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Corporate And Business
Name Searches (NUANS®) in Ontario

The first thing you have to do when starting a business is to check availability of the proposed business or corporate name.

You have to ensure that the proposed business name is not used by other people as a trademark or a corporate name.

Please select one of the options to continue:


Learn about name searches

  • What is a NUANS® Search System?
  • View a Sample of the NUANS Search
  • Why do I need a NUANS Search?
  • What is a Preliminary NUANS Search?
  • What is the difference between Preliminary and NUANS searches?

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Learn About Business Name Searches

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What is a NUANS® Search System?

A NUANS name search is a computerized search system that compares a proposed corporate / business name or trade-mark with databases of existing corporate names and trademarks. This comparison determines the similarity that may exists between the proposed name or trademark and existing names in the database, and produces a listing of names that are found to be most similar.

The search report consists of 7 pages and allows you to evaluate the availability of the proposed name.

You can view a sample of the NUANS report here - PDF or Image

View this quick video to learn more about NUANS searches.

Why do I need a NUANS Search?

NUANS name search report is required in order to register:
1. Provincial or Federal Corporation
2. Not-for-profit organization or a Charity
3. Register a Trademark

In addition, NUANS search is a fairly comprehensive search to check availability of a business name.

A NUANS name search is necessary to incorporate your business in Ontario or Canada. Requesting a NUANS search online takes only a few minutes. Your NUANS report is usually ready within 2-3 business hours. Your NUANS search report will show what specific corporate names that sound similar to your proposed name are already registered. It will also show you if you can use the proposed corporate name.

If the name already exists, then you will have to do a NUANS name search again. That is why we recommend doing a preliminary business name search before an actual NUANS search. That gives you an opportunity to search for up to 3 business names at a much lower price.

If you are registering a corporation and the proposed name does not exist, the NUANS search would actually reserve the name for 90 days.

What is a Preliminary NUANS Search?

If you are considering several names for your business, you can perform a Preliminary Name Search before making a final decision. A Preliminary name search will allow you to check up to 3 names for $15 plus tax.

You can view a sample of the Preliminary name search here - PDF or Image

  Order Preliminary Search   Order NUANS Name Search


What is the difference between Preliminary and NUANS searches?

Preliminary search is a low cost alternative that allows you to check up to 3 names for one low fee of $15. However, this search is limited to exact match only and does not provide phonetically similar names, like a NUANS search does. Also, it does not reserve the name, it only checks the name.

NUANS search on the other hand, provides phonetically similar names and if no match found, actually reserves the name for 90 days. However, you can do only one name search per order.


What to expect after search order is placed

  • Preliminary Name Search is usually ready within 2 business hours
  • NUANS name search is usually ready within 3 business hours
  • Once ready, your search report will be uploaded to your account or delivered based on the preferences you select on the order form

Order Your Business Name Search Now

Simply select the appropriate link below to be redirected to the application form.

You will be directed to our secure server for submitting your application.



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