Trade Name

Trade Name

A trade name, also known as a DBA (Doing Business As) or a fictitious name, is a name by which a business may operate irrespective of its actual legal name.

  • A Corporation or LLC might use a trade name if it prefers not to use the actual legal name.
  • A Sole Proprietor or Partnership might use a trade name since they don’t have an entity with a corporate name.
  • Since a trade name is not actually a Corporation or an LLC, the trade name cannot include the word “Inc.”, “incorporated,” “Limited Liability Company” or an abbreviation thereof.
  • It is important to reserve your name so no one else can use it.

For example: If “Smith Designs, LLC” does business as “Smith’s Creative Websites,” then “Smith Designs, LLC” is the Legal Name of the entity and “Smith’s Creative Websites” is the trade name.

Trade names can be registered with the AZ Secretary of State’s office.  Once you obtain a trade name from the Secretary of State, no one in Arizona can use your trade name for the purpose of their business name, trade name, LLC name or corporate name.  Once a trade name is granted by the AZ Secretary of State, it is valid for a term of 5 years, then it can be renewed.

If you need assistance obtaining a trade name, please contact our office at 520.222.6434.