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Can my non-profit organization operate under two different names?

San Juan, PR |

I have a non-profit organization and wish to use a separate name for certain business purposes. For example, lets say I own the "Robert Institute for the hearing impaired Inc." (Non-Profit), but i want to use the name "Robert Center" to for marketing purposes. Is this possible?

Attorney Answers 2


Generally speaking, this is fine. I'm not sure how PR might be different, but most states have a way to register a Doing Business As on the secretary of state's web site. You should do this if PR permits it.

Also, if your non-profit has a tax-exempt status, then you need to be careful to make sure all activities under both names are consistent with the exempt purpose of the organization. Income unrelated to the exempt purpose (subject to some exceptions) is taxable, and too much unrelated business income can threaten the tax exempt status.

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Yes, you would need to research your particular state's requirements regarding operating as a DBA.

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