Fictitious Business Name (FBN) Filing Instructions
Please read all these instructions before proceeding with Fictitious Business Name Filing(s).
The fictitious business name statement shall be filed with the county clerk of the county in which the registrant has his or her principal place of business in this state or, if the registrant has no place of business in this state, with the Clerk of Sacramento County. Nothing in this chapter shall preclude a person from filing a fictitious business name statement in a county other than that where the principal place of business is located, as long as the requirements of this subdivision are also met. (CA Business & Professions Code Sec. 17915)
Check index to see if the business name you have chosen has not already been filed with the San Francisco County Clerk's Office.
Search online - Fictitious Business Name Search: FBN Search
Search via a terminal at the:
SF Tax Collectors Office
City Hall, Suite 140
1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place
San Francisco, CA 94102
County Clerk's Office
City Hall, Suite 168
1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place
San Francisco, CA 94102-4678
Note: It is your responsibility to check sources other than the S. F. County Clerk's Fictitious Business Name index to ensure that you are not infringing on other business trademark or common law rights. Other suggested sites are the Secretary of State's Business Division, the U.S. Patents and Trademark Office, or the S.F. Public Main Library.
Go to the Tax Collector's Office at City Hall, Room 140, and do the following:
Complete Business Registration Certificate application.
Pay registration fee.
Pay any prior delinquent taxes.
You may obtain the Application for Business Registration Certificate at: SF Tax Collector's Office.
Complete the Fictitious Business Name Statement form.
Go to the County Clerk's Information Counter to submit the completed Fictitious Business Name (FBN) form.* Bringing your completed form with you will expedite the service time and prevent you from having to stand in line twice. Make sure the information included on the Fictitious Business Name Statement matches the information as submitted on your business tax registration certificate with the Tax Collector’s Office or it will be rejected.
*Effective January 1, 2014 (CA B&P CODE SEC 17916), anyone filing a Fictitious Business Name Statement in person must present a valid government-issued photo identification, such as a driver's license, State-issued identification card, or passport.
Note: New accounts require copy of receipt from Tax Collector's Office. Delinquent accounts require Original Temporary Verification of Registration (TVR) from Tax Collector's Office.
Upon filing, an "Endorsed" copy of the FBN statement (usually yellow-colored) will be provided along with a receipt.
Methods of Payment: cash, personal check (preprinted with account holder's name issued from a U.S. bank, no foreign checks) and money order payable to S. F. County Clerk, debit card or credit card.
Mail in your FBN Statement by sending:
The completed FBN Statement.
A self-addressed stamped envelope.
Note: New accounts require copy of receipt from Tax Collector's Office. Delinquent accounts require Original Temporary Verification of Registration (TVR) from the Tax Collector's Office.
Methods of Payment: personal check (preprinted with account holder's name issue from an U.S. bank, no foreign checks) and money order payable to S. F. County Clerk
An "ENDORSED" copy of the filed statement will be issued to you.
You must publish with one San Francisco legal court approved newspaper (see legally adjudicated newspaper) within 30 days from the date of filing, once a week for 4 consecutive weeks.
Please Read: FBN Publication Requirement Instructions
Note: Be sure to contact newspaper companies early enough as they may not be able to publish immediately.
1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Pl., City Hall #168 SF CA 94102-4678 - Map Directions