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What is LLC DBA?

DBA=Doing Business

DBA stand for the words “Doing Business As.” It is a legal requirement that the name of a business is the same as the person or entity who owns it. So if you own an unincorporated small business, its name for legal purposes is your name. Lik wise if your unincorporated business is a partnership, the legal name should be the last names of the partners. For corporations or limited liability companies (LLCs), the legal name should be the one that the entity is registered under with the state government.

You are required to use your company’s legal name on all government forms and applications, including your application for employer tax IDs, licenses and permits. Many times a person wants to do business under another name. This could be for advertising purposes or original good will or some other reason. If you want to run your business under an assumed name, then you should file a DBA or “doing business as” registration form with your state government. The DBA is a business name that is different than your personal name, the names of your partners or the officially registered name of your LLC or corporation.

For example, let’s say John Smith is a sole proprietor of a motorcycle shop. He wants to name his business John’s Harleys and Hondas for advertising reasons. Depending on where he lives, John will need to register that name as a fictitious business name with his state agency. In some states, fictitious names are registered with the state government; in others, you register fictitious names with the county clerk’s office; and in others, there are no laws requiring businesses to register a business names.

If you want a DBA designation, you need to call your state’s business regulation department or check online to meet the necessary requirements.

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