In Florida, if you own a small business, you need a license – it is that simple. But, what type of license you need could vary. Every business must have a general business license. This is called a business tax receipt and is received from your tax collector. The county and municipality you live in will determine where and how many tax receipts you need for your business. It does not matter if your business is run at home or in a physical location – if you provide goods and services, you must have a business tax receipt, sometimes just for the county, but other times for the city as well.
Not every business will need additional licensing, but some will. You must check with a qualified attorney, or at least the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation, to see what standards your business has to abide by. The additional licensing is typically not hard to get, but you need to do it in order to have a legal business.
Register Your Name
If you are going to be using a fictitious name for the company, you will need to register it with the state. This means you are filing as a sole proprietor or partner. Your legal name for the company needs to be registered with the state and renewed yearly.
Some people decide to incorporate their business, whether to limit their liabilities or for ease of tax purposes. Whatever the reason you decide, you must take the following steps to make sure you get the process done correctly:
– Choose your name
– File the Articles of Incorporation
– File for an Employer Identification Number
– Get your business license
– Open a separate bank account for the company
The most important step you can take when setting up a small business is to get the proper licensing. The license keeps you accountable for everything your business does from filing taxes for the income you make to making sure you are running your business appropriately. Without the license, it can be harder for officials to determine who/what is responsible for anything that occurs. Starting your business, the right way, can help you stay out of legal trouble and can prevent you from losing your business prematurely. Oftentimes, businesses are hit with hefty penalties as a result of not being licensed – don’t let yourself be one of them!