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South Dakota DBA In 3 Easy Steps

South Dakota DBA In 3 Easy Steps

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South Dakota DBA In 3 Easy Steps

If you’re planning to start a business in South Dakota under a name other than your own, you will need to register for a business name. Business name registration is commonly referred to as a South Dakota DBA or “Doing Business As.” To see if you need to register for a South Dakota DBA and steps on how to register, check out our guide.

Related: How to start a business in South Dakota

Who Needs to Register for a South Dakota DBA?

The requirements for registering for a DBA in South Dakota are listed in State Statute, SD Code § 37-11-11, and vary depending on the type of business entity.

Sole proprietorships and general partnerships are the most common business structures to register for a South Dakota 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 that doesn’t show the last name of each person who owns the business, they will need to complete the DBA registration.

For example, if Sam Smith starts a consulting business and operates under the name Sam Smith, he doesn’t need to register his business name.  If Sam decides to name his business Sam’s Consulting, he will need to register.

Related: How to start a sole proprietorship in South Dakota

A corporation and Limited Liability Company (and other business entities like the Limited Partnership and Limited Liability Partnership) won’t typically register for a South Dakota DBA since a unique legal 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 a South Dakota corporation or Limited Liability Company without having to form another entity.

What Are the Steps to Register a South Dakota DBA?

Step 1: Verify Name Availability

A business may not register a name that is the same or similar to another business in South Dakota. So, the first step in the DBA registration process is doing a South Dakota business name search through the South Dakota Secretary of State.

Step 2: Get a South Dakota Business ID Number

Before filling out the DBA application, you will need to have your state ID number. To get this number, fill out the Tax License Application from the South Dakota Department of Revenue.

Step 3: File the DBA Application

Next, get the DBA application from the South Dakota Secretary of State website to fill out the DBA application.

Information requested on the form includes:

  • Assumed business name being registered
  • Principal address of the business
  • Name and address of the owners
  • State Business Tax ID Number

Fill out the fields and submit with payment.

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.

South Dakota DBA FAQs

How much does a South Dakota DBA cost?

The South Dakota Secretary of State requires a $10 state filing fee to obtain a DBA. The filing is good for 5 years and renewable.

How long does it take to process the South Dakota DBA application?

The South Dakota Secretary of State normally processes a DBA application in 3-5 business days.

After registering a DBA, can someone use my business name?

While registering your DBA will keep someone else from registering the exact same name in the state of South Dakota, 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

What is the difference between a South Dakota DBA and a business license?

These are actually two different business registrations. In addition to the South Dakota 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 South Dakota?

Are there any restricted words for a South Dakota DBA?

In addition to being unique, DBAs can’t be registered using words related to banking, suggesting that the business does something it doesn’t offer, or referring to a government agency.

Additionally, a DBA can’t be registered using an entity designator, such as an LLC or corporation, unless the business is that type of entity.

Does a DBA need an EIN?

An EIN or Employer Identification Number (sometimes called a 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 South Dakota


  1. SD Code § 37-11-1 ↩︎

South Dakota DBA In 3 Easy Steps

South Dakota DBA In 3 Easy Steps

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