A business entity is a commercial, corporate and/or other institution that is formed and administered as per commercial law in order to engage in business activities, usually for the sale of a product or a service. There are many types of business entities defined in the legal systems of various countries. These include corporations, cooperatives, partnerships, sole traders, limited liability company and other specifically labelled types of entities. Some of these types are listed below, by country. For guidance, approximate equivalents in the company law of English-speaking countries are given in most cases, e.g.
Inc. (Incorporated): restricted to non-profit associations
Ltd. (Limited): ≈ plc (UK). The suffix Ltd. may also be used by a private company limited by guarantee, such as a charity or university (these may obtain dispensation from the Registrar of Companies to operate without the suffix).
NL (No liability): A type of mining, speculative, or research company with no right to call up the unpaid issue price of shares.
Pty. Ltd. (Proprietary Limited Company): ≈ Ltd. (UK) ATF Trust. In Australia companies can act as a trustee for a trust.
Pty. (Unlimited Proprietary) company with a share capital: A company, similar to its limited company (Ltd., or Pty. Ltd.) counterpart, but where the liability of the members or shareholders is not limited.
unincorporated (i.e. unregistered and without legal personality):
stG (stille Gesellschaft): ≈ partnership by estoppel (i.e., no partnership agreement)
GesbR (Gesellschaft des bürgerlichen Rechts): ≈ partnership by contract (i.e., formed by partnership agreement); statutes and regulations concerning Austrian companies, especially with regards to the companies register (Firmenbuch), do not apply.
incorporated (i.e. registered and with legal personality):
In Canada entities can be incorporated under either federal or provincial (or territorial) law. Unlimited liability corporations can be formed in Alberta "AULC" and Nova Scotia "NSULC".
The word or expression “Limited”, Limitée, “Incorporated”, Incorporée, “Corporation” or Société par actions de régime fédéral or the corresponding abbreviation “Ltd.”, Ltée, “Inc.”, “Corp.” or S.A.R.F. forms part of the name of every entity incorporated under the Canada Business Corporations Act (R.S., 1985, c. C-44). ≈ Ltd. or Plc (UK)
As an exception, entities registered prior to 1985 may continue to be designated Société commerciale canadienne or by the abbreviation S.C.C.
Under the Canada Cooperatives Act (1998, c. 1), a co-operative must have the word “cooperative”, “co-operative”, “coop”, “co-op”, coopérative, “united” or “pool”, or another grammatical form of any of those words, as part of its name.
Unlike in many other Western countries, Canadian businesses generally only have one form of incorporation available. The aforementioned AULC and NSULC are generally not used as operating business structures, but are instead used to create favorable tax positions for either Americans investing in Canada or vice versa.
Rather, Canadian businesses are generally formed under one of the following structures:
SP (Sole Proprietorship): No formal business structure is established
GP (General Partnership): Either a formal structure with a partnership agreement, or an informal structure, in which case the Partnerships Act for the province will apply
LP (Limited Partnership): An investment structure, limiting both the liability and the participation of the investor. An investor who takes an active role will be deemed a general partner, and become exposed to unlimited liability.
Joint Venture: A business activity shared by two or more business entities. The joint venture's activities must be finite in terms of either time or scope.
EEIG (European Economic Interest Grouping): an EU legal entity designed to enable cross-border cooperation between companies. It has unlimited liability and is not liable for corporation tax.
SCE (Societas Cooperativa Europaea): a European Cooperative (Societas Cooperativa Europaea is Latin for "European Cooperative Society").
SE (Societas Europaea): a European (Public) Limited Company (Societas Europaea is Latin for "European Company").
(proposed)SPE (Societas Privata Europaea): a European private limited company, corresponding to Ltd., GmbH, etc. This form of company is currently being proposed by the European Commission.
An SE or SCE may be created by registration in any of the EU/EEA Member States, and is subject to the European Company Statute. It may relocate its registered office to any other EU/EEA Member State with minimal formalities.
valtion liikelaitos (Swedish: statens affärsverk): commercial government agency, expected to fund themselves, but debts directly backed by state funds — distinguished from regular companies where the government owns stock. (See: List of Finnish government enterprises)
kunnallinen liikelaitos (Swedish: kommunal affärsverk): municipal enterprise, similar as previous but run by a municipality
paliskunta: a reindeer herding corporation, governed like a stock company except that the "stocks" are reindeer
Economic entities for special purpose
asunto-osakeyhtiö (Swedish: bostadsaktiebolag), a limited liability company for the ownership, construction and maintenance of an apartment building
julkinen keskinäinen vakuutusyhtiö, abbreviated jy (Swedish: publikt ömsesidigt försäkringsbolag), public mutual insurance company
keskinäinen kiinteistöosakeyhtiö (Swedish: ömsesidiga fastighetsaktiebolag, a limited liability company for the ownership, maintenance and construction of real property.
