If you want to do business in Arizona using a trade name (also called a DBA), you’ll first need to register your trade name with the Arizona Secretary of State. We’ll answer some common questions about getting a DBA and tell you the steps to take so you can start doing business under a trade name.
What is a DBA name in Arizona?
A “doing business as” name (DBA) is any name a business uses besides its legal business name or the owner’s legal name. (Note: DBA’s are referred to as “trade names” by the state of Arizona, but the two terms mean the same thing.)
However, you can’t just start calling your business by a different name and call it good. Arizona law requires you to register the DBA you want to use with the Secretary of State.
Why do I need a DBA name in Arizona?
There are a few different reasons a business might need a DBA name, including:
- Using a name other than your own if you have a sole proprietorship. If you’re a sole proprietor, in the eyes of the law, you are your business. So if you don’t want your jewelry business to be called “Cathy Richards,” you’ll need to register a DBA in order to use a different name for your business.
- Branching out into a new industry. For example, if you own an Arizona LLC called Greg’s Auto Repair, LLC, but you want to start repairing electronics on the side using the name “Greg’s Electronics,” “Greg’s Auto Repair, LLC” would be your business’s official name, and “Greg’s Electronics” would be a DBA.
- Rebranding. Such as if you want to turn your 50s-style diner into a Spanish tapas restaurant.
- Shortening a long name. Maybe the full name of your Arizona corporation is Sacred Chakras Holistic Experience Meditation and Yoga Studios Incorporated, but that’s a mouthful to say. You could get a DBA and simply refer to your business as “Sacred Chakras.”
How do I get a DBA name in Arizona?
To get a DBA name in Arizona, you need to complete a Trade Name Application on the Arizona Secretary of State website, which costs $10. But first, you should do a business entity search and make sure your preferred name isn’t already in use. If another Arizona business is already using the name, your application will be rejected. Once you have your DBA, you’ll need to renew it every five years.
Do I need to publish my DBA name in Arizona?
No. While Arizona does have a publication requirement for certain business activities, including forming an LLC, you’re not required to publish a newspaper announcement when you register a DBA.
Want more information? Check out our guide on How to Get a DBA Name for Your Business.