How to Get a DBA Name in Indiana 2024: A Complete Guide

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How to Get a DBA Name in Indiana

If you want to use a different name other than the legal name for your business in Indiana, you must file a DBA (Doing Business As) name. The public, specifically your potential customers, will recognize your business by its registered legal name. Using a trade name or DBA in marketing and sales can help your Indiana LLC reach a wider audience.

Indiana, also known as The Hoosier State, has specific regulations for filing a DBA name. However, these regulations can vary depending on your business structure. At LLCBase, we understand that forming a business can be an overwhelming experience, so we are here to help you every step of the way. This article will provide the essential steps to obtain a DBA Name in Indiana.

What is a DBA

A DBA, which stands for “Doing Business As,” is a name under which a business operates that differs from its legal name. It is also known as a trade, assumed, or fictitious name. A DBA allows business owners, such as sole proprietors, general partnerships, limited liability companies (LLCs), and corporations, to conduct business under a separate name without creating a new legal entity.

Registering a DBA is important for several reasons, including legal compliance, branding, and customer recognition. The process for obtaining a DBA varies by jurisdiction and may require filing with a state or county government office. Researching local regulations and following the steps to register your DBA name properly is essential.

Understanding DBA Names in Indiana

You must choose a name when you form an LLC or any business structure. Every company has a legal name. For example, a partnership or sole proprietorship might operate under the legal name of the company’s owner or owners. The name specified in the Articles of Incorporation or Articles of Organization can be used by any business entity, including corporations, limited liability companies (LLCs), and others.

There are situations when you may decide not to use your company’s registered legal name in Indiana for various reasons. Your company’s legal name might not be relevant to your business or no longer accurately describe it. Alternatively, you might want a new name without changing your incorporation or registration documents.

If you plan to start your business in Indiana under a name other than your personal name or an existing corporate name, you must file a DBA name with Indiana state, regardless of the type of business entity you have incorporated as (sole proprietor, partnership, corporation, or LLC).

There are no restrictions on how many DBA names you can use for your 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.

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How to Obtain a DBA Name in Indiana

Want to obtain a DBA name in Indiana? Simply follow these easy-peasy steps, and you’ll be well on your way to securing that perfect “doing business as” name in no time!

Step 1: Check Name Availability

Before filing a DBA in Indiana, ensuring that no other business is already using your chosen name is crucial. To confirm name availability in Indiana, search the Indiana Secretary of State INBiz database provided by the Indiana Secretary of State. This step is important to avoid potential legal issues and confusion for customers.

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Step 2: Choose a DBA Name

In Indiana, fictitious names cannot be identical or too similar. A DBA should avoid deceiving the public by appearing confusingly similar to any other business name. When choosing a DBA name, ensure it follows the guidelines and restrictions the Indiana government sets. These guidelines may include avoiding certain words or phrases, such as those related to banking, insurance, or professional designations, without proper authorization.

Step 3: Register the Indiana DBA Name

Once you have determined that the name is available for registration, complete the required forms provided by your county or the Indiana Secretary of State. You must register your DBA name in the county where you intend to conduct business. In most Indiana counties, specific information is required, such as the company’s name, organization type, and description of the products or services to be provided under the Fictitious Name. Carefully complete the necessary forms and ensure all information is accurate and complete.

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Step 4: Submit the Application

To file the Indiana DBA Name, you must apply to the Indiana Secretary of State or the appropriate county office. In Indiana, you can file the DBA name using various methods, such as (two methods, by mail and in person). The cost of filing the Fictitious Name (DBA name) in Indiana is $35. This fee may vary depending on the method of filing or the specific county where you are registering your DBA name.

