Before you even start or open a business, you should conduct a thorough research about the documents you may need. Keep in mind that there are laws, rules and regulations that you must follow when starting a business. A certain law covers every part of your business. To start, you need to fill out and send specific forms and other documentation to the state and local government offices. One of these documents is a business license. Without this document, you cannot open and run a business.What is a General Business License?
If you are a business owner and planning to put up a business in California, you should obtain a general business license in the city where it is located. This license is sometimes known as a business tax certificate.
If your business is under an unincorporated section of the state, then you must obtain a tax certificate or a business license on a county basis.
What if you have a business in multiple locations? You have to get such license in every city that you operate. For instance, if you have a business with branches in San Diego and Los Angeles, you need to get a business license from those cities.
You can obtain a business license through online, in-person or by postal mail. The cost of getting one will depend on the city or county where your business is situated. When applying, you have to provide the licensing authority with the business name and address, as well as the owner’s name and address. Additional contact number is also required.
You also have to submit the following requirements:
- Business type and structure
- Number of employees
- EIN or Federal Tax ID number
- Projected annual sales
Besides the general business license, you may need to secure specific licensing. For instance, if your business involves selling or leasing merchandise, you should apply for a seller’s permit. You may also have to register your business entity with the California Secretary of State’s Office.
Now, if you have a business under a company name in addition to the legal name, you should obtain a fictitious business name statement. A fictitious business name is a name used for the business other than the one listed on the Articles of Incorporation. For example, if your company A runs a gym called AB, you should apply for a fictitious business name statement with the city in which it operates.
Obtaining a business license can be time-consuming. It is also confusing especially for first-time applicants. Consult with our tax professionals today to help you apply for a business license and other permits required by the city where your business is situated by calling (800) 575-9284.