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A doing business as (DBA or d/b/a) name is a pseudonym that you can use for your business. DBAs are also called trade names, fictitious names, or assumed names. You can register a DBA if you don’t want to use your personal name or legal business entity name with customers and clients.
When you form a sole proprietorship, your business’s name is your full legal name by default. Or, if you formed a business entity, such as a corporation or limited liability company (LLC), the full entity’s name is its legal name. By registering a DBA, you’re letting the public know that you or the entity will be conducting business under a different name.
If you’re a sole proprietor, you may want a DBA that more clearly tells potential customers what services or products you offer. Similarly, if you formed a business entity and your business is growing, a new DBA may better convey the current business’s offerings. You can also have multiple DBAs, which could be helpful if you have different product lines, geographies, or target customers.
Check your city, county, and state requirements, as the rules and requirements can depend on your business’s structure, where it’s located, and where it operates.
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