What does DBA Mean?

DBA acronym – “Doing business as”

Let me define and explain the salient features, advantages, and benefits of DBA (doing business as) and various requirements in straightforward manners.

What does DBA Mean?

DBA or doing business is an assumed business name or a fictitious business name to make the public aware of the real and true business owner. For example, business owner Peter Trump might file the Doing Business As the name “Trump Walls.” or “Peter Roofing”  or “Trump Construction”. DBA is a trading name where the business operates, rather than holding the business out to the public under its legal name.

What does DBA mean in business?
You are required to bear in mind that any business you intend to start needs a name. If you have decided and planned to start a new business either as a single owner (sole Proprietorship) or with a partner (a partnership), then you have a choice to select a legal name of your business (business name) or DBA (doing business as) for your new startup.

The DBA is misinterpreted frequently, but it can be a valued and respected mode to establish a business entity and have more or fewer safeties and or protections of your privileges and rights as a single business holder. Nevertheless, you are required to be aware that you recognize the limitations and boundaries of a DBA to shield your rational, intellectual property, and other trademark rights.

If you wish to run your business under a name different from your own, Mike Maziar Dostdar doing a new business as “food paradise,” you will be required to get this fabricated name registered by the dissimilar state authorities.


Filing a DBA provides the sole proprietor (single owner of the business) the autonomy to use a business name that assists in marketing their goods or services, also builds a distinct, certified business identity. Nevertheless, be warned that a DBA (doing business as) doesn’t guard your business name against being used by others. And for the same are required to pursue trademark protection from the relevant authorities.


Thus, the name under which new business is operated, as opposed to the company’s legally required name, is considered DBA (doing business as), and such names must not include the following wordings unless this a corporation or company registered with the Secretary of State.

  • Inc.
  • Corp.
  • Corporation
  • Incorporation


You can call a company to be DBA (doing business as) when the operating name is different from its registered or legal name. For the sake of consumers’ protection, doing business with the entity, a few States need DBA or fabricated business name filing to be made by the new business owners who are to start a new business with a name other than their name.


It would help if you were very vigilant while starting DBA “doing business as” because the rules and regulations, procedures, and processes for filing a fabricated name may differ from one state to another state.


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To get your business registered as DBA (doing business as), you need to visit county offices to submit an application and deposit the registration fee (if any) to the county officer or clerk.


The State may require you to place fabricated or fictitious name ads for a certain period of time in the local newspaper. You may be charged the price between $ 10 to $ 100 of filing a fictitious name, and to open a business account, your bank may ask for a fabricated name certificate; they may guide you to get it, a company is not required to file a fabricated or fictitious business nain most states me if a company runs a business under a name other than its own. Incorporation documentation having similar effects on corporate businesses as fabricated or fictitious name filing does for the single owner (sole proprietorship) or partnership kind of business.

How to File a DBA or Fictitious Business Name?


You can have below the answers to questions you may come across while starting a business as DBA (doing business as) and its registration process.


  • Consumer Protection – To offer maximum protection by the state for their consumers, DBA is meant for the public or people to know about the business’s real owner to ensure consumer protection. Therefore fraudulent business owners could not escape from legal concerns when running their business under a different name.


  • Legal Entity – You are not supposed to consider DBA as a different legal entity because there is no discrepancy between business assets and your personal assets. Registering a DBA does not cause your personal liability as an owner of the business.


  • Business Account – If your business is a separate legal entity, then business funds and personal are required to be managed separately. So, you are required to have a bank account for your business if it is operated as a DBA. Sole proprietors and partners (in partnership business) without DBA are not legally required to have a business account.


  • DBA Advantages – Once you start your business as a DBA, you certainly like to retain small expenses. The progression is modest, and filing for a DBA registration may help you accomplish this goal.


  • Recordkeeping – In the case of DBA (doing business as), you are not required to have the endless day to day complex record-keeping and further regulations that are mandatory in upholding an LLC or corporation or the expenses linked with creating an LLC or corporation.


  • State taxes – the businesses must submit their returns to the state tax office because IRS is not the mere state entity that requires a DBA to file tax returns annually or maybe on the basis. Filing for a DBA permits individuals to run the business under another name without forming a new organization.


  • DBA or LLC better – The main difference between an LLC (limited liability Company) and DBA (doing business as) is accountability protection; an LLC (limited liability company) affords limited liability protection. The personal property of the business owners remains detached or separated from the business. Simultaneously, no additional tax benefits are given in case of a DBA (doing business as).


