How to Find Business Records in North Carolina
Searching for Business Records in North Carolina
In North Carolina, the Secretary of State is charged with the
responsibility for maintaining business documents that are matters of
public record. Here is some basic information to assist you in accessing
this information online.
What Records Are Maintained by the North Carolina Secretary of State?
The North Carolina Secretary of State receives documentation every time
a business entity such as a corporation or limited liability company is
formed within the State of North Carolina. These business entities
continue to file periodic documentation of their status that is also
maintained by the Secretary of State.
Additionally, the Secretary of State keeps UCC (Uniform Commercial Code)
filings that document security interests that secured parties have in
others’ collateral. Scanned images of these documents can be viewed over
How Can I Search for Records Maintained by the North Carolina Secretary
To search for North Carolina business records online, go to the North
Carolina Secretary of State’s website, at
http://www.secstate.state.nc.us/ . Then scroll down to the list of
options featured in blue.
If you wish to search for information about North Carolina corporations,
from the Secretary of State home page select the option “Search
Corporations Database.” This will take you to a page with the heading
“Corporations Division.” To locate the search options, scroll down until
you see the heading “Search….” Under the “Search…” heading are three
search options, “by corporation name,” “for new corporations,” and by
If you wish to search for recently-formed corporations or name
availability registrations, select the option “for new corporations.”
You will be taken to a page where you can select whether you wish to
search for new corporations or for name reservations. You will also be
able to input a date range for which to search, and you may select the
county in which the registered agent is located. Then click on “Download
New Corporations.” Then you will be taken to a page with two links from
which you may download the requested information. One link will allow
you to download a compressed zip file, the other will allow you to
download text only.
If you wish to search all corporations on file, select the option “by
corporation name.” You will be taken to a page where you may input the
name or part of a name of a business in a search window. Through the use
of radio buttons you may also indicate whether the search term inputted
represents the beginning of a word, part of a word, the exact name or a
sound-alike. You can also select whether you are searching for name
availability. Additionally, you may check a box to indicate whether you
would like the search results to reflect only active corporations. After
inputting your search criteria, click on “Search.” The search results
will be returned in list format, including entity name, type, status,
date formed, and any annual online reports. The entity names are blue
clickable links. Clicking on the name of a business will take you to
another page with additional information about that business, including
the Secretary of State ID number, the citizenship and state of
incorporation, the duration, and information about the registered agent.
The registered agent’s name is also a clickable link which allows you to
view a list of the entities for whom that individual acts as a
To search for a registered agent, select the “by registered agent”
option. This search will permit you to view a list of registered agents
matching the search criteria. Clicking on the name of any registered
agent will permit you to view a list of companies for whom that
individual is a registered agent. The business names in this list are
also clickable links that allow you to view more detailed information
about that business.
If you wish to search for UCC information, from the Secretary of State
home page select the option “UCC Records.” Then on the left of the page
select “UCC Research.” You will be taken to a page where you may select
whether to perform a standard RA9 search or a non-standard RA9 search. A
standard RA9 search permits you to search by individual or organization
name. The non-standard RA9 search allows you to determine whether the
search term represents the beginning of a name, an exact match, a
sound-alike, or whether you wish to search for all words or any words
provided. You can also select to search by filing number and input the
number of a UCC filing.
The search results will be returned in list form, including file number,
filing date, name and address. The file numbers are clickable links.
Clicking on a file number will carry you to a page providing more
information about that filing, including the names of the secured party
and the debtor, and all of the documents filed in conjunction with the
transaction. Each document listed has an icon that looks like a small
folder. Clicking on this folder will permit you to view online a scanned
image of that document.
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