A Fictitious Business Name is the name under which someone does business. They are registered with the county through the Clerk Recorder's office. Usually they are needed by people filing for a business license who are using a name other than their legal name to do business.

Often the fictitious business name is used as a point of discussion on the wiki when the page name is changed for a business. It has also been raised as an issue when businesses appear to not have their licenses in order.

Business & Professional Code Sections 17900-17930

People and Organizations Who Must File A Fictitious Business Name Statement:

  • In the case of an Individual, a name that does not include the surname (last name) of the individual owner.
    • The fictitious business name may not suggest the existence of additional owners (such as “Company”, “& Sons”, “Brothers”, “& Associates”, etc).
  • In the case of a Corporation, a fictitious business name is any name other than the exact corporate name as stated in the articles of incorporation.
  • In the case of a Limited Partnership, any name other than the name of the partnership on file with the Secretary of State.
  • In the case of a Limited Liability Company, any name other than the name stated in its articles of organization.

Those Who Are Not Required to File a Fictitious Business Name Statement:

  • Nonprofit Organizations or Associations such as fraternal and charitable organizations, churches, hospitals, or labor unions
  • Real Estate Investment Trusts having an authorized agent on file with the Secretary of State pursuant to Corporation Code §24003

Other Local Counties