Business representatives inquiring about the availability of their proposed entity name prior to registration, or those simply looking to gain insight into an entity’s particular business details, will be able to do so through the use of the Secretary of State’s business entity search. The function will also allow for the online purchase of a Certificate of Existence,  a document only available to those entities whose annual reports are up to date. Review our brief tutorial below to educate yourself on both the search by name and search by control number option. Alternatively, those using this function to search for their business name’s availability should skip directly to the third tutorial on this page.

Search by Name

Step 1- To begin, you will need to navigate to this website. There you will first need to supply the business name into the topmost field. You will have the option of choosing between Starts With and Contains in regards to the search parameters. Furthermore, the search results can be limited to only active entities if you wish. Before clicking Search, provide the image text into the appropriate field.

tn-name-search

Step 2- A list of names will appear on the following page, the contents of which should contain all entities whose names resemble the one supplied in the previous step. Scroll through the results until you’ve landed on the entity you’d like to research. To review the business details, click on the control number.

tn-name-search-2

Step 3- On this third and final page, you will be presented with all information that is available to the public. The data displayed will include the filing history, registered agent information and the structural information found in the initial registration documents. You will also be given the option to purchase a Certificate of Existence.

tn-name-search-3

Search by Control Number

Step 1- Searching by control number allows the inquirer to narrow the search results to just one entity. First navigate to this website and supply the control number in the appropriate field. If you wish, you may search for active entities only. Before clicking Search, be sure to enter in the image text into the final field.

tn-name-search

Step 2- If entered correctly, the number should provide a single search result. A few pieces of information will be provided in this first page, however, more will be available through clicking on the control number in the far left hand column.

tn-name-search-4

Step 3- Finally, you will be presented with the business entity’s assumed names, history, registered agent info and all other business details made available by the Secretary of State.

tn-name-search-3

Name Availability Search

Step 1- Those looking to perform a name availability search will need to do so on the Secretary of State’s business services online portal here. There, you will be able to enter the exact business name you plan on registering under before clicking Search.

tn-name-search-5

Step 2- All entities whose name matches that of your own will be presented. In the case that there are no search results, there is reason to believe that the name will indeed be accepted by the Secretary of State.

tn-name-search-6

How to (Video)