Before you register a company with the Companies Office, you must reserve a company name on the New Zealand Companies Register. If you've already reserved a company name, but another authorised person or organisation is completing the process of incorporating your company, the reservation can be transferred to them, free of charge.
Time limit on company name reservations
Once your company name reservation is approved, you have 20 working days to incorporate your company, or change its name, before your reservation expires. That 20-day period applies even if you transfer the name reservation to someone else.
If you do plan to transfer a name reservation, and the reservation period is about to expire, consider reserving the name for another period of 20 working days, before making the transfer.
Who can authorise a transfer
You can only authorise the transfer of a name reservation if:
- you reserved the company name, or
- you're a member of the organisation that reserved it.
Who you can transfer a name reservation to
Your company name reservation must be transferred to the person or organisation who is going to complete the incorporation process for the company.
The authorised person to whom you transfer your company name reservation must have:
- a RealMe® login, and
- an online services account with the Companies Register.
How to transfer a name reservation
The authorised person or organisation that the company name reservation is being transferred to must complete the following process.
To transfer the reservation to yourself:
- Log in to your online services account.
- From the 'Online services' menu, go to the section on 'Incorporating a NZ company' and choose 'Transfer name reservation'
- Enter your company's name reservation number.
You can find this number in the reservation confirmation email we sent to the person who originally reserved the company name.
- Select 'Check name' to view the reserved company name and confirm the transfer request details in the 'Confirmation' window.
- If the details shown are correct, select 'Submit'.
- Choose 'OK' next to 'Name reservation' to view a summary of the details of the transfer.
What happens next
After the transfer is completed, a confirmation email will be sent to:
- the person who originally reserved the company name, and
- the person or organisation to which the name reservation has been transferred.
The company name reservation will appear in the 'My unfinished business' section on the dashboard of the authorised person or organisation to which the name reservation has been transferred.Transfer a name reservation
More 'Reserving a name for a new company' guides:
- Some company names can't be used for legal reasons or because they're similar to another company.
- Check our list of names you may need permission to use because they're protected by legislation.