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A trade name , trading name , or business name is a pseudonym frequently used by companies to operate under a name different from their registered, legal name. The term for this type of alternative name is a "fictitious" business name.
Registering the fictitious name with the relevant government body is often required. A company typically uses a trade name to conduct business using a simpler name rather than using their formal and often lengthier name. Trade names are also used when a preferred name cannot be registered, often because it may already be registered or is too similar to a name that is already registered.
Fictitious business names do not create separate legal entities. Legal agreements such as contracts are normally made using the registered legal name of the business; and the legal name must be used whenever a business sues or is being sued. In English, trade names are generally treated as proper nouns. In some Canadian jurisdictions , such as Ontario , when a businessperson writes a trade name on a contract, invoice, or cheque, he or she must also add the legal name of the business.
Numbered companies will very often operate as something other than their legal name, which is unrecognizable to the public. In Singapore , there is no filing requirement for a "trading as" name, however, there are requirements for disclosure of the underlying business or company's registered name and unique entity number. In the United Kingdom, there is no filing requirement for a "trading as" name, however, there are requirements for disclosure of the owner's true name and some restrictions on the use of certain names.
Oregon uses Assumed Business Names ;  Washington calls DBAs trade names ;  other states refer to trade styles or fictitious business names. For consumer protection purposes, many U. Note, though, that this is not a substitute for filing a trademark application. A DBA filing carries no legal weight in establishing trademark rights.
Sole proprietors are individual business owners who run their businesses themselves, and are typically newer to the small business game. Generally, a DBA must be registered with a local or state government, or both, depending on the jurisdiction.
For example, California, Texas and Virginia require a DBA to be registered with each county or independent city in the case of Virginia where the owner does business. Maryland and Colorado have DBAs registered with a state agency. And Virginia requires corporations and LLCs to file a copy of their registration with the county or city to also be registered with the State Corporation Commission.
DBA statements are often used in conjunction with a franchise. The franchisee will have a legal name under which it may sue and be sued, but will conduct business under the franchiser's brand name which the public would recognize. A typical real-world example can be found in a well-known pricing mistake case, Donovan v.
In California , filing a DBA statement also requires that a notice of the fictitious name be published in local newspapers for some set period of time to inform the public of the owner's intent to operate under an assumed name. The intention of the law is to protect the public from fraud, by compelling the business owner to first file or register his fictitious business name with the county clerk, and then making a further public record of it by publishing it in a newspaper.
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. This article is about trade names of businesses. For trade names of other products and services, see Brand name. The examples and perspective in this article deal primarily with the United States and do not represent a worldwide view of the subject.
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