South Carolina LLC Name Search [2023]

Why Should You Conduct a South Carolina LLC Name Search Well?

Before establishing a South Carolina LLC, every company should conduct a South Carolina business name search.

The first step in incorporating an LLC or company in South Carolina is to conduct a business name search. This search looks for the availability of the business name you wish to use across all of the state’s registered business organizations. Each LLC or company registered in South Carolina is required to have a distinctive business name, just like every other state.

Therefore, before beginning your firm, it’s crucial to conduct a business entity search to see whether the name is already taken before registering your LLC or Corporation with the South Carolina Secretary of State’s Office. Searches are free of charge.

In the section below, we’ll explain how to use the South Carolina Secretary of State Business Search to determine whether an LLC name is available.

Follow South Carolina Naming Guidelines

Before conducting a name search for your company, we strongly advise business owners to check if their names complies with the rules. The most important step in creating an LLC is for business owners to select a company name. Make sure the name you select is both easy for potential customers to find and conforms with South Carolina’s naming regulations.

The words “limited liability corporation” or one of its acronyms (LLC or L.L.C.) but be present in the name of the business or corporation. Business owners must take note of this step as it may lead to complications in the future.

Additionally, no government agency names may be used in your South Carolina LLC’s name (FBI, Treasury, State Department, etc.).

To use restricted words in your South Carolina LLC, you might need to submit additional documentation and hire a licensed person, such a doctor or lawyer.

It’s crucial that your name stand out from every other company name. A distinguishing name in South Carolina is one that materially differs from all other registered or used company names in the South Carolina state.

Your formation filing might be denied if you don’t utilize a distinctive name in South Carolina.

Do a South Carolina Business Name Search

Use the South Carolina Business Entity Search to see if your preferred business entity name is available before submitting your name reservation request. Enter the name of the business entity you want to utilize in the business entity search field, leaving off identifiers like “LLC,” for the best results. +

All business entities with the same or similar names will be returned by this. If your company name consists of many words, you may even limit your search to the first two words to guarantee that you find every name that might be similar.

The website automatically requests you to conduct a search before reserving a name. Before submitting your documentation, be sure to conduct a comprehensive search to prevent rejection.

South Carolina Corporation Search Name Status

Looking through the list of search results to see if any expired names would match the firm is one technique to come up with ideas if a company is having trouble coming up with a solid business name.

If someone wished to create a new coffee shop, for instance, they could type “coffee” into the search field to get a list of suggestions based on the business status results:

Call if there is a name that interests you but is no longer active.

Search Available Domain Names

Whether or not your preferred web domain name is available should be taken into account while choosing a business name. It’s crucial to have a URL that accurately reflects the name of your company. This apparently insignificant action can have a significant impact on how potential clients discover your company.

Use your favourite domain registration, such as GoDaddy, to do an internet search to find out if your desired URL is accessible.

Search for Business Name availability in South Carolina

By visiting this website and typing a company name into the entry area, one can determine whether a desired corporate name is available.


The results returned will look something like the one below if the name is currently available for usage in South Carolina.

Search for a Business Entity in South Carolina

By first going to this page, you can search for a business entity that is already listed with the South Carolina Secretary of State. Click Search after entering the business name or registered agent in the appropriate entry form.

The outcomes you get ought to like the one in the image below. Click on the business name of the entity you’re looking for after scrolling down to locate it.

The next page will allow you to evaluate every aspect of the company.

Reserve Your South Carolina Business Entity Name

All LLC name inquiries and requests are handled by the Division of Corporations at the South Carolina Secretary of State. There is a 120-day non-renewable reservation period for business names.

You must submit an application by mail if you want to reserve a company name. There is a filing fee that you must pay in order to reserve your business name. Make checks payable to the “South Carolina Secretary of State” alone.

Other Concerns

While reserving the name for your South Carolina LLC is simple, there are several additional considerations you should make when deciding on the ideal name for your company. To check if your name may be used online, you could wish to do a trademark and social media search. By doing this, you may make sure that you can use your company name without limitations.

Trademark Search

Before registering, conducting a trademark search on your company name and any related slogans or emblems will help you avoid expensive future lawsuits. If you later learn that another company has trademarked your company name, you are not immediately forbidden from using it.

To ensure you do not unintentionally violate anyone’s intellectual property rights, it is crucial to be aware of who is using the name, what business they are in, and where they are situated.

If your company name or any associated slogans, logos, or other items are already being used by another company in your state, you may finish this process by conducting a South Carolina trademark search. Then lookup any federally registered trademarks connected to your company name in the electronic records of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

Social Media Search

Making sure your company name is accessible for usage on social media platforms is just as crucial—if not more so—than choosing a domain name that matches your operation. Use a tool like Namecheckr to simultaneously search across all platforms while searching for your company name on all major websites.