  • Online: There is no online filing available
  • Offline: For filing offline, you must send the downloaded PDF form or drop it off in person at the Marion County Recorder’s Office, 200 E. Washington Street, Suite T-741, Indianapolis, IN 46204

Step 5: Use the Indiana DBA Name

Once your DBA name is registered and approved, you can use it in your business operations. Be prepared to provide three “specimens” demonstrating the Trade Name used, such as business cards, booklets, flyers, labels, or stickers. These specimens may be requested by the Indiana Secretary of State or the county office as proof of usage. Properly displaying your DBA name in your marketing materials, signage, and other business documents is essential to ensure customers and clients know your new trade name.

Following these steps, you can obtain a DBA name in Indiana and use it to enhance your business’s visibility and reach.

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DBA Name in Indiana: A Detailed Guide

Read the comprehensive guide to renewing and changing a DBA name in Indiana:

Renewing a DBA Name in Indiana

It is essential to renew your DBA name periodically to maintain its validity. In most states, renewing a DBA name follows the same process as filing a new DBA name. Every Indefinite, you should renew your Indiana DBA to ensure continued compliance with state regulations.

To renew your DBA name in Indiana, follow these steps:

  1. Check the renewal deadline: Be aware of the renewal deadline for your DBA name, typically every Indefinite. Missing the deadline may result in penalties or loss of your trade name rights.
  2. Complete the renewal application: Obtain the renewal application from the Indiana Secretary of State or the appropriate county office. Fill out the required information, including updates on your business address, contact information, and a description of the products or services provided under the Fictitious Name.
  3. Submit the renewal application: Submit the completed renewal application to the Indiana Secretary of State or the appropriate county office by the deadline. Be prepared to pay the renewal fee, which may vary depending on the method of submission or the specific county where you are renewing your DBA name.
  4. Receive confirmation: Once your renewal has been processed and approved, you will receive confirmation from the Indiana Secretary of State or the county office. Keep this documentation for your records.

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Changing a DBA Name in Indiana

If you need to change your Trade Name (DBA or Fictitious Name), apply to the Indiana Secretary of State (SOS) or the appropriate county office. The process for changing a trading name is similar to registering a new DBA. You can reserve your DBA name for Indefinite.

To change your trade name in Indiana, follow these steps:

  1. Check name availability: Before applying for a new trade name, ensure that another business still needs to use the desired name. Search the Indiana Government Records Inquiry System or the Indiana Secretary of State INBiz database provided by the Indiana Secretary of State to confirm business name availability in Indiana.
  2. Complete the change application: Obtain the trade name change application from the Indiana Secretary of State or the appropriate county office. Fill out the required information, including the current and new trade names you wish to use.
  3. Submit the change application: Submit the completed change application to the Indiana Secretary of State or the appropriate county office. Be prepared to pay the change fee, which may vary depending on the submission method or the county where you change your DBA name.
  4. Receive confirmation: Once your trade name change has been processed and approved, you will receive confirmation from the Indiana Secretary of State or the county office. Keep this documentation for your records and update all relevant business materials with the new trade name.

