The first thing you need to decide on is your business name. I believe the name of your business should say what you do. A lot of people use their name for their business. Lets say that you hand someone your card and a month later they find it in their wallet. Will they know why they should call you? Probably not. But, if your card tells them exactly what it is that you do “Dave’s Hauling”, “Shirley’s Pet Walking” or “Mel’s House Painting” then there is no doubt.
County: You’ll need to go to your County Clerk Recorder’s office. They have a free service that allows you to look up the business name you want and find out if someone else has already used it. This filing is called a Fictitious Business Name or dba (doing business as). The cost is minimal, generally less than $25 for five years.
Then your dba needs to be published in a local newspaper. It can be any paper although the small ones will charge less. Our county legal recording paper is in the same offices as the County Clerk. They charge $50 to have the fictitious name published four times.