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.
An example would be if the limited liability company “Indiana Pet Store LLC” wanted to do business as “Amazing Pets & More,” then the owners would have to file for a dba registration to use the new name.
When you need a dba
A dba can be useful for a number of reasons, principally to avoid legal problems, but also to set up a bank account and enter into transactions under a different name. In general, merchants and consumers like to know who they are dealing with, and filing for a dba will allow a business to ensure others that it is dealing legitimately under a legitimate name.
Searching for a name
The first step is to see if the name you want to use is available. If another company has already filed to use the name, you are not likely to be able to register it as your assumed name. Be sure to use the Check Name Availability Search and not the Business Entity Name Search because the former will include all names that are not available for use, whereas the latter will not.
Filling out the dba forms
Filers for a dba in Indiana should obtain a Certificate of Assumed Business Name, which is also known as Form 30353, from the Indiana Secretary of State website. This form must be filled out and filed with the Indiana Secretary of State, as well as with the county recorder in each county where a place of business is located. There are also various forms for reserving names for shorter periods of time, for foreign entities domiciled in another state, and for renewals available on the site.
Indiana dba filing & registration
When filing for the dba in Indiana the filer must provide:
Name and address of the business
Name and address of the business owner
The assumed name or dba the business is seeking to operate under.
Getting an assumed name will not 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