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Name availability guidelines for Company are given under Rule 8 of the Companies (Incorporation) Rules, 2014

In old Companies Act, 1956 Ministry had issued name availability guidelines by way of (Companies (Name Availability) Rules, updated in 2011). In the new Companies Act, 2013 name availability guidelines for Company are given under Rule 8 of the Companies (Incorporation) Rules, 2014.


In determining whether a proposed name is identical with another, the differences on account of the following shall not be considered and the name will be regarded as identical:


a. The words Private, Pvt, Pvt., (P), Limited, Ltd, Ltd., LLP, Limited Liability Partnership;


b. The words appearing at the end of the names – company, and company, co., co, corporation, corp, corpn, corp.;


c. Plural version of any of the words appearing in the name of an existing company doesn’t make a name unique.


d. The type and case of letters, spacing between letters and punctuation marks;


e. Joining word or separating the words does not make a name unique.


f. The use of a different tense or number of the same word does not distinguish one name from another.


g. Using different phonetic spellings or spelling variations shall not be considered as distinguishing one name from another. (For example, P.Q. Industries limited is existing then Pee Que Industries or P & Q Industries shall not be allowed)


h. If intentionally misspelled words are used as a name for a company, it shall be checked with properly checked words.


i. The addition of internet related designation such as .com, .net, .edu, .gov, .org, .in does not make a name unique. Example: If a company exists with a name, “Fast Movies Limited”, then the name “ Limited” or “FastMovies Dot Com Limited” will  not be allowed.


j. The addition of words like New, Modern, Nav, Shri, Sri, Shree, Sree, Om, Jai, Sai,  The, etc. does not make a name distinguishable from an existing name and similarly, if it is different from the name of the existing company only to the extent of adding the name of the place, the same shall not be allowed. Such names may be allowed only if no objection from the existing company by way of Board resolution is produced/ submitted;


k. Different combination of the same words does not make a name unique.    Example: If a company exists with a name,“Builders and Contractors Limited”, then the name “Contractors and Builders Limited” will not be allowed.


l. If the proposed name is the Hindi or English translation or transliteration of the name of an existing company or limited liability partnership, then the name will not be allowed.


2. A name shall be considered undesirable if:-


i. it attracts the provisions of section 3 of the Emblems and Names (Prevention and Improper Use) Act, 1950 (12 of 1950);


ii. it includes the name of a registered trade mark or a trade mark which is subject of an application for registration, unless the consent of the owner or applicant for registration, of the trade mark, as the case may be, has been obtained and produced by the promoters;


iii. it includes any word or words which are offensive to any section of the people;


3. A name shall also generally be considered undesirable if:


i. the proposed name is identical with or too nearly resembles the name of a limited liability partnership;


ii. it is not in consonance with the principal objects of the company as set out in the memorandum of association:  Provided that every name need not necessarily indicative of the objects of the company, but when there is some indication of the objects in the name, then it shall be in conformity with the objects mentioned in the memorandum.


iii. If the Company’s main business is finance, housing finance, chit fund, leasing, investments, securities or combination thereof, such name shall not be allowed unless the name is indicative of such related financial activities, viz., Chit Fund/ Investment/ Loan, etc.;


iv. it resembles closely the popular or abbreviated description of an existing company or limited liability partnership;


v. the proposed name is identical with or too nearly resembles the name of a company or limited liability partnership incorporated outside India and reserved by such company or limited liability partnership with the Registrar: Provided that a foreign company incorporating its subsidiary company in India, the  addition of word "India" or name of any Indian state or city is permissible along with the original name of the holding company.


vi. If any part of the proposed name includes the words indicative of a separate type of business constitution or legal person or any connotation thereof e.g. co-operative, sehkari, trust, LLP, partnership, society, proprietor, HUF, firm, Inc., PLC, GmbH, SA, PTE, Sdn, AG etc.


