Filing an Illinois DBA

In Illinois, DBAs are referred to as Assumed Names. Your assumed name will be filed in one of two offices, depending on your structure. If you're filing an assumed name on behalf of an already incorporated entity, such as a corporation or LLC, you will file your Illinois DBA with the Corporations Division of the Secretary of State's office. Alternatively, if you are filing as a general partnership or a sole proprietorship (individual), you will file your Illinois DBA with your County Clerk's office

Select Your State
Select Entity Type

How to File a DBA for a Sole Proprietor or Partnership

A sole proprietorship or a partnership will be filed with the County Clerk of the county in which the business is physically located. Many counties (Cook County being a notable exception) require that your chosen name be distinguishable from other names on file in that county— can perform a DBA name search at the county level to help you avoid running into this problem in the form of a rejection.

A basic amount of information is required in order to form a DBA. A typical list of this information is as follows:

  • The name of your DBA
  • The name(s) of the owner(s) of the DBA
  • Business address
  • Home address—this must typically be a physical address
  • Notarized signature of owner(s)

Some counties also ask how many years you wish your DBA to be active.

A DBA filing only remains active if the state-wide publication requirements are met. Upon filing, the owner of the DBA must immediately commence publication of a legal notice announcing the new filing, usually once a week for three weeks. If the deadline for publication (frequently within 15 calendar days of the filing date) is not met, the filing is immediately cancelled, and anyone wishing to operate their new DBA must file again.

How to File a DBA for an Incorporated Entity

Incorporated entities already have a record with the Corporations Division; a DBA filing simply modifies that corporate record to include the new assumed name by drafting and filing the Application to Adopt, Change or Cancel an Assumed Corporate Name.

Since much information about the DBA (namely, the owning entity) is already on file with the state, the application process is quite simple. Information required is listed below:

  • Name and filing information of corporation
  • Name of assumed name
  • Expiration date of the assumed name filing (which corresponds with the corporation's anniversary month)
  • Signature of an authorized officer

The filing fee of an Illinois corporate assumed name varies, interestingly, based on how close the current year is to a year divisible by 5; the length of a filing is anywhere from 1 to 5 years, depending on how many years are left in the current 5-year increment, and filing fees are prorated accordingly.

Illinois Startup Quicklinks

Order Now