Higher category: Property and Property law
A trade name, trading name, or business name is a pseudonym frequently used by companies to operate under a name different from their registered, legal name. The term for this type of alternative name is a "fictitious" business name. Registering the fictitious name with the relevant government body is often required.
A pseudonym or alias is a name that a person or group assumes for a particular purpose, which can differ from their first or true name (orthonym). The term is not used when a new name entirely replaces an individual's own.
Legal name is the name that identifies a person for legal, administrative and other official purposes. A person's first legal name generally is the name of the person that was given for the purpose of registration of the birth and which then appears on a birth certificate, but may change subsequently. Most jurisdictions require the use of a legal name for all legal and administrative purposes, and some jurisdictions permit or require a name change to be recorded at marriage. The legal name may need to be used on various government issued documents. The term is also used when an individual changes their first or full name, typically after reaching a certain legal age.
In a number of countries, the phrase "trading as" (abbreviated to t/a) is used to designate a trade name. In the United States, the phrase "doing business as" (abbreviated to DBA, dba, d.b.a. or d/b/a) is used,among others, such as assumed business name or fictitious business name. In Canada, "operating as" (abbreviated to o/a) and "trading as" (abbreviated to T/A) are used, although "doing business as" is also sometimes used.
The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States or America, is a country comprising 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, and various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is slightly smaller than the entire continent of Europe. With a population of over 327 million people, the U.S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D.C., and the most populous city is New York City. Most of the country is located contiguously in North America between Canada and Mexico.
Canada is a country in the northern part of North America. Its ten provinces and three territories extend from the Atlantic to the Pacific and northward into the Arctic Ocean, covering 9.98 million square kilometres, making it the world's second-largest country by total area. Its southern border with the United States, stretching some 8,891 kilometres (5,525 mi), is the world's longest bi-national land border. Canada's capital is Ottawa, and its three largest metropolitan areas are Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver.
A company typically uses a trade name to conduct business using a simpler name rather than using their formal and often lengthier name. Trade names are also used when a preferred name cannot be registered, often because it may already be registered or is too similar to a name that is already registered.
Fictitious business names do not create separate legal entities.The distinction between a registered legal name and a fictitious business name, or trade name, is important because fictitious business names may not always identify the entity that is legally responsible. Legal agreements such as contracts are normally made using the registered legal name of the business; and the legal name must be used whenever a business sues or is being sued.
In law, liable means "responsible or answerable in law; legally obligated." Legal liability concerns both civil law and criminal law and can arise from various areas of law, such as contracts, torts, taxes, or fines given by government agencies. The claimant is the one who seeks to establish, or prove, liability.
In English, trade names are generally treated as proper nouns.
In some Canadian jurisdictions, such as Ontario, when a businessperson writes a trade name on a contract, invoice, or cheque, he or she must also add the legal name of the business.
Jurisdiction is the practical authority granted to a legal body to administer justice within a defined field of responsibility, e.g., Michigan tax law. In federations like the United States, areas of jurisdiction apply to local, state, and federal levels; e.g. the court has jurisdiction to apply federal law.
Ontario is one of the 13 provinces and territories of Canada. Located in Central Canada, it is Canada's most populous province accounting for 38.3 percent of the country's population, and is the second-largest province in total area. Ontario is fourth-largest jurisdiction in total area when the territories of the Northwest Territories and Nunavut are included. It is home to the nation's capital city, Ottawa, and the nation's most populous city, Toronto, which is also Ontario's provincial capital.
Numbered companies will very often operate as something other than their legal name, which is unrecognizable to the public.
A numbered company is a corporation given a generic name based on its sequentially assigned registration number. For instance, an entity incorporated under the Canada Business Corporations Act and assigned the corporation number 1234567 would be entitled to register "1234567 Canada Inc." as its legal name. Similarly, in Australia, a company assigned the Australian Company Number 123 456 789 upon registration can have its legal name as "123 456 789 Pty Ltd".
In Chile, a trade name is known as a nombre de fantasía ('fantasy' or 'fiction' name), and the legal name of business is called a razón social (social name).
In Brazil, a trade name is known as a nome fantasia ('fantasy' or 'fiction' name), and the legal name of business is called razão social (social name).