Register South Carolina business entity

On the South Carolina Secretary of State website, South Carolina corporations may be filed electronically.

Alternatively, you may register with businesses like Northwest Registered Agent, Incfile, or ZenBusiness, which can handle the filings for as cheap as $0 plus state filing costs.

Register TAX ID/EIN with the IRS

A firm is identified for tax purposes by its nine-digit EIN number. Consider it the social security number for companies. The owner of the limited liability corporation (LLC) can easily file for an EIN online without any hassle. Swyft Filings charges $79 for corporations in South Carolina to register for a Tax ID.

Logo creation

Businesses with outstanding logos impress clients, help them stand out from the competition, and help clients recall your distinctive services in a favorable way. This is similar to choosing a good business name.

It is simple to get a logo from Fiverr in 24 hours or less thanks to the rise of freelance marketplaces.

Writing a business plan

Writing a business plan may assist in organizing the thoughts of business owners and provide a roadmap for companies to follow. A well-written company plan makes an excellent first impression on investors and promotes responsibility. Companies that link together should think about using a formal operating agreement.

Open a business bank account

Businesses are obliged to have a company bank account because it helps keep personal and corporate funds separate. Additionally, it helps establish corporate credibility in the event that future business expansion loans are required.

Businesses cannot utilize a PO box as their principal mailing address and must have a business postal address in order to create a business bank account.

South Carolina business structure naming considerations

Sole proprietorships and partnerships

In order to open for business in South Carolina, sole proprietorships are not required to register with the South Carolina Secretary of State. There is often no need to do a company name search for sole proprietorships because they normally operate under an individual’s name.

Similar to sole proprietorships, partnerships are reasonably simple to set up and often include the last names of all partners.


LLCs are independent legal companies that let owners keep their personal and professional obligations separate. LLC names must be registered with the South Carolina Secretary of State and must be distinctive.


Similar to LLCs, corporations are distinct legal business entities that must be registered with the South Carolina Secretary of State. Large enterprises that want to issue shares and draw investors frequently utilize corporations since they are somewhat sophisticated legal business entities.

Corporations must identify themselves as such in their business names by using the terms “corp”, “corporation”, “Inc”, “limited”, or “company”. Additionally, S Businesses must follow the same name guidelines as conventional corporations.

Professional Corporations are required to use “professional corporation” instead of the standard corporate term to identify themselves as such.

How Do I Reserve an LLC Name in South Carolina

You can submit the Application to Reserve a Limited Liability Company Name if there is a name you choose but are not yet prepared to create the LLC. At a payment of $25, the name reserve will retain a name for up to 180 days.


Can business owners conduct a DBA business name search for sole proprietors or partnerships in South Carolina?

The South Carolina Secretary of State Business Entity Database contains details about South Carolina-registered companies and LLCs.

An assumed name, also known as “doing business as,” “DBA,” a fictitious business name, or a trade name, must be registered by a sole proprietorship or partnership conducting business under a name other than the owner’s legal identity.

How does a business owner form an LLC in South Carolina?

Make sure the name is accessible to use by doing a business entity search prior to launching your company and creating an LLC.

An Operating Agreement, which outlines the norms by which the LLC is to be run, is a document worth thinking about, especially for multi-member LLCs, even if it is not necessary in South Carolina.

Make sure to apply for South Carolina business licenses after creating a Limited Liability Company and to get an Employer Identification Number (EIN) so that the company is able to conduct business legally.

Does South Carolina require a registered agent?

Corporations must utilize a registered agent and a registered business location to comply with the registered agent’s legal obligations, according to the South Carolina Secretary of State’s Office.

Adding a layer of anonymity between the organization and the general public is one of the key advantages of choosing a third-party registered agent service provider. All paperwork is acquired by the registered agent, who can also provide it to you discreetly via mail. Northwest Registered Agent is a good choice.

Should I name my LLC after myself?

Although there is no prohibition against doing so, most professionals advise against it.

One advantage of forming an LLC is the freedom to name your company differently, which may give it a more polished appearance.

Do business owners have to include LLC the name of their corporations?

Yes. The word “Limited Liability Company” or one of its acronyms (such as LLC or L.L.C.) must appear in the legal name of an LLC in South Carolina.

What are the requirements to name an LLC in South Carolina?

The name of the LLC must be distinct as suggested by the South Carolina Secretary of State, include a special designator like Limited Liability Company, LLC, L.L.C., etc., and not contain terms that are prohibited or affiliated to government agency, such as bank or insurance, unless the business is authorized to do so.

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