How to Find Business Records in Maryland
Maryland Business Records
In Maryland, crucial business documents are maintained by the
Maryland Secretary of State and Maryland’s Department of Assessments and
Taxation. The types of records that can be accessed by the public
include information about business entities, Uniform Commercial Code (UCC)
filings, and trademarks registered with the State of Maryland. Here are
a few tips on how to access this information.
What Records Are Maintained in the State of Maryland?
The Maryland Secretary of State maintains a state registry of trademarks
that can be searched online. This registry is not the same as the United
States Patent and Trademark Office registry, which is broader in scope.
The Maryland Department of Assessments and Taxations makes available
both business entity information and UCC filings. When a business
becomes a corporation, or “incorporates,” it is required to file certain
documentation demonstrating its new corporate status. Therefore, the
State of Maryland has documentation of every corporation that
incorporated in Maryland. UCC (Uniform Commercial Code) filings, also
called security interest filings, document the security interest that a
party has in collateral owned by a debtor. This security interest is
often given in exchange for a loan.
Why Would a Business Not Have Documents On File?
It should be noted that not all businesses incorporate, register
trademarks or are the subject of security filings. For this reason, a
business may have no reason to have documents on file.
Additionally, sometimes businesses choose to incorporate in a state
other than their home state, in order to take advantage of the laws of
that state. If that is the case, the State of Maryland may have no
record of the incorporation, but that record would be on file in the
state in which the business incorporated.
How Can I Search for Records Maintained by the State of Maryland?
To search for Maryland business records online, begin by visiting the
website for Maryland’s Department of Assessments and Taxation, located
at http://www.dat.state.md.us/. From the home page, to search for
information about business entities or UCC filings, select the option
marked “Business Data Search.” From this page, to search for Maryland
businesses, select the option marked “Business Entity Information.” You
will be taken to a page where you can search either by name or by
The results will be returned in list form and will include the
department ID and entity name. The list will also include clickable
links such as “General Info,” “Amendments,” “Personal Property,” and the
status of the entity. These items listed in red are clickable links that
allow you to access additional information about each entity.
To view information about UCC filings, from the “Business Data Search”
page, select the option “Security Interest Filings (UCC).” This will
take you to a page where you can search either by name or by file
number. Additionally, this search screen has two search button options,
marked “Search [Current]” and “Search [History].” This allows you to
determine whether the search will only return current security interests
or whether you wish to view all filed security documents even if they
are no longer current.
The UCC results will be returned in list form, containing clickable
links permitting you to access additional information. Some documents
can be viewed online; others can be ordered in hard copy.
To search for trademarks registered with Maryland’s state registry,
begin at the Maryland Secretary of State home page, located at http://www.sos.state.md.us/index.asp.
Select the option “Additional SOS Services.” This will take you to a
page titled “Office of the Secretary of State Additional Services.”
Under the heading “Registrations,” select the option “Trademarks and
Service Marks.” Then select “Search the Trade and Service Mark
Database.” This will take you to a page where you can input search
information, including the trademark or part of the trademark, a
description of the mark, the service, the owner or the classification.
Then click on “Submit Query.” The search results will be returned in
list form, including the name of the mark and its assigned number, the
date of first use and first use in Maryland, the owner of the mark, the
service, the classification, a description of the mark, the type of
registration, the date of registration and the renewal date. It must be
remembered that this state registry is not the same as the United States
Patent and Trademark Office, which maintains a national trademark
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