How to Get a DBA Name For an LLC in Texas – An Easy Guide


Steve Goldstein
Steve Goldstein
Business Formation Expert
Steve Goldstein runs LLCBuddy, helping entrepreneurs set up their LLCs easily. He offers clear guides, articles, and FAQs to simplify the process. His team keeps everything accurate and current, focusing on state rules, registered agents, and compliance. Steve’s passion for helping businesses grow makes LLCBuddy a go-to resource for starting and managing an LLC.

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Get a DBA Name in Texas

Are you looking to establish a business in Texas and need to get a DBA (Doing Business As) name for your venture? You’re in the right place! A DBA, also known as a Trade Name, Fictitious Name, or Assumed Name, allows you to conduct business under a name that’s different from your legal business name. This can be advantageous for branding, marketing, and overall business operations.

In Texas, if you’re willing to use a different name other than the legal name for your business, you must file the DBA (Doing Business As). The public (specifically your potential customers) knows your business by its registered legal name. Instead of using your formal business name, you may use the trade name or DBA in marketing and sales to reach a wider audience.

Texas, popularly known as The Lone Star State, has some regulations when it comes to filing your DBA name. However, the regulations can vary depending on the type of business structure you have. In this article, I will share the basic steps to get a DBA Name in Texas.

What is DBA Name in Texas?

Whenever you form an LLC or any business structure, you must get a name for it. Every company has a legitimate name. For instance, a partnership or sole proprietorship might function under the legal name of the company’s owner or owners. The name specified in the Certificate of Formation – For Profit Corporation or Certificate of Formation may be used by any business entity, including corporations, limited liability companies (LLCs), and others.

However, there are situations when you may decide against using your company’s registered legal name in Texas. This is due to a variety of factors. For instance, the legal name of your company can be unrelated to it or no longer accurately describe it. Or perhaps you want a new name without altering your documentation for incorporation or registration.

If you intend to run your business in Texas under a name other than your personal name or an existing corporate name, you must submit a DBA name with Texas state regardless of the type of business entity you have incorporated as (single proprietor, partnership, corporation, or LLC).

No restrictions exist on how many DBA names you can use to do business. However, each DBA name must be filed with the state where you conduct business. This is necessary because the general public has a legal right to know whether a specific individual or company is operating under a name other than their legal name.

In Texas, changing your business name is a risky factor. It can bring positive and negative effects on your business. Hence, before you file and change your legal business name, analyze all the risks and advantages.

LLCBuddy Editorial Team

How to Get a DBA in Texas

To get a DBA in Texas, you must first check if any other business is already using the name before filing a DBA in Texas. You can then submit the Texas business name reservation form after it has been confirmed that no other company is already using the chosen name. You can search the Texas Government Records Inquiry System and confirm that the name you chose is not already in use. However, getting a DBA is not mandatory in many states. If you open an LLC in Texas, you must check with Texas Secretary of State whether you need to file DBA or not.

Guideline for choosing a DBA name

You must choose a name to register, which is the crucial step. There are a few straightforward LLC name guidelines to follow (if you’re forming an LLC) while choosing a name in Texas.

  • In Texas, fictional names cannot be the same or similar to one another. A DBA cannot deceive the public by appearing to be confusingly similar to any other business name.
  • Unless the company has been incorporated as an LLC or corporation, a DBA name cannot contain a corporate indication, such as Corp or LLC, or any other words that imply an entity type. This will stop a lone proprietor from passing for a legitimate corporation.
  • Any banking-related words without a letter from the Texas Banking Commissioner’s Office, or any insurance-related words without a letter from the Texas Texas Department of Insurance.
  • Any words that could confuse your corporation with a government agency (FBI, Treasury, State Department, etc.).
  • A professional designation in the name (i.e., engineering, attorney) without a copy of the license of one officer/member or a letter from the governing agency allowing the use of the name without licensing.
  • Any words that indicate or imply that the corporation is engaged in a business that is not authorized by law to pursue.

How Can You Tell if a DBA Name in Texas is available?

Once you have selected a name that complies with the requirements mentioned above, there are a number of methods you can use to find out if the name is open for registration. One simple strategy is to look up other companies in Texas with the same name on Google.

It is a simple technique to clear out any already taken names, even though it may not guarantee that the name you want to register is accessible. As it is likely that you will require a website domain that matches your business name, you may also check to see whether the web domain for that name is accessible. For example, you can check Texas LLC name search guide to see how you can find the availability of your desired LLC name in Texas.

Before you may register your Trade Name in Texas, you must have used it for business purposes. Therefore, you must use a Trade Name as soon as possible if you want to register and protect it in Texas.

