Creating a good business name is one of the essential things to consider when starting an LLC. You might be curious about how to get a unique name, how to register your entity name, and how to write LLC — with or without a comma. Although no states require a comma in your LLC name, many business owners prefer it.
The names of limited liability companies (LLCs) are regulated at the state level. Though many states have similar LLC naming rules, there are plenty of differences. Almost all states, though, require an LLC to have a “designator” in its name that indicates that it’s an LLC.
What designators you can use will vary slightly from state to state. Most states allow “LLC” with or without periods and the full spelling of “Limited Liability Company.” When it comes to commas, though, that’s entirely up to you.
So, should you use a comma or not in naming your LLC? Let’s consider a few things first.
As stated earlier, the state doesn’t mandate the presence or lack thereof of punctuation between your business name and business designation. Hence, deciding whether or not to separate your business name with a comma is your choice.
Many business owners prefer to put a comma before “LLC” to give some separation between the main business name and the words or abbreviation telling you that it’s an LLC. The name “Isaac’s Upholstery LLC” tends to run together, but “Isaac’s Upholstery, LLC” is clearer to some people. Again, though, this is a matter of preference. You can go either way.
However, your decision to use or not use a comma becomes vital after you must have registered your business. If your selected business name has a comma, you must maintain consistency, especially on legal documents.
Again, this will depend on what designators your state allows. Nearly all states allow “LLC” (with no periods) and “L.L.C.” Some states may allow it with only one period at the end (“LLC.”), but, from a punctuation perspective, having only one period instead of three would be inaccurate and could be a turn-off to clients who care about such things.
Creating a business name with a comma or no comma, period or no period, gives room for flexibility and several possible outcomes. Again, not all states allow the same designators, but some commonly used business entity designators for LLCs include Limited Liability Company, LLC, and L.L.C. Some states also allow the words “Company” and “Limited” to be abbreviated as “Co.” and “Ltd.” respectively.
Using Isaac’s upholstery business as an example, here are some possible business name and entity identifiers combinations for his limited liability company:
As we mentioned earlier, LLC names are regulated at the state level, and there are some rules and regulations you have to follow to be recognized as a legal company. These regulations differ from one state to another.
Apart from the LLC name itself, some states have special rules around the naming process. For example, New York insists you publish your LLC name in two different newspapers, and Alabama demands that you reserve your business name first.
State LLC naming requirements vary across states, but most states require:
Most states will allow you to reserve your LLC name for a set time period prior to registering your business. Reserving your business name means your chosen name will be secured exclusively for you for a stipulated time. Most reservations are for up to 120 days; some are as short as 30 days. Reserving your legal business name prevents other startups from using it for their business name registration. This allows you to hold down a name while you prepare your Articles of Organization.
There are many moving parts to cater to when starting an LLC. Getting your business registered is a massive part of that process. We can help you with some of those responsibilities, from creating a unique name to having your LLC legally registered in your desired state. Starting at $0 plus state fees, our LLC formation service and other services can help you get started today.
Disclaimer: The content on this page is for informational purposes only, and does not constitute legal, tax, or accounting advice. If you have specific questions about any of these topics, seek the counsel of a licensed professional.
Each state has its own rules for including the LLC designator in your business name. Most allow L.L.C., LLC, and limited liability company.
Again, each state has its own rules, but most allow “LLC” with or without the periods. No states require or forbid you to put a comma before the designator.
From a grammar perspective, you would either use LLC with no periods or three periods (L.L.C.)
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