How to Get a DBA Name in North Dakota | A Step-By-Step Guide

Steve Bennett
Business Formation Expert  |   Fact Checked by Editorial Team
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Get a DBA Name in North Dakota

Have you ever wondered how to get a DBA for your Limited Liability Company? If you have, then you are on the right page. Doing Business As (DBA) names, also known as trade names, fictitious names, or assumed names, are an essential aspect of businesses in North Dakota. A DBA name allows companies to operate under a name different from their legal business name since it is important for branding, marketing, and legal purposes. In this article, we will provide a comprehensive guide to getting a DBA name in North Dakota.

Through thorough research and market study, Webinarcare Editorial Team will help you learn about the DBA name. It would be best to cross-check all the factors before obtaining one for your North Dakota business.

What is a DBA Name?

A DBA (Doing Business As) name in North Dakota is a name under which a business operates that is different from its legal name. It is also known as a trading, fictitious, or assumed name. A DBA name allows companies to start a limited liability company in North Dakota, and market themselves under a separate name from their legal business name. Registering a DBA name in North Dakota, provides businesses with branding, marketing, and legal benefits while also helping to prevent other businesses from using the same or a similar name within the state.

Example of a DBA

A DBA (Doing Business As) example can be illustrated through a fictional scenario involving a sole proprietor named John Smith. Let’s say John owns a bakery business and wants to operate it under a different name rather than using his name.

Legal Business Name: John Smith (sole proprietor)

DBA Name: Sweet Treats Bakery

In this case, John would register “Sweet Treats Bakery” as his DBA name. By doing so, he can legally conduct his bakery business using the name “Sweet Treats Bakery” for branding, marketing, and legal purposes, instead of using his name, John Smith. This allows John to establish a professional identity for his bakery and distinguish it from other businesses.

If you start an LLC in North Dakota, registering a DBA name is important when it comes to remembering your business. However, it is best to consult with a legal professional before you begin registering your DBA name. This is to ensure that your business name is available in North Dakota.

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How to Get a DBA Name in North Dakota

Starting a business in North Dakota can be exciting and challenging. One crucial step in establishing your business’s identity is choosing and registering a Doing Business As (DBA) name. Here are the steps to get a DBA in North Dakota.

Step 1: Choose a Unique and Appropriate Name

The first step in registering a DBA name is selecting a unique and appropriate name for your business. Your chosen name should be easy to remember and represent your business’s products or services. 

Consider the following tips when choosing a DBA name in North Dakota:

  • Avoid using names too similar to existing businesses, as this may lead to confusion and potential legal issues.
  • Stay away from names that may be considered offensive or misleading.
  • Research North Dakota naming requirements, as some have specific restrictions on what words and phrases can be included in a business name. 

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Step 2: Conduct a Name Search

Once you have chosen a suitable name for your business, conducting North Dakota Business Name Search is essential to ensure the name is not already used. In North Dakota, they have an online business name database that you can search, usually found on the North Dakota Secretary of State Business Records Search. Sometimes, you may also need to check with your local county clerk’s office to ensure the name is not already used at the county level.

If your chosen name is already in use, select a different name and repeat the search until you find an available name.

Step 3: Register the DBA Name

After confirming that your chosen name is available, the next step is registering your DBA name with the appropriate state or county agency. In North Dakota, you will need to complete a DBA registration form, which can often be found on North Dakota Secretary of State website. North Dakota may require additional documentation, such as proof of business ownership or a business license in North Dakota.

When filling out the registration form, provide accurate and complete information. Any errors or omissions may lead to delays in processing or even the rejection of your application.

Step 4: Pay the Registration Fee

A fee is typically associated with registering a DBA name. In North Dakota, there are two methods, by mail and in person. The cost of filing a DBA is $25. However, renewing your DBA every five years would be best. Sometimes, there may be separate fees for North Dakota DBA registrations. Be prepared to pay these fees when submitting your registration form.

Step 5: Publish a Notice of Your New DBA Name

North Dakota requires you to publish a notice of your new DBA name in a local newspaper. This step will inform the public of your intention to operate under a fictitious name. 

