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Fictitious Business Name/DBA in Nevada

Last updated Saturday, May 25, 2024


The abbreviation DBA means “doing business as” and is also referred to as a fictitious business name. A DBA is a registered name that a company or person utilizes to do business under that is not the legal name. The legal name of a company is different depending on its business structure. For LLCs, the legal name defaults to the name of the company. For sole proprietors and general partnerships, the legal name is the name of the person(s) that owns the company.


DBA application filing is only required if you operate a corporation or LLC under a name other than the name that was filed with either the articles of incorporation, or articles of organization. It is generally not necessary for you to create a DBA for a corporation or limited liability company (LLC). However, there are some instances in which you might want to depending on certain factors. Specifically, an LLC is a popular business type offering the liability protections of a corporation without the formalities typically required of corporations. A DBA only changes the name of your business. It changes nothing else.


It is required by Nevada Revised Statutes (NRS 602.010) that every person doing business in the state of Nevada under an assumed or fictitious name that is different from the legal name of each person who owns an interest in the business must file with the County Clerk of each county in which the business is being conducted a certificate containing the information required by the above Nevada Revised Statute. Registering a fictitious business name in Nevada does not prevent others from using the same name. However, it is still recommended that you pick a unique name. Nevada fictitious firm names must meet the state requirements. You will search the specific county clerk’s office where you intend to do business primarily.


To create an LLC or corporation, you must file articles of organization with the appropriate state agency, usually the Secretary of State's office. In contrast to a DBA, it is a formal entity with its own separate legal existence. Its articles of organization must state the company's legal name, which cannot be too similar to any other existing entities in the state. This type of business structure does not need a fictitious name as long as it's conducted under its legal name.


An individual operating a sole proprietorship must file DBA paperwork if he is not using his own legal name as the company's name. An LLC or corporation does not generally need this, but you may want or need one if you want to do work under a name different from the company's legal name.


In order to conduct business in Nevada under a name that is different from your own, you must file a form with the county clerk.  This is known either as a “fictitious firm name” or “DBA” (Doing Business As).  For example, if your legal name is John Doe, and you want to open Joe's Hardware as a sole proprietor, you need to register “Joe's Hardware” as a DBA before you open your business.  This will enable you to get a business license and also to open a business bank account. A corporation or LLC may also need to file a DBA in order to conduct business in Nevada under a name different from the official name on the incorporation or organization filing.  For example, if Joe's Widgets, Inc. wishes to open a business called Gadget World, they need to register “Gadget World” as a DBA. Most banks require a Nevada DBA registration and a certified copy of the Nevada DBA before opening a business bank account. In most Nevada counties, the application form for a DBA is only one page long, costs $20 to file, and does not expire for 5 years.


Why do you need a DBA?

·        A DBA keeps things simple for small businesses. A DBA is the best way for a sole proprietorship to operate under a fictitious business name without forming a separate LLC or corporation.

·        A DBA simplifies branding and marketing in Nevada. The business name you decide on is your first impression. Your DBA name is your brand name. For example, clients would not know that Jake Smith opened a bakery without a DBA. His Nevada DBA allows him to operate under the new name, Jake’s Baked Goods.

·        A DBA benefits your LLC or incorporation. A DBA allows an LLC to operate various companies in different lines of business. For example, Joe’s Seeds and Plants LLC opens a flower shop. Joe’s Seeds and Plants LLC registers a DBA name in Nevada to open The Sunflower Shop’s flower shop. The flower shop can now operate using a fictitious name.

·        A DBA keeps business banking simple. A DBA helps protect the business owner and their personal assets and credit scores. Most financial institutions require that new businesses file a DBA before opening a business bank account using the new name. However, a DBA does not offer legal protection or liability protection by itself.

·        A DBA addresses the privacy of business owners. Registering a DBA allows small business owners the freedom to use a fictitious business name on public-facing material rather than using their personal name.


If you want to conduct business under any variant of its legal name, you will need to obtain a DBA. Here are some reasons why you might want to:


·        When you don't want to use the "LLC" in your company's name, as state law usually specifies that the company must include this designation in its legal name.

·        When you want to use your establishment as an umbrella for several related ones.

·        When you want to expand into another state that has an existing business with a confusingly similar name. To grow your business into additional states, you must register with each new state as a foreign LLC or corporation and obtain permission to operate there. If a state already has a company operating under a name similar to yours, you will need a fictitious name for a different name to work there.


