Company Name? How do u tell if it already exists?

Discussion in 'Starting a Lawn Care Business' started by software23, Jul 16, 2003.

  1. software23

    software23 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 5

    We need to get ourselves a company name. We live in Florida and there are tons of lawn mowing and landscaping companies. I know how to legally check the name by looking at the US Patent & Trademark Office.

    But there is no possible way to tell what companies are going around is there? I thought maybe the phone book, but many are not listed probably most are not listed. I don't want to pick a good name and get going and realize that there is already a company that has been established and did not trademark there name. Its really not worth it, legally. And we are going to use an enclosed trailer and get the logo / name put on 3 sides don't' want to get that redone.

    Maybe I am missing something?
  2. Moguy

    Moguy LawnSite Member
    Messages: 238

  3. Grassmechanic

    Grassmechanic LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,697

    go to local county clerks office. They'll help you.

  4. KerryB

    KerryB LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 661

    I agree with the lawyer bit. But if the name isnt registered with the Patent and trademark office its free game.
  5. A1 Grass

    A1 Grass LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 330

    First of all, what you need most likely is not a Patent or Trademark, unless you are opening a chain of Landscaping companies across the country.

    What you need is a DBA (doing Business as...) which (in Texas) you can get at the county courthouse. Part of your payment in filing a DBA goes for doing a search to see if someone has that name.

    Start by checking the Yellow pages, make a few choices, then go to the courthouse!
  6. Hometown Lawn Care

    Hometown Lawn Care LawnSite Member
    Messages: 147

    If I can help you out any, just don't use the name Hometown Lawn Care, lol

    I jus search everywhere and make sure my name is all over the net, go ahead seach Hometown Lawn Care in all the most popular engines, and were there...
  7. KerryB

    KerryB LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 661

    Actually a DBA is necessary but will not protect you or your company name if someone decides to register it first.
    If they get the name trade marked before you do they will own A 1 Grass and can make you stop using it.
  8. A1 Grass

    A1 Grass LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 330

    Yeah, that's kinda what I said.

    My point: In the last 23 years, having registered a number of business names using a DBA, have I ever had that

    Am I personally worried about someone coming in and taking it? Not really.

    If you have lots of money for a lawyer, and you are really worried about a national comapny coming in and stealing your name because it's the best name ever, go for the Trademark!

    Otherwise, filed your assumed name certificate, be happy and get on to the next problem...
  9. Dave_B-The_Grass_Guy

    Dave_B-The_Grass_Guy LawnSite Member
    Messages: 18

    A-1 Grass and Grass Mechanic hit it right on the head, go to the county and register your name and DBA ( doing business as), in most cases they have a computer there to check and see if that name is registered already. Here in Texas you own the name for 10 years. I'm not sure about Florida though, you will just have to go and check on Monday.
    Now in MY case, I incorporated my OWN name into the business, insuring that there wouldn't be any hassles. I mean really, how many Dave Breen's are out there doing business as The Grass Guy? On one hand it lends a personal touch to the business, people know exactly who it is they are dealing with, on the other hand if you screw it up, your reputation as a company and as a person are both damaged. If you do good quality work, stand behind it all and are willing to go the extra mile, it can pay off for you.
    Yellow pages aren't necessarily the best place to eliminate whether or not the name you're contemplating is being used, a LOT of fly-by-night companies (low-ballers, Illegal aliens, high school/collage kids,etc.) who don't have long term goals or intentions to remain in the biz for long won't spend the expense to have their name listed, and even some of the ones that do won't be listed.
  10. Tomt

    Tomt LawnSite Member
    Messages: 218

    If the name is anything other than your name, i.e. "John Doe Lawn Service" you have to register a "fictitious Name" with the state for $50.00.
    You can check the name and where it in already used, if at all.
    850 488 9000 in Tallahassee.
    Hope this is some help.

Share This Page