How Do I Change the Name of My LLC?
Your company name says a lot about your business — so if your goals have changed, your membership has changed, or your current business name is no longer working for you, you’ll be relieved to learn that initiating an LLC name change is fairly simple. Here’s how to do it:
1. Make sure the new name is available for use.
Check with the Secretary of State office in which your business was registered, to determine availability. You may be able to perform a free online search on the state’s website. If the name you desire is already being used by a competitor, read our article on choosing a name for your LLC.
2. Create and file an amendment to your LLC’s Articles of Organization.
When you formed your LLC, you (or your attorney or legal service) created a document called the Articles of Organization. Now, you’ll need to amend that document to reflect your new company name. Then, you must file it with the Secretary of State office through which your LLC was formed. You may be required to pay a fee, depending on your state’s requirements. Once the amendment is completed and registered, you must file it in with property records office of any county in which your LLC owns property. Depending on your state requirements, you may be able to do this online.
NOTE: If your name change is a correction rather than a new name — for example, if the company that helped your form your LLC misspelled your company name on the paperwork — you may be able to file a Certificate of Correction. Check with your Secretary of State office to determine whether this is an option for you.
3. Create and file an amendment to your LLC’s Operating Agreement, if applicable.
If you or your legal provider created an Operating Agreement at the time of your LLC’s formation, you will need to amend this as well, to reflect the new name.
4. Update any other legal or government documents with the new name.
Any and all government records to your LLC, including business licenses, certificates of occupancy and tax filings, must also be updated with the new name.
5. Spread the word.
Next, you’ll need to inform customers, banks, credit card companies, service providers, associates and anyone else you do business with, about the name change. This may include revising marketing materials, business cards, signage, and websites.
As a side note, if the above process sounds too daunting, another option is to create a new LLC, and merge your old company with the new one — or, file a Fictitious Name Certificate to keep your current LLC name and continue doing business as (DBA) the name of your choice. Congratulations on your new business name — and we hope the name change process goes smoothly for you.