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To reserve a company name, you will need to register a limited company. If you have a name in mind, we would advise reserving it as soon as possible, even if you are not quite ready to start trading. This will prevent anyone else from registering the same company name. Below, we explain how to do this.
Reserve a company name by setting up a dormant company
The first step in the process of reserving a company name is to check that it is available. You can do this for free using Rapid Formations online Company Name Checker. This tool will compare your entry against every company name currently in use and registered at Companies House.
If you have no intention of trading through this name, or you are not quite ready to start trading at the present time, you will need to contact the Corporation Tax department to record your new company as dormant. By doing so, HMRC will not expect or request the submission of annual accounts and tax returns.
Company name restrictions
You may find that another business has already registered the name you want to use, or one that is very similar. Anything deemed ‘too similar’ is likely to confuse the general public. For that reason, you can only register a name that is the same as, or similar to, another business if you get permission from that business or you’re going be part of the same group.
Furthermore, you must:
- not choose a name that could be considered offensive
- get permission if you want to include ‘sensitive’ words
- not choose a name that suggests an association with a government or official body, the Royal Family, or a local authority
Companies House provides full guidance on company name rules and restrictions, which we would advise reading before choosing a name.
Don’t forget to register a domain name
If you decide to reserve a company name, you should register it as a web domain at the same time. Matching your website and business email domain with your company name will make it easier for people to find you online. It will also add credibility to your company, legitimise your business online, and ultimately improve your overall brand image.
Reserve a company name today
Rapid Formations offers a Basic Package specifically designed for reserving a company name or setting up a dormant company to start trading at a later date. This package is available for just £12.99 and includes the registrar’s £10 filing fee.
The application is very straightforward. It is completed online and there’s no need for signatures or paperwork. We will send your application to Companies House electronically and your company should be formed within 3 working hours.