How to File a DBA in Houston

The state of Texas requires all businesses to file a DBA, or assumed name certificate, which entitles business entities to legally use their desired business name. This applies to sole proprietorships, partnerships, LLCs and corporations. The specific process for obtaining a DBA varies from county to county, however. If you want to file a DBA for a business operating in Houston, you will need to register your DBA in Harris County.

Visit the Harris County Clerk's Office website and access the "Assumed Names Search" page. Using the "Search" fields, enter the assumed name that you hope to establish (such as "Jane's Consulting Services," for example) and click "Search." You can then find out instantly if your desired business name is available. If the name is already in use, think of a different business name that you can register.

Download and fill out the appropriate DBA form. If your business is a corporation, you must fill out form 205. If you have an unincorporated business with one to three owners, use form 207. For four to 13 owners, use form 207A. If your business has 14 owners or more, use form 207B. You can find all of these forms at the Harris County Clerk's Office website.

Submit your form to the address at the bottom. You can mail it, or you can obtain and submit your form in person at the county clerk's office. If mailing the form, you must first have it notarized with a licensed Texas notary public. If mailing, remember to enclose a check for the $15 filing fee.