Can i trademark my fictitious business name [Best Article]

Last updated : Sept 29, 2022
Written by : Dorsey Oxton
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Can i trademark my fictitious business name

Can you trademark a fictitious name?

You cannot copyright or trademark your “fictitious” name or alias. Unlike the protections afforded to trademarks, your business assets and personal assets are not protected if you just file for a DBA.

Should I trademark my DBA name?

In most cases, registering a trademark is a good idea whether or not you already have a DBA name. A DBA name registration alone cannot prevent others from using your business name, and it may even be possible for another person to trademark your DBA name, meaning you would lose out on intellectual property protections.

How do I protect my DBA name?

Trademark. A trademark can protect the name of your business, goods, and services at a national level. Trademarks prevent others in the same (or similar) industry in the United States from using your trademarked names.

What business names Cannot be trademarked?

Trademark Basics Non-generic words, logos, slogans, colors, smells, and sounds can all be registered with the USPTO, as long as you can demonstrate how they represent your business. Inventions and works of authorship cannot become registered trademarks and should be protected with patents or copyrights respectively.

Can a DBA violate trademark?

A company that files a DBA name does not have exclusive rights to the registered name—and in fact may not even be able to use it legally in commerce if it violates another company's trademark. Trademarks, on the other hand, grant a business the exclusive right to use the mark, words, symbols, or title in commerce.

Should I trademark my business name before forming my LLC?

In most cases, the best time to file a trademark application for your business name is right after you've filed paperwork to form your LLC or corporation. By doing this before your business officially launches, it protects the name for commercial use once you're up and running.

What happens if I don't trademark my business?

If you do not register your trademark, you will have legal rights only within the geographic areas where you operate. This means you may be able to stop a subsequent user of the mark, even if it is a bigger company, from using the mark in your geographic area only.

Why should I trademark my business name?

A company's business name is among one of its most powerful branding assets. And as with other business assets, it's wise to protect it. If a business owner fails to do so, they run the risk of another company using the name. That can potentially confuse customers and create legal issues.

What are the disadvantages of a DBA?

  • Lack of Naming Rights: Using a DBA does not give you official rights to your business name.
  • Lack of Legal Protections: Using a DBA also does not give you the same legal protections and limited liability as an LLC or other corporate structure.

Can someone steal your business name?

Anyone can snatch up a business name and use it for their own business. There's no one uniform database or agency that ensures only one business is using a specific business name. That's how we often see very similar company names that aren't related by franchise or corporate ownership from one state to another.

How long does a trademark last?

A federal trademark lasts 10 years from the date of registration, with 10-year renewal terms. Between the fifth and sixth year after the registration date, the registrant must file an affidavit to state that the mark is still in use.

Can 2 businesses have the same name?

Can Two Companies Have the Same Name? Yes, however, certain requirements must be met in order for it to not constitutes trademark infringement and to determine which party is the rightful owner of the name.

Can the same name be trademarked twice?

However, if the two products are not related to one another and not likely to cause any confusion, then trademark law will not prevent the two companies from using the same name. Put differently, if the same name is registered in different trademark classes, this does not give rise to an infringement claim.

Which Comes First LLC or trademark?

The trademark needs to be owned by someone. The trademark owner is typically going to be the one who is using the trademark. If the plan is to form an LLC to operate your business using that trademark, then the LLC would be the trademark owner. So the LLC needs to exist before the application is filed.

Should I own my trademark or should my company?

The party who controls the nature and quality of the goods and services used in connection with the brand should be the trademark owner. This is an important decision and naming the proper owner for purposes of registration is critical to maintaining a valid trademark.

Can someone steal my logo?

Logo theft is a violation that occurs when one party steals or uses another party's trademarked logo without their permission. This is a more specific term for trademark infringement, and can take many forms. It typically involves the theft of a trademark or a service mark.

What is the cheapest way to trademark?

The basic cost to trademark a business name ranges from $225 to $600 per trademark class. This is the cost to submit your trademark application to the USPTO. The easiest and least expensive way to register your trademark is online, through the USPTO's Trademark Electronic Application System (TEAS).

Is it worth getting a trademark?

It is a good idea to register your trademark to protect yourself against an infringement suit, to add value to your company, to put your competitors and the public on notice of your rights in your own brand and to strengthen the legal protection of your mark.

How does a DBA affect taxes?

All earnings made from your DBA will still appear on your personal return and will be subject to regular income taxes and self-employment taxes. Self-employment taxes are where sole proprietors get hit the hardest. That's because they need to pay 15.3% taxes on all net business income before deductions.