In Japan, the word yagō (屋号) is used.
In Singapore, there is no filing requirement for a "trading as" name, however, there are requirements for disclosure of the underlying business or company's registered name and unique entity number.
In the United Kingdom, there is no filing requirement for a "trading as" name, however, there are requirements for disclosure of the owner's true name and some restrictions on the use of certain names.
In several U.S. states, DBAs are officially referred to using another term. Oregon uses Assumed Business Names;Washington calls DBAs trade names; other states refer to trade styles or fictitious business names.
For consumer protection purposes, many U.S. jurisdictions require businesses operating with fictitious names to file a DBA statement, though names including the first and last name of the owner may be accepted. [ citation needed ] Since most people in these circumstances use a business name other than their own name, [ citation needed ] it's often necessary for them to get DBAs.This also reduces the possibility of two local businesses operating under the same name, although some jurisdictions do not provide exclusivity for a name, or may allow more than one party to register the same name. Note, though, that this is not a substitute for filing a trademark application. A DBA filing carries no legal weight in establishing trademark rights. In the U.S., trademark rights are acquired by use in commerce, but there can be substantial benefits to filing a trademark application. Sole proprietors are the most common users of DBAs. Sole proprietors are individual business owners who run their businesses themselves, and are typically newer to the small business game.
Generally, a DBA must be registered with a local or state government, or both, depending on the jurisdiction. For example, California, Texas and Virginia require a DBA to be registered with each county (or independent city in the case of Virginia) where the owner does business. Maryland and Colorado have DBAs registered with a state agency. And Virginia requires corporations and LLCs to file a copy of their registration with the county or city to also be registered with the State Corporation Commission.
DBA statements are often used in conjunction with a franchise. The franchisee will have a legal name under which it may sue and be sued, but will conduct business under the franchiser's brand name (which the public would recognize). A typical real-world example can be found in a well-known pricing mistake case, Donovan v. RRL Corp., 26 Cal. 4th 261 (2001), where the named defendant, RRL Corporation, was a Lexus car dealership doing business as "Lexus of Westminster", but remaining a separate legal entity from Lexus, a division of Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc.
In California, filing a DBA statement also requires that a notice of the fictitious name be published in local newspapers for some set period of time to inform the public of the owner's intent to operate under an assumed name. The intention of the law is to protect the public from fraud, by compelling the business owner to first file or register his fictitious business name with the county clerk, and then making a further public record of it by publishing it in a newspaper.Several other states, such as Illinois, require print notices as well.
A corporation is an organization—usually a group of people or a company—authorized by the state to act as a single entity and recognized as such in law for certain purposes. Early incorporated entities were established by charter. Most jurisdictions now allow the creation of new corporations through registration.
Business is the activity of making one's living or making money by producing or buying and selling products. Simply put, it is "any activity or enterprise entered into for profit. It does not mean it is a company, a corporation, partnership, or have any such formal organization, but it can range from a street peddler to General Motors."
Australian trade mark law is based on common-law use-based rights as well as the Trade Marks Act 1995 (Cth), which is administered by IP Australia, an Australian government agency within the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science.
A collective trademark, collective trade mark, or collective mark is a trademark owned by an organization, used by its members to identify themselves with a level of quality or accuracy, geographical origin, or other characteristics set by the organization.
The Lanham (Trademark) Act is the primary federal trademark statute of law in the United States. The Act prohibits a number of activities, including trademark infringement, trademark dilution, and false advertising.
.ca is the Internet country code top-level domain (ccTLD) for Canada. The domain name registry that operates it is the Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA).
A sole proprietorship, also known as the sole trader, individual entrepreneurship or proprietorship, is a type of enterprise that is owned and run by one person and in which there is no legal distinction between the owner and the business entity. A sole trader does not necessarily work 'alone'—it is possible for the sole trader to employ other people.
A trademark attorney or trade mark attorney or agent is a person who is qualified to act in matters involving trademark law and practice and provide legal advice on trade mark and design matters.
A privately held company, private company, or close corporation is a business company owned either by non-governmental organizations or by a relatively small number of shareholders or company members which does not offer or trade its company stock (shares) to the general public on the stock market exchanges, but rather the company's stock is offered, owned and traded or exchanged privately or over-the-counter. More ambiguous terms for a privately held company are closely held corporation, unquoted company, and unlisted company.
