Do you know which licenses and permits you need in order to start your business? Now is the time to find out — before you launch your business. The specific licenses and permits you need depend on your location, your type of business, and other factors. Here are some areas to investigate:

Obtaining a Business License

A business license allows you to do business in the city in which the business will operate. Regulations, procedures, and costs associated with business licenses vary from city to city. If your business is based outside of the incorporated area, then you may need to obtain a business license from the county in which you do business. Depending on the nature of your business, you may need other licenses and permits as well.

Obtaining a Business Tax Certificate within the City of San Jose

(Sometimes known as a business license)

Any person or company conducting business within the City of San Jose must pay a business tax prior to beginning business activity in the City – this is required whether or not an office is located in San Jose. Once the tax has been paid, a business tax certificate will be provided to the person or company. This certificate also serves as an official receipt showing that the tax was paid. The certificate must be displayed conspicuously in your place of business.

Obtaining State Licenses

Many professionals must obtain a state license before practicing in the State of California. To learn which professions require a license, visit the website for the Department of Consumer Affairs.  

Obtaining Permits

To find out if you need permits for your business, visit CalGOLD Business Permits Made Simple. Enter your type of business and click “continue,” or click on the “all business types” for a complete list. Follow the instructions to obtain a detailed list of the state, county, and city permits you may need and how to apply for them.