Register the Texas DBA Name

Once you have established that the name is available for registration, you must finish the file using the forms your county has provided. You must register your DBA name in the county where you intend to conduct business. In most Texas counties, the following fundamental information is needed-

  • Name of the company, its phone number, city, state, and street address
  • The organization type under which the business is incorporated
  • List the partners’ names and addresses (if applicable)
  • Describe the items, services, or business that will be delivered under the Fictitious Name in the registration form
  • Use of the Fictitious Name in the marketplace
  • Both the classification type and number
  • Make a mark (pick Trade Name)
  • Date and state of the first use of the trade name
  • When the Trade Name first appeared in Texas
  • Application’s name, title, signature, and date Email address

Submitting the Texas DBA Name Application

To file the Texas DBA Name, you must apply to the Texas Secretary of State. In Texas, you can file the DBA name in two methods, by mail and in person.. The cost of filing the Fictitious Name (DBA name) in Texas is Varies by county.

  • Online filing: There is no online filing available
  • Offline filing: For filing offline in Texas, you must send the accomplished DBA filing form to the County Clerk’s Office where your business is located. The mailing address and drop-off location will vary depending on the specific county.

Using the Texas Trade Name

Three “specimens” demonstrating the Trade Name used must be submitted to Texas Secretary of State. The following are some instances of acceptable specimens:

  • Business cards
  • Booklets,
  • Flyers,
  • Labels, and
  • Stickers

How to Renew a Trade Name in Texas

You can renew your DBA name after a stipulated time. In most states, the renewal of the DBA name follows the same process as filing a fresh DBA name. You need to get the DBA renewal form, fill it up with the correct information, and submit it to the state online or offline. The renew time for DBA name filing is ten years in Texas.

How to Change a Trade Name

You can change your Trade Name (DBA or Fictitious Name) by applying to the Texas SOS. The process is similar. You can search for the name you want to have after changing the old Trade Name. If the name is available, make sure it follows other guidelines. You can reserve your DBA name for ten years; after then, you can change or renew your DBA if needed through the Texas SOS.

FAQs

What is a DBA Name?
DBA stands for “doing business as.” A DBA name is a fictitious business name that is used by businesses that operate under a name that is different from the official, legal name of the business.
Do I need to file a DBA Name in Texas?
Yes, if you are conducting business in Texas under a name other than the official, legal name of the business, a DBA name must be filed with the Texas Secretary of State.
What is the process for filing a DBA Name in Texas?
The process for filing a DBA name in Texas is relatively straightforward. It involves completing an application form, submitting it along with the applicable fees, and filing it with the Texas Secretary of State.
What information will I need to provide on the DBA filing form?
The DBA filing form requires information such as the legal name of the business, the DBA name, the purpose of the business, the county where the business will operate, the address of the business, and the name and address of the business owner.
What is the filing fee for a DBA Name in Texas?
The filing fee for a DBA name in Texas is $25.
How long does it take to process a DBA Name filing in Texas?
The processing time for a DBA name filing in Texas is typically within 10 business days.
How long is a DBA Name valid in Texas?
A DBA name is valid in Texas for as long as the business is actively conducting business under the name.
Do I need to register my DBA Name with the IRS in Texas?
No, a DBA name does not need to be registered with the IRS in Texas.
How do I renew my DBA Name in Texas?
There is no renewal process for DBA names in Texas; however, if the business changes its address or the name of the business owner, the DBA filing must be updated to reflect the changes.
Is a DBA Name the same as a trademark or service mark?
No, a DBA name is not the same as a trademark or service mark. A trademark or service mark is a unique symbol, word, or phrase used to identify a particular product or service and to distinguish it from other products or services.
Is a DBA Name required if I am conducting business online in Texas?
Yes, if you are conducting business online in Texas under a different name than the official, legal name of the business, a DBA name is required.
Do I need to publish a notice of my DBA Name in Texas?
Yes, in some cases a notice of the DBA name must be published in a newspaper in Texas. This requirement is determined by the county in which the business is located.
Can I use a DBA Name in Texas if I have multiple locations?
Yes, a DBA name can be used in Texas for businesses with multiple locations.
How do I change or cancel my DBA Name in Texas?
To change or cancel a DBA name in Texas, a written request must be made to the Texas Secretary of State.
Do I need a separate DBA Name for each business location in Texas?
Yes, a separate DBA name is required for each business location in Texas.
Is a DBA Name required for a sole proprietorship in Texas?
Yes, if the sole proprietor is conducting business in Texas under a different name than the legal name of the business, a DBA name must be filed with the Texas Secretary of State.
Is a DBA Name required for a partnership in Texas?
Yes, if the partnership is conducting business in Texas under a different name than the legal name of the business, a DBA name must be filed with the Texas Secretary of State.
Is a DBA Name required for a corporation in Texas?
Yes, if the corporation is conducting business in Texas under a different name than the legal name of the business, a DBA name must be filed with the Texas Secretary of State.
Can I use a DBA Name in Texas if my business is located in another state?
Answer:Yes, a DBA name can be used in Texas if the business is located in another state, provided the business is conducting business in Texas.
What forms of payment are accepted for filing a DBA Name in Texas?
The Texas Secretary of State accepts payment by check, money order, or credit card for filing a DBA name in Texas.
Is a DBA Name required for a limited liability company in Texas?
Yes, if the limited liability company is conducting business in Texas under a different name than the legal name of the business, a DBA name must be filed with the Texas Secretary of State.
Does a DBA Name have to match the name of the business owner in Texas?
No, a DBA name does not have to match the name of the business owner in Texas.
Is a DBA Name required for a nonprofit organization in Texas?
Yes, if the nonprofit organization is conducting business in Texas under a different name than the legal name of the business, a DBA name must be filed with the Texas Secretary of State.
Can I file a DBA Name online in Texas?
Yes, a DBA name can be filed online in Texas through the Texas Secretary of State website.
What is the penalty for not filing a DBA Name in Texas?
The penalty for not filing a DBA name in Texas can be a fine of up to $500.
Is a DBA Name required for a foreign corporation in Texas?
Yes, if the foreign corporation is conducting business in Texas under a different name than the legal name of the business, a DBA name must be filed with the Texas Secretary of State.
Do I need to register my DBA Name with the Texas Comptroller?
No, a DBA name does not need to be registered with the Texas Comptroller.
Is a DBA Name required for a sole proprietorship that is owned by a non-resident of Texas?
Yes, if the non-resident sole proprietor is conducting business in Texas under a different name than the legal name of the business, a DBA name must be filed with the Texas Secretary of State.
Is a DBA Name required for a foreign limited liability company in Texas?
Yes, if the foreign limited liability company is conducting business in Texas under a different name than the legal name of the business, a DBA name must be filed with the Texas Secretary of State.
Do I need to register my DBA Name with the local county in Texas?
No, a DBA name does not need to be registered with the local county in Texas.