keskinäinen vakuutusyhtiö (Swedish: ömsesidigt försäkringsbolag), mutual insurance company
laivaisännistöyhtiö (Swedish: partrederi), a type of general partnership for the owning of a merchantman
In the corporations of real estate law, the ownership or membership may be vested either in the real property or in a legal or natural person, depending on the corporation type. In many cases, the membership or ownership of such corporation is obligatory for a person or property that fulfils the legal requirements for membership or wishes to engage in certain activities.
keskivedenkorkeuden muuttamista varten perustettu yhteisö (Swedish: Sammanslutning som bildas för höjning av medelvattenståndet), a corporation of water law for the permanent change of the median water level
ojitusyhteisö (Swedish: dikningssammanslutning), a corporation of water law for the construction and maintenance of ditches
säännöstely-yhteisö (Swedish: regleringssammanslutning), a corporation of water law for the regulation of water level in a body of water
tiekunta (Swedish: väglag), a type of limited-liability corporation for the maintenance of private road
uittoyhteisö (Swedish: flottningssammanslutning), a corporation of water law for timber-floating
vesioikeudellinen yhteisö (Swedish: vattenrättslig sammanslutning), a corporation of water law for a project that involves economic use of bodies of water
yhteisalue (Swedish: samfälliga område), a corporation for the maintenance of a real property jointly used by several other properties or persons
yhteismetsä (Swedish: samfälld skog), a jointly owned forest
osakaskunta (historically "jakokunta"), a partition unit, i.e. a corporation for maintenance of the commons.
In addition to native types, European Union types are implemented:
SAS (Société par actions simplifiée): ≈ unlisted public company (Au), close corporation (CC) (S.Africa), private corporation (Can); often used for subsidiaries; minimum of one director and two members/shareholders; no limit on share capital; liability can be restricted to director; no "one share - one vote" principle
The "mit beschränkter Haftung (mbH)" suffix (/ɛmbeɪhɑː/) ("with limited liability") can be added to various kinds of firms, yielding combinations such as "Handelsgesellschaft mit beschränkter Haftung (HmbH)" and even to narrower combinations such as "Dental-Handelsgesellschaft mit beschränkter Haftung" ("dental supply trading firm with limited liability"). The abbreviation of the latter is usually limited just to the "mbH" portion (e.g., "Dental-Handelsgesellschaft mbH"); total abbreviation (e.g., "DHmbH") is usually avoided because the abbreviations are too nonspecific/ambiguous.
Unltd or Ultd (Unlimited/無限公司): similar to a limited liability company (Ltd) but whose members or shareholders do not benefit from limited liability should the company ever go into formal liquidation. It is not a requirement under company law to add or state the word or designation Unlimited (無限公司) or its abbreviations (Unltd or Ultd) at the ending of its legal company name, and most unlimited companies do not.
Public Sector Unit (PSU) - Alternatively known as Public Sector Enterprise (PSE). It may be public limited company listed on stock exchanges with major ownership by a state government or a central government of India or it may be unlisted entity with major ownership by a state government or a central government of India. Some of these entities are formed as business entities through special legislation, where these entities are governed by the statutes of these legislation and may or may not be governed by company laws like a typical business entity.
One person company - It is a type of private company which can have only one director and member.
Unlimited Company. A company, similar to its limited company (Ltd., or Pvt. Ltd.) counterpart, but where the liability of the members or shareholders is not limited.
Similar to United Kingdom below, though without the class Community Interest Company. There were two forms of Company Limited by Guarantee, but only the form without a share capital is now used. Irish names may also be used, such as cpt (cuideachta phoibli theoranta) for plc, and Teo (Teoranta) for Ltd.
Limited Company – Four types:
Private company limited by shares – If company is wound up, members’ liability is limited to the amount, if any, unpaid on the shares they hold. Maximum number of members in the Republic of Ireland is 99.
Company limited by guarantee not having a share capital - Public company. Must have at least seven members. Members' liability limited to amount they have undertaken to contribute to company assets. If wound up, liability does not exceed amount specified in memorandum. If a guarantee company does not have a share capital, members are not required to buy shares (such as charities).
