New Filing Requirements for Assumed Business Names Certificates

Article written by: Chris Seamster, Business and Corporate Law Attorney

Many individuals, business and legal entities operate under an assumed business name or “d/b/a”. The assumed business name certificate is intended for the registration of business names other than the legal name of an individual or legal entity and are filed in the local Register of Deeds’ office.

The North Carolina General Assembly recently revised the laws governing assumed business names (see Article 14A, Chapter 66 of the NC General Statutes) and now requires that all assumed business name filings filed in the local Register of Deeds’ offices must be compiled into a statewide centralized online searchable database at the NC Secretary of State’s office. To comply with the law, if an assumed business name certificate was filed any time before December 1, 2017, the individual or entity must file a new assumed business name certificate with the local county Register of Deeds’ office in order to keep the assumed business name filing effective.

The law allows a 5-year transition period to give all businesses using an assumed name time to re-file their assumed business information before the old filings expire on December 1, 2022. The new certificate of assumed name will be recorded and indexed in that county and it will also be uploaded to a statewide database of assumed business name information housed at the NC Secretary of State’s office.