Registration under the Fictitious Name Act is for public notice only and gives rise to no presumption of the registrant’s rights to own or use the name registered nor does it affect trademark, service mark, or corporate name rights previously acquired by others in the same or similar name. Registration under this section does not reserve a fictitious name against future use.
For the purpose of filing documents on-line, the typed name of the individual “signing” the document is sufficient under s.15.16, Florida Statutes. Electronic signatures have the same legal effect as original signatures. Typing in someone’s name/signature without their permission constitutes forgery.
The name to be registered must be advertised at least once in a newspaper as defined in Chapter 50, Florida Statutes, in the county where the principal place of business of the applicant will be located. No proof of advertisement will be required. As part of the signature block the applicant certifies the name has been advertised at least once in a newspaper as defined in Chapter 50, Florida Statutes.
The Division of Corporations will not deny a registration for a duplicate name. Every fictitious name application will be registered if statutory filing requirements are met. Applicants that are licensed under other sections of statute should insure that a proposed name is acceptable under the provisions of their respective regulating law prior to submission of an application under this part.
If a business fails to comply with this act, the business, its members, and those interested in participating in such business may not maintain any action, suit, or proceeding in any court of this state until this section is complied with. Any person who fails to comply with this act commits a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083, Florida Statutes.
Effective January 1, 1991, the filing responsibility for fictitious name registration is with the Department of State, Division of Corporations.
A person may engage in business under a fictitious name by registering the name with the Division of Corporations by completing the “Application for Registration of Fictitious Name.”
If a change of ownership occurs, the owner(s) of record must file a cancellation and re-registration within 30 days of the change. This can not be filed online. You will need to download an application for registration of fictitious name and follow the instructions on the form on how to cancel and re-register.
If the registration is no longer active, you can file a cancellation. This can not be filed online. You will need to download an application for registration of fictitious name and follow the instructions on how to cancel.
Fictitious names are valid for 5 years and expire on December 31st of the fifth year.
Each Fictitious Name Registration must be renewed between July 1 and December 31 of the expiration year to maintain registration under this act. The Division of Corporations will mail to the last reported mailing address, at least 3 months prior to its expiration date, a statement of renewal. Please keep your current address on file with the Division of Corporations.
Any request for a certificate of status or a certified copy of a Fictitious Name Registration, if other than on the initial registration, should be directed to the Division of Corporations, P.O. Box 6327, Tallahassee, FL 32314.
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