In order to register certain businesses in Ontario you must obtain an NUANS Search Ontario. This is a report which shows all the names registered across Canada that are similar to a proposed name for an Ontario business. The Ontario NUANS report will show all of the companies, partnerships, sole proprietorships, trade-marks that have similar names.

When is a NUANS Search Ontario Required

You are required to provide a NUANS Search Ontario when you are incorporating any type of company in Ontario. You are not required to provide an NUANS Search Ontario when you are registering a business name on behalf of a company, an Ontario sole proprietorship or an Ontario partnership. However, it is suggested that you obtain a report because the onus is on you to ensure that any business name that you register is clear and has not been registered anywhere else in Canada.

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Choosing a Name for Your Company

When choosing a name for your company you need three aspects to the name:

Distinctive Element – This is the first word or words of your proposed name and should be something very different. For example, Marlborough Dental Clinic Inc. has the distinctive element of “Marlborough”. It could be a made up word or a person’s name such as Holly’s Interior Décor Inc. It can also be a made up word such as Cooss Rug Cleaning Inc. The more original and distinct this section of the proposed name is, the more chance the name will be accepted by the government.

Descriptive Element – The descriptive element of the name describes the business purpose. This should be the middle one or two words of your corporate name. Using the examples above, Marlborough Dental Clinic Inc. is using the descriptive as “Dental Clinic”, Holly’s Interior Décor Inc. is using “Interior Décor” and Cooss Rug Cleaning Inc. is using “Rug Cleaning”. In Ontario the government does not scrutinize the names as other provinces and you can use vague words such as “Enterprises”, “Holdings”, etc. as long as the proposed name is not the same as other business names already registered.

Legal Element – The legal element only applies to proposed names being used for an incorporated company or a new company being incorporated. You must use one of the following choices: Ltd., Limited, Corp., Corporation, Inc. or Incorporated. In the case of business names, sole proprietorships and partnerships, a legal ending is not required.

Refer to the chart below for an illustration of these examples:

  • Distinctive Element

  • Vancouver

  • Dominique's

  • Butterwind

  • Descriptive Element

  • Lawn Mowing Services

  • Graphics Design

  • Wind Surfing Instruction

  • Legal Element

  • Ltd.

  • Corp.

  • Inc.

Is Your NUANS Search Ontario Automatically Accepted

It is not enough to order a NUANS Ontario report. You need to first determine if the name is available and a good qualified search house will first check the proposed name that you want to use by doing preliminary name searches. If you order an Ontario NUANS report without doing preliminary name searches and it turns out you have picked a name exactly the same as another name on file with the Ontario government, you will not be allowed to register your business. It is important to have preliminary name searches done prior to ordering a NUANS Ontario report because once the report is ordered, there is a cost and if it is not accepted you will need to purchase a new report showing another proposed name.

NUANS Ontario
NUANS Ontario Report

Why Choose Our Service when you Order an NUANS Search Ontario

Our service includes preliminary name searches when you order a NUANS Search Ontario. We will check all of the names you provide and if those names are not available we will accept additional choices from you until we find the perfect name that is available for your business. When we check your name, we will check to see if the name is being used or any similar name is being used in Ontario AND in all of the other provinces of Canada. With the internet allowing businesses to operate everywhere it is very important that your proposed name is free in all provinces and territories in Canada before you register your business.