Before registering your new business, conducting a NUANS Pre-Search is a good first step. This search will look through the NUANS databank for existing businesses, corporations and trademarks across Canada, so you can see what existing business and trademarks exist similarly to the business name you would like to use. Whether you are registering a Master Business Licence or Incorporating, including this pre-search with your order gives you the opportunity to make changes to your business name if you see too many similar or conflicting business names.
With a Master Business Licence, there is no name protection, so it is not necessary that you conduct a NUANS Pre-Search before registering. However the NUANS Pre-Search allows you to search business names you may be interested in registering or incorporating. You may want to do a NUANS Pre-Search for several reasons:
1.Advertising for someone else
If your business name is very similar to another in your area, customers could get you confused with them, and your advertising dollars may even be helping out that other business. Pre-Searching NUANS can make you aware of these potential name conflicts, so you can change your business name to make it distinctive enough from the others before registering it.
2. Another business with a bad reputation
Businesses can sometimes develop a bad reputation for a number of different reasons, and you do not want your business being confused with one that has that type of reputation. Potential customers could avoid your business in this circumstance. A NUANS Pre-Search can help avoid this confusion.
3. Infringing on protected names
Master Business Licences don’t have name protection, but corporations and trademarks do have name protection. Infringing on a protected business name could potentially lead to legal issues with that existing corporation or trademark. Ensure you are not infringing on someone else’s protected business name by conducting a NUANS Pre-Search before registering.
A NUANS Pre-Search can be ordered on its own where you can provide either one or three business names proposed or you can include the presearch with your Master Business Licence registration.
NUANS Name Reservation
The NUANS Name Reservation is a 7 page computerized databank listing of existing corporate, business and trademark names that may be similar to your proposed business name. The report is valid for 90 days, and you can either conduct the reservation separately or include it with your incorporation package.
Incorporated businesses are given name protection within the jurisdiction they are incorporated. This means that no other business can register in that jurisdiction using the exact same corporate name.
When completing a NUANS Name Reservation, you have the option to choose to pre-search prior to completing the name reservation. This allows you the opportunity to provide a new business name, if you wish. Another pre-search would be conducted if a new name is provided and the NUANS Name Reservation would not be ordered until an available business name was determined.
If you have any questions about conducting a NUANS Pre-search, ordering a NUANS Name Reservation, registering your business or Incorporating, please feel free to contact our staff for additional information and assistance.
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Ontario Business Central Inc. is not a law firm and cannot provide a legal opinion or advice. This information is to assist you in understanding the requirements of registration within the chosen jurisdiction. It is always recommended, when you have legal or accounting questions that you speak to a qualified professional.