Over the last two years, Companies House has disallowed more than 800 business names for being ‘too offensive’.
Building That Fought Hitler Limited, Cambridge Cannabis Club Limited, Fancy a Bomb Ltd and Fit as Fork Ltd are among the company names that have been rejected by the executive agency and trading fund for the government.
Other names to be turned down include Go Fudge Yaself Ltd, Just Weed Ltd, Meow Meow Cooking Studio Ltd, Pandemic19 Ltd and The Great Big Corrupt Company.
However, some of these rejected names can later be approved if an adequate explanation is given.
Some words that are deemed as ‘sensitive’ have to be authorised by the Secretary of State in the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy before an incorporation can use it in its name.
The approval list is made up of 134 words, such as benevolent, British, commission, inspectorate, licensing, parliamentary, Senedd, standards and Windsor.
Words that indicate a potential link with a government department, a devolved administration or a local authority also have to be checked.
Using certain words and phrases in a business name could be classed as a criminal offence.
Architect, building society, credit union, physician, social worker, solicitor, and surgeon are examples of words and expressions that are legally protected.
A representative for Companies House said: “It is important that the register is not abused by recording offensive names.
“We have a statutory responsibility to ensure that the names we register do not have the potential to offend. All applications are carefully considered but we will not register a name which is considered to be offensive.”
Companies House is responsible for manging the UK’s register of businesses, their executives and other stakeholders who help run the company.
- they analyse and record business information to then make it accessible for the public.
More than 500,000 limited businesses are newly registered each year, equalling around four million in total.
Between April and June 2021, 190,639 new companies and 115,554 dissolutions were recorded in the UK.
This data highlights that the number of new incorporations has continued to increase during the COVID-19 pandemic, when many businesses had to temporarily close.
Registrations for English and Welsh businesses take place in Cardiff, whereas Scottish and Northern Irish companies are listed in Edinburgh and Belfast.