assumed Name registrations need to be unique and are registered through the Idaho Secretary of State’s office.

How do I form an Idaho LLC?

Before starting your business and forming an LLC, be sure to do the business entity search first to make sure the name is available to use.  Once you know the LLC name is available, learn how to form an Idaho LLC by reading our step-by-step guide.

While not required in Idaho, an LLC operating agreement, which are the rules for how the LLC operates, is a document worth considering, especially for multi-member LLCs.

After forming a Limited Liability Company, be sure to register for any Idaho business licenses and obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN) so the business is legal to operate.

What are the naming guidelines for an Idaho LLC?

In addition to being unique, the LLC’s name must include a special designator such as Limited Liability Company, LLC, L.L.C., etc., and it may not use restricted words such as bank or insurance unless the entity is licensed to operate as such.

Can an LLC name be reserved?

If there is a name you want to use but are not ready to form the LLC, the name can be reserved.  A name can be reserved for up to four months by filing the Reservation of Legal Entity Name can be filed with the Secretary of State.

How To Do An Idaho Business Name Search

How To Do An Idaho Business Name Search

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