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Indiana DBA / Assumed Business Name In 5 Easy Steps

Indiana DBA / Assumed Business Name In 5 Easy Steps

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Indiana DBA / Assumed Business Name In 5 Easy Steps

If you’re planning to start a business in Indiana using a specific name, you may need to register for a business name. Business name registration is commonly referred to as an Indiana DBA or “Doing Business As,” but is officially called an Assumed Business Name. To see if you need to register for an Indiana Assumed Business Name and steps on how to register, check out our guide.

Related: How to start a business in Indiana

Who Needs to Register for an Indiana Assumed Business Name?

According to Indiana state law, a business needs to register for an assumed name before conducting business under that name.1 The requirements and need to register for an Assumed Name vary depending on the type of business entity.

Sole proprietorships and general partnerships are the most common business structures to register for an Indiana DBA. By default, the name of a sole proprietorship and general partnership is the owner(s) legal name, but if the small business owner wants to operate under a specific name, they will need to complete the Assumed Business Name certificate.

For example, if Amy Smith starts a resume writing service but isn’t going to operate under a specific business name, she doesn’t have to register. However, if she decides to name her business Amy’s Awesome Resumes, she will need to register for a business name. Under Indiana state law IC 23-0.5-3-4(i)(1-2), she could operate under Smith’s Awesome Resumes without registering.2

Related: How to start a sole proprietorship in Indiana

A corporation, Limited Liability Company, Limited Partnership, or Limited Liability Partnership won’t typically register for an Indiana DBA since a unique entity name is created during the entity formation process. However, some will want to register for a DBA if they have another business or brand name they want to operate in addition to the legal name of the business. This can allow multiple businesses to operate with the liability protection of an Indiana corporation or Limited Liability Company without having to form another entity. 

Steps to Register an Indiana Assumed Business Name

Sole Proprietorships and Partnerships

Step 1: Check for Name Availability

Assumed names will need to be different from any other registered names in the state. To check and see if your name is available, you can do an Indiana business name search on the Indiana Secretary of State website.

Step 2: Obtain the Certificate of Assumed Business Name Form

Sole proprietorships and partnerships will obtain the form from the County Recorder in the county where the business’s principal office is located.

Some counties offer this form for download on their websites; however, some require that it be picked up from the County Recorder’s office.

List of Indiana County Recorders

Step 3: Fill out the Form

Common information requested on the form includes:

  • Name being requested
  • What the business does
  • Address of the business
  • Names of the owners

Step 4: Notarize the Form

Before signing, the form will need to be notarized.  Most county offices have a notary on-site.

Step 5: File the Form

File the form with the County Recorder, and you will receive a certificate.

If you would prefer to have a someone else research DBA name availability and file the required forms, Bizee and LegalZoom offer a DBA registration service for $99, plus state fees.

Corporations, LLCs, LLPs, & LPs

Step 1: Check for Name Availability

Assumed names will need to be different from any other registered names in the state. To check and see if your name is available, you can do an Indiana business name search on the Indiana Secretary of State website.

Step 2: Obtain the Form

The Certificate of Assumed Business Name form (Form 30533) is available from the Indiana Secretary of State to download or to file online.

Step 3: Fill out the Form

You can only apply for one name at a time on a form.  To register for multiple names, you will need to use multiple forms.

Step 4: Submit the Form

If filing online, submit the form along with the filing fee.

If mailing, send to:

Indiana Secretary of State – Business Services Division
302 West Washington Street, Room E018
Indianapolis, IN 46204

Indiana DBA FAQs

How much does an Indiana Assumed Name cost?

The filing fee for Sole Proprietorships and Partnerships to register for a Certificate of Assumed Name varies by county and is generally around $25.

Corporations and Limited Liability Companies will be charged $20 when filing online or $30 when filing by mail.

Are there any naming restrictions when filing an Indiana DBA?

An Assumed Name can’t use a business entity suffix that is different from the type of entity. For example, a sole proprietorship can’t use LLC or corporation in its name.

Assumed Names also can’t be registered using words that are related to banks or insurance such as banking, savings, trust, credit union, or insurance unless the business is licensed by the Indiana Department of Financial Institutions to provide those services.

Names also can’t include wording that may refer to a government agency, such as Treasury, State Department, CIA, FBI, etc.

Can someone use my business name after registering an Indiana DBA?

While registering your Assumed Name will keep someone else from registering the exact same name in the state of Indiana, it does very little to stop someone else from operating that business name in other states. If stopping others from using your business name is important, you can protect it through a trademark.

Related: How to trademark a business name

Does a DBA need an EIN?

A DBA by itself doesn’t need an EIN, but the business entity may.

An EIN or Employer Identification Number (also informally called a business tax ID number) is a unique nine-digit number that some businesses will register for through the Internal Revenue Department (IRS). An EIN is required for partnerships, corporations, multi-member LLCs, or any business that has employees.

Sole proprietorships and single-member LLCs without employees can use the owner’s social security number to identify the business.
There is no cost to get an EIN when registering directly from the IRS.

Related: How to register for an EIN in Indiana

What is the difference between an Indiana Assumed Name and a business license?

These are actually two different business registrations. In addition to the Indiana Trade Name registration, most businesses will also need a business license. The licenses a business will need vary depending on what the business does and local registration requirements.

Related: What business licenses are needed in Indiana?

  1. IC 23-0.5-3-4 ↩︎
  2. IC 23-0.5-3-4(i)(1-2) ↩︎

Author

  • Greg Bouhl

    With over two decades as an entrepreneur, educator, and business advisor, Greg Bouhl has worked with over 2,000 entrepreneurs to help them start and grow their businesses. Fed up with clients finding and acting on inaccurate and outdated information online, Greg launched StartUp101.com to be a trusted resource for people starting a business.

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Indiana DBA / Assumed Business Name In 5 Easy Steps

Indiana DBA / Assumed Business Name In 5 Easy Steps

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