Fictitious Business Statement - DBA (Doing Business As) - Why get one?

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Comply with legal requirement

  • A DBA filing may be required if you're using a name other than your official name or personal name.

Set up a business bank account

  • In most states, you need a DBA to open a bank account under your business name.

Expand and grow your business

  • A DBA helps distinguish new business lines to market, manage, and grow your business.

Still have questions? Continue reading…

Is a fictitious business name the same as a DBA?

Yes. The name varies by state. A DBA name is sometimes also called an assumed business name or trade name.

Does my LLC or corporation need a DBA?

You may be required to file a DBA application if you plan on using a name that's different than the official LLC or corporation name filed with the state. When choosing a DBA name, some states and counties will allow you to use the designation "LLC" or "Inc." But you can't imply that your company is a different entity type than it really is.

Can I open a bank account before my DBA is filed?

Most banks require sole proprietorships and general partnerships to have registered DBAs to open bank accounts under their business names.

Do I need a DBA if I'm using my personal name?

In some places you can use your full name or part of your name without having to register a DBA. Exact rules can vary by state and by county, so it's best to contact your county clerk's office.

Is there a difference between a DBA and a trademark?

Yes. The purpose of a DBA is to inform the public that you intend to conduct business within your state using a name other than your personal name. A DBA doesn't give you unlimited rights to use that name. In contrast, trademark registration can protect a business' brand name, slogan or logo beyond a single geographic area.

Can someone else register the same name?

Some states and counties will register any properly filed DBA, even if it's the same name as yours. DBA filing doesn't provide business name protection. Name protection generally comes under state and federal trademark law.

Didn’t find the answer you need?

Get legal advice from an independent attorney at a price you can afford. We suggest contacting Marcela J. Pena for all legal matters at Moten & Associates.

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