The notice must typically include your DBA name, legal business name, business address, and owner’s name. You may need to provide proof of publication to North Dakota or the county agency responsible for DBA registrations.

Step 6: Obtain Any Necessary Permits or Licenses

Depending on your North Dakota business’s nature and location, you may need additional permits or licenses to operate under your DBA name.

The permits and licenses required for your business will depend on your business’s nature, location, and local and state regulations. Here are some common types of permits and licenses that might be required when operating under a DBA:

  • Business License: A general business license may be required in North Dakota to operate your business legally. This license ensures your business meets local zoning, safety, and regulatory requirements. In North Dakota, the costs of obtaining a business license range from $50 – $300.
  • Sales Tax Permit: If your business sells taxable goods or services, you may need a Sales Tax Permit from North Dakota Office of State Tax Commissioner.
  • Professional Licenses: Depending on your business type, you may need specific professional licenses or certifications. For example, if you are operating a restaurant, you may need a food handler’s permit; if you offer professional services such as accounting or legal services, you may need a professional license from North Dakota state board. DBA filing requires professional licenses if you operate under a General Partnership in North Dakota
  • Health and Safety Permits: Businesses in certain industries, such as food service, may require health and safety permits to ensure compliance with state and local regulations.
  • Zoning Permits: Depending on your business location and the type of business you are operating, you may need a zoning permit from your local planning or zoning department.
  • Environmental Permits: If your business involves activities that could impact the environment, you may need permits from North Dakota state or federal environmental agencies.

Step 7: Renew Your DBA Registration as Needed

In North Dakota, you are required to renew your DBA registration periodically. This renewal process may involve completing a renewal form, paying a renewal fee, and sometimes republishing the notice of your DBA name. Stay up-to-date with your state’s renewal requirements to maintain your DBA name and avoid penalties.

Maintaining the DBA Name

Once your DBA name is registered and published, it is essential to maintain it to remain in good standing with North Dakota. Here are some important aspects to consider:

  • Renewal or Expiration: Depending on North Dakota’s regulations, your DBA name registration may expire or need to be renewed periodically. Keep track of these deadlines to avoid losing your DBA name.
  • Updating Business Information: If your business undergoes significant changes (such as a change in ownership or address), you may need to update your DBA name registration with the appropriate agency.
  • Canceling or Discontinuing the DBA Name: If you decide to stop using your DBA name or close your business, notify the appropriate agency and follow any required procedures for canceling or discontinuing the name.

Is a DBA in North Dakota the same as a Trade Name?

Yes, in North Dakota, a DBA (Doing Business As) is the same as a trading name. Both terms refer to a name under which a business operates differently from its legal name. A DBA or trade name allows companies to conduct business and market themselves using a different name from their legal business name. Other terms for DBA or trade name include fictitious name and assumed name. Registering a DBA or trade name in North Dakota may vary depending on the type of business and the state’s specific regulations.

Do I need to register my North Dakota DBA in the Internal Revenue Service?

No, you do not need to register your DBA (Doing Business As) name in North Dakota with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The registration of a DBA is typically done at the state or local level, depending on the specific regulations of North Dakota. The IRS is not involved in the DBA registration process.

However, once your DBA is registered in North Dakota, you may need to obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN) in North Dakota from the IRS if your business has employees, operates as a corporation or partnership, or meets certain tax-filing requirements.

Do I need to file for a DBA if I already have North Dakota Registered Business Name?

If you already have a registered business name in North Dakota and you plan to conduct business using that exact name, you do not need to file for a DBA (Doing Business As). A DBA is required when a business wants to operate under a name different from its legal business name. 

However, you must file for a DBA if you have a registered business name and wish to conduct business under a different name. This applies to sole proprietorships, partnerships, limited liability companies (LLCs), and corporations that intend to use a name other than their legally registered name.

