Washington DC Secretary of State (SOS) Business Name Search Instructions

Last Updated on January 30, 2024

district of columbia state map

The corporation registry of the District of Columbia keeps a record of all the business entities registered under the Secretary of State. The registry has information regarding Corporations, Limited Companies, Limited Liability Companies, Limited Partnerships, and Limited Liability Partnerships.

District of Columbia Business Entity Search

The Secretary of State facilitates an online search tool that can be used to find entities and business organizations that are registered in the state.

To check the availability of business entities in the state, you need to have one of the following information with you:

  • Entity Name
  • File Number
  • Trade Name
  • Document Tracking Number
  • RA Name

To make your search easier, we’ve created a simple guideline for you to follow below:

1. To begin your search for a business entity registered with the District of Columbia Secretary of State, click on this link. It will directly take you to their Login Page, where you will need to register for a DCRA CorpOnline Web Portal Account to be able to use their search tool (registering is easy and will only take a few minutes).

District of Columbia DCRA Login Page

2. Once your personal account is registered, you can then proceed to their search too by clicking on “Business Filings Search”l (their Search Page will look like the screenshot below).

District of Columbia DCRA Business Entity Search

3. Assuming we’ll search by Entity name, let’s type in that name in the “Inquiry” field (for this example, our sample name will be “Bloom”). You can also widen or narrow your search by choosing one of the radio buttons and one of the options in the “Entity Status” drop-down menu. For this example, we’ll select “Starts With” and leave the “Entity Status” blank. Then click on the “Search” button.

District of Columbia Corporate Entity Search

4. A list of entities with or containing the name “Bloom” along with their File Number, Effective Date, Status, Registered Agent, Model/Type, Locale, and Qualifier will then appear.

District of Columbia SOS Result Page

If you want more information on the entity, you can click on their name.

District of Columbia SOS Business Entity Details

Apart from accessing information, you can also file and download annual reports of a business entity, as well as register and renew licenses.

Business License

The business name registration is different from business licensing in DC.  The District of Columbia Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs has more information regarding business licenses.


Information on the District of Columbia (DC) SOS (Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs)

district of columbia sos seal


The Secretary of the District of Columbia is one of the highest government offices in the state and is responsible for a wide range of public services. The current Secretary is Kimberly Bassett.


The Secretary of the District of Columbia is the custodian of the Seal of the State. She provides protocol, authentication, and public records management services on behalf of the mayor and other governing agencies. The Secretary of the District of Columbia is in charge of the following divisions:

  • Ceremonial Services Unit
  • Office of Documents and Administrative Issuance
  • Office of Notary Commissions and Authentication
  • Office of Protocol and International Affairs
  • Office of Public Records and Archives
  • Office of the Secretary

Select the State Where the Corporation is Registered:

How much does it cost to do a business search in Washington DC?

There is no cost to search for businesses using the Washington DC business search database.