Company limited by guarantee having a share capital - As with a private company if the maximum number of members is 99. Members have liability either for the amount, if any, that is unpaid on the shares they hold, or for the amount they have undertaken to contribute to company assets, in the event that it is wound up.
A public limited company. Must have at least seven members. Liability is limited to the amount, if any, unpaid on shares they hold. Unlawful to issue any form of prospectus except in compliance with the Companies Acts 1963-2006. Nominal value of Company's allotted share capital must satisfy specified minimums which must be fully paid before company commences business or exercises any borrowing powers.
Single Member Company – Private company limited by shares or a guarantee company having a share capital, which is incorporated with one member, or whose membership is reduced to one person. Must have at least two directors and one secretary. Sole member can dispense with holding General Meetings including Annual General Meetings.
Unlimited Company - No limit on liability of members. Creditors may have recourse to shareholders for unpaid liabilities of the company. Must have at least two shareholders.
Undertakings for Collective Investment in Transferable Securities (UCITS) - Public limited companies formed under EU Regulation and the Companies Acts 1963-2006. Sole object of a UCIT is collective investment in transferable securities of capital raised from the public that operates on the principle of risk-spreading. Central Bank of Ireland must approve all registrations of UCITS.
European Economic Interest Groupings (EEIG) - Mechanism for a business within the EU to engage in cross-border commerce. Purpose is to facilitate or develop economic activities of its members. Must have between two and 20 members which may be companies or individuals from different EU states.
Societas Europaea (SE) – A European public limited liability company formed under EU Regulation and the European Communities Regulations 2007. Can be formed by merger or as a holding or subsidiary SE or by conversion of a PLC to an SE. Must have members from different Member States unless an SE itself is setting up a subsidiary SE.
B.M./BM/בע"מ (Be'eravon Mugbal) literally: by limited liability/warranty, usually translated "Ltd." in English, pronounced "BE'AM" in Hebrew.
Company (corporation) - Formed and registered in Israel in accordance with Israeli law. Most companies limit liability of their members in the form of shares. In this case the term "Limited" or the abbreviation "Ltd." must appear as part of the full name of the Company.
Private Company, 1-50 shareholders, 1 director, may not offer or sell stock or debentures to the public. Articles must containt restriction on transfer of shares.
Public Company, minimum 7 shareholders, may offer stock or debentures to the public after issuing a prospectus with specified information. Must publish annual report that includes audited financial statements and directors' report, filed with Register of Companies, available to the public.
Foreign Company (branch) - Company formed overseas may have a branch or local office in Israel. Must register as a foreign company with Register of Companies within one month of its establishment. If the company uses "limited" as part of its name, it must display its name and the country where it is formed in every invoice, letter, announcement, advertisement, or other official publication. No requirement to publish financial statements of a private company.
Partnership - Entity that consists of persons who contract to form a partnership. Personal liability of the partners is not limited unless they are limited partners of limited partnerships. A foreign partnership is also permitted to do business in Israel.
Self-Employed - A self-employed person works entirely for him/herself and is entirely liable for the business. Same rules of registration apply.
Cooperative - Entity found mainly in agriculture (such as a kibbutz or moshav), or transportation, or certain types of marketing operations associated with agricultural products.
Non Profit Organization - Mainly academic institutions, hospitals, charitable organizations, and municipalities. Non profits are subject to a special law governing their formation and operations.
Private Limited Company: Liability, limited by shares; Name, cannot be deceptively similar to another registered company; Management, at least 1 director; Shareholders, limited to 1-50 excluding persons who are employed by company, prohibition against any invitation to the public to subscribe for shares; Founders, 1-50; Nationality, Nepalese company; Company purpose, any lawful purpose except industry on Negative List; Formation, file Memorandum and Articles of Association with Registrar of Companies.
Public Limited Company: Liability, limited by shares; Name, cannot be deceptively similar to another registered company; Management, at least 3 directors; Shareholders, minimum 7, no maximum, share subscription by public pursuant to a prospectus that complies with Companies Act of 2007 and Securities Act; a Private Limited Company can convert to Public Limited Company by complying with Companies Act of 2007; Founders, minimum 7; Nationality, Nepalese company; Company purpose, any lawful purpose except industry on Negative List; Formation, file Memorandum and Articles of Association with Registrar of Companies.
Branch: Liability, main company remains liable; Name, same as main company; Nationality, foreign company; Company purpose, any lawful purpose except industry on Negative List; Formation, file Memorandum and Articles of Association with Registrar of Companies, plus permission to work in Nepal by concerned authority; Founders, main branch.
