Do I Need a Business License?


If you have just started a new business, you probably know that you need one or more business licenses. However, “business license” does not refer to a single specific document. Below, we look at the process for determining your business license requirements, the types of licenses and permits available, and the most effective ways to help your company comply with regulations.

How to determine business license requirements

Business license and permit requirements depend on several things. Your type of business entity (whether you are a corporation, LLC, sole proprietorship, or another type of entity). The purpose of your business (with a business license or permit). The specific requirements of your city, county, and state. In some cases, a license or permit at the federal level may be required if you are engaged in federally regulated activities.

Types of business licenses and permits

An incredible variety of business licenses and permits are available for almost any type of business. The following list is not exhaustive but includes some of the business licenses available.

  • Alcohol and tobacco licenses
  • Bakery licenses
  • Body piercing license
  • Daycare center license
  • Collection agency license
  • Cosmetology License
  • Technology License
  • Environmental License
  • Restaurant License
  • Pest Control License
  • The lot and Building Transaction License
  • Restaurant Business License
  • Pavement Café License
  • Cab Business License
  • Waste Transportation License

Note that each state has different terms and requirements, so it is essential to take the time to research.

How do you obtain the necessary licenses and permits?

There are several ways to determine if you need a license or permit:

  1. Contact your state or local government to find out what their requirements are.

State consumer offices, state departments, and licensing offices may have the information you need. Contact the Department of Business if you are unsure which state department handles business licensing. Try contacting the county clerk or the county treasurer/tax collector’s office at the county level. Try contacting the city clerk or the mayor’s office at the county level.

2.Hire an in-house attorney.

If you don’t want to do all the legwork, you can find a business attorney to determine the licenses and permits needed for your type of business.

3.Hire a third-party filing service.

Third-party filing services are cheaper than lawyers or legal counsel because you don’t have to pay for legal advice. Many third parties have electronic databases of business licenses and permits. They can easily manage your business through their system to inform you of what you need to file for compliance. Often a list of necessary forms is provided, and many third-party services provide the forms themselves.

Business Compliance

Whether you are operating in multiple locations or conducting due diligence on a target company upon acquisition, it is critical to ensure that the company has the necessary licenses/licenses and is registered correctly in all locations where it operates. It is also daunting because each state, county, and municipality has regulations on what activities must be licensed, how agencies must be licensed, how many times must renew a license, and so on. 

Wrap Up

Ensuring business compliance by keeping all licenses up to date and obtaining appropriate licenses for new activities presents additional challenges.

Author Bio

Villie Walters Ramirez is a 32-year-old sales assistant in a lottery business license at a tax king who enjoys accounting and bookkeeping. She has a post-graduate degree in accounting and a severe phobia of cats. She enjoys traveling A lot.