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6 Steps to Take before Changing Your Business’ Name

Businesses that gain or lose a partner, those who are trying to rebrand and even those that may be trying to get away from a negative association may all consider changing their names. Regardless of why a business name needs to be changed, the how of it is typically involved.

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By taking certain steps ahead of time, however, business owners facilitate the transition into the new business name with minimal disruptions, wasted time and lost money.

So, here are the steps to take before and as you change the name of your business:

  1. Make sure the name isn’t trademarked – Using the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office’s search tool, you can see if the name you want (or some variations of it) are already trademarked.
  2. See if an appropriate domain name is available – Do a simple search for the URL you want (and possibly similar variations of it) to see if it’s available. If not because a business already owns it, you may want to reconsider your name.
  3. Complete the Secretary of State form to change your business name – As part of this process, you can determine whether another entity in the state is already operating under your business name.
  4. File a New DBA Name & Update Your Licenses and Permits – If your former business had filed a “doing business as” name, make sure you update this. At this time, it’s also good to check if you need to go through a special process to update the business names on your licenses and permits.
  5. Inform the IRS – How the IRS should be informed of the new name will depend on the type of business entity you have. For instance, while sole proprietors may need to send in a letter, partnerships may be able to note the new name on their tax returns.
  6. Update Your Business Contracts – This may be a complicated process because you may need to update employment contracts, lease contracts, contracts with distributors or vendors, client contracts, etc. As this point, it can be essential to retain an experienced business lawyer, who can help you appropriately revise your business contracts – and update them if necessary.

Contact a Denver Business Lawyer at Downey & Associates, PC

For experienced help resolving any contract or business legal issues, contact Denver Business Lawyer Thomas E. Downey. Since 1983, Thomas Downey and his dedicated staff have been providing individuals and businesses in the Denver Metro Area and throughout the U.S. with the highest level of legal service for their business, litigation, & real estate legal issues.

Our dedication to our clients, coupled with our extensive legal experience, means that our clients can always trust that we will aggressively protect their rights and help them achieve the best possible outcomes to their sensitive legal matters.

We encourage you to learn more about your rights and options, as well as our various services, by calling us at (303) 813-1111 or by emailing us using the contact form on this page. From our law offices in Centennial, we serve clients throughout Colorado and the U.S.

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