In Mississippi, while it’s optional, a business operating under a fictitious name may want register their name. Learn more about what a DBA is, why a business may want one and how to register.
What is a DBA?
A DBA, also known as “Doing Business As”, Trade Name, Assumed Name or Fictitious Name is a name used by a business, that is different from the legal name of the business.
Unlike most states, Mississippi does not require fictitious names to be registered. This registration is voluntary however there are several reasons to consider such as:
- Formally informing the public the use of a business name
- Many banks will require the name to be registered before opening a business checking account
- Some vendors will request the filing to prove the business exists
Who needs to register?
The requirements and need to register for a Trade Name vary, depending on the type of business entity.
Sole proprietorships and general partnerships are usually the most common entities to register for a DBA.
In most states, the legal name of a sole proprietor or partnership can be the owner’s full first and last name, which can be used without registering. For example, if John Smith starts a business repairing computers but doesn’t use a business name he doesn’t have to register. If John decides to name his business John’s Computer Repair then he would need to register.
Corporations and Limited Liability Companies won’t typically register a fictitious name since a unique entity name is created during the formation process. Some will file for a DBA if they have another business they want to operate under their corporate/LLC umbrella to keep the liability protection without having to form another entity.
Mississippi DBA Registration Form
How much does it cost to register?
The filing fee for the Fictitious Business Name Registration is $25 in Mississippi.
The name registration is valid for five years and is renewable.
What are the steps to file a DBA in Mississippi?
Step 1 – Fill out the Form
Information requested on the form includes:
- Business name
- Business entity
- Fictitious name
- NAICS Code
- Business address
- Name of the business owner/officer(s)
Step 2 – File the Form
Submit the form and payment to the Secretary of State.
DBAs can’t be registered using words that are related to banking and insurance with words like bank, savings, credit union and insurance, unless the business is licensed to provide those services.
Protecting your business name
Registering a Fictitious Name will not stop anyone else from using the exact same name. If stopping others from using your business name is important, you can protect it through a trademark – See how to protect your name through a trademark.
If you have questions about the process, you can contact the Secretary of State at 604-359-1633 or through their Contact form.