Hopefully, you joined us for Part One of this series discussing how to change the name of your LLC/corporation. In that post, we discussed changing your business’s name entirely.
Now, in part two, we’ll discuss the second option: maintaining the original name while operating under a new one.
Using the Original Name with the State while Filing a New Name with DBA
There are certain situations when a small business owner may want to give their business a new name for branding reasons, while still retaining the original name for legal purposes. This could be because the business has a trademark on the name and doesn’t want to forfeit it.
In order to operate this way, you’ll need to file a Doing Business As (DBA) document with the county/state office in which you’re operating.
Upon filing, speak with your bank to determine if a new business account will be required for the DBA or if it’s possible to add a DBA to your existing account. You’ll need to do this before using your new name to conduct any type of financial business dealings.
Before moving forward, inquire whether the name you desire is available so that you don’t infringe on any existing trademarks. You can do this by checking with the USPTO’s online database, which will point out whether the name is taken or too similar to another business’s name. As a kind of insurance policy, you can also discuss this with a trademark lawyer.
Because the name of your business is so important to your brand’s overall image, it’s important that you’re able to stand behind your name. If you feel the name no longer fits as your business matures or if your business is performing poorly, a name change may be in order.
Need more assistance? Consult our blog: 5 Tips for Naming Your Small Business.