searching fora business name


Google Reviews
searching business names

Instant Preliminary Name Search

Ontario Business Central now offers you access to search a proposed business name in the NUANS database with instant results. This self-serve option puts the NUANS preliminary or presearch in your hands. At any time you can search yourself to see if a business name is available. You can use this tool as many times as you wish to find that perfect business name for your startup.

Alternatively you may order an agent-assisted search instead if you would rather have our staff do it for you.


How do I order a preliminary search?

You simply provide the name of the business you wish to either register as a business, incorporate or trademark under the “name” category.

The next step is to select the jurisdiction where your business will operate within. The jurisdictions where the business will operate.

The full NUANS reservation report is necessary to incorporate however it is also vitally important when registering a business to search the business name against existing businesses and trademarks.

Our office also asks for your email address and credit card payment details. Once the application is completed, the NUANS pre search results will automatically be available to you right away.

Note: DO NOT include a legal ending of any type for this search.
This will be used for confirmation of your order so please ensure it is correct.

Additional Information About the Preliminary Search

This enables you to quickly search a business name for availability within the Nuans pre-search databank. The results from the Nuans pre-search databank show similar named trademarks, corporations and small businesses within Canada.

The Preliminary Search is a useful tool to those who may have want to see a variety of business names before choosing which one to proceed with.

The Provinces and areas that provide corporate information to the Nuans databank are Trademarks, Ontario, Alberta, British Columbia,Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Northwest Territories, Nova Scotia, Nunavut, Prince Edward Island, Saskatchewan, the Yukon, and the Federal government. Other Provinces and areas corporate information may not be available through the Nuans databank system.

Providing a name that is unique and distinctive to you and your line of business is crucial. A corporate name should have a distinctive element and a descriptive element to separate your business name from existing businesses.

What is the Preliminary NUANS database?

The NUANS preliminary or presearch is a Canada wide database that provides most but not all registered and incorporated businesses in Canada. It also provides details from the trademark database simultaneously.

Can I do my own NUANS Preliminary Search?

Yes, by completing this application, you are completing the NUANS preliminary search without the assistance of any staff member. The results are available directly and immediately.

How much does the NUANS preliminary search cost?

The cost is $10.00 plus HST per company search.

What if I have a number of searches I want to do?

The NUANS system only allows one business name to be searched at a time. This is why unfortunately, we can only offer one business name at a time through our online portal.

When is the NUANS preliminary search available and open?

You can go through the system as many times as you wish 24/7. The system is always available and open for you to search that business name. Whether it's 2 am in the morning where a business name has just come to you or the weekend, you can always come and search for that great startup name you have generated.

What will the NUANS preliminary results show me?

The NUANS database will provide to you in a report that is limited to 200 matches for registered businesses, incorporated and trademarks that the system designates as similar to the proposed or given name you submitted.

The view of the report will have the following specific information for each similar business.
Name , Jurisdiction and Number, Creation Date, Status Description, Status Date

The definitions of these include:
Name: The name of the business the system considers to be similar
Jurisdiction and Number: Where the business operates and the registration, corporate or trademark number assigned to that business
Creation date: When the business first registered or incorporated
Status Description: Provides details such as if the business is registered, incorporated, canceled or transferred.
Status Date: confirms the date the business was started, when the business was canceled or transferred.

SAMPLE of NUANS Preliminary Results

instant preliminary results

How to interpret the results of the NUANS preliminary.

In general, the results can be put in a few different levels of concern. This information is only general and is not a legal opinion. As an example, if you wish to register a business in the Province of Ontario and are looking at the NUANS preliminary results.

Red - very concerning
Orange - somewhat concerning
Green - not as concerning

Similar named corporation in Ontario or similar named trademark
In general, if you see an existing corporation or trademark that is similar to your proposed business name in the same province you wish to operate within, this is very concerning. You may not want to register or incorporate a business name that could be confusing to an existing business name.

Similar named corporation in Canada (Federal Incorporation)
The federally incorporated businesses have the highest level of name protection in Canada outside of a trademark. If a federal corporation exists, no matter what jurisdiction your business will operate, it is best to view this as very concerning.

Similar named registered business in Ontario
Registered businesses in any jurisdiction do not have the same name protection as their corporate and trademark counterparts however if the same or similar business name has already been registered in the Province you wish to operate within, this is somewhat concerning. There may be confusion in the marketplace between your business and the same or similar named existing business.

Similar named corporation in another jurisdiction outside of Ontario
If you find an incorporated business that operates in a different Province than the one you wish to operate within, as long as you have no intentions of pursuing business operations within that province, the similarly named corporation is not as concerning.

Similar named registered business in another jurisdiction outside of Ontario
Registered businesses in a different jurisdiction than the business you wish to operate within is not as concerning as long as you do not have intentions of operating within that jurisdiction.

We offer additional complimentary start up services including:
Instant NUANS where you can order the NUANS report as a Self Serve Item
NUANS Bundle where you can have us complete the staff assisted preliminary search, NUANS report, review of NUANS report and Domain search and registration.
Ontario Business Registration to open a Sole Proprietorship, General Partnership or Trade Name
Ontario Incorporation Launch an Ontario Incorporated business easily
Federal Incorporation Have the highest level of name protection in Canada

Ontario Business Central staff are here to assist you to navigate the results and to help you to complete any other business transaction easily.

Business Search

This will be used for confirmation of your order so please ensure it is correct.
Name Distinctive Element Descriptive Element Legal Ending
Coined Word Abzoodle
Dance Class
Dictionary Word Relaxation
Family Word Campbell
Geographic Word Toronto
Ice Cubes
Descriptive Name Lowfat
General Name Ontario


Restrictions on Corporate Business Names

As a profit corporation in the Province of Ontario there are words or wordings not permitted by the Business Corporations Act. They are as follows:


Other services offered by Ontario Business Central include Ontario incorporation, Canada Incorporation, Not for Profit Incorporation and much more.


Back to top