FAQs

What is a DBA name?
“DBA” stands for “Doing Business As.” A DBA, also known as a fictitious name or assumed name, is a name used by a business to conduct activities that differ from the legal name.
Who needs to file for a DBA in North Dakota?
If you’re a sole proprietor or partnership operating under a name other than your own legal name, you must file for a DBA in North Dakota.
How do I file for a DBA in North Dakota?
You can file for a DBA in North Dakota by completing a trade name application and submitting it to the North Dakota Secretary of State’s office.
Can I file for a DBA online in North Dakota?
Yes, you can file for a DBA online at the North Dakota Secretary of State’s website.
How much does it cost to file for a DBA in North Dakota?
The fee for filing a DBA in North Dakota is $25.
Does filing for a DBA grant me legal protection?
No, filing for a DBA doesn’t grant any legal protection or ownership of the name.
How long does it take for my DBA to be approved in North Dakota?
Typically, it takes 4-6 weeks for a DBA to be approved in North Dakota.
Can I use my DBA across multiple counties in North Dakota?
Yes, a North Dakota DBA is valid statewide.
Do I need to renew my DBA in North Dakota?
No, you don’t need to renew your DBA in North Dakota.
Can I change my DBA name in North Dakota?
Yes, you can change your DBA name in North Dakota by filing a new trade name application. The fee is $25.
Can I have multiple DBAs under one business in North Dakota?
Yes, you can have multiple DBAs under one business in North Dakota.
Can I trademark my DBA name in North Dakota?
Yes, you can trademark your DBA name in North Dakota, but it’s not required to conduct business.
Do I need to publish my DBA in a newspaper or local publication in North Dakota?
No, there’s no requirement to publish your DBA in North Dakota.
Can I use my DBA to get an EIN (Employee Identification Number) in North Dakota?
Yes, you can use your DBA name to get an EIN in North Dakota.
How do I cancel my DBA in North Dakota?
You must file a cancellation of trade name application and submit it to the North Dakota Secretary of State’s office. The fee is $10.
Can a business entity use a DBA in North Dakota?
No, only a sole proprietorship or partnership can use a DBA in North Dakota.
Can I reserve a DBA name in North Dakota?
No, there’s no provision for name reservation in North Dakota for DBAs.
Can I engage in business under my DBA before it’s formally approved by the Secretary of State in North Dakota?
No, you should wait until your DBA has been approved before conducting business under that name in North Dakota.
What happens if there’s more than one business using the same DBA in North Dakota?
If you suspect a business is operating under your DBA name, you should notify the North Dakota Secretary of State’s Business Division.
Do I need a business license to operate my business under a DBA in North Dakota?
It depends on the type of business you plan to operate. Some businesses require licenses or permits to operate legally in North Dakota.
Can I use my DBA to open a bank account in North Dakota?
Yes, you can use your DBA name to open a bank account in North Dakota.
Do I need a lawyer to file for a DBA in North Dakota?
No, you don’t need a lawyer to file for a DBA in North Dakota. You can complete the paperwork yourself.
Can I use a DBA to shield my personal assets from creditors in North Dakota?
No, a DBA doesn’t offer any personal asset protection in North Dakota.
Can a non-resident of North Dakota file for a DBA in the state?
Yes, a non-resident can file for a DBA in North Dakota.
Are DBA filings public record in North Dakota?
Yes, DBA filings are public record in North Dakota and can be searched online.
Can I have a DBA and a trademark for the same name in North Dakota?
Yes, you can have both a DBA and trademark for the same name in North Dakota.
Can I use my DBA to sell products online in North Dakota?
Yes, you can use your DBA to sell products online in North Dakota.
How do I know if my DBA name is available in North Dakota?
You can search for the availability of your DBA name in North Dakota through the Secretary of State’s online database.
Can I use my DBA to bid on government contracts in North Dakota?
Yes, you can use your DBA to bid on government contracts in North Dakota, but keep in mind that certain contracts may require specific business licenses or qualifications.
What is a DBA name in North Dakota?
A DBA name in North Dakota is also known as an assumed name or a trade name. It is a name used by individuals or businesses to operate under a name different from their legal name.
Do I need to register a DBA name in North Dakota?
Yes, you need to register a DBA name in North Dakota if you want to do business under a name different from your legal name.
Can I use my own name as a DBA name in North Dakota?
