Clinic Naming Rules
What are the laws and rules regarding clinic names? Am I permitted to operate my practice under an assumed name?
The name under which a chiropractic physician conducts business is considered a form of advertising. D.C.s and their clinics must follow all the usual rules regarding advertising and assumed names.
For practices that are not corporations or Limited Liability Companies (LLCs), DCs may not practice under any name other than their own, i.e. an assumed name, UNLESS they have properly registered the assumed name with their county. Each county has its own form for registering an assumed name of all types of businesses, including health care practices. The official designation then becomes “John Jones, D.C., doing business as _________________[Clinic Name]. This process permits the public to be able to get information about the owners of clinics and other entities with which they transact business. Under the Medical Practice Act, a license can be disciplined for operating a practice under an assumed name without registering it with the county.
The clinic name may not be misleading as to the nature of the services provided. IDFPR legal staff has said that omitting the word “chiropractic” in a clinic name is not inherently misleading if the name otherwise complies with advertising rules. This means that the name of the clinic must accurately reflect the services provided, and any websites, signs, business cards, pamphlets, and other promotional material must include the name of the chiropractic physician with the initials “D.C.” or “chiropractic physician.”
In the case of medical corporations, the corporation may bear the last name of one or more owners, or it may adopt a name without the surname of an owner if it records the corporate name with the name of the owners in the county of its principal office. If the corporation operates the practice under a different name than its official corporate name, it must also register the assumed name with the Illinois Secretary of State. In addition, the same rules apply as for unincorporated clinics — i.e., the corporate name must not be misleading and any advertising must include the physicians’ names and their title/initials. For medical corporations, the names may not be as restricted because the corporation is authorized to render chiropractic and medical services.