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Words carved onto a tree

What’s In A Name?

Date: 02/02/2015 | Corporate

New regulations which came into force on 31 January 2015 should help to simplify the process for companies and LLPs choosing or changing their name.  

What has changed?

  • Words that require approval: You cannot include certain ‘sensitive words’ in a company, LLP or business name without obtaining consent (either from Companies House or from a specified third party). The list of ‘sensitive’ words has been reduced, with the most significant deletions including “National”, “European”, “Group”, “Holding”, “International” and “United Kingdom”.
  • ‘Same as’ rules relaxed: You cannot register a name which is identical to, or the ‘same as’, an existing company’s name. Previous regulations set out a list of words which were to be disregarded when determining if company names were different. For example, if there was a company called “ABC Limited” you could not register a company called “ABC Group Limited” or “ABC Holdings Limited” as “Group” and “Holdings” were effectively disregarded. The list of words to be disregarded has been reduced with “Group”, “Holdings”, “International” and “Services” among those words removed from the list.
  • Requirement to display company name at its registered office: where more than five companies operate from or are registered at one office, place or location it will no longer be necessary to display the details of all of the companies in an easily-seen place at the office in question.  Instead, only a register of the names need be made available for inspection.
  • Permitted characters in company names: A wider range of characters, signs and symbols and punctuation will be permitted to be used in a company name.

If you would like any further advice or clarification on these changes then please contact Craig Stirling or any member of the Corporate Team. 

The matter in this publication is based on our current understanding of the law.  The information provides only an overview of the law in force at the date hereof and has been produced for general information purposes only. Professional advice should always be sought before taking any action in reliance of the information. Accordingly, Davidson Chalmers LLP does not take any responsibility for losses incurred by any person through acting or failing to act on the basis of anything contained in this publication.

Written by

CRAIG STIRLING | Davidson Chalmers Stewart
Craig Stirling

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