FAQs

What does DBA stand for?
DBA stands for “doing business as,” which is also known as a fictitious business name.
Who needs a DBA name in Indiana?
Any sole proprietor or partnership conducting business under a name other than their legal name in Indiana must file and obtain a DBA name.
Can a corporation or LLC file for a DBA name in Indiana?
No, a corporation or LLC operating under an alternative name must file an Indiana Business Entity Report to legally conduct business.
What steps must I take to obtain a DBA name in Indiana?
You must file a certificate of assumed business name with the Indiana Secretary of State.
Which organization should I submit my certificate of assumed business name to?
Your certificate should be submitted to the Indiana Secretary of State.
How much does it cost to file a certificate of assumed business name in Indiana?
It costs $10 to file a certificate of assumed business name in Indiana.
Is there a fee for withdrawing a DBA name from the state of Indiana?
There is no fee to withdraw a DBA name from the state of Indiana.
Can I use an apostrophe or special character in my DBA name?
No, Indiana law requires the DBA name to be in plain text, with no irregular punctuation.
If I file for a DBA name in Indiana, do I need to re-file annually?
No, there is no annual re-filing requirement for a DBA name in Indiana.
Can I use my DBA name in other states?
If you want to conduct business under your DBA name in other states, you must follow their criteria.
How long does it take to receive approval for a DBA name in Indiana?
The processing time for a certificate of assumed business name can take up to two weeks to process.
Do I need a separate EIN for my DBA name in Indiana?
No, you can use the same EIN you received for your federal tax returns for your DBA registered in Indiana.
Can I operate completely online under my DBA name in Indiana?
Yes, you can operate your business entirely or partly online and use your DBA name in Indiana.
Do I need to publish a legal notice of my DBA name in Indiana?
No, Indiana law does not require filing entities to publish legal notices of the DBA name.
Can I file for a DBA name in Indiana without an internet connection?
Yes, you can file either in person, by email, fax, or by mail.
If I change my primary business address, do I need to change my DBA name?
No, as an assumed name, it isn’t hugely affected by a Business address change in Indiana.
Can my husband and I register a DBA name as “John and Jane’s Artifacts” in Indiana’s legislation?
Using two people’s names may require additional paperwork or authorization.
How will I know if my DBA name registration request has been approved?
After filing and approval, you will receive an approval email or a paper certificate from the Secretary of State.
Do I need to have an attorney register my DBA name in Indiana?
No, an attorney is not required to submit a certificate of Joint Station Meeting Division (JSMD).
What is the window of time to choose a DBA name in Indiana?
Before a business transaction in Indiana can occur, the state must approve your DBA.
Do I need a DBA registration to sell physical products at an Indiana farmers’ market?
Having a DBA registration in the state will be essential to selling items under a brand’s name.
Again, can an Indiana DBA be used in other parts of the country?
Aside from Indiana, if your business area involved in other regions, you can individually register a DBA for each state.
Can I make edits or change my DBA name after the registration process in Indiana?
You can change specific name elements not including Business Entity Types after initial approval.
Should I include initials in the DBA name as I file for it from Indiana?
Adding the own successful company in the name placement could require personalized authorization hoops to proceed with the desired title.
Will Indiana pick through my current entities when I Register my DBA name?
For established entities wishing to file for a DBA in Indiana when theirs, state entity types may already include an authorization process.
What happens if more than one applicant files with the same DBA name title approval requests?
The certification type considers duplicates during the process and promotes effective conflict resolution to access authorization in Indiana.
Can I connect multiple business names and DBA registrations to my Indiana brand successfully?
Registering more than one substitute entity name should be authorized prior or reflected on the Business Entity Reports.
Do inactive or non-operating businesses still need a DBA name association in Indiana?
Conducting business carries varies across states. Check region policies and determine if filings are necessary remaining inactive businesses may require looking over approbations.
Do I need proximity ties or specific linkages with anyone as I register for a DBA name in Indiana?
Using people’s names demands additional consumer protection with legal issues in unison.
What is a DBA name?
DBA stands for “doing business as” and refers to a fictitious name that a person or business uses to conduct business.
Do I need to get a DBA name in Indiana?
Indiana law requires anyone doing business under a name that is different from their legal name to register their DBA name.
How do I choose a DBA name in Indiana?
Your DBA name should be unique and not already in use in Indiana. It should be easy to remember, easy to spell, and reflect the nature of your business.
