Once you set up your new business, you may think you are ready to start offering your products or services to your future customers. However, there is a series of permits that your business might require before you can open your doors. Have you taken care of them? It may be worth your while to read on to find out what licenses your business requires before you get in trouble with the authorities or even risk having your business shut down.
Here is a list of the most common licenses that businesses need. Keep in mind that not all of them will apply to your business and that some of them will vary depending on the location, the industry, and the type of business. You may have to do further research to determine which ones apply to you, but this is a good starting point.
General business license – Allows you to operate a business in the city in which you are located.
State and federal tax identification number – Most businesses need to get a federal employee identification number, also known as EIN. State and local governments may also require you to obtain a tax identification number.
Sales tax permits – Will your business be selling goods online or offline? If your state requires you to collect sales taxes, you have to get a sales tax or seller’s permit.
Zoning permits – Zoning regulations in your area may determine where certain types of businesses may or may not operate. If you own a manufacturing facility, a restaurant, or even have a home office you may have to apply for either a variance or a conditional-use permit in certain areas.
Professional or occupational licenses – Depending on the business sector in which you operate, you may need a professional or occupational license.
Health permits – Will you be handling or selling food? Your business may require a health permit.
Fire department permits – Will your business use flammable materials? Will it involve a number of people assembling in one location? You may require an inspection by the fire department.
Air and water pollution control permits – If your business process calls for the burning of any materials or for the disposal of anything into sewers or waterways or if you use any products that produce gases, you may need to get a special environmental permit.
Building permits – Will you be modifying or making structural changes to the place where you will be operating your business? A building or construction permit might be required.
Sign permits – Depending on the location of your business you may face restrictions on the size, location, and lighting type that you can apply to the sign outside the business. It may be worth it for you to get written approval from your landlord (if you are renting your business space) before having a sign made and paying for it, only to find out you will not be able to use it.
Special state licenses – Will you be serving alcohol? You may require a special license to do so.
You don’t need to feel overwhelmed by the number of permits that your business might require. Go to thefloridatriallawyer.com/business-litigation/ and find the information and the legal help you need to get your business ready to open its doors to the public.
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