Which is better DBA or LLC?

Registering a DBA does not typically give you exclusive rights to use your business name. Forming an LLC gives you more protection, because it ensures that another business entity can't be created in your state with the same name as your business.

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Can i trademark my fictitious business name

Comment by Nohemi Darienzo

hey this is attorney elizabeth potts weinstein and today we're going to talk about do you need a dba or do you need a trademark so to answer that question let's look at what is a dba and what is a trademark what are the purposes of both of them a dba a doing business as registration which in some places is called a fictitious business name registration some places is called a trade name is a registration you do with the state or the county where you are located to put the world on notice that you're using a name for your business a brand name that is different than the legal name of your business and the reason you have to do that dba or fbn registration is because it's required under state law that's the number one reason you have to do it if you're transacting business with a name that's different than your legal name so for a sole proprietorship your legal name is your name so if you have a name for your business that's different than your own legal name then you have to do the registration and if you're an llc if you have a name for your brand that's different than the name of the llc you have to do the registration because it's just required under state law also you're going to need that document so you can put the name of the business on your bank accounts merchant accounts all that kind of stuff if you want to put out your business with that brand name into the world and have it be on everything such as showing up when a charge is on your client's credit card statement then you're going to want to have that dba or fbn registration train marks are different trademarks are there to protect consumers we want to make sure that consumers when they go to buy a purse that it is the legit purse from the brand that they think they're purchasing from and not a counterfeit purse as an example so the idea of trademark registration is actually not to protect you as the owner as much it's more to protect consumers from counterfeit so they know the source of the the product or service that they're buying is what they think it is now it also protects you the business owner from someone else having a product service business whatever that has the exact same name in the same industry because you can file lawsuit against them and get them to stop trademark registration is also helpful with third parties like amazon twitter instagram if you have a registered trademark and someone else want has tries to get the url tries to use that brand on amazon and selling that brand because your registered trademark you can get dibs with that third-party business over the people who are trying to be confusing to everyone in the market but if you don't have a registered trademark they're probably not going to give you the time of day so which one do you need and maybe you actually need both it depends if you're using a name for your business that is different than the legal name of your business then you need that dba fbn registration if you want your to protect the brand name over the entire united states then you want to get a trademark registration so in some cases you're going to do both of those things because both of those things are true in some cases you just need one or the other it really depends upon the exact facts of your situation is this just something that's just one little product or is it the entire name of your business and how much money and time are you willing to spend on this that's my last point dbas take a little bit of time and money but they're much faster than getting a registered trademark so with the dba or fbn registration for example here in california not only do you have to register the fictitious business name with your county you also have to have it published in a legal newspaper so it takes six to eight weeks or more for all that paperwork to be done typically the cost is going to be around 100 so between 75 125 somewhere in there trademarks though with the united states patent and trademark office take a lot longer and cost a lot more money if you do it all yourself you don't hire a lawyer you don't use any kind of service you do all the filing yourself and you just do it in one category or class then it will be 250 for the filing fee as the time i'm recording this video as long as you fall under the requirements of that 250 sometimes it's actually 350 per class or category of your product or service and it takes a lot longer a trademark is currently going to take maybe nine months at the earliest but it's looking more like 12 to 18 months and that's assuming nothing goes wrong you don't have to have a fight with the trademark office so it can even take longer than that can take years to get that through so if you're deciding do you need a dba or a trademark most of you will probably need a dba if that's the name you're using for your business it's different than your legal name of your business for trademarks a lot of times it's not just about do you need it it's about how much time do you have and what is your budget again this is attorney elizabeth potts weinstein if you have any questions about what i've talked about today feel free to post them in the comments and i will and i will try to point you in the right direction thumbs up if you like this video and subscribe for more videos about small business law trademarks copyrights all that kind of stuff see you later bye

Thanks for your comment Nohemi Darienzo, have a nice day.
- Dorsey Oxton, Staff Member

