Dba stands for doing business as. You use this whenever the name you use for business is different from the name you told the state you were doing business as. It does not replace an LLC but your llc can have a dba. For example, if you told the state you were doing business as Scott enterprise, LLC but your store front or website says Scotty’s Playhouse. Scotty’s Playhouse is your dba or trade name. It’s the name consumers associate with your good or service. If you don’t have a llc or corporation. You are a sole proprietor. Your business and you are one in the same therefore your business name is your legal name. If you do business in any name other than your legal name you will need a dba. Keep in mind as a sole proprietor, even if operating under a dba, you assume all of the risk and liabilities associated with your business. Many business for as a LLC to limited their liability.
In some states DBAs are referred to as fictitious names. If you have a dba that you are using in multiple states, you may want to consider protecting your name through federal registration. I invite you to schedule a 15 minute assessment call here.