  • Doing business without a DBA – In some states like California, you must not get registered a DBA or fabricated business name. According to California law, a business name is not considered a fictitious name as long as it includes your last name.


  • USE a DBA – You can launch an application to file a DBA (doing business as) when a company is willing and wants to transact business under its domain name. The company name is not available as a domain name.


  • Unemployment Insurance – any business, either DBA (doing business as) or LLC (limited liability company), doesn’t affect your unemployment insurance.


  • Business Checks and personal bank account – business checks can be deposited into a personal bank account, but you are preferred to have a separate business bank account because a few banks may ask you to have a business bank account; otherwise, you will not be allowed to deposit business checks into your personal bank account.


  • Two businesses and ONE DBA name – you may not be legalized by some states to have one single DBA (doing business as) for two businesses. Though some businesses register a solo DBA, in some cases, more than one DBAs are the most valuable choice.


  • Unique Business Name – DBA name must not be identical to the name already used in the state. Surprisingly similar names (if already in existence) must be avoided when two businesses compete in the same market.


  • Sole Proprietor and DBA – a single business owner is obligated to have his legal name for his/her business to be operational. In case, not willing to use DBA (doing business as), a single owner must get permission from local state authorities in advance.


  • DBA Ownership – DBA ownership can be transferred to a third party for many reasons; it is a business so in most cases.


  • DBA Number – Small business consultants recommend having EIN (Employer Identification Number. You must launch an SS-4 application to acquire this number from the internal revenue service’s authorities.


  • Obtain a copy of DBA – You can ask the county state department, and this can be done via mail or email, fax even in person, but attaining a certificate or a copy of DBA online is a stress-free option.


  • States and DBA – the states that require DBA (doing business as) are Ohio, Alaska, Arizona, Alabama, Delaware, Florida, Kansas, Hawaii, Maryland, Mississippi, New Mexico, Nebraska, Wyoming, and Wisconsin.


  • Time – Usually, the filling is required within a stipulated time (30-60) days once you started using the name. The filing process usually takes 1-4 weeks, depending on the jurisdiction, with some exceptions.


For Example – Starting a DBA in California – Step-by-step

  • First, check the name availability or if it is not taken already in California.
  • Submit a statement of fictitious or DBA business name at the county’s clerk office
  • Publish your new business name
  • Deposit the required fee set by the state authorities
  • Lastly, follow-up on your file.



Filing a DBA will be a fast, firm, and effective and operative selection to make your business “legal, authorized, and official” while if more or fewer benefits, but be certain that you are cognizant of the limitations or restrictions of this business name description.

Filing a DBA can help form several businesses as long as they are all unified and integrated underneath an inclusive LLC or supplementary corporate umbrella. Not only can you always grow in your business, but there will be many benefits of doing business. So let us see what will be the benefits of doing or starting your own business.

1- You are doing business, it will directly affect society, as you draw the employment. ( employment means producing different jobs for your society). So the gap between jobs and job seekers gets stable over here. If not on a larger level but a smaller level, it will work too.

2- You are utilizing different resources to turn it into something useful. ( utilizing resources means to use those resources that are not useful if they remain in their raw forms like steel and steel after getting refined, it becomes useful. Like this, many examples work here, and when you do business one way or other, you use, recycling different things). It is not necessary to have a business where you are using some raw material, but it can be anything.

3- with the business start-up, you are transferring people on the new trend, which are not about 9 to 5 jobs, but a flexible working environment that allows many people to pursue their passions in life. It has become a trend of doing jobs every person-shaped and designed his life and career accordingly to get a job. And doing a job made their life bound in a box, people dose not get more time than their job, and it suffocated many.

The business allows you to have work that you really love, which does not make you tired.

Good Luck!

Daniel Smith

Daniel Smith

Daniel Smith is an experienced economist and financial analyst from Utah. He has been in finance for nearly two decades, having worked as a senior analyst for Wells Fargo Bank for 19 years. After leaving Wells Fargo Bank in 2014, Daniel began a career as a finance consultant, advising companies and individuals on economic policy, labor relations, and financial management. At Nimblefreelancer.com, Daniel writes about personal finance topics, value estimation, budgeting strategies, retirement planning, and portfolio diversification. Read more on Daniel Smith's biography page. Contact Daniel: daniel@nimblefreelancer.com

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