Trademark v. DBA

Posted by Michael Shimokaji | Jul 15, 2015 | 0 Comments

Question: In California, if I want to start a new business and plan to do it under the umbrella of an already existing LLC, how can I keep someone else from forming a California corp or LLC with the DBA name? Is trademarking the DBA name the best route?

ANSWER: You cannot stop the California Secretary of State from allowing someone to incorporate with a name that is different from another company incorporated in California. Even if you have a registered trademark, the California Secretary of State allows incorporation under a name as long as it is not identical to another corporate name. You would need to have a California corporation or LLC with the name that is identical to the other's name to prevent the other from incorporating with the same name.

About the Author

Michael Shimokaji

Michael’s expertise includes the strategic development of patent and trademark portfolios. He identifies those patents and trademarks that are valuable to his clients by providing them with a competitive advantage. Then, Michael obtains patent and trademark registrations in the US and abroad.


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