When including an abbreviation like “Inc.” in a business name, it would make sense to learn about the comma rules surrounding it. This article will explain all you need to know about using commas with the word “Inc.”
Is There A Comma Before “Inc.” In A Company Name?
There is never a direct reason to include a comma before “Inc.” in a company name. The only time you might do so is if the company is officially registered with a comma between the name and “Inc.” That is entirely up to the company to decide upon, though.
In most cases, you will find that there is no comma used.
You can also refer to specific style guides to learn more about each case.
The Chicago Manual of Style simply says that commas are not required. Whenever we include words like “Inc.” in business names, there is never a reason to write a comma unless the company has specifically decided to do so.
AP Style also has a rule that specifically states you should not “set off with commas.” That means you should not include commas where they add nothing of value to a sentence, clause, or name. Since a business name already establishes itself, it makes sense to leave the comma out.
Is There A Comma After “Inc.” In A Company Name?
There doesn’t usually need to be a comma after “Inc.,” either. The only time you might include a comma after “Inc.” is because we might include a comma after a person’s name or any other noun. If a comma naturally falls after the name, then you can.
The Chicago Manual of Style and the AP Stylebook both agree when it comes to comma usage in this way. There are no outright rules that relate to business names since it’s rare for the business name to be the reason for the comma placement.
For example, if you get a sentence like this, you won’t need a comma:
- I visited Whitehouse Inc. to see what they had on offer.
We could replace the business name with any proper noun to show that it works with no comma.
- I visited John to see what he had on offer.
The same is said for when a comma does fall in the sentence. This applies if the business name comes at the end of a clause but not at the end of a sentence:
- According to Whitehouse Inc., you’ll find what you’re looking for here.
And again, we can swap the business name with any noun to generate the same effect.
- According to John, you’ll find what you’re looking for here.
How To Write “Inc.” In A Sentence
- I work at Simon’s Inc. I think it’s the most interesting place I’ve ever worked at.
- You won’t find it at Mitchell & Mitchell Inc., but I think I know where else you can look.
- I’m going to see what’s available at Jupiter Inc. I want to make sure I’m getting the best deal.
- Sorenson’s Inc. is the only place that sells something like this. It might be worth looking into them.
- Do you ever go to Sardine Inc.? I think they have some of the best fishing gear out there.
Punctuation of “Inc.”
There is only one way to correctly punctuate “Inc.” You only need to include the period after the “c” to show that it’s an abbreviation of the longer word “incorporation.” Most businesses will include this period to show that it’s a shortened form of the word.
You should also capitalize the “I” to make sure it’s kept as a proper noun. Most business names are proper nouns, so it makes sense for all starting letters to be capitalized.
There are no other direct ways to punctuate “Inc.” Only the period and the capital letter are required.
Is “Inc.” Capitalized?
“Inc.” should always be capitalized. It’s part of a company name, so it makes sense to treat it as a proper noun, just like any word in a company’s title. The only time you won’t capitalize it is if the company specifically registered its name without capital letters.
Comma Before or After “Ltd.”
You do not need to include commas before or after “Ltd.” It works in the same way as “Inc.,” where commas go against both AP Style and Chicago Manual of Style rules. As long as the period is present after the “d,” you’ll be writing it correctly.
- Southern Water Ltd. is the place I work.
- I visit Chicago Ltd. whenever I need my pipes fixed.
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Martin holds a Master’s degree in Finance and International Business. He has six years of experience in professional communication with clients, executives, and colleagues. Furthermore, he has teaching experience from Aarhus University. Martin has been featured as an expert in communication and teaching on Forbes and Shopify. Read more about Martin here.