When you should file a DBA for your business

DBA, “Doing Business As”, is a phenomenon concept in the world of business. Any business needs trust, and that’s what DBA targets. It is thus a must for a business to register as a DBA entity. If your business gets a DBA registration, it will tie itself to you as the owner legally. You thus become accountable for any action that the business takes. The DBA is a mechanism that stops businesses that try to engage in fraud using fictitious names. It’s thus hard to establish dummy businesses. The print media publicly announces your DBA once you register your company. The advert enables the public to know the owner of the business. It’s not a must for all companies to register for the DBA. DBA is only mandatory for specific business categories and classes.

Businesses that must have a DBA registrations

There are specific legal conditions that you have to meet to register your business to get a DBA registration. Let’s look at the business that should file for a DBA registration.

Farms under partnerships or sole proprietor firms

Businesses under a partnership of people or a sole proprietorship format should file DBA files. Partnerships do this if the business doesn’t have the person’s full legal name of who owns it. These businesses aren’t incorporated legally, and thus no legal entity documents apply here. Even after getting a valid license for the business, a DBA is vital.


They are extensions of the same corporations in different regions as agents. Your business can also agree to sell its franchiser products under it. The franchisee will do the business using the franchiser’s name in such a scenario. Also, it gets an opportunity to register as a local business in the area of operation by filling out the DBA form. It has to do this even when the franchise is already incorporated. You can operate a business under the franchise name via DBA registration.

Legal entities

In most cases, any business incorporated as an S corporation, C corporation, or LLC doesn’t need to file DBA registration. It’s because they are legally registered entities with business names they use. If you have such a business and wish to operate as a separate entity with a unique product line, the parent business must register it as a new entity using the DBA system. It will be easy for your business to operate.

How to file DBA forms

The process is easy and doesn’t involve much paperwork. Here is the procedure:

  • The DBA guidelines will depend on your business location. These requirements are unique based on the city, state, and country. The business structure will also affect the guidelines to meet. The filing expenses also vary between the states, cities, and countries. Some countries may require that you file the documents in their respective language and you’re going to need professional translation services to finish the job for you.
  • Some countries need the DBA filler to place ads in print media about the business’s fictitious name. Some countries need this public announcement as a must process. It’s good to check if it applies in your area.
  • In filling the DBA files, your business DBA name has to be unique, and it shouldn’t have any names or phrases that can cause confusion about the business.

Tips to help you file a DBA easily

Finish the good standing certificate if your business is a registered corporation or an LLC before filing a DBA file. It’s proof to the authorities that your business is legal.

File your DBA files anytime you have changes in the top suite personnel setups. For partnerships, changes in names need the filing of a new DBA.

Some countries need the renewal of DBAs after a specific period. You need to observe this to limit expiry.

If you have problems filling a DBA, hire professionals to help you. It’s better to hire professionals than to make mistakes in the process.

The essence of a DBA

You need to file a DBA to improve transparency and allow the public to know the people running your business. A DBA will tether your businesses to the real people whose names are public. It is thus easier for legal processes to continue if there is any need. It’s the main reason why you need to file a DBA.

A DBA is an essential registration that your business needs for it to be legally compliant. It will help your business to expand easily. You can obtain a DBA from the county state government or the clerk’s office.

Author: Alison Lurie

Leave a Comment