DBA stands for “doing business as.” A DBA gives you the legal backing to operate your business under a different name other than your own name (in the case of a sole proprietorship) or the registered name of your business. A DBA is only used for branding purposes. A DBA isn’t a type of business structure and won’t protect your personal assets.
Please note that you can apply for a DBA when you first register your new business, or you can apply for a DBA later on if you decide to make changes to your business. It is important to state that a business can use a DBA to advertise, transact business, and open bank accounts.
If you plan to run your business in Arizona under any name other than your own name or the registered name of your business, you are expected to file a DBA name registration.
Also, since a company’s official legal name must include a business type designation—like LLC, Inc., or Co.—businesses that do not want to use that designation in marketing must register a DBA. Having said that, filing an Arizona trade name, also known as an Arizona DBA (doing business as), is an easy process that is achieved by filing online with the Secretary of State.
This article will help you understand how to file a DBA in Arizona. We will show you a step-by-step process on how to file a DBA in Arizona and what you need to do after filing your DBA. Without any further ado, let’s begin:
Steps and Requirements to Set Up a DBA in Arizona
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STEP ONE. Start with an Arizona Trade Name Search
If you intend to fill a DBA in Arizona, the first point of call is to search for a trade name. Please note that in Arizona, your Arizona trade name must be unique and must also meet Arizona’s Business title=”business name” data-wpil-keyword-link=”linked”>business name requirements. To get this process started, you have to visit the Arizona Secretary of State’s website and search for your new DBA name to make sure it isn’t already in use.
The next step to take in this regard is to review Arizona’s naming requirements. In Arizona, your trade name should not include the following words and phrases without approval from the Arizona Department of Financial Institutions:
Bank; banker; banking; banc; banco; banque; credit union; deposit; savings association; building association; savings and loan association; building and loan association; savings bank; thrift; trust; and trust company.
How can you tell if the name is available?
To make sure you are not using another company’s name, it is best you conduct a name search on Arizona eCorp site.
Check if the URL is Available
If you want to give your potential clients a sense of professionalism, it is best you check to see if you can use your DBA name as a web domain. The customers you need are on the internet, so if you want to expand your brand and build your customer base, a business website is a necessity.
With so many people offering the service, building one won’t cost you a pretty penny and would pay off in the long run.
Set up a Professional e-mail Account
First impression is critical especially in business where your main aim is to win clients and customers. In this modern era, many people are becoming very selective and conscious when it comes to communication via e-mail. Spam messages from unwanted sources tend to make people scared of opening new messages, and this is where a professional e-mail comes into play. Some of the best professional e-mail services you should consider are:
- G suite
- Zoho Workplace
- Office 365Step
STEP TWO. Register Your Arizona DBA
Once you have sorted out everything that has to do with your DBA cum trade name, then you should proceed to file your trade name. Your Arizona trade name can be filed online with the Secretary of State. Please note that there are some important information you need to provide when filing your DBA in Arizona and they include:
- Name and type of entity registering the trade name
- Nature of the business
Please note that a DBA does not offer any legal protection for your personal assets in the event that your business is sued.
File an Arizona Trade Name
File Online on the Arizona Secretary of State’s Website
- $10 Filing Fee
- $3 Duplicate certificate (optional)
In other to effectively manage your Arizona trade name you might have to contact the Arizona Secretary of State’s office by calling them with these numbers; (602) 542-6187 or (800) 458-5842.
Renew Your Trade Name with the State
Please note that your Arizona trade name is not a one-off thing and you are required to renew it. Your Arizona trade name registration is active for five years. They must be renewed online and the renewal fee is $10. Arizona also recommends that the owner renew their registration beginning six months before its expiration date.
Only the current owner can renew a trade name. If the ownership has changed, the applicant must also submit an Assignment of Trade Name application. If the trade name registration has expired, the applicant must create a new online registration.
Change Your Trade Name
In Arizona, there is room for changing your trade name. If you want to change your trade name, you need to fill out a new registration. To amend your trade name registration with updated information regarding addresses, ownership, etc., you must file online. The filing fee is $3.
Withdraw Your Trade Name
So also, in Arizona, you can cancel your trade name online with the Secretary of State if you so desire.
A DBA is required for many businesses to legally operate and provides information on the people operating the business. In addition to the legal requirement, a DBA offers other benefits such as proving the existence of a business, opening a bank account under a business name, registering a merchant account to accept credit cards, and others.
Registering a DBA is just one small aspect of the business formation process. Forming your business, developing it, and protecting it against legal risks is an ongoing process that involves lots of time and attention.