How to File a DBA in Georgia

Image of a man looking up how to file a D B A in Georgia

Registering a Georgia DBA (doing business as), also known as a trade name, is a simple process that you complete with the county where you do business.

To learn more about why you may need a DBA, read our What is a DBA article.

How To Use This Guide

Use our free guide below to file for a DBA in Georgia:

Use A Professional Service

A professional service will handle filing your DBA on your behalf, allowing you to focus on the other needs of your new business.

four point eight out of fiveMyCompanyWorks ($99 + state fee) for a personalized DBA service.

four point five out of five Swyft Filings ($99 + state fee)

How to Set up a DBA in Georgia

Step 1: Start With a Georgia DBA Name Search

The first step to getting a DBA is choosing the name and making sure it’s available. Your name can be similar to other business names, but it’s still a good practice to create a unique name.

TIP: Our business name generator tool is a great resource for entrepreneurs who are still working to create the perfect business name or website address.

Before you file your DBA, you will be required to search state and county records to make sure your exact name isn’t already taken. You will also need to consider any naming rules.

In Georgia, your business name should not include:

  • Any business entity suffix, such as LLC, Incorporated, Corp., etc unless the business is actually an LLC, corporation, etc.
  • Any variations on the word “bank” or related words without approval from the state’s Department of Banking and Finance.
  • The words “insurance,” “assurance,” “surety,” “fidelity,” “reinsurance,” “reassurance,” or “indemnity” without approval from the state’s Office of Insurance and Safety Fire Commissioner.

You can view more information about Georgia’s business naming rules here.

Next, a quick search on the U.S. Trademark Electronic Search System will tell you whether someone else has already trademarked your name.

Now would be the perfect time to make sure there’s a web domain available for your DBA as well.

Find a Domain Now

Service provided by GoDaddy.com

After registering a domain name, consider setting up a professional email account (@yourcompany.com). Google's G Suite offers a business email service that comes with other useful tools, including word processing, spreadsheets, and more. Try it for free

Step 2: Register Your DBA with the County Clerk of Superior Court

When registering a DBA, Georgia law requires you to submit an application with the County Clerk of Superior Court where your principal place of business is located.

DBA regulations are very similar from county to county, but they do vary. We will give you step-by-step directions to get a Fulton County trade name.

If you need to file in a different county, you’ll need to contact the correct County Clerk of Superior Court for instructions.

These links will lead you to the trade name websites for some of the more populated counties:

You can find the complete list of county contact information here.

A DBA does not offer any protection for your personal assets in the event that your business is sued. For more information on setting up a limited liability company, visit our How to Form an LLC page and select your state.


How to File a Fulton County DBA

At this point, you should’ve already chosen a name for your business and completed the name searches in Step 1 above. You will need to fill out the below form and then submit it to the Fulton County Clerk of Superior Court office.

Forms

Trade name applications are processed within four weeks. Fulton County recommends filing the application in person if you need a time-stamped copy immediately. If filed at an annex location, Fulton County cannot immediately provide a book/page.

Submit Your Trade Name Application

136 Pryor Street
Ground Floor
Atlanta, GA 30303

Fees

  • $172 registration fee (varies slightly by county)
  • Publishing fee of $20 per 100 words per insert (with 2 inserts required), plus a $5 affidavit fee

Manage Your Fulton County DBA


DBA Questions

For general questions about filing a trade name application in Fulton County, you can call the Clerk for Superior Court at 404-613-5371.


Renew Your DBA

Your Fulton County trade name does not need to be renewed.


Change Your DBA

To make changes to your trade name, you need to fill out a new registration form with the appropriate amendments. The fee is $174 ($172 plus a $2 cross-referencing fee).


Withdraw Your DBA

To withdraw your trade name in Fulton County, fill out the Affidavit to Cancel Registered Trade Name form and submit it to the Clerk of Superior Court. The fee is $174 ($172 plus a $2 cross-referencing fee).

Step 3: Publish a Notice for Your DBA

You must publish a legal notice in a newspaper in the county where your principal place of business is.

What To Do:

Within 30 days of registering your trade name, contact an approved newspaper from the county list in the county where your principal place of business is located. Request that the newspaper run a legal notice of trade name registration once a week for two weeks.

Publication is easy and when you call the newspaper to run your legal, they will be familiar with the process and will have a legal notice template for new trade names.

You should direct any questions about publication to the Clerk of Superior Court office that you registered your trade name with.

You can find the complete list of county contact information here .

Need Help Filing your DBA?

Have A Professional Service File Your DBA For You

A professional service will handle filing your DBA on your behalf, allowing you to focus on the other needs of your new business.

We recommend using MyCompanyWorks ($99 + state fee) for a personalized DBA service. You can also read our list of the best DBA filing services.

Georgia DBA FAQ

Can I file a Georgia DBA online?

You will need to contact the county of your principal place of business to find out if online filing is available, but it is generally done in person or by mail in Georgia. You can find the complete list of county contact information here .

How do I withdraw my Georgia DBA?

You will need to file an Affidavit to Cancel Trade Name form with the county office that you registered the trade name with.

How do I change my DBA in Georgia?

The process of making changes to your trade name in Georgia can vary state to state, but you may be required to file a new registration form that includes the amended information.

How often should I renew my Georgia DBA?

Your trade name does not expire in Georgia.

When is a DBA required in Georgia?

A DBA is required whenever a business is operating under a name other than its legal name.

How do I transfer my DBA in Georgia?

To transfer ownership of a trade name in Georgia, you will need to fill out a new registration statement.

How many DBAs can I have?

You can have as many DBAs as you can afford to create and are able to keep track of. However, more isn’t necessarily better. Each one will come with additional incremental expense and paperwork, so you will want to make sure you have a good reason for each one you have.

Is my DBA protected from being used in other places?

There are some state-level laws that prevent DBAs that are too similar to existing ones from being used, but this varies from state to state. It is possible to trademark a DBA, which would offer stronger protection across state lines.

Can a DBA get an EIN or Tax ID?

DBAs aren’t required to have a separate EIN because DBAs aren’t a business entity. The business entity that the DBA is under would have an EIN if an EIN is required.

To learn more about EINs and when you would need one for your business, read What is An EIN from our friends at TRUiC.

Can a DBA become an LLC?

Your DBA is just a name. A DBA is often confused with a sole proprietorship. If you mean “can my sole proprietorship become an LLC?” then the answer is “Yes. Absolutely.”

To learn how to form an LLC, visit our Form an LLC state guides.

Can a DBA have "Inc." in the name?

A DBA can only have "Inc." in the name if the business entity the DBA is attached to is a corporation.

How do I set up a DBA for a Rental Property?

It’s always best to consult an attorney when seeking specific legal advice for your business. Usually, the best option is to form an LLC to protect your personal assets in the event of an issue with the rental property. Holding the rental property in your name and with a DBA will not afford you any protection.

Useful Links for Your Georgia DBA