How to File a DBA in Minnesota

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Filing a Minnesota DBA (doing business as), also known as a fictitious name, is a simple process that you complete with the Secretary of State. 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 Minnesota:

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How to Set up a DBA in Minnesota

Step 1: Start With a Minnesota DBA Name Search

If you haven't already, head over to the Minnesota Secretary of State website to make sure your assumed name isn't taken by another registered Minnesota business. 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.

In Minnesota, your fictitious name should not include:

  • Any business entity suffix, such as LLC, Incorporated, Corp., etc unless the business is actually an LLC, corporation, or etc.
  • Any terms given to financial institutions, including: "bank," "banc," "banco," "banque," "banker," "trust company," "savings and loan association," "savings bank," "credit union" or other similar words.

You can find more information about Minnesota business name guidelines 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 Minnesota DBA

In Minnesota, you register your DBA with the Secretary of State. You can file online, or you can complete the certificate of assumed name form.

The following information is needed on the form:

  • Section 1: Assumed name.
  • Section 2: Address of principal place of business
  • Section 3: Names and addresses of all owners of the assumed name.

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.


Submit Your Certificate of Assumed Name Form

File Online

Walk-In or Mail

Minnesota Secretary of State - Business Services
Retirement Systems of Minnesota Building
60 Empire Drive, Suite 100
St Paul, MN 55103

Fees

  • $30 Filing Fee by mail
  • $50 Filing Fee if done online or for expedited in-person processing

Manage Your Minnesota DBA

DBA Questions

Call the Minnesota Secretary of State: 1-877-551-6767

Renew Your DBA with the State

Your Minnesota assumed name must be renewed annually by December 31. You can renew online or by completing the annual renewal form and mailing or bringing it to:

Minnesota Secretary of State - Business Services
Retirement Systems of Minnesota Building
60 Empire Drive, Suite 100
St Paul, MN 55103

You can retroactively reinstate an expired assumed name by filing the current year's renewal and paying a $45 for expedited service in-person and online filings or $25 if submitted by mail.

Change Your DBA

You can make amendments to your certificate of assumed name online or by filling out the amendment of assumed name form and mailing or bringing it to:

Minnesota Secretary of State - Business Services
Retirement Systems of Minnesota Building
60 Empire Drive, Suite 100
St Paul, MN 55103

The fee is $30 if filed by mail or $50 if done online or for in-person expedited service.

Withdraw Your DBA

You can cancel your Minnesota assumed name online or by filling out the assumed name cancellation form and mailing or bringing it to:

Minnesota Secretary of State - Business Services
Retirement Systems of Minnesota Building
60 Empire Drive, Suite 100
St Paul, MN 55103

There is no fee for canceling an assumed name.

Step 3: Publish a Notice for Your DBA

After filing, the Certificate of Assumed Name must be published for two consecutive issues in the legal notices section of a qualified legal newspaper.

The newspaper must circulate in the county where the principal place of business is located. This must be done before conducting business under your assumed name.

Please see Minnesota Statutes, Chapter 333 for complete Assumed Name filing information.

Need Help Filing Your Minnesota 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 ZenBusiness ($95 + state fee) for a personalized DBA service.

DBA Minnesota FAQ

Can I file a DBA online in Minnesota?

You can file your assumed name online at Minnesota's Secretary of State website.

How do I change my DBA in Minnesota?

You can make amendments to your certificate of assumed name online or by filling out the amendment of assumed name form and mailing or bringing it to:

Minnesota Secretary of State - Business Services
Retirement Systems of Minnesota Building
60 Empire Drive, Suite 100
St Paul, MN 55103

How can I withdraw my DBA?

You can cancel your Minnesota assumed name online or by filling out the assumed name cancellation form and mailing or bringing it to:

Minnesota Secretary of State - Business Services
Retirement Systems of Minnesota Building
60 Empire Drive, Suite 100
St Paul, MN 55103

How often should I renew my Minnesota DBA?

Your Minnesota assumed name must be renewed annually by December 31. You can renew online or by completing the annual renewal form and mailing or bringing it to:

Minnesota Secretary of State - Business Services
Retirement Systems of Minnesota Building
60 Empire Drive, Suite 100
St Paul, MN 55103

When is a DBA required in Minnesota?

A DBA is required whenever a business is operating under a name other than its legal name. In the case of a sole proprietorship, you will need a DBA if you are operating under a name other than your own personal name.

How do I transfer my DBA in Minnesota?

Most transfers can be completed by filing an amendment to change the owner’s name.

You can make amendments to your certificate of assumed name online or by filling out the amendment of assumed name form and mailing or bringing it to:

Minnesota Secretary of State - Business Services
Retirement Systems of Minnesota Building
60 Empire Drive, Suite 100
St Paul, MN 55103

Is my Minnesota 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 your name is not protected in Minnesota. It is possible to create a federal trademark for a DBA, which would offer stronger protection across state lines.

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.

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. 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 Minnesota DBA