Stichting: ≈ foundation. Can run a business. No profit distribution to founders or board members.
mutual societies (associations which are allowed to pay dividends to their members; liability may be unlimited (W.A. - Wettelijke Aansprakelijkheid), limited (B.A. - Beperkte Aansprakelijkheid) or exempt (U.A. - Uitsluiting van Aansprakelijkheid)):
Coöperatie: ≈ co-operative society
Onderlinge waarborgmaatschappij: ≈ mutual insurance company
Mts (Maatschap): ≈ group practice (of professionals, e.g. doctors, accountants, lawyers); share facilities not profits, members are treated as natural persons for tax and liability purposes.
B.V. (Besloten vennootschap): ≈ Ltd. (UK), LLC (US). Shares are privately registered and not freely transferable. The name means "closed company", stemming from the fact that the (group of) shareholder(s) is cannot be changed without consent from the majority of shareholder(s).
N.V. (Naamloze vennootschap): ≈ plc (UK), Corp. (US). Minimum issued share capital upon incorporation: €45,000. Literally translated, the title has the "nameless company", owing to the fact that shareholders are not formally known as such in company statutes and other legal documents.
Ltd (Limited): ≈ plc or Ltd. (UK). Names of limited liability companies that were registered under the Companies Act 1993 (but not those that were registered under the Companies Act 1955) must end with the word "Limited", the words "Tāpui (Limited)", or the suffix "Ltd".
Sociedad Anónima Abierta (S.A.A.): To qualify to register as an S.A.A., a company must meet one or more conditions laid down in Article 249 of Peru's General Corporation Law. Those conditions state there must be a primary public offering of shares or convertible bonds in stocks, which are held by more than 750 shareholders, more than 35% of its capital belonging to 175 shareholders, or that all shareholders entitled to vote approve the adjustment to the scheme. The S.A.A. is then audited by the Comisión Nacional Supervisora de Empresas y Valores (CONASEV).
s.c. (spółka cywilna): "civil partnership", not a partnership or a company, but rather an agreement on the sharing of profits, losses and ownership of a business. Can be likened to a voluntary association.
S.K.A. (spółka komandytowo-akcyjna): limited partnership with shares. Minimum share capital PLN 50,000 (approx. €12,500).
sp.p. (spółka partnerska): ≈ limited liability partnership May also be denoted by the addition of i partner(zy) ("and partner(s)") to the firm's name. Can only be used for the purpose of practicing as a licensed professional listed in the appropriate provision of the Commercial Companies Code. The partners are fully liable for the partnership's debts, with the exception of debts incurred by other partners practicing their licensed profession and employees under their direction.
Sp. z o.o. (spółka z ograniczoną odpowiedzialnością): ≈ Ltd. (UK). Minimum share capital PLN 5,000 (approx. €1,250).
Spółdzielnia: ≈ cooperative. Has legal personality. May also be denoted by the word Spółdzielczy in the firm's name.
References: (Polish) Commercial Companies Code of 15 September 2000 (Dz.U. No 94 item 1037 as amended); (Polish) Civil Code of 23 April 1964 (Dz.U. No 16 item 93 as amended); (Polish) Law on Cooperatives of 16 September 1982 (Dz.U. 2003 No 188 item 1848 as amended)
Nekommercheskaya organizatsiya/некоммерческая организация: non-profit organization (there are many types of non-profits in Russia, the type depends on the ownership of the assets (Non-state pension fund/Негосударственный пенсионный фонд, for example))
GP/ГП, GUP/ГУП (Gosudarstvennoye unitarnoye predpriyatie/Государственное унитарное предприятие): state (unitary) enterprise
OOO (Obshchestvo s ogranichennoy otvetstvennostyu/Общество с ограниченной ответственностью): ≈ LLC (UK)/
OAO (Otkrytoye aktsionernoye obshchestvo/Открытое акционерное общество): ≈ plc (UK), publicly traded shares (similar to a corporation in the US)
kooperativ/кооператив : cooperative (many types, which differ by the type of activity, e.g. agricultural, production, etc.)
ZAO/ЗАО (Zakrytoe aktsionernoye obshchestvo/Закрытое акционерное общество): ≈ ltd (UK), privately held shares (similar to a close corporation, or closely held corporation, in the US) (maximum 50 "owners of capital" (not shareholders). If there are more 50 "owners of capital", they have a year to transform into a "OAO")
Prostoye Tovarishestvo (General Partnership) and Kommanditnoe Tovarishestvo (Limited Partnership). This types of business entities are not popular (approximately 0,5% of total amount of business entities).
