All fictitious name certificates for businesses (commonly known as "doing business as" or "dba" certificates) are required to be filed with the Town Clerk. The dba files allow consumers to identify and locate the proprietor of a business which goes by a name other than that of the proprietor. Sunderland maintains a database of active dba information. Once filed, a certificate is valid for four years. The fee for filing is $30.00.
In the following instances, a Business Certificate must be filed with the Town Clerk’s Office:
- Type of Business Agency Requirement Frequency Corporation doing business under a name other than their exact legal name.
- Sole proprietorships and partnerships doing business under a name that does not include surname of partner or proprietor.
- *Massachusetts Business Trusts doing business under a name other than their exact legal name.
- Limited partnerships doing business under a name other than its true partnership name or a name which does not contain the words "Limited Partnership"
- Limited Liability Companies doing business under a name other than their exact legal name.
*Certain non-residents, such as foreign limited liability companies, must appoint the city or town clerk as their agent for service of process in accordance with MGL Chapter 227, s.5A.