How to file a Delaware DBA
By Bazal Razzaq
Updated: October 30, 2023
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Are you looking to file a Delaware DBA name to kickstart your business? Well, you have come to the right place. We have prepared a complete guide for you on how to get a fictitious name certificate in Delaware.
Register a Delaware DBA
Registering a Delaware trade name is called DBA.
#1 Start with a Delaware DBA Name Search
Your DBA in Delaware should be unique and must meet all the basic name requirements. Before filing you should search the state’s record to ensure the name is not already taken by another business entity.
Your DBA trade name must not include the following-
- Any name such as LLC, Incorporated, or Corporation until and unless the business is a Limited Liability Company or a corporation.
- Word called Bank or its variant until and unless the company is authorized as a bank by the state. However, the word bank can be used if it doesn’t refer to a business bank or delude the public regarding the nature of the business.
We suggest you check if the name is available as a web domain (URL). Even though you don’t intend to start a business, you can secure the URL of your choice today.
If you haven’t thought of a trade name yet, you can use a free business name generator app. You can also create a logo for your brand with a free logo generator.
#2 Register the Delaware DBA
The DBA in Delaware is filed with the county or counties where the company does the business.
Filing a trade name with the county clerk
“Doing Business As” regulations are governed by the state of Delaware which means that the steps to acquire a trade name are similar from county to county. All three counties in Delaware use the same Delaware DBA registration form.
When you do a business with a fictitious name, it doesn’t have any tax implications.
How to File a Delaware DBA
Delaware’s fictitious trade name must be registered in every county where the company runs the business. It can be done by submitting the Registration of Trade, Business & Fictitious Name Certificate with the County Clerk’s office through mail or in person. The certificates should be notarized.
Cost of Filing:
$25 Filing Fee per County.
Filing Address of 3 counties:
- New Castle County
Leonard L. Williams Justice Center
500 North King Street, Suite 500, LL1
Wilmington, DE 19801-3746
- Kent County
Kent County Courthouse
38 The Green
Dover, DE 19901
- Sussex County
Sussex County Courthouse
1 The Circle, Suite 2
Georgetown, DE 19947
Manage the DBA in Delaware
Contact your county office with the questions.
New Castle: (302) 255-0825
Kent: (302) 735-1900
Sussex: (302) 735-1900C
Renewal of Delaware DBA-
There is no need to renew your trade name.
Change Your Delaware ‘Doing Business As’ name-
You can fill out the Supplemental Change Form to make any changes to the DBA name. It involves a cost of $25 as a filing fee.
Withdraw DBA in Delaware-
If you want to terminate or cancel your trade name then fill out the Termination Affidavit Form.
After filing the DBA trade name
Since DBA filing marks the beginning of a business, there are a few more steps that you should consider before filing.
- Create a Business Website- Every business requires a website. The drag-and-drop builders like GoDaddy and Wix have made the job easy.
- Streamline the business Finances in Order- It is good to separate the business and personal finances. You can open a business bank account to separate the business. Also to avoid cash flow irregularities, you can arrange a business credit card.
- Protect the business- Just as an LLC helps to protect your personal assets during a lawsuit, the business assets also need protection. You can start with general liability insurance as a base coverage.
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
You can have as many no. of DBA as you want and are able to manage. Each DBA comes with an additional expense and paperwork.
It is not mandatory to have a separate EIN for a DBA as it isn’t a business entity.
A ‘Doing Business As’ name can have an Inc. if the business entity is a corporation.
If you hold a rental property in your name then DBA will not provide any protection. The best solution is to form an LLC to protect your personal assets to avoid any issues with the rental property.
Filing for a DBA is a much better way than changing the legal name of your business. If you wish to rebrand your company or add another line of business, getting a DBA is much simpler than going for a legal name change.
Some state laws do prevent DBAs that are similar from getting used. You can trademark it to offer greater protection across different states.