Hozyaystvennoe Partnerstvo (Business Partnership) is "secret" entity. There are not analog in other jurisdictions.
Private Limited Company, Sole Proprietorship and Partnership are the predominant types of business found in Singapore.
LLP (limited liability partnership): owners have the flexibility of operating as a partnership while enjoying limited liability. An LLP can sue and be sued, acquire and hold property, and have a common seal.
Ltd/Bhd/Pte Ltd/Sdn Bhd (private limited company/Sendiran Berhad): ≈ Ltd. (UK). Maximum 50 shareholders. There also exist "exempt private companies", being either owned by no more than 20 non-corporate shareholders, or wholly state-owned and designated by the finance minister as exempt.
Ltd/Bhd (public limited company/Berhad): ≈ plc (UK). There also exist public companies limited by guarantee, which conduct non-profit activities; the finance minister may approve the registration of such companies without the addition of the word “Limited” or “Berhad” to the name.
Singapore subsidiary company is a popular term used for a form of Singapore business entity. A subsidiary company can have different structures but is essentially a Private Limited Company and so is a separate legal entity. Characteristics of a Singapore subsidiary company include: i) 100% foreign ownership is allowed, ii) the company enjoys low tax incentives as per a resident company, iii) repatriation of profits is allowed and iv) the minimum paid up capital required is S$1.
Section 53(b) company (unlimited liability company): ≈ professional limited liability company (PLLC) (US)
Public company/publieke maatskappy: ≈ public limited company (UK), corporation (US); has at least 7 shareholders (unless it is a wholly owned subsidiary of another company) and at least two directors. The company's name must end in "LTD"; its registration number ends in /06.
CC/BK (Close corporation/beslote korporasie): Has 1–10 non-corporate members. The name must end "CC" or "BK"; registration number ends /23. Registration number and members' names must appear on all correspondence. On 1 May 2011 the new Companies Act (Act 71 of 2008) came into force and disallows any new incorporations under this form.
≈ plc (UK) or Inc. (US). Min. share capitalCHF 100,000. Bearer or registered shares, of a par value of min. CHF 0.01 each. Details of shareholders generally not publicly available (except for main shareholders and management shares of publicly listed companies).
≈ Ltd. (UK), LLC (US). Min. capital CHF 20,000. Registered shares only, of a par value of min. CHF 100 each. Name, address and share of each owner (and any changes) publicly recorded in the Official Register of Commerce.<http://zefix.admin.ch/>
Investmentgesellschaft mit festem Kapital / SICAF (société d’investissement à capital fixe) / SICAF (società di investimento a capitale fisso):≈ investment trust (UK), closed-end company (US)
Investmentgesellschaft mit variablem Kapital / SICAV (société d’investissement à capital variable) / SICAV (società di investimento a capitale variabile):≈ OEIC (open-ended investment company) (UK), open-end company (US)
A.Ş. / A.O. (Anonim Şirket / Anonim Ortaklık): ≈ Joint stock company Minimum capital is TRY 50.000. Registered shares, of a minimum par value of TRY 0,01 each. Only type of company that can be publicly traded in Turkish Law.
Ltd. Şti. / L.Ş. / L.O. (Limited şirket / Limited Ortaklık) ≈ Limited company Minimum capital is TRY 10.000. Registered shares, of a minimum par value of TRY 25 each.
According to the Capital Markets Act (Act No: 6362)
HAAO (Halka Açık Anonim Ortaklık) ≈ Publicly held corporation This essentially is a special type of A.O. These type of companies can only be established as A.O.'s.
plc or Ccc (public limited company, or WelshCwmni Cyfyngedig Cyhoeddus): a company whose shares may be traded publicly. Requires an authorized minimum share capital of £50,000; of which it must have allotted shares to the value of at least £50,000 and a minimum of 25% must be fully paid up prior to starting business.
Private company limited by guarantee. Such a company must include Limited or Ltd. at the end of its name (so cannot readily be distinguished from a private company limited by shares), unless it cannot distribute its profits. Guarantee companies are commonly used by not for profit organizations, which may omit Ltd. at the end of their names.
