Is there a difference between a corporate name and a trade name?

Yes. A corporate name is used by an entity that is formed as a corporation. Profit corporation names are required to contain one of the following endings: “Corporation”, “Incorporated”, “Limited” or an abbreviation of one of those words. The name cannot be substantially identical to a name already registered with the Department.

A trade name is a name under which a person transacts business, other than one’s legal name (personal name) or a registered corporate name, general or limited partnership name, limited liability company name or limited liability partnership name. A trade name is also known as a fictitious name or a DBA (doing business as). A registered business entity can file for Registration of Trade Name (Form T-1) as long as the name is different from its registered name.