For the most part, once you choose a name, it's yours. But that also means that companies in other states could have the same name as yours. However, if you're looking to expand to other geographic markets, you will want to start developing goodwill through consistent branding. Speak to an intellectual property/trademark specialist to discuss how best to handle your branding roll-out and protection. Like consulting with doctors, it never hurts to have a second opinion.
Nina L. Kaufman, Esq. is an award-winning New York City attorney, edutainer and author. Under her Ask The Business Lawyer brand, she reaches thousands of entrepreneurs and small business owners with her legal services, professional speaking, information products, and LexAppeal weekly ezine. She also writes the Making It Legal blog.