Top 5 Legal Tips for Naming Your Small Business

Would a small business by any other name be just as successful? When it comes to naming your business, you’ve got to think about everything from how that name will look with a nice logo to how it will resonate with customers and clients. You’ve also got some legal considerations, as well.

From incorporating and trademarks to website URLs, here’s some of our best legal advice for naming a small business:

1. Five Considerations When Choosing a Business Name

You might already have a name in mind, or maybe you had the name before you even had the business plan. Either way, here are some things to think about before you make it official: First, Is the Name Available? Second, Does the Name Describe the Product? Third, How Do Others Perceive It? Fourth, Is the Name too Complicated? Fifth, Does the Name Limit You?

2. What Is a Fictitious Business Name?

You may be thinking, “Nope, my business name is very real.” But fictitious business statements are declarations that your business name is not the same as your real name. For example, if you’re opening Super Duper Widgets, and you’re name is John Smith, you would technically file a statement declaring that you are doing business as (DBA) the name of your business.

3. What If Another Business Uses Your Name?

Your name is your brand, and you want it to stand out. So what happens if someone else starts using it? You can protect your business name by registering it with the state or federal business authority, and by trademarking the name as well.

4. Should a Business Change Its Name on Bad News?

Isis was a perfectly fine name, for people and businesses, until very recently. So when a business name becomes so toxic it’s hurting your bottom line, should you just switch it up? There are ways to change a name without causing too much attention or making it look like a new business.

5. What to Do If Someone Takes Your Company’s Internet Domain Name

Your business name isn’t just on your physical front door — by now it’s on your digital one as well. And you don’t want potential clients and customers getting confused. So how do your protect your business’s URL? You can do two things. You can do a Domain Name Buyback or under the authority of the Internet Corporation of Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN).

If you have more legal questions about naming your small business or changing its name, contact a local business attorney.

[Adopted from an article by Christopher Coble, Esq. dated April 24, 2017]

Interesting Lawsuit of the Month: 15-Year-Old Sues His Mom for Taking His Phone off Him
A 15-year-old boy in Spain sued his mother, accusing her of “mistreatment” after she confiscated his phone in an attempt to make him study.

News.com.au reports that the mom took the phone from her son in February. The son took legal action against his mother, reportedly accusing her of “mistreatment” and seeking a nine-month jail term, as well as payment of his legal costs.

The unusual case came before a judge in Almeria in Southern Spain. The Local reports show that the judge came down on the side of the mother, ruling that she was “well within her rights” and “took the correct action” by confiscating the phone.

“She would not be a responsible mother if she allowed her son to be distracted by the mobile phone and fail to study,” said the court ruling, which was seen by Europa Press.

This is not the first time that a teen has taken legal action against a parent over technology. Last year an 18-year-old in Austria sued her parents over childhood photos they posted to Facebook.

Quote of the Month:

“When something is important enough, you do it even if the odds are not in your favor.”             -Elon Musk