Comment by ugleeboiI

hey everybody this is Seth can eat can even a real today I'm going to show you how to file for a fictitious business name and I'm also going to explain what is it for and do you actually need it for your business hey everybody this is Seth can eat can even a real this channel is to teach you how to build passive income one of the big parts of passive income is setting up your business right if your business is not set up correctly you can get into tax issues you can also get issues where people are using your logo or your brand and you have no way to protect yourself and so today I'm going to talk about fictitious business names now this comes under a lot of different terms some people call it a DBA doing business as some states and counties call it an assumed business name others call it a fictitious business name as I mentioned and others call it a trade name they're all the same thing though a fictitious business name is simply this when you register your company with the state or in a city or district the name that that company is as its own identity is one thing so for example if I go in and I say I want to start a business the simplest way possible just to me I don't want to set up anything big and fancy we're not gonna go public then I'll set up a sole proprietorship very low fees very simple now this means that the name of my business is me Seth penny and my social security number is the number that identifies my business which is also me me and the business are one and the same so when I pay taxes at the end of the year my all the money my business makes is personal income there's no separation from corporate income my company's income and my personal income it's all in the same now let's say my business is creating really cool clothing for cats and I want to market my business as Florel felines how do you like that the problem now is if I want to go out and do business as Florel felines I need to come up with an a fictitious business name or a DBA doing business as or a trade name or a soon business name because if I'm going to do business with an under a different name I have to file for that with the state or the county in order for it to be legal this not only protects me it helps to preserve my identity but also protects the customer in case you know their cat tried on the suit and it somehow was allergic and the cat got sick and they wanted to sue me for the vet bill and now therefore they have to know who they're suing or if they sue floral felines but that's not really my business name who is it so it becomes a legal issue in most states you're required to file for a fictitious business name and it's much more marketable to be advertising as floral fee lies instead of saying oh this is Seth cape and I'm you know making clothing for owners of cats let me give you another example or why someone would file for a fictitious business name let's say you're a partnership and by the way in most cases it'll be a sole proprietorship or a partnership that will file for a fictitious business name usually a corporation or an LLC don't need to because when you go in and file as a corporation or as an LLC that is your name in other words the name of your corporation is your business name and in some rare situations you might want to do business under a different name than your legal entity and that's a different scenario but not as common but let's just say a lady named Suzie Q decides that she's gonna go out and start a business so she sets up a sole proprietorship that means the name of her business is Suzie Q if that's her name the problem is that's not a great name if she's selling toe massage equipment she doesn't want her toe massage equipment to sound like a Twinkie so she needs to decide how am I going to market myself so she decides to register a fictitious business name called toe massage elites and therefore with the state or the county it depends on the state every state is different she goes in she registers and now they have that name on file as her doing business as name or her fictitious her fake business name when she files for taxes it'll still be under Suzie Q because that's the legal entity the fictitious business name is not a legal entity it's just in this case for marketing purposes the closest example I can think of is think about why an actor would use a stage name for example in 1946 Marilyn Monroe did not start with Marilyn Monroe that was not her real name she coined that name it was a pull off of her mother's maiden name and they coined that in 1946 because it sounded more Swift and more sexy and more catchy Marilyn Monroe has its own cadence that's not her real name it's her stage name just like a business you might be doing your business name as a sole proprietorship my the susie-q but your business name to your customers is gonna be called toe massage elite and that's why you have that distinction now some people do it to help protect their identity other people do it because it's more marketable but is the third reason people might do it pretend that you have a side business of selling hydrated yokes on eBay and your dry frizzy Oaks how about that and that's only 10% of your income but your main income over here is clothing for cats or for cute kitties floor or feline business both of them are under the LLC which you have called you've registered as Z industries so over here you might register a fictitious business name for your fall or felines and over here you register a DBA or a fictitious business name as freeze-dried yolks in other words you to your customer these are two separate businesses they don't know it's the same company but it doesn't matter the main company is Z industries these two are just DBAs fictitious business names when you file taxes you'll follow them all in one under z industries because that's the legal entity when i was 16 years old i wanted to become a professional magician so i went in and i registered my first business as a sole proprietorship in california and i had to go to the city clerk and i had to register a fictitious business name red and blue magic and entertainment i became a professional magician i was also a professional tap dancer i did this for a living in my late teens and early 20s and I was good at it now that was my first experience now why wouldn't I want to market my business as Seth Kinney well first of all keep is really hard to know how to pronounce unless you hear this phrase can even reel in second red a blue magic and entertainment just sounds better then Seth can eat so it was marketable so I had to go in and what they do and this is in most states and counties is you have to search a database to make sure no one else is using that same name if no one else is using the name you can use it and typically there's a fee anywhere from $0 like North Carolina up to $200 like Georgia but usually is between 25 and 50 dollars it's not that expensive so I registered my fictitious business name and I began doing business under that name even though the legal entity was still Seth can eat when I pay taxes at the end of the year I filed as Seth it was my o

Thanks ugleeboiI your participation is very much appreciated
- Dorsey Oxton

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