How to Search a Michigan LLC Name in 2024 - How to Start my LLC

Michigan LLC Name Search

Written by:

Carolyn Young has over 25 years of experience in business in various roles, including bank management, marketing management, and business education.

Reviewed by: Sarah Ruddle

For over 15 years, Sarah Ruddle has been a noteworthy leader in the business and nonprofit world.

Michigan LLC Name Search

Michigan LLC Name Search

Nailing down a great name for your Michigan LLC can be challenging. 

You want the name to be unique and easy to remember while being legally acceptable and conveying what your business does. You also want it to be SEO-friendly so that it can easily be found on Google. That’s a lot of boxes to check. 

And even if you’ve already found the perfect business name, you need to make sure it’s available. That takes several steps, as detailed in this handy guide.

Michigan LLC Entity Search 

The most important consideration when choosing an LLC name in Michigan is to make sure it’s available and legally acceptable. Here’s how to confirm you can use your preferred business name. 

1. Check for availability in Michigan

Go to the Michigan Secretary of State website and enter your business name. 


You should also search for similar business names, as you don’t want a name that can be easily confused with other businesses in Michigan.

2. Check Michigan’s LLC name regulations

In Michigan, your LLC name must include “limited liability company” or an abbreviation (LLC or L.L.C.) and cannot have words that could confuse your LLC with a government agency.

Additionally, your business name cannot imply involvement in any illegal activity and must be distinguishable from all other business names in the state. Michigan also lists restricted words that cannot be used in your name.

3. Check Trademarks

Check with the US Patent and Trademark Office to ensure the name has not been trademarked and is thus available nationally. 

4. Check domain name availability

You’ll want to make sure the domain name is available. You can check at a site like and use .com or .org, as those give your business more credibility.

5. Google it

Do a Google search to ensure the name is not being used in the U.S. or internationally. This is particularly important if you plan to have a strong online presence for your business.  

Once you’ve confirmed these, it’s a good idea to reserve the name with the state. 

How to File a Michigan LLC Name Reservation

To reserve an LLC name in Michigan, start by visiting the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs and downloading the form. You cannot file your reservation online, only by mail to: 

Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs
Corporations, Securities & Commercial Licensing Bureau 
Corporations Division 
P.O. Box 30054 
Lansing, MI 48909

The cost to file a name reservation is $25. Once your application is processed, your LLC name will be reserved for 180 days.

Doing Business As (DBA)

Even after all this work, you may want to do business under a name other than your LLC. First, you’ll need to register a “doing business as” or DBA name. There are two main reasons you might want to use a DBA.

  • Suppose you want to add new product lines. For example, if your business name is “JJ’s Waffles,” you want to expand and offer “JJ’s Muffins.” You can have multiple DBAs under the umbrella of your one LLC. 
  • When you have a DBA, you can have a business bank account under that name. So if you add “JJ’s Muffins,” customers can pay “JJ’s Muffins,” and you can deposit those payments into the bank account with that name.

In Michigan, a DBA is known as an assumed name. To register an assumed name, go to the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs to download the form. You’ll mail the form and the $25 fee to:

Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs 
Corporations, Securities & Commercial Licensing Bureau 
Corporations Division 
P.O. Box 30054 
Lansing, MI 48909

In Closing

Choosing a business name is crucial to entrepreneurial success, so if you’ve found a good one, don’t let somebody else get it. Instead, just take the steps detailed above to ensure it’s available and legally acceptable before nailing it down. 

You don’t want to run into an issue later that could impact the success of your business.