Do You Need a DBA?

Do You Need a DBA?

Are you running multiple brands?

Possibly under the same company?

If so, you may need a DBA. 

A DBA is usually required when you're using a brand name that doesn't match your registered company name. But it’s not a substitute for registering properly or obtaining a trademark. Here’s when you may need to register for a DBA:


What a DBA is

A DBA, Doing Business As, license allows your company to operate under a pseudonym. In California, it is called a Fictitious Business Name.

It's important because it's legally required if you're operating a company under a name that is different than your registered company name.


What a DBA isn't

A DBA is not a substitute for an LLC or a Corporation. It won’t provide you any tax benefits or limit your liability. It’s just a way of telling people that your LLC or Corporation goes by another name.

A DBA is not an exclusive right to use your company name name. The only way to lock down your business name is with a trademark.


When you need a DBA

You probably need to file a DBA if you’re using a different business name than the one registered with your state. This happens frequently when companies rebrand or split into multiple brands.

You may also need a DBA to use a specific tag line, like “Best Juice in Los Angeles”

In California, you also need a DBA if you are a sole proprietor who does not conduct business under their last name, or if the business name includes unknown owners, like “Smith & Partners.”



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