vii. Abbreviated name such as ‘DJMO limited’ or ‘23K limited’ cannot be given to a new company. Abbreviated name based on the name of the promoters will not be allowed. For example:- BMCD Limited representing first alphabet of the name of the promoter like Bharat, Mahesh, Chandan and David. Provided that existing company may use its abbreviated name as part of the name for  formation of a new company as subsidiary or joint venture or associate company but such joint venture or associated company shall not have an abbreviated name only e.g. Delhi Paper Mills Limited can get a joint venture or associated company as DPM Papers Limited and not as DPM Limited. Provided further that the companies well known in their respective field by abbreviated names are allowed to change their names to abbreviation of their existing name after following the requirements of the Act;


viii. the proposed name is identical to the name of a company dissolved as a result of liquidation proceeding and a period of two years have not elapsed from the date of such dissolution(since the dissolution of the company could be declared void within the period aforesaid by an order of the Tribunal under section 356 of the Act).


ix. if the proposed name is identical with the name of a company which is struck off in pursuance of action under section 248 of the Act, then the same shall not be allowed before the expiry of twenty years from the publication in the Official Gazette being so struck off (since the company can be restored anytime within such period by the Tribunal);


x. it is identical with or too nearly resembles the name of a limited liability partnership in liquidation or the name of a limited liability partnership which is struck off up to a period of five years;


xi. If the proposed name include words such as ‘Insurance’, ‘Bank’, ‘Stock Exchange’, ‘Venture Capital’, ‘Asset Management’, ‘Nidhi’, ‘Mutual fund’ etc., then a declaration must be submitted by the applicant that the requirements mandated by the respective regulator, such as IRDA, RBI, SEBI, MCA etc. have been complied with by the applicant.


xii. If the proposed name includes the word "State" the same shall be allowed only in case the company is a government company. Also names that only contain generic words like the name of a continent, country, state, city such as Asia limited, Germany Limited, Haryana Limited, Mysore Limited or the name is a general one, like Cotton Textile Mills Ltd. or Silk Manufacturing Ltd. will not be allowed.


xiii. it is intended or likely to produce a misleading impression regarding the scope or scale of its activities which would be beyond the resources at its disposal.


xiv. the proposed name includes name of any foreign country or any city in a foreign country, the same shall be allowed if the applicant produces any proof of significance of business relations with such foreign country like MOU with a company of such country .Provided further the name combining the name of a foreign country with the use of India like India Japan or Japan India shall be allowed if, there is a government to government participation or patronage and no company shall be incorporated using the name of an enemy country.


4. Change of Activities

If any company has changed its activities which are not reflected in its name, it shall change its name in line with its activities within a period of six months from the change of activities after complying with all the provisions as applicable to change of name.


5. Proposed Company Name contain name of  an individual


In case the key word used in the name proposed is the name of a person other than the name(s) of the promoters or their close blood relatives, No objection from such other (s) shall be attached with the application for name. In case the name includes the name of relatives, the proof of relation shall be attached. It shall be mandatory to furnish the significance and proof thereof for use of coined words made out of the name of the promoters or their relatives.


6. Declaration by Applicant

The applicant shall declare whether they are using or have been using in the last 5 years , the name applied for incorporation of company or LLP in any other business constitution like Sole proprietor or Partnership or any other incorporated or unincorporated entity and if, yes details thereof and NOC from other partners and associates for use of such name by the proposed Company or LLP as the case may be and also a declaration as to whether such other business shall be taken over by the proposed company or LLP or not.


7. Specific Prohibition on using selected words in the proposed name

The following words and combinations thereof shall not be used in the name of a company in English or any of the languages depicting the same meaning unless the previous approval of the Central Government has been obtained for the use of any such word or expression

(a) Board;

(b) Commission;

(c) Authority; or

(d) Undertaking

(e) National

(f) Union

(g) Central

(h) Federal

(i) Republic

(j) President

(k) Rashtrapati,

(l) Small Scale Industries

(m) Khadi and Village Industries Corporation

(n) Financial, forest, Corporation and the like

(o) Municipal

(p) Panchayat

(q) Development Authority;

(r) Prime Minister or Chief Minister

(s) Minister

(t) Nation

(u) Forest corporation

(v) Development Scheme

(w) Statute or Statutory

(x) Court or Judiciary

(y) Governor

(z) Development Scheme or the use of word Scheme with the name of Government (s) , State , India, 15

For Section 8 Companies, the name shall include the words foundation, Forum, Association, Council and the like.

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