What is a DBA?
When a business wants to operate under a different name (known as a trade name) that business may need to file to ‘do business as’ (DBA). Filing for a DBA allows the company to register their secondary name with the state and makes the name a fully legal name for operating purposes.
When you need a DBA
Oregon law requires all businesses using a different name register that name with a DBA filed with the Oregon Secretary of State Corporation Division. Even though it is the law to file a DBA, doing so makes it legal for the company to open bank accounts, sign contracts, receive payment and more with the trade name.
Setting up a DBA in Oregon
Setting up an Oregon DBA begins by searching the state database of business names to see if the name you want is available. You can start the research here.
Deceptive or fraudulent names, names that associate the entity improperly with a government authority, or names that improperly incorporate entity designations, e.g. include "Inc." when they are not corporations, are to be avoided whenever possible.
Furthermore, entities should keep in mind that registration of a business name does not automatically confer the right to use that name. For example, if you register the name of a major business operating throughout the country but that isn’t registered in Oregon, you can still be sued by the national chain for infringing on their trademark (assuming the trademarked their name, and a national chain likely did).
Oregon DBA Filing and Registration
To file a DBA, a business will have to include the proposed name for the DBA, the name of the filer, the principal place of business of the entity itself, and any other specific information requested explicitly on the form. For more information, filers should visit the Oregon Secretary of State corporations division website.
Getting a trade name registered by filing a DBA doesn’t change how your company is taxed.
If you want to file a DBA in Oregon, LegalZoom can help you. We can prepare and file the paperwork, search for available business names, and get you in touch with a business attorney to answer specific questions about your company.