How To Apply for a Business License

When you're getting ready to open up your own business, one thing you will need to do is obtain a business license. It sounds fairly easy, doesn't it? You just go to the necessary government agency and apply for a business license. However, it's a little more difficult than that in some cases. The complexity and time that is involved greatly depends on the type of business for which you want to obtain a license. Here are some steps you can take to help you with your task of applying for a business license.

  1. First, you will want to get in contact with your federal, state, and local (city, town, or county) governments to discuss what business licenses you will need to open up your type of business. You will need to speak to someone at each level of government, because there may be different laws pertaining to the different levels of government, and each may require different licenses. Ask each government office how long the application process takes and what the cost is for each license so you can be prepared.
  2. It's also important to find out if you meet all of the requirements for possessing all of the licenses required for your business. For instance, there are certain requirements for a realtor to get a license, and different requirements for a doctor to get his or her license.
  3. Next, apply for each business license that you need. Keep in mind that if you're opening a business that serves food, you will need a food service license, and if you're opening a liquor store or a place that sells liquor, you will need a license for that. There are also other types of business licenses that you may have to obtain depending on the type of business.
  4. Lastly, after you have obtained all of the different types of business licenses that you need to open your business, find out if and/or when each of the licenses expire and what it entails to renew your license. Specialty licenses in particular have expiration dates, as do food service licenses. Make sure that you're prepared to renew them in a timely manner so that your licenses don't expire before you get them renewed.



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