Yes, you can use your own name as a DBA name in North Dakota.
Can I register a DBA name for my LLC in North Dakota?
Yes, you can register a DBA name for your LLC in North Dakota.
How much does it cost to register a DBA name in North Dakota?
The fee to register a DBA name in North Dakota is $25.
How long does it take to register a DBA name in North Dakota?
It may take up to 15 days to process your DBA name registration in North Dakota.
Can I register a DBA name online in North Dakota?
No, you cannot register a DBA name online in North Dakota. You must submit an application by mail.
Does registering a DBA name in North Dakota protect my business name?
Registering a DBA name in North Dakota does not provide legal protection for your business name. To protect your business name, you may want to consider registering a trademark.
What happens if someone else is already using the DBA name I want in North Dakota?
If someone else is already using the DBA name you want in North Dakota, you will need to choose a different DBA name to register.
Do I need to publish my DBA name in North Dakota?
If you are doing business as a sole proprietorship, you need to publish a notice of your DBA name in a legal publication in the county where your business is located. If you are doing business as a corporation or LLC, you do not need to publish notice.
How often do I need to renew my DBA name registration in North Dakota?
You need to renew your DBA name registration in North Dakota every five years.
Can a non-citizen register a DBA name in North Dakota?
Yes, a non-citizen can register a DBA name in North Dakota.
Can I register a DBA name for a non-profit organization in North Dakota?
Yes, you can register a DBA name for a non-profit organization in North Dakota.
Are there any restrictions on the names I can choose for my DBA name in North Dakota?
Yes, you cannot use words that suggest that your business is a government agency or that imply a professional license or another legal distinction that you does not possess.
What is the penalty for not registering a DBA name in North Dakota?
If you fail to register a DBA name in North Dakota, you may be subject to fines and legal action.
Can I use a DBA name in North Dakota if I have already registered a trademark for my business name?
Yes, but it is important to ensure that registering a DBA name does not infringe on any existing trademarks.
Do I need to update my business registration with the state if I register a DBA name in North Dakota?
No, you do not need to update your state registration if you register a DBA name in North Dakota.
Can I add a DBA name to my existing business in North Dakota?
Yes, you can add a DBA name to your existing business in North Dakota.
Can I do business under multiple DBA names in North Dakota?
Yes, you can do business under multiple DBA names in North Dakota.
Can I register a DBA name in North Dakota for a franchise?
Yes, you can register a DBA name in North Dakota for a franchise.
Does registering a DBA name in North Dakota give me exclusive rights to that name?
No, registering a DBA name in North Dakota does not provide exclusive rights to that name.
Can I register a DBA name for an online business in North Dakota?
Yes, you can register a DBA name for an online business in North Dakota.
Can I register a DBA name for a construction business in North Dakota?
Yes, you can register a DBA name for a construction business in North Dakota.
Do I need to add LLC or a similar designation to my DBA name in North Dakota?
If you are registering a DBA name for an LLC, you must include “LLC,” “Limited Liability Company,” or a similar designation in your DBA name.
Can I sell a business registered under a DBA name in North Dakota?
Yes, you can sell a business registered under a DBA name in North Dakota.
Is registering a DBA name in North Dakota required for a social media business?
Yes, if the social media business is operating under a name different than the legal name, a DBA name registration is required in North Dakota.
Can I register a DBA name in North Dakota for a non-US citizen owned business?
Yes, non-US citizens can register a DBA name if they meet legal requirements to conduct business in the state of North Dakota.

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Conclusion

Getting a DBA name in North Dakota is crucial for many businesses, providing branding, marketing, and legal benefits. By following the steps outlined in this comprehensive guide, you can successfully register a DBA name in North Dakota and enhance your business’s credibility and recognition in the market. Remember to stay up-to-date with North Dakota’s rules and regulations surrounding DBA names, and maintain your registration to ensure your business remains compliant.

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