Unlimited company (or Welsh Anghyfyngedig). A company either with or without a share capital whose members or shareholders do not benefit from limited liability should the company ever go into formal liquidation. It is not a requirement under company law to add or state the word or designation Unlimited or its abbreviations (Unltd., or Ultd.) at the ending of its legal company name, and most unlimited companies do not. Unlimited companies are exempted from filing accounts with the Registrar of Companies for public disclosure, subject to a few exceptions (unless the company was a qualified subsidiary or a parent of a limited company during the accounting period).
In the United States, the individual states incorporate most businesses. Very few special types are incorporated by the federal government.
For federal tax purposes, the Internal Revenue Service has separate entity classification rules. Under the tax rules, an entity may be classified as a corporation, a partnership, a Cooperative or disregarded entity. A corporation may be either a Subchapter S corporation or a C corporation. A disregarded entity has one owner that is not recognized for tax purposes as an entity separate from its owner. Types of disregarded entities include single-member LLCs; qualified subchapter S subsidiaries and qualified REIT subsidiaries. A disregarded entity’s transparent tax status does not affect its status under state law. For example, for federal tax purposes, the sole-member LLC (SMLLC) is disregarded, so that all its assets and liabilities are treated as owned by its single member. But under state law, an SMLLC can contract in its own name and its owner is not personally liable for the debts and obligations of the entity. To be recognized as a Cooperative for tax purposes Cooperatives must follow certain rules under Sub Chapter T of the Internal Revenue Code.
The key word for a bank is "national". A bank chartered by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) must have the word "national" in its name. A bank chartered by a state is forbidden to have the word "national" in its name. For a savings bank or credit union, the key word is "federal," and the same rules apply; a federally chartered savings bank or credit union must have the word "federal" in its name, while a state chartered savings bank or credit union cannot have "federal" in its name.
The following are the main business designations and types (corporations and non-corporations):
Sole proprietorship: a business consisting of a single owner, not in a separately recognized business form.
General partnership is a partnership in which all the partners are jointly liable for the debts of the partnership. It is typically created by agreement rather than being created by a public filing.
LP (limited partnership): a partnership where at least one partner has unlimited liability and one or more partners have limited liability.
LLP (limited liability partnership): a partnership where a partner's liability for the debts of the partnership is limited except in the case of liability for acts of professional negligence or malpractice. In some states, LLPs may only be formed for purposes of practicing a licensed profession, typically attorneys, accountants and architects. This is often the only form of limited partnership allowed for law firms (as opposed to general partnerships).
LLLP (limited liability limited partnership): a combination of LP and LLP, available in some states.
LLC, LC, Ltd. Co. (limited liability company): a form of business whose owners enjoy limited liability, but which is not a corporation. Allowable abbreviations vary by state. Note that Ltd. by itself is not a valid abbreviation for an LLC, because in some states (e.g. Texas), it may denote a corporation instead. See also Series LLC. For U.S. federal tax purposes, an LLC with two or more members is treated as a partnership, and an LLC with one member is treated as a sole proprietorship.
PLLC (professional limited liability company): Some states do not allow certain professionals to form an LLC that would limit the liability that results from the services the professionals provide such as doctors, medical care; lawyers, legal advice; and accountants, accounting services, when the company formed offers the services of the professionals. Instead states allow a PLLC or in the LLC statutes, the liability limitation only applies to the business side, such as creditors of the company, as opposed to the service side, the level of medical care, legal services, or accounting provided to clients. This is meant to maintain the higher ethical standards that these professionals have committed themselves to by becoming licensed in their profession and not immune to malpractice suits.
Corp., Inc. (Corporation, Incorporated): used to denote corporations (public or otherwise). These are the only terms universally accepted by all 51 corporation chartering jurisdictions in the United States. However in some states other suffixes may be used to identify a corporation, such as Ltd., Co./Company, or the Italian term S.p.A. (in Connecticut; see under Italy). Some states that allow the use of "Company" prohibit the use of "and Company", "and Co.", "& Company" or "& Co.". In most states sole proprietorships and partnerships may register a fictitious "doing business as" name with the word "Company" in it. For a full list of allowed designations by state, see the table below. See also Delaware corporation, Nevada corporation, Massachusetts business trust.
Professional corporations (abbreviated as PC or P.C.) are those corporate entities for which many corporation statutes make special provision, regulating the use of the corporate form by licensed professionals such as attorneys, architects, accountants, and doctors.
Doing Business As (DBA): denotes a business name used by a person or entity that is different from the person's or entity's true name. Filing requiments vary and are not permitted for some types of businesses or professional practices. DBAs can be sole proprietorships, or can be used by corporate entities to reserve "brand names", such as those of chain stores owned and operated by a holding company or other "umbrella".
