Legal Hotline – Fictitious Name Notice

Q: What are the requirements for a business fictitious name public notice?

A: The Fictitious Names Act, 54 Pa.C.S. § 301, et seq., governs the registration and use of fictitious names by business entities in the commonwealth. When a business entity intends to use a fictitious name, the business must register the name with the Pennsylvania Department of State. As part of the registration process, businesses that include an individual party must place a legal notice of its intent to use a fictitious name in a newspaper of general circulation in the county where the principal office or place of business is located. The public notice must be published one time, and it must contain the following information:

  1. The fictitious name.
  2. The address, including street and number, if any, of the principal office OR place of business of the business to be carried on under or through the fictitious name.
  3. The names and respective addresses, including street and number, if any, of all persons who are parties to the registration.
  4. A statement that an application for registration of a fictitious name is to be or was filed under the Fictitious Names Act.

The notice may appear prior to or after the day upon which the application for a fictitious name is filed and must be kept with the permanent records of the business. News organizations should refer advertisers with questions about the Fictitious Names Act to the Pennsylvania Department of State Bureau of Corporations and Charitable Organizations.

As always, this is not intended to be, nor should it be construed as, legal advice. Please contact the PNA Legal Hotline with questions at (717) 703-3080.

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