How to Reserve a Company Name

Introduction

Having a good company name is important because it is the first image that your business projects onto the public. It is what customers will remember about your business, and either draw them in or send them to your competitors. Thus, if you have come up with a company name that is suitable for your business, but are not ready to register your company, you are able to reserve the company name. 

Reserving a Company Name

If you are not ready to register your company, but want to ensure a name is available, you can submit a 410 application to ASIC to reserve it. If the name is available, you may be able to reserve it.  Business names will be rejected by ASIC if they have already been registered or reserved by another corporation. They will also be rejected if they are unacceptable for registration, per the Regulations.

Once ASIC approves it, you are able to reserve the name for two months. If you would like to extend this period, you will need to lodge an application to reserve the name again with a prescribed fee. However, it is important to note that ASIC will not extend a name reservation indefinitely as a means to prevent other people or corporations from legitimate use of the name.

Even if your name has been approved by ASIC, you are not exempt from action being taken against you by an individual or company with a similar name. It is your responsibility to be aware of issues arising from existing name registrations that are similar to the name that you have registered.

Can I Reserve my Company Name?

Once you have selected a name for your company, you must ensure that it is available for registration. This is an essential requirement since you are unable to register a name that is identical or similar to an existing name. Further, only certain characters are allowed in a company’s name and some terms are restricted from registration. 

Which characters can I use?

A full list of acceptable characters are available on the ASIC Website. However, characters such as 0 – 9 and A – Z are acceptable. Some other symbols such as exclamation marks are acceptable, whilst others such as question marks are not.

Restricted Terms

If a business name is misleading, is considered offensive or suggests illegal activity, it will be refused by ASIC. Some words and phrases cannot be registered without the approval of a government minister. Some of these examples include:

  • ‘Building society’;
  • ‘trust’
  • ‘university’
  • ‘chamber of commerce’

Lawpath offers a Company Namecheck that is linked to ASIC. This allows you to check your proposed company name.

Reservation Steps

  1. Login to your ASIC account.
  2. Select ‘Select new form’ on the left hand menu.
  3. From the list of firms, select ‘410B’.
  4. Enter the ‘ACN/ABN’ of the company you wish to reserve a name for.
  5. Confirm your company details.
  6. Select ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ to confirm if your proposed name is identical to a registered business name.
  7. Enter the ‘Proposed name’ of the company to be reserved.
    1. From the drop-down list, select ‘Legal elements’ you would like to apply to the company name.
  8. Review the proposed company name and confirm that the information is correct.
  9. Request for Manual Review and select ‘Yes’ or ‘No’ to confirm if manual review of your proposed change of company is required.
  10. Select a ‘Payment option’ from the drop-down menu. 
  11. Select the Authorising officeholder from the drop-down list.
  12. When you are satisfied that the document is being lodged within the terms and conditions of ASIC’s Electronic Lodgement Protocol, select ‘Yes’
  13. ‘Submit’ to lodge your form with ASIC

Conclusion

Reserving your company name is a necessary step to take to ensure your name is available upon registration. Once you are ready to register, be sure to check out Lawpath’s quick and easy online company registration. We also have a range of services to assist you with protecting your new company from the start.

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