Required designations for corporations, by U.S. state, territory or commonwealth:
"corporation", "company", "incorporated", or "limited", or an abbreviation of one of these words; may not contain the word "city", "borough", or "village" or otherwise imply that the corporation is a municipality.
"association", "bank", "company", "corporation", "limited" or "incorporated" or an abbreviation of one of these words or the equivalent in a foreign language. Corporation may not use "bank", "deposit", "credit union", "trust" or "trust company" unless it also has a license to operate one. May not use "limited liability company" or "limited company" or the abbreviations "L.L.C.", "L.C.", "LLC" or "LC"
"Corporation", "Company", or "Incorporated", or shall contain an abbreviation of one of those words; but the name may not end with the word "Company" nor the abbreviation "Co." if the final word or abbreviation is immediately preceded by "and" or any symbol for "and"
"corporation", "incorporated" or "limited" or an abbreviation of one of such words is required and for a statutory close corporations for corporate provisions to apply. May not contain "bank," " trust," "trustee" or "credit union" unless approved by the Commissioner of Financial Institutions.
“corporation”, “incorporated”, “company”, “limited”, “corp.”, inc.”, “co.” or “ltd”; If the corporation is a professional corporation, it must contain the term or abbreviation “professional corporation”, “p.c.”, or “pc”.
"association," "company," "corporation," "club," "foundation," "fund," "incorporated," "institute," "society," "union," "syndicate," or "limited," (or abbreviations thereof, with or without punctuation), or words (or abbreviations thereof, with or without punctuation) of like import of foreign countries or jurisdictions (provided they are written in Roman characters or letters)
'corporation,' 'incorporated,' 'company,' or 'limited,' or the abbreviation 'corp.,' 'inc.,' 'co.,' or 'ltd.,' or words or abbreviations of like import in another language; must not be longer than 80 characters
"corporation," "incorporated," "company," or "limited," or the abbreviation "corp.," "inc.," "co.," or "ltd.," or words or abbreviations of like import in another language; if the word "company" or its abbreviation is used, it shall not be immediately preceded by the word "and" or an abbreviation or symbol representing the word "and."
"corporation," "incorporated," "company," "limited," or the abbreviation "corp.," "inc.," "co.," or "ltd.," or words or abbreviations of like import in another language; provided however, that if the word "company" or its abbreviation is used it shall not be immediately preceded by the word "and" or by an abbreviation of or symbol representing the word "and"
(except for banks) "association," "church," "college," "company," "corporation," "club," "foundation," "fund," "incorporated," "institute," "society," "union," "university," "syndicate" or "limited," or one of the abbreviations "co.," "corp.," "inc.," "ltd.," or words or abbreviations of like import in other languages if they are written in Roman characters or letters
"corporation", "incorporated" or the abbreviation "Inc.," or the word "company" or the abbreviation "Co."; but if the word "company" or the abbreviation "Co." is used, it may not be immediately preceded by the word "and" or the abbreviation "&."
(except for railroad, telegraph and telephone corporations) "Corporation", "Incorporated" or "Limited", or the abbreviation of any of those words, or may contain instead the word "Company" or the abbreviation "Co." if the latter word or abbreviation is not immediately preceded by the word "and" or the symbol "&". No corporate name shall contain the phrase "doing business as" or the abbreviation "d/b/a". Only a bank or bank holding company is allowed to use any of "bank", "banker", "banking", "savings", "safe deposit", "trust", "trustee", "building and loan", "homestead", "credit union", "insurance", "casualty", "redevelopment corporation", or "electric cooperative".
words or abbreviations of words that describe the nature of the entity, including "professional association," "corporation," "company," "incorporated," "chartered," "limited," "limited partnership," "limited liability company," "professional limited liability company," "limited liability partnership," "registered limited liability partnership," "service corporation" or "professional corporation"; beginning July 1, 2007, may also include "limited liability limited partnership"
for business corporations: Title 13-C § 401 Maine Revised Statutes; for non-profit corporations: Title 13-B § 301-A Maine Revised Statutes;
For Corporations: "Company", if it is not preceded by the word "and" or a symbol for the word "and"; "Corporation", "Incorporated" or "Limited" or abbreviations; for Limited liability companies: "limited liability company", "L.L.C.", "LLC", "L.C.", or "LC"; for Limited liability partnerships: "limited liability partnership", "L.L.P." or "LLP"; for Limited partnerships: "limited partnership", "L.P.", or "LP"; for Limited liability limited partnerships: "limited liability limited partnership", "L.L.L.P.", or "LLLP"; for Professional corporations: "chartered", "chtd.", "professional association", "P.A.", "professional corporation", or "P.C."
