Starting a business in California requires conducting a search for companies in the state. The California Secretary of State maintains an organized registry of business entities that exist or have been dissolved. The database is free to use and makes it easy to search for existing companies or to query an available business name. Names can be checked for availability by searching the California Secretary of State's database of business names.
An available name can be reserved for up to 60 days by submitting a name reservation request form. When selecting a California business name, it's important to understand the different naming requirements for each type of entity. To ensure that the name of your LLC is distinguished from the names of other companies on file with the California Secretary of State, you can use a California business license search. This will provide you with more information about the company and its legitimacy.
You can also perform a California Secretary of State business search above by entering a license number, individual name, or company name and selecting a state. You can search for California business licenses on the Secretary of State's website if it appears as an LLC, corporation, or partnership. Additionally, you can search for the company to review consumer complaints in the Better Business Bureau by looking for where the company is located or where it is doing business. The purpose of the waiver is to temporarily ease the burden of creating a new business in California.
LLCs limit the owner's personal liability for business debts and lawsuits and offer a lot of flexibility when it comes to business ownership, management, and taxes. A DBA (doing business as), or trade name, is a fictitious business name that companies operate outside of the LLC's formal name. For more information, see the Business Entities section of the Secretary of State's website and the Nolo article, Qualify to Do Business Outside Your State. You can also visit CalGold on the California Office of Economic and Business Development website for more information. The Governor of CalGold's Office of Business and Economic Development is responsible for helping you find the right permit for your business.