You must register a trade name, or “doing business as” name, per RCW 19.80.10 for:
- A Sole Proprietor or Partnership using a name other than the full legal name of the owner or owners.
- A Corporation, Limited Partnership, or Limited Liability Company operating under a name other than the name registered with the Office of the Secretary of State.
- Any business name you are using that is not your full legal name.
Registering your trade name does not protect the name from use by others. A business can register an unlimited number of trade names.
A trade name will remain registered indefinitely until the owner requests that it be canceled. There is no charge for canceling a trade name.
If you also want to file a trademark or service mark, you may want to consult an attorney. If your business activities will extend beyond Washington State, it may be to your benefit to file for a trademark with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. If your business activities will stay within Washington, it may be to your benefit to file for a trademark with the Secretary of State.
Find out if a name is already in use
- Our business lookup: General license
- Secretary of State Corporations Registration Data Search: Corporation and limited liability company names.
- U.S. Patent and Trademark Commission: Search for federally registered names.
Register a trade name
- File a Business License Application online with My DOR.
- Pay the $5 fee for each trade name registered and the Business License Application processing fee (non-refundable), see instructions on how to determine your processing fee.
Cancel a trade name
- Online with My DOR.
- By paper, using the Business Information Change form. Provide your Unified Business Identifier number (UBI), sign and date your request.
How to apply
Complete the following and mail to:
Business Licensing Service
P.O. Box 9034
Olympia, WA 98507-9034