Maryland Code CORPORATIONS AND ASSOCIATIONS § 1-502
nonprofit corporations are not required to use any of these words; for business corporations, they must use "corporation," "incorporated," or "limited," or shall contain an abbreviation of one or more of these words, or the word "company" or the abbreviation "Co." if that word or abbreviation is not immediately preceded by the word "and" or the character "&"
corporation, incorporated, company, or limited, or the abbreviation corp., inc., co., or ltd., or words or abbreviations of like import in another language, except that a corporation organized to conduct a banking business under the Nebraska Banking Act may use a name which includes the word bank without using any such words or abbreviations
No specific requirements stated except that a name appearing to be that of a natural person and containing a given name or initials must not be used as a corporate name except with an additional word or words such as “Incorporated,” “Limited,” “Inc.,” “Ltd.,” “Company,” “Co.,” “Corporation,” “Corp.,” or other word which identifies it as not being a natural person
Shall contain the word "corporation", "incorporated" or "limited", or an abbreviation of one of such words; there is also a long list of words a business corporation is not allowed to use without additional approval from other agencies including "board of trade", "state police", "urban development", "chamber of commerce", "state trooper", "urban relocation", "community renewal", "tenant relocation", "acceptance", "endowment", "loan", "annuity", "fidelity", "mortgage", "assurance", "finance", "savings" and many others
New York State Consolidated Laws, Business Corporations Law §301; Not-For-Profit Corporations Law, §301
a corporation must contain the word "corporation", "incorporated", "company", or "limited", or the abbreviation "corp.", "inc.", "co.", or "ltd."; a limited liability company must contain the words "limited liability company" or the abbreviation "L.L.C." or "LLC", or the combination "ltd. liability co.", "limited liability co.", or "ltd. liability company"; a limited partnership that is not a limited liability limited partnership must contain the words "limited partnership", the abbreviation "L.P." or "LP", or the combination "ltd. partnership"; a limited liability limited partnership must contain the words "registered limited liability limited partnership" or "limited liability limited partnership" or the abbreviation "L.L.L.P.", "R.L.L.L.P.", "LLLP", or "RLLLP"; a registered limited liability partnership's name must contain the words "registered limited liability partnership" or "limited liability partnership" or the abbreviation "L.L.P.", "R.L.L.P.", "LLP" or "RLLP".
must contain the word "company", "corporation", "incorporated", "limited", or an abbreviation of one or more of these words; may not contain the words "limited liability company", "limited partnership", "limited liability partnership", "limited liability limited partnership", or any abbreviation of these words.
The name of the corporation which shall contain one of the words “association”, “company”, “corporation”, “club”, “foundation”, “fund”, “incorporated”, “institute”, “society”, “union”, “syndicate”, or “limited” or abbreviations thereof, with or without punctuation
For private corporations it shall contain one or more of the words “corporation,” “incorporated,” “company” or “limited” or an abbreviation of one or more of those words; shall not contain the word “cooperative.” For non-profit corporations there is no specific requirement except the name cannot imply a purpose not dictated in its articles of incorporation and cannot contain the word "cooperative" or the phrase "limited partnership."
"corporation," "incorporated," "company," or the abbreviation "corp.," "inc.," "co.," or words or abbreviations of like import in another language (provided they are written in Roman characters or letters); existing corporations which were formed using only "limited" or "ltd" are not required to change their name
"corporation", "incorporated", "company"; the abbreviation: "corp.", "inc." or "co." or words or abbreviations of like import to the words or abbreviations listed in another language; without the written consent of the United States Olympic Committee, may not contain the words "Olympic", "Olympiad", or "Citius Altius Fortius"; without the written consent of the Division of Consumer Protection may not contain the words "university", "college" or "institute"
"corporation," "incorporated," "company," or "limited," or the abbreviation "corp.," "inc.," "co.," or "ltd.," or words or abbreviations of like import in another language; shall not have the word "cooperative" or any abbreviation thereof as part of its name unless the corporation is a worker cooperative corporation;
"corporation," "incorporated," "company," or "limited," or the abbreviation "corp.," "inc.," "co.," or "ltd."; must not include "Bank," "banking," "banker," "trust," "cooperative," or any combination of the words "industrial" and "loan," or any combination of any two or more of the words "building," "savings," "loan," "home," "association," and "society,"