Companies in the Republic of Liberia are regulated by a variety of laws. The corporate laws of Liberia were promulgated over 50 years ago to provide an offshore jurisdiction for ship owners and the international financial community. LISCR has been appointed by the Government of Liberia as its agent, to manage the corporate registry, and to act as the sole registered agent for corporations registered in Liberia, but having their place of business elsewhere. The corporate registry is managed by LISCR located in Dulles, Virginia in the US and an office in Zurich, Switzerland.
Canadian trademark law provides protection to marks by statute under the Trade-marks Act and also at common law. Trademark law provides protection for distinctive marks, certification marks, distinguishing guises, and proposed marks against those who appropriate the goodwill of the mark or create confusion between different vendors' goods or services. A mark can be protected either as a registered trade-mark under the Act or can alternately be protected by a common law action in passing off.
A company, abbreviated as co., is a legal entity made up of an association of people, be they natural, legal, or a mixture of both, for carrying on a commercial or industrial enterprise. Company members share a common purpose, and unite to focus their various talents and organize their collectively available skills or resources to achieve specific, declared goals. Companies take various forms, such as:
In United States business law, a registered agent, also known as a resident agent or statutory agent, is a business or individual designated to receive service of process (SOP) when a business entity is a party in a legal action such as a lawsuit or summons. The registered agent's address may also be where the state sends the paperwork for the periodic renewal of the business entity's charter. The registered agent for a business entity may be an officer or employee of the company, or a third party, such as the organization's lawyer or a service company. Failure to properly maintain a registered agent can affect a company negatively.
Foreign corporation is a term used in the United States to describe an existing corporation that conducts business in a state or jurisdiction other than where it was originally incorporated. The term applies both to domestic corporations that are incorporated in another state and to corporations that are incorporated in a nation other than the United States. All states require that foreign corporations register with the state before conducting business in the state.
A series limited liability company, commonly known as a series LLC and sometimes abbreviated as SLLC, is a form of a limited liability company that provides liability protection across multiple "series" each of which is theoretically protected from liabilities arising from the other series. In overall structure, the series LLC has been described as a master LLC that has separate divisions, which is similar to an S corporation with Q-subs.
In United States trademark law, the Supplemental Register is the secondary register of trademarks maintained by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. It was established in 1946 by Subchapter II of the Lanham Act, to allow the domestic registration of trademarks that do not meet all the requirements for registration on the Principal Register, so that the holder(s) of such a mark could register it in another country. This was necessary because under the Paris Convention for the Protection of Industrial Property foreign registration was not permitted in the absence of domestic registration, and the trademark laws of countries outside the U.S. often have less stringent registration requirements for marks.
Trademark distinctiveness is an important concept in the law governing trademarks and service marks. A trademark may be eligible for registration, or registrable, if it performs the essential trademark function, and has distinctive character. Registrability can be understood as a continuum, with "inherently distinctive" marks at one end, "generic" and "descriptive" marks with no distinctive character at the other end, and "suggestive" and "arbitrary" marks lying between these two points. "Descriptive" marks must acquire distinctiveness through secondary meaning—consumers have come to recognize the mark as a source indicator—to be protectable. "Generic" terms are used to refer to the product or service itself and cannot be used as trademarks.
A trademark is a type of intellectual property consisting of a recognizable sign, design, or expression which identifies products or services of a particular source from those of others, although trademarks used to identify services are usually called service marks. The trademark owner can be an individual, business organization, or any legal entity. A trademark may be located on a package, a label, a voucher, or on the product itself. For the sake of corporate identity, trademarks are often displayed on company buildings. It is legally recognized as a type of intellectual property.
The Madrid system is the primary international system for facilitating the registration of trademarks in multiple jurisdictions around the world. Its legal basis is the multilateral treaty Madrid Agreement Concerning the International Registration of Marks of 1891, as well as the Protocol Relating to the Madrid Agreement (1989).
An unregistered or common law trademark is an enforceable mark created by a business or individual to signify or distinguish a product or service. A common law or unregistered trademark is legally different from a registered trademark granted by statute.