A DBA, which stands for Doing Business As, can be added to a corporation or any type of business. It is sometimes referred to as a fictitious business name because a DBA is a name other than the legal name of the business. You may want to add a DBA to your corporation if you have a branch that does business in a different industry and you want to keep the two as separate entities. Adding a DBA to a corporation is a fairly simple process that you can do on your own.
Determine your state's filing requirements for a DBA. Some states require you to file a DBA form with the Secretary of State while others require you to file the form at the county clerk's office where the business is located. Contact your Secretary of State to see what your state's requirements are for a DBA form. Most states have a website for the Secretary of State.
Run a business name search with your Secretary of State or local county clerk. This may be available on the Secretary of State website, or you can request a business name search in person. This is to make sure that no one else is using the business name that you want to use for your DBA. Think of a few backup names in case your first choice is already being used by another business.
Obtain the DBA form required by your state. Sometimes this form is called a Fictitious Business Name form. Fill out your DBA name, the official name of your corporation, your name, the business address and contact information. Sign and date the form.
Submit the DBA form to the appropriate state office, either the Secretary of State or your local county clerk's office, with the appropriate fee. The fee varies by state. After you file the DBA form for your corporation, it will be effective for a period of four to five years, depending on the state. After it expires, you have to resubmit it to continue doing business under the DBA.