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Fictitious Business Name Filings

Last modified: 5/8/2014 11:54 AM

Fictitious Business Name (FBN) Filings 

The purpose of registering a Fictitious Business Name with the County Clerk is to ensure that consumers have access to the true name and address of the owners of a business.

  • Fictitious Business Name Statements must be filed before you begin your business or within 40 days of your first transaction.
  • A filed Fictitious Business Name Statement is effective for five years.
  • Fictitious Business Name Statements must be filed in the county in which the principal place of business is based.
  • An applicant may have more than one FBN and there may be more than one registrant per Fictitious Business Name.
  • Registration of a Fictitious Business Name Statement DOES NOT guarantee exclusive use of that name; applicants are responsible for ensuring that the chosen Fictitious Business Name does not duplicate a current registration or violate any trademark protocols.
  • All information on the Fictitious Business Name Statements filed with the County clerk is public record pursuant to the California Public Record Act including the residence address.
  • Be certain the information in the statement is correct and complete before filing it. Once your statement has been filed, changes to that filing CANNOT be made, and NO REFUNDS ARE ISSUED.

More detailed information is available at www.leginfo.ca.gov - Business and Professions Code section 17900 - 17930 and 14411 - 14418 and Government Code section 6020 - 6027, 6040 & 6064.

  1. FBN Renewal information - Business and Professions Code section 17920.
  2. Statement of Abandonment information - Business and Profession Code section 17922.
  3. Statement of Withdrawal from Partnership information - Business and Professions Code section 17923.
  4. FBN Retention information - Business and Professions Code section 17925 & 17927.
  5. FBN as PUBLIC RECORDS - Govt. Code Sections 6250 - 6270.

How to File/Re-file Fictitious Business Name Statement

  1. See Publishing Information (if required).
  2. Research the Name: Although we do offer a search service (see current rate in Fees / Quick Reference ), it is much more economical and convenient to perform the search yourself at no cost online or in-person at our office.
  3. Obtain an Application: Applications can be obtained:
    • Online: Download the PDF versions that are available at the bottom of this page.
    • In-person: Come to the Clerk-Recorder's Business Division during regular hours.
    • By-Mail: Send a request and a self-addressed stamped envelope to our office. ATTN: Business Division.
  4. Complete the Form: The PDF versions may be completed online if your version of Adobe Acrobat includes that features. Otherwise, print and complete. All applications must be completed in Black ink. The second page of the form has specific instructions on how to complete the form. We regret that we are not able to give advice on what to put in the fields; you are responsible for filing it out COMPLETELY and accurately or it will be rejected at filing time.
  5. Check the Current Fee: The current fee may be determined by checking our Fees / Quick Reference sheet.
  6. Choose one of the methods below:
​In Person By Mail
Payment Methods
Accepted​
​Check, cash, money order,
debit card ($2.50 charge)
​Check or money order
(payable to Clerk-Recorder's
Office)
​Time
Consideration
​Available between 8:00 am - 4:30 pm
 
M - F excepting holidays
 
Filed while you wait
​FBNs received by mail
usually processed
within 7 work days
​Your copy & Publication
Information (If needed)
​Given to you at the Business Counter ​Returned to you by mail:

See Publishing Information
​How? ​Come to our office at the Business Counter ​Mail form, payment, & self-addressed stamped envelope to:
Clerk-Recorder's Office
Business Division
East Wing, First floor
70 West Hedding Street
San Jose, CA 95110