1701.05 Corporate name - transfer - reservation.

(A) Except as provided in this section, and in sections 1701.75 , 1701.78 , and 1701.82 of the Revised Code, which sections relate to the reorganization, merger, and consolidation of corporations, the corporate name of a domestic corporation shall comply with all of the following:

(1) It shall end with or include the word or abbreviation "company," "co.," "corporation," "corp.," "incorporated," or "inc."

(2) It shall be distinguishable upon the records in the office of the secretary of state from all of the following:

(a) The name of any other corporation, whether nonprofit or for profit and whether that of a domestic or of a foreign corporation authorized to do business in this state;

(b) The name of any limited liability company registered in the office of the secretary of state pursuant to Chapter 1705. of the Revised Code, whether domestic or foreign;

(c) The name of any limited liability partnership registered in the office of the secretary of state pursuant to Chapter 1775. or 1776. of the Revised Code, whether domestic or foreign;

(d) The name of any limited partnership registered in the office of the secretary of state pursuant to Chapter 1782. of the Revised Code, whether domestic or foreign;

(e) Any trade name the exclusive right to which is at the time in question registered in the office of the secretary of state pursuant to Chapter 1329. of the Revised Code.

(3) It shall not contain any language that indicates or implies that the corporation is connected with a government agency of this state, another state, or the United States.

(B) The secretary of state shall determine for purposes of this section whether a name is "distinguishable" from another name upon the secretary of state's records. Without excluding other names that may not constitute distinguishable names in this state, a name is not considered distinguishable from another name for purposes of this section solely because it differs from the other name in only one or more of the following manners:

(1) The use of the word "corporation," "company," "incorporated," "limited," or any abbreviation of any of those words;

(2) The use of any article, conjunction, contraction, abbreviation, or punctuation;

(3) The use of a different tense or number of the same word.

(C) A corporation may apply to the secretary of state for authorization to use a name that is not distinguishable upon the secretary of state's records from the name of any other corporation, limited liability company, limited liability partnership, or limited partnership, or from a registered trade name, if there also is filed in the office of the secretary of state, on a form prescribed by the secretary of state, the consent of the other entity or, in the case of a registered trade name, the person in whose name is registered the exclusive right to use the name, which consent is evidenced in a writing signed by any authorized officer or any authorized representative of the other entity or person.

(D) In case of judicial sale or judicial transfer, by sale or transfer of good will or otherwise, of the right to use the name of a corporation, whether nonprofit or for profit, and whether that of a domestic corporation or of a foreign corporation authorized to exercise its corporate privileges in this state or to do business in this state, the secretary of state, at the instance of the purchaser or transferee of such right, shall accept for filing articles of a corporation with a name the same as or similar to the name of such other corporation, if there also is filed in the office of the secretary of state a certified copy of the decree or order of court confirming or otherwise evidencing the purchase or transfer.

(E) Any person who wishes to reserve a name for a proposed new corporation, or any corporation intending to change its name, may submit to the secretary of state a written application, on a form prescribed by the secretary of state, for the exclusive right to use a specified name as the name of a corporation. If the secretary of state finds that, under this section, the specified name is available for such use, the secretary of state shall file the application and, from the date of the filing, the applicant shall have the exclusive right for one hundred eighty days to use the specified name as the name of a corporation, counting the date of such filing as the first of one hundred eighty days. The right so obtained may be transferred by the applicant or other holder thereof by the filing in the office of the secretary of state of a written transfer, on a form prescribed by the secretary of state, stating the name and address of the transferee.

Effective Date: 06-06-2001; 2008 HB332 08-06-2008