How do I check if my desired DBA name is available in Indiana?
You can search for existing business names on the Indiana Secretary of State’s website or contact their Business Services Division.
Can multiple businesses use the same DBA name in Indiana?
No, your DBA name must be unique, and you may not use a name that is already registered by another business in Indiana.
Do I need to form a new business entity to register a DBA name in Indiana?
No, you may operate your business as a sole proprietorship and register a DBA name.
What is the cost to register a DBA name in Indiana?
The fee to register a DBA name in Indiana is $20.
How do I register a DBA name in Indiana?
You will need to file a Business Entity Report with the Indiana Secretary of State’s office with your desired DBA name.
Can I register a DBA name online in Indiana?
Yes, you can register a DBA name through the Indiana Secretary of State’s website.
How long does it take to register a DBA name in Indiana?
It usually takes a few days to process your DBA name registration in Indiana.
Do I have to renew my DBA name registration in Indiana?
Yes, you must renew your DBA name registration every five years in Indiana.
Can I operate my business under a DBA name without registering it in Indiana?
No, it is illegal to operate your business under a name that is different from your legal name without registering a DBA name in Indiana.
Can I use an out-of-state DBA name to do business in Indiana?
No, you must register a DBA name with the Indiana Secretary of State’s office to do business under that name in Indiana.
Can I amend my DBA name in Indiana?
Yes, you may amend your DBA name in Indiana by filing an amendment to your Business Entity Report.
Can I transfer my DBA name registration to someone else in Indiana?
No, a DBA name registration is not transferrable in Indiana. You will need to cancel your current registration and have the new entity file a new DBA name registration.
What happens if I don’t register a DBA name in Indiana?
It is illegal to operate your business under a name other than your legal name without registering a DBA name in Indiana, and you may be subject to fines and penalties.
Can I use my DBA name as a trademark in Indiana?
Yes, you can use your DBA name as a trademark in Indiana if it meets certain legal requirements for trademark protection.
Can I use an abbreviation for my DBA name in Indiana?
Yes, you can use an abbreviation for your DBA name in Indiana if it is commonly used and understood by the public.
Can I use the words “Inc.” or “LLC” as part of my DBA name in Indiana?
Yes, you can use these terms if your business is a corporation or an LLC.
Do I need to file my DBA name registration with any other agency in Indiana?
No, you only need to register your DBA name with the Indiana Secretary of State’s office.
Can I change my DBA name at a later time in Indiana?
Yes, you can change your DBA name by filing an amendment to your Business Entity Report and paying the appropriate fee.
Can I have a DBA name if I’m a not-for-profit organization in Indiana?
Yes, you can have a DBA name if you’re a not-for-profit organization in Indiana.
Do I need to register my DBA name with the county or city in which I’m doing business in Indiana?
No, you only need to register your DBA name with the Indiana Secretary of State’s office.
Can I use my DBA name as a web domain name in Indiana?
Yes, you can use your DBA name as a web domain name in Indiana if it is available.
Can I have multiple DBA names for one business in Indiana?
Yes, you can register multiple DBA names for one business by filing a new Business Entity Report for each name and paying the appropriate fee.
Can I cancel my DBA name registration in Indiana?
Yes, you can cancel your DBA name registration by filing a Statement of Termination with the Indiana Secretary of State’s office.
Do I need to display my DBA name in my advertising and on my business cards in Indiana?
Yes, if you’re doing business under a DBA name in Indiana, you must prominently display that name in all advertising and on all business cards and stationery.
Can I register a DBA name for a non-US resident in Indiana?
Yes, non-US residents can register a DBA name in Indiana by following the same requirements as US residents.
Does Indiana DBA name registration provide exclusive rights to use that name?
No, registration of a DBA name in Indiana does not provide exclusive rights to use that name. It’s recommended that businesses conduct a trademark search to identify any potential conflicts before adopting their DBA name.

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Conclusion

Navigating obtaining, renewing, or changing a DBA name in Indiana is essential to managing your business’s identity and growth. Following the outlined steps and adhering to state regulations ensures your business remains compliant and continues to thrive. Remember, a well-chosen trade name reflects your brand identity and helps you connect with your target audience more effectively. As your business evolves, it’s crucial to stay adaptable and responsive to the ever-changing market conditions, and having a suitable DBA name is a significant part of that journey.

So, embrace the opportunity to create a professional and friendly image for your business, and let your DBA name be the catalyst for success. Visit LLCBase today to access valuable resources and guidance tailored to your business needs.

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