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Why Texas DBA Filing is So Important

One of the key reasons why Texas DBA filing is so important is that it establishes a desired business name as a registered entity in the state. This provides legal protection and prevents other businesses from using the same name, helping to avoid confusion among consumers. By completing the DBA filing process, business owners can solidify their unique brand identity and ensure that their business is properly recognized in the marketplace.

Another significant benefit of Texas DBA filing is that it allows businesses to open business bank accounts, accept payments in the business name, and enter into contracts using the registered DBA name. This is essential for establishing a professional image and maintaining clear financial records for the business. Without a registered DBA name, businesses may face challenges in conducting everyday operations and accessing necessary financial services.

Furthermore, filing a DBA in Texas is important for compliance purposes. State laws require businesses to file a DBA if they operate under an assumed name that is different from the legal name of the business entity. By complying with these regulations, businesses can avoid potential legal issues and penalties that may arise from operating without a registered DBA. Additionally, proper DBA filing allows businesses to maintain good standing with state authorities and ensures that their operations are above board.

In addition to legal and compliance benefits, Texas DBA filing also plays a crucial role in protecting the reputation and goodwill of a business. By establishing a recognized business name through DBA registration, businesses can build trust and credibility with customers, suppliers, and partners. A registered DBA name gives businesses a professional and legitimate appearance, which is essential for attracting customers and gaining a competitive edge in the marketplace.

Overall, Texas DBA filing is a fundamental step for businesses to establish their brand identity, comply with regulations, and protect their operations. By completing the DBA filing process, businesses can ensure that they are recognized as legitimate entities in the state and can access essential business resources and services. While it may seem like a small administrative task, filing a DBA in Texas can have a significant impact on the success and longevity of a business. It is imperative for entrepreneurs to prioritize DBA filing as part of their business operations and to understand the benefits that come with having a registered DBA name.

In Conclusion

A DBA name in Texas is the best way to update your business name. Unlike the registered legal business name, you can have as many as DBA names. You can use your new assumed name as soon as the state has processed your filing, and getting one is a rather simple process. Whether you have an LLC or any other business structure, filing a DBA name is helpful for your business upgradation anytime.

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