Doing Business As
D.B.A. or “Doing Business As” is not only a cool bar in the East Village, it also refers to individuals (sole proprietorships), partnerships, corporations and other entities that do business under a name different from their real name. For example, Joe Smith operates a computer service business under the name “Computer Geeks to the Rescue,” (fictional example) and Town Sports International, LLC operates a popular gym under the name “New York Sports Club” (real life example.)
If you are starting a business, but don’t want to form a legal entity yet (corporation or LLC), a business certificate gives you the ability to call your business something other than your personal name.
When you do business under a name different from your real name, you have to file a business certificate either with the county clerk of your county or with the Secretary of State in Albany. Here are the rules: