How to File a DBA in Idaho

By Heather Frances J.D.

In Idaho, you can operate your business as a sole proprietorship -- meaning there is no legal difference between you and your business -- or under a formal business structure like a corporation or limited liability company. Whatever business structure you choose, you must operate your business under your business’s legal name unless you file a Certificate of Assumed Business Name with the Idaho Secretary of State.

Assumed Name

If you are “doing business as” any name other than your business’s legal name, Idaho law says you are doing business under an "assumed name." If you operate a sole proprietorship, an assumed name is any name different from your personal name. If you operate another type of business entity, an assumed name is a name different from the names of your partners, corporation or limited liability company. For example, if you operate a photography business without any formal business structure, you are a sole proprietor. If you conduct your business under your personal name, you do not have to file an assumed name certificate. However, if you conduct business as Sunshine Photography, for example, you must file a certificate since you are using a different name from your own.

Choosing a Name

Before choosing an assumed name for your business, you may wish to check whether the name you want is available. The Secretary of State’s office keeps all business names on file and they are public record, so you can ask the office to check its records to ensure the name you want to use is not identical or deceptively similar to another business’s name. Alternatively, you can check yourself using the Secretary of State’s online business entity search. Filing a certificate is a “notice” filing, which means that your filing simply gives notice to the public that you are using that name. Filing itself does not give you the exclusive right to use the name.

File a DBA for your business online. Get Started Now

Filing Your Certificate

To file a Certificate of Assumed Business Name, you must use the form provided on the Idaho Secretary of State’s website. You must include information such as your assumed name, your business’s actual legal name, your business’s address and type of business. You can fill out the form online and mail it or hand-deliver the form and filing fee to the Secretary of State at the address listed on the form. You can also fax your certificate, but you must provide payment along with the fax.

Reserving a Name

If you plan to create your business under a formal legal structure, such as a corporation or limited liability company, you might have a name in mind for your business before you are ready to actually file your formation documents. In this situation, you can reserve your proposed name for up to four months by filing an Application for Reservation of Legal Entity Name. The form includes your name and address along with the name you want to reserve, and it must be accompanied by a filing fee. You don’t have to file this form if you are ready to file your formation documents. For example, if you are already operating your business as a sole proprietorship under an assumed name and you are ready to incorporate the business, you likely will not need to file a reservation application.

File a DBA for your business online. Get Started Now
How to Register a Business Name With the State of South Carolina


Related articles

Copy of Articles of Incorporation for a Michigan Corporation

Corporations offer liability protection for shareholders by providing a separate legal entity that divides personal debts and assets from business debts and assets. Though this is an attractive structure for many businesses, you must file appropriate forms, including articles of incorporation, to operate a corporation legally, and copies of these forms are available from the state of Michigan.

What Steps Are Involved in Forming a C Corporation?

C corporations are complex business entities that have chosen to incorporate under Subchapter C of Chapter 1 of the Internal Revenue Code. A C corporation is recognized as a distinct legal entity, and it is owned by its shareholders. The corporate structure protects individual shareholders from personal liability arising out of the business. A C corporation is governed by the laws of the state in which it filed articles of incorporation.

How do I Obtain a Business Name in Idaho?

Any person who intends to transact business in Idaho under an assumed business name must file a Certificate of Assumed Business Name with the Idaho Secretary of State before beginning to transact business. However, if an individual is using both his first and last names within the business name, he doesn’t have to file the certificate. Further, if a business entity, such as a limited liability company or a corporation, is organized and registered with the state, the owners or incorporators do not have to file a Certificate of Assumed Business Name with the Idaho Secretary of State, as long as the assumed name of the business appears on its filed organizational document.

Related articles

How to File a DBA on Your Own in Iowa

When you operate a business under any name besides the registered name or your own name if you are a sole proprietor, ...

What Do You Need to Register a Business Name?

For many customers, your business name is the first point of reference they have with regard to your company. Leave a ...

Rules and Regulations for a Sole Proprietorship

Starting your new business as a sole proprietorship is the easiest and least expensive legal business structure you can ...

How to Form an S Corporation in Wisconsin

An S corporation is a regular corporation, or C corporation, that has filed a special tax election with the IRS. ...

Browse by category
Ready to Begin? GET STARTED