Article 3.

Names.

55D-20. Name requirements.

(a) In addition to the requirements of any other applicable section of the General Statutes:

(1) The name of a corporation must contain the word "corporation", "incorporated", "company", or "limited", or the abbreviation "corp.", "inc.", "co.", or "ltd.".

(2) The name of 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". Notwithstanding the prior sentence, any limited liability company whose name contained the words "low-profit limited liability company" or the abbreviation "L3C" pursuant to subdivision (6) of this subsection prior to its repeal on January 1, 2014, may continue to use that name unless the limited liability company amends its articles of organization to change its name.

(3) The name of 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".

(4) The name of 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".

(5) 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".

(6) Repealed by Session Laws 2013-157, s. 11, effective January 1, 2014.

(b) In addition to the requirements of subsection (a) of this section, the name of a limited partnership shall not contain the name of a limited partner unless (i) it is also the name of a general partner or the corporate name of a corporate general partner, or (ii) the business of the limited partnership has been carried on under that name before the admission of that limited partner.

(c) The name of a corporation, nonprofit corporation, or limited liability company shall not contain language stating or implying that the entity is organized for a purpose other than that permitted by G.S. 55-3-01, 55A-3-01, or 57D-2-01 and by its articles of incorporation or organization.

(d) The use of assumed names or fictitious names, as provided for in Chapter 66, is not affected by this Chapter or by Chapter 55, 55A, 57D, or 59 of the General Statutes.

(e) The filing of any document, the reservation or registration of any name under this Chapter or under Chapter 55, 55A, 55B, 57D, or 59 of the General Statutes, or the issuance of a certificate of authority to transact business or conduct affairs or a statement of foreign registration does not authorize the use in this State of a name in violation of the rights of any third party under the federal trademark act, the trademark act of this State, or other statutory or common law, and is not a defense to an action for violation of any of those rights. (1901, c. 2, s. 8; 1903, c. 453; Rev., s. 1137; 1913, c. 5, s. 1; C.S., s. 1114; 1935, cc. 166, 320; 1939, c. 222; G.S., s. 55-2; 1955, c. 1371, s. 1; 1959, c. 1316, s. 28; 1969, c. 751, ss. 4-6; 1973, c. 469, s. 45.3; 1989, c. 265, s. 1; 1989 (Reg. Sess., 1990), c. 1024, s. 12.5; 1995, c. 539, ss. 4, 5; 2001-358, ss. 14(a), 15; 2001-387, ss. 162, 173, 175(a); 2001-413, s. 6; 2010-187, s. 3; 2013-157, s. 11.)