The Proper Way to File a Louisiana DBA
Being a business owner in Louisiana? Do you want to manage it using a prospective name? You have an excellent opportunity to acquire a business and to conduct activities of a sole proprietor under the (DBA) name.
The process of obtaining a DBA for any official business is simple, but it requires considering several nuances. In addition, owners should be aware of the rules for using the new name registered. So, we have prepared a step-by-step guide to use the DBAs in the state under the question.
It is essential: the sole proprietor must understand that he will not receive limited liability protection, as is the case with an LLC. There are no restrictions on the number of DBAs in an LLC. You won’t experience any difficulties while doing it yourself. However, the greater the number of additional names, the more difficult it is to keep accounting correctly. Therefore, hiring an LLC website is the very best idea!
Louisiana DBA Application Process
Filing DBA in Louisiana is rather difficult in comparison to some other states. Nevertheless, you can do it all by yourself without any problems. Start by checking the preferred business name in the business filing database over the internet.
If another company in the state has not already taken the chosen name, you can use it.
Do note that Louisiana has below-listed restrictions on the assumed names:
- DBA can only contain English characters and letters;
- DBA can never imply relations with government entities and agencies;
- DBA may not contain names related to corporations (such as “Inc.” or “Corps.”);
- DBA may not contain names of public places without written consent.
If your name matches these conditions, fill the Application to Register Trade Name, Trademark, or Service Mark and legally notarize it. Additionally, you need to publish a statement regarding your DBA in a Louisiana parish newspaper.
Your application form should contain the following data:
- Valid business name;
- Your valid address and real name;
- Assumed name;
- Type of business;
- The date you began to use the trade name;
- The date your first used the name in Louisiana;
- Notary public’s signature.
After finishing the form, write a $75 check and make it payable to the “Secretary of State.” Send it to the Secretary’s office in Louisiana:
P.O. Box 94125
Baton Rouge, LA 70804-9125
In addition, you need to register the chosen DBA in the county where your company mainly does business. Find the local county clerk’s office and find out whether you need to do any extra paperwork.
Louisiana DBA: The Essence
At the initial stage of doing business, entrepreneurs usually use only one type of economic activity. But in the future, there is a need to diversify risks and expand the company.
So, you have to choose: open a new legal entity or apply to DBA? Sole proprietors and general partnerships may use names that differ from the owner’s name.
Limited liability companies and corporations can use several DBAs at once to have the official registered identification of their activities. Why do Louisiana companies acquire DBAs? The answer lies on the surface:
- Sole proprietorships and partnerships are a guarantee that your company is conducting official activities. A professional company will attract many more potential clients than a company that has just its name. The company can also obtain a bank account using the DBA. This way, you can separate personal assets and business. It will also be more comfortable for customers, as each sole proprietorship prefers to receive invoices in the company’s name.
- Corporations and LCCs use registered DBAs to use different names within the same trademark. DBA also helps to separate subsidiaries from the parent corporation. For example, this technique is prevalent in the restaurant business. One owner opens several restaurants that are unrelated. Thus, it doesn’t matter what your marketing or accounting goals are! DBAs are advisable in any case, and most importantly, they make doing business very comfortable.
So, DBA in Louisiana is the best opportunity for companies to make their image brighter and more recognizable. They can use a variety of tools to express themselves without wasting time on paperwork.
A Louisiana DBA Validity Period
The registered DBA can be legally used for ten years from the moment it is filed with the Secretary of State in Louisiana.
You can continue to work with your assumed name beyond that point. Contact the Secretary of State directly or file the online forms before your DBA expires in order to renew your reservation. The assumed name will be valid for another 10 years after the renewal.
Hiring a Professional DBA Filing Service: The Necessity
You do not need to register for a DBA yourself, as there are quite a few companies that provide this service at a professional level. They know all the subtleties. So, you will get a positive result the first time. Of course, their services are not free. They will collect all the documents on their own, and you will only need to provide them with some data. So, it’s up to you to decide what you want: save your time or money.
It is worth noting again that the requirements for obtaining a DBA in Louisiana are simple, and many companies fill out the official form online on their own. But if you are still too busy or are afraid to make a mistake, you can turn to LegalZoom, for example. The fees you will have to pay are very fair, and it is worth spending that money!
It makes sense to register a DBA when you need to separate several areas of business. Such a solution will make it possible to assess efficiency better, improve the quality of control over certain types of activities.
Rational use of “Doing business as” to promote a new product on the market – allows you to analyze the consumers’ reaction and not spend money on opening a new legal entity. To file a DBA will not cause additional complications.
Can I get legal protection from the DBA?
– No, you cannot. DBA registration does not provide for the security of business from the point of view of jurisdiction. Personal asset protection is available through a corporation or limited company.
Is there a need for a registered agent when creating a DBA?
– If you acquire the DBA names as a sole proprietor or are a general partnership – you do not need a registered agent. However, companies and limited liability corporations must have a registered agent. The presence of DBA in the latter case does not matter.
Can different companies use the same name?
– A DBA application does not guarantee that your business will have exclusive rights to a fictitious name. The law does not prohibit all interested LLCs or corporations from using your registered name.
Is there a requirement by the State of Louisiana to publish the DBA name?
– Yes, you are obligated to publish a notice of the application in a local parish newspaper once a week three times in a row. The local Clerk of Court can provide you with more information about eligible newspapers and required fees.