Nevada DBA tax considerations:


·        In Nevada, a DBA just changes the name of your business.

·        A DBA has no effect on the status of a business entity for tax purposes.

·        You do not have to have a separate employer identification number because a DBA is not a legal entity.

·        Federally, the IRS does not require that you have a separate tax ID number.


An LLC and corporation are created at the state level, while DBA applications are usually submitted at the county or city level. This regulatory framework aims to protect consumers by making it clear who really owns and operates an establishment. As noted above, if an individual with a sole proprietorship wants to use any name but her own for her business, she must file for a fictitious name with the appropriate office in her locality. Having an assumed name does not create a separate legal entity. It is merely a name to trade under. Therefore, unlike a limited liability company or corporation, it offers you no protection from your company's debts and liabilities.


Nevada Revised Statutes: Section 602.010 Filing of certificate with county clerk


·        Every person doing business in this state under an assumed or fictitious name that is in any way different from the legal name of each person who owns an interest in the business, must file with the County Clerk of each county in which the business is being conducted, a certificate containing the information required by NRS 602.020.

·        A person intending to conduct a business under an assumed or fictitious name may, before initiating the conduct of the business, file a certificate with the County Clerk of each county in which the business is intended to be conducted.

·        If the Board of County Commissioners of a county has adopted an ordinance pursuant to NRS 602.035, a certificate filed pursuant to this section expires 5 years after it is filed with the County Clerk.


The filing of a fictitious firm name does not give exclusive rights to the use of that name.  An FFN filing is also required by the Business License office before issuing a business license under a fictitious name. A person doing business in this state without complying with the requirements of this chapter or having falsely filed a certificate of termination is guilty of a misdemeanor (NRS 602.090). Each individual business name must have a separate filing. 


In Nevada, a fictitious name can’t contain any of the following:

·        Business suffixes such as LLC, Incorporated, Inc, etc., unless that is the actual business structure.

·        Any words or phrases related to financial institutions such as bank, banc, credit union, etc., unless approved by the Nevada Commissioner of Financial Institutions.

·        Any words related to mortgage lending companies such as financial, mortgage, etc., unless approved by the Nevada Division of Mortgage Lending.

·        Any words related to accounting such as accountant, auditor, auditing, accountant, CPA, etc., unless approved by the Nevada State Board of Accounting.

·        Any words related to architecture such as architect, architecture, licensed architect, interior, licensed residential designer, etc., unless approved by the Nevada State Board of Architecture, Interior Design, and Residential Design.

·        Any words related to engineering such as engineer, engineering, licensed engineer, etc., unless approved by The Nevada Board of Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors.


You can find additional Nevada DBA naming restrictions in Nevada Revised Statutes § 86.171


County Clerk Information For Filing A Fictitious Firm Name Or DBA (Doing Business As)





Carson City

108 E. Proctor Street Carson City, NV. 89701


Churchill County

155 N. Taylor St., Suite 110 Fallon, NV. 89406-2748


Clark County

500 S. Grand Central Pkwy., 1st Floor P.O.Box 551604 Las Vegas, NV. 89155-1604


Douglas County

1594 Esmeralda St. P.O.Box 218 Minden, NV. 89423-0218


Elko County

571 Idaho St. 3rd Floor Elko, NV. 89801-3700


Esmeralda County

P.O. Box 547 Goldfield, NV. 89013-0547


Eureka County

P.O. Box 677 Eureka, NV. 89316-0677


Humboldt County

50 W. 5th St., #207 Winnemucca, NV. 89445-3199


Lander County

315 S. Humboldt St. Battle Mountain, NV. 89820-9998


Lincoln County

1 North Maine St. P.O. Box 90Pioche, NV. 89043-0090


Lyon County

27 South Main St. Yerington, NV. 89447-0816


Mineral County

105 South "A" St., Suite 1 P.O.Box 1450 Hawthorne, NV. 89415-1450


Nye County

101 Radar Road P.O. Box 1031 Tonopah, NV. 89049-1031


Pershing County

400 Main St. P.O. Box 820 Lovelock, NV. 89419-0820


Storey County

County Court House, "B" St, Drawer "D" Virginia City, NV. 89440-0139


Washoe County

1001 E. 9th Street Building A, 1st Floor Reno, NV. 89512


White Pine County

801 Clark Street, Suite 4

Ely, NV. 89301-0659



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Revised May 25, 2024 8:15 AM



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