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Do I need a DBA?

DBA (Doing Business As) Filing Service

Without a registered DBA , your business has to operate only under its one official legal name, which if you are a Sole Proprietor, is your personal name! State law requires that you file the proper paperwork to operate even under a variation of your legal business name, and even for a short amount of time. Two examples are below:

Example #1: Jane Doe begins doing independent consulting work, marketing herself as Can-Doe Consulting. Since Jane hasn't filed the paperwork to create an LLC, Corporation, etc., that makes her a Sole Proprietorship by default. So she must register Can-Doe Consulting as a DBA, since her legal business name as a Sole Proprietorship would be Jane Doe.

Example #2: The official legal name of an entrepreneur's Limited Liability Company is "John Doe Enterprises, LLC". He markets a home building business in the summer as "JD Homes", and a snow-plowing business in the winter as "JD Enterprises". Those are both DBAs that would need to be registered, because neither matches exactly with his official legal business name.

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