The rules on the availability of names are quite complex. In general you can use any company name that is unique. The name must end with the word ‘Limited’ or its abbreviation ‘Ltd’ and you cannot use a name that contains abusive or offensive words. When considering whether a name is the ‘same as’ another already registered, certain words such as ‘the’, ‘&’ or ‘and’, ‘company’, ‘co’, ‘www’, ‘UK’, ‘EU’ and ‘international’ (plus many others) are ignored when comparing similarity in names.
For example, if a company called ‘John Smith Limited’ already exists, you will not be allowed to register ‘John Smith & Company Limited’.
There are many other examples of words that are considered ‘same as’.
In addition, there are a large number of words considered to be ‘sensitive names’ which require specific consent from various regulatory organisations before they can be used. This list is extensive but includes words such as ‘European’, ‘British’, ‘charity’, and ‘authority’.
Our ordering system will not allow you to submit a name that is the same as another on the register. Further guidance is available from our Support & Information Guides, however, this is a very complicated matter and if you are struggling to find your most suitable name, please contact us.