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In Nevada, a business operating under a fictitious name will need to register a DBA. Learn more about what a DBA is, who needs 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. This name is often referred to as a Fictitious Firm Name (FFN) in Nevada.
When a business wants to operate under a name other than their legal name, the state of Nevada, like most states, require the business to register their business name. The registration requirement was designed to protect consumers from business owners hiding anonymously behind the name of a business.
Who needs to register?
Any person operating a business in Nevada with a name that is different from the legal name of the owners or is different from the legal name of a business registered with the Secretary of State (Corporation or LLC), the business has to file with the County Clerk of each county in which business is being conducted. The requirements and need to register for a Fictitious Name vary, depending on the type of business entity.
Sole proprietorships and general partnerships are the most common entities to register for a DBA.
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 will 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.
Nevada DBA Registration Form
The FFN form is available from the County Clerk’s office. Many Clerks have the forms online and/or they are available to pick up from their office.
How much does it cost to register?
The filing fee to register a Fictitious Firm Name in Nevada is $20.
Fictitious Names need to be renewed every five years.
What are the steps to file a DBA in Nevada?
Step 1 – Obtain the Form
A FFN form will need to be obtained from every county in Nevada where business is conducted. If physically operating in multiple counties, note that each county’s form is different and will have to be picked up individually.
Step 2 – Fill out the Form
Information requested on the Fictitious Firm Name form typically includes:
- Fictitious Name
- Mailing Address
- Owner Name
Step 3 – Notarize the Form
Before filing the Fictitious Firm Name form, be sure to have the form notarized. Counties typically have notary services available at no-cost or with a minimal fee.
Step 4 – Submit the Form
Submit the filing fee and form to the County Clerk. A Fictitious Firm Name Certificate will be provided by the Clerk.
DBAs can’t be registered using words that are related to banking or engineering unless the business is licensed to provide those services.
Protecting your business name
Registering a Fictitious Name will not stop anyone else from registering the exact same name in Nevada. 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.