If you are starting a business as a sole proprietor or partnership you must file a document with the city, county or state as required by the laws of the state in which your business will be conducted. The name you choose for the business is a “fictitious name.” It is also called a “DBA” (doing business as). The laws are intended to protect those doing business with the company by providing a public record of the owner’s identity and the address of the business.
In many states, corporations and LLC’s may file assumed name certificates if they wish to conduct business under a “fictitious name.”
In New York State A fictitious name refers to a foreign corporation that must qualify in New York under another name because its original name conflicts with an existing New York entity. Nonetheless, many people use the term interchangeably with “doing business as” (DBA).
In New York, a DBA certificate is filed with the County Clerk in the county in which the company is located and an assumed name certificate for LLCs and corporations is filed in the Department of State.