Getting a DBA can be an easy process, but sometimes it can be overwhelming for a new business owner who is learning all the steps needed for the business. That is why we have set out a quick guide to help you step by step on how to quickly file a DBA.
First of all, DBA is known as ‘doing it as business’ which is a nickname or trade name that you give to your business if you are looking to expand its services. If you have a business that is a partnership or sole proprietorship, you do not need to use your personal name in the DBA – but an alternative name instead.
Examples of business entities that can register a DBA are:
- Limited Liability Companies (LLCs)
- General Partnerships
- Limited Liability Partnerships (LLPs)
- Limited Partnerships (LPs)
- For-Profit and Nonprofit Corporations
- Sole Proprietorships
Which state do you want to register in?
The first and most important step is to understand which state you want to register your DBA in. Each state has different rules and regulations, as well as DBA fees that can start from $10 and go up to $100. There are three states that don’t accept DBA registrations and they are New Mexico, Kansas and South Carolina. You can use a DBA state guide to help research which state is suitable for you; which will also make the DBA process quicker too.
What’s the name?
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What’s also important is having a DBA name that isn’t similar or the same as other existing businesses. You can use a business name generator to search for available names, which would be a quicker process for you. There are plenty of name guides out there to assist you further with a DBA name. Another suggestion is to obtain a domain name (URL) for your DBA, so you don’t have any complications in the near future.
An example of wanting to choose a name that indicates that you have expanded your business is when your business may be called “Jewellery Express LLC” as its main legal name, but you wish to expand your business by selling shoes too, so your DBA would be “Shoes Express.” The DBA can be anything you want it to be that’s related to your business, but it is best that it leaves a good impression and is professional.
Once you’ve selected the name and state that you wish to register in, you need to register it right away. The procedure is dependent on the state that you choose, because you may need to register it with the state or the clerk’s office. Once you have registered it, you just need to wait for a confirmation from the state and then you’re officially registered.
If you are looking to expand your trade within your business or you need a nickname that is more memorable to clients, then it is only beneficial to get a DBA. It is a clever way to expand your business without needing a new legal entity.
While a DBA may not protect your personal and professional assets like an LLC does, it has its other benefits such as privacy as your trade name is only shown, rather than your actual name. Another benefit is that you can also accept payments under the DBA name, rather than your personal name and you can set up a separate bank account for that.
It is also pleasant to have a DBA when it comes to filing taxes since it has to be done under one legal entity for your business; meaning that you are saving yourself the extra paperwork. Getting a DBA is actually a quick and straightforward process, with only 3 steps needed to be completed. There are more pros than outweigh the cons and less time spent on getting something that can be an advantage towards your business.