Last updated Jun 12, 2024 and written by Tom Richardson

Choosing Your Company Name – Restricted Words: International

When choosing the name for your Limited Company it’s important to check if your chosen name includes any “restricted words” and if it does, can you meet the criteria set out by Companies House that allows you to use it?

One of the most commonly used restricted words is “international”. According to Companies House:

If you wish to use this word [international] at the start of the name you will need to show at the time of registration that the major part of the company’s activities is trading overseas.

If you wish to use the word at the end of the name, you will need to show that the company operates in two or more overseas countries. If the company cannot satisfy these conditions on registration, you must confirm that it will do so within 3 months when you return the application.

Companies House mention being able to “show” that the above will occur. This simply means drawing up a document outlining this. For example:

Dear Companies House,

This is to confirm that “company name ltd” (company number) will be trading in the following countries within 3 months:

• Country 1 (which will constitute xx% of total trade)
• Country 2 (which will constitute xx% of total trade)

Signed – Company Director

If you are forming the company through Companies Made Simple our system recognises the restricted word and prompts you to fill out the template. Once completed, upload this document (as a pdf) to the supporting documents section of your company admin portal and then submit the application.

If you can not meet the criteria you will need to pick an alternative name without the restricted word.

A full list of the restricted words can be found in Appendix A, B & C here: http://www.companieshouse.gov.uk/about/gbhtml/gp1.shtml#appC