What is a dba?
If the owners of a company want to do business using a name that is different from the original name used to form the business, they must register the secondary name. For sole proprietorships and partnerships, the original name is the actual name of the owner or partners.
This secondary name doesn’t replace the original name but acts as an additional, legal name for the business. This name is known by several terms such as trade name, fictitious business name, and assumed name. The process for filing this name is often called filing for dba registration, or doing business as.
For example, if the limited liability company “Wholesome Farms LLC” wants to do business as “Sunny Farms Company,” then the owners have to file a dba.
When you need a dba
All businesses in Idaho are required by law to properly register trade names by filing a dba. In addition, some banks require proof of dba registration in order to open a bank account under that name.
Setting up a dba in Idaho
The first step is to search state databases of business names to determine if the trade name you want to register is available. If another company has already filed for that name, it is unlikely you can too. The Idaho Secretary of State has instructions for how to conduct a business name search. Some types of names are not allowed under Idaho law, including names with the words "corporation," "incorporated," "Inc." or "Corp." as these indicate a previously registered corporation.
Once the name is chosen, the owners must fill out a Certificate of Assumed Business Name form and file it with the Idaho Secretary of State. There is a $25 filing fee. Filing fees are subject to change, check with the Secretary of State for the most recent fee.
The paperwork typically asks for:
The "assumed business name" (dba or trade name) you want to file
The true business name of your company (the name under which it was formed)
Business address or addresses of the entity or individuals doing business under the assumed business name
You will choose from a number of general categories to best describe what type of business you are operating
Getting a trade name registered by filing a dba doesn’t change how your company is taxed.
If you’re ready to file a dba, LegalZoom can help you get started today. We can help you file the paperwork with your state and can get you in touch with an attorney or tax professional to answer specific questions.
Find out more about DBA State Requirements