Start a DBA ( Doing Business As)
Both the state and the local government usually allows corporations to register alternative names under which they can conduct their business. This is referred to as DOING BUSINESS AS (DBA). This process allows your corporation to legally conduct your business under a different trade name other than your registered name.
DBA is also referred to as an assumed or fictitious name. This entity provides many advantages to business owners: For the sole proprietorship, it allows the company to conduct business using a name other than the personal name of the owner. Same for other types of the corporations (S and C) and nonprofits, with DBA they can operate their business using a different name from the one that appears on incorporation documents.
Here are some practical examples of how to use the DBA:
An individual who owns and runs a sole proprietorship computer company under the name Chris Chance might decide to file for a DBA name “Chance computers” under which he will start operating his business.
Corporations and limited liability companies (LLC) can register alternate names for certain lines of business. For example, Chance computer Service Inc. could register the DBA name “Chance’s computer.”
Start a DBA and receive the following benefits:
- Better visibility for marketing purposes.
- More credibility with suppliers and customers.
- Easier time opening a business account in the bank.
- The ability to do business under a different name on the Internet.
How to Start a DBA in Texas
- Get a copy of form 503 (the assumed name certificate): After checking to make sure that the name you want to use is not already taken (you can do this at the Texas comptroller of public accounts office), get the copy of form 503 (assume name certificate). This form can be downloaded from the Texas secretary of state website or you can personally obtain a copy of this form at the county clerk’s office.
- Complete the form 503: Pay great attention to general instructions while filling the form. Take your time to study the form and provide correct information. The following information is needed:
The assumed name you wish to use.
The legal name of the business.
The structure of the business type and file number.
Jurisdiction of the formation.
Registered office address.
Period of duration.
Counties where the assumed name will be used.
- Submit the form: After carefully filling the form 503, notarized the form and make sure you keep your own copy for your own records. The filing fee is $25.
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