Do you want to run a business under another name other than your legal one? If so, file for an assumed or fictitious Business Name in Georgia. In this DBA guide, we’ll walk you through the process and give some tips on choosing a unique business name.
Important! Please keep in mind that DBA is not a business structure, so it won’t protect you from liabilities, lawsuits, or any other unforeseen situations. DBA stands for Doing Business As. – often precedes the name under which a business operates, which is not the legal name of the business.
Therefore, before starting, make sure you understand the difference between informal business structures such as sole proprietorship and formal ones like corporations and LLCs.
To register or renew the trademark, trade name, or service mark for your company in Georgia you need to file the application to the Secretary of State. Here is what you need to do:
Georgia Business Entity Search
Your company’s trade name should be unique and have not been acquired by any other entity in Georgia. Moreover, this name must also meet the business name requirements of Georgia.
First, you have to search Georgia State’s records for the DBA, Business, & Fictitious names to know whether the name that you wish to have for your business has already been taken by someone or not. Here, make sure, this name isn’t already in use.
Note: You can also find a complete guide on business name search here.
Once you are done searching, the next step is to review the naming requirements of the state of Georgia given on the Secretary of state website. To highlight some:
- Business entity suffix, such as Incorporated, LLC, Corp, etc., unless the business is actually a corporation, or LLC,etc are not allowed.
- Using words like bank, banco, banker, banking, banc, banque, bancorp, bankruptcy, trust, or trust company, credit union, savings & loan, etc, needs approval from the Department of Banking and Finance.
- Words implying that the company is organized for an unlawful purpose are not allowed.
- The words insurance, surety, assurance, fidelity, reassurance, reinsurance, or indemnity can not be used without approval from the Georgia Office of Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner.
Register Your Georgia DBA ($25)
Georgia trade names are filed with the county where you principally operate your business. DBA regulations are managed by the state of Georgia, which means the steps for getting a DBA are similar from county to county.
Georgia Superior Courts’ website provides a complete list of county contact information. Select your respective county and apply for Georgia DBA.
Instead of doing it yourself, save some time by hiring a reliable formation service like ZenBusiness. You can see editors’ Review on ZenBusiness to decide if it’s the best choice for your company.
The following information must include in the Georgia trade name form:
- Your business name and adress
- Owners/partners of the business and addresses
- Entity type (eg; LLC, sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation)
- Trade name’s description
- Date formed
- Notary in the state and county of filing
Publication of Your Georgia DBA
The state of Georgia requires you to publish a notice of your DBA registration with a newspaper twice (once a week for two weeks) in the county of your business operation. Please check the publication requirement in your respective county using Georgia Superior Courts’ website.