How Do I Know if I Need a Business License For My LLC?

Almost every business needs some type of business license to operate legally in the state you are doing business in. However, each states licensing requirements differ depending on the type of business you are operating, where its located, and what government rules apply. Some states have a general state business license that is required regardless of what types business you have. Other states require a license issued at the state level that only applies to certain types of businesses, and some states dont have any type of state license at all. Typically, if no license is required at the state level, there are state professional licensing requirements that will apply. In addition, most states require local business licenses issued at the city or county level. In order to avoid overlooking state and local licenses that may be required of your LLC, the table below provides directions to point you in the right direction so you know what state websites and local offices to contact.

State Business License Information
Alabama Alabama requires a privilege license that can be purchased through the county Probate Judge or License Commissioner in the county where the business is located. Unless otherwise provided, a privilege license is required in every county where the business is located. In addition to the privilege license, your business may require several different types of business licenses depending upon the services offered or products sold by the business. The Alabama Department of Revenue provides a list of business entities and occupations requiring a license or permit from a state regulatory agency.

Local: To determine what licenses your business will need, contact the license commissioner at your local county probate court.
Alaska An Alaska business license is required for all entities doing business in Alaska. The business license is obtained from the Division of Corporations, Business & Professional Licensing, Occupational Licensing Section.
Arizona In Arizona, not all businesses are required to have a license and some businesses are required to have more than one license. There is not a "generic" state business lic ense. In order to help you determine whether your business is required to have a license, consult the Arizona Department of Revenues Guide, which helps Arizona businesses comply with the state's basic tax and licensing requirements.

Local: Each city/town in which you do business may have their own license or permit requirements. Contact the a city office in which your business is based and in which your business operates to learn about local requirements. Additionally, your business may be subject to public health licensing by your county. More information is available from the Arizona Department of Health Services.
Arkansas There is no standard Arkansas state business license.

Local: Arkansas requires a business or privilege license that is issued at the local government level. You can apply for a business license at the City Planning or Zoning Office in the city in which the business is physically located. If located outside of the city limits, contact the County Collector or Clerk's Office.
California There is no standard California state business license.

Local: If you are in business in any city in California, no matter how small, you need to apply for a business license in your city by filling out a business license application obtained in person or online from your citys offices or city hall.
Colorado Colorado does not have a standard state business license.

Local: Business licenses in Colorado are issued by the City Clerks office. Visit your local clerks office in person or online for a business license application.
Connecticut There is no standard Connecticut state business license.

Local: Business licenses in Connecticut are issued by the City Licenses and Inspections Division.
DC Most businesses in DC are required to file for a new Basic Business License. Apply online.

Local: Visit the Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs to determine what license requirments apply to your LLC.
Delaware Any person or entity conducting a trade or business in the State of Delaware is required to obtain a Delaware business license from the Delaware Division of Revenue. This includes entities located in Delaware who conduct their business outside the state. A business license must be obtained at the time business commences in Delaware.

Local: Your city and/or county may also require a city and/or county business license, in addition to a State of Delaware business license. Please contact your local government office for more information about local requirements.
Florida To apply for a Florida business license or learn about license requirements, go to the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulations Application Center.

Local: A business license/occupational license or business tax receipt is required by most counties in Florida. Check with your local tax collectors office to see what may be required for your LLC.
Georgia There is no standard Georgia state business license.

Local: Most cities and counties in Georgia require a local business license. The Finance Division of your city/county typically issues these licenses. In most cities/counties, the business license is referred to as an "occupational tax registration certificate."
Hawaii For information on any business licenses that may be required in Hawaii, visit the Hawaii Business Action Center.
Idaho The state of Idaho offers a Regulatory Requirements Wizard to help you determine which state and local licensing requirements must be met for your business.
Illinois There is no standard state Illinois business license.
For information on Car Dealer and Remitter Licenses, see Vehicle Services
For information on liquor licenses, visit the Illinois Liquor Control Commission
For information on Securities & Loan Business Broker, Dealer, or Advisor Licensing, visit the Securities Department
For information on Grain Warehouses, Dealers, Buyers & Agricultural Cooperatives Licensing, visit the Department of Agriculture

Local: Some cities in Illinois require local business licenses. Click on the city for more information:
Chicago | Rockford | Springfield | Naperville
Indiana There is no standard state business license in Indiana.

Local: Most cities/counties in Indiana require licenses/permits for some businesses. Contact your local Licensing Division for the city/county in which your LLC is located and doing business.
Iowa There is no standard state business license in Iowa.

Local: To identify any local licenses that may be required for your LLC, contact the local city clerks office.
Kansas There is no standard state business license in Kansas.

Local: New businesses should check with their local city and county clerk to determine if either municipality requires a local business license.
Kentucky Kentucky does not have a standard state business license that applies to all businesses.

Local: The state of Kentuckys website allows you to enter your business location in their Local Requirements database to determine if any city/county licenses are required for your LLC.
Louisiana GeauxBiz, a service of the Louisiana Secretary of State, is a "licensing information center" for prospective small business owners; it provides current and potential business owners a single place to go for all the necessary information to operate within the state. Approval for all licenses and permits still comes from the individual agencies, but GeauxBiz is a clearinghouse for regulatory information.

Local: Your local Parish may require specific permits and licenses. Some common local licenses and permits you may need are: Alarm Permit Building Permit Business License and/or Tax Permit Health Permit Occupational Permit Signage Permit Zoning Permit
Maine Maine does not have a standard state business license that applies to all businesses.

Local: General licenses to operate a business are managed at the town/city level in Maine. Contact your town office for information. To obtain contact information for your town office or to locate your municipal website, visit the Maine.gov Local Government portal.
Maryland The Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development has compiled a list of statewide licenses broken down by business category.

Local: Most counties in Maryland require specific licenses or permits. The Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development has compiled a list of county-by county license requirements
Massachusetts To find a list of the license requirements for your business type, visit the Massachusetts Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation office.

Local: To find out what local business license requirements may be needed, contact your city or town clerk, who is responsible for issuing all local business licenses. A list of links to Massachusetts city and town web sites can be found here.
Michigan Michigan requires a state license for some businesses. Michigan provides an Alphabetical List of Michigan Licenses and Permits..

Local: To find out what local business license requirements may be needed, contact your city clerks office, who is responsible for issuing all local business licenses.
Minnesota Minnesota offers an A-Z Index of business types that require a license.

Local: To find out what local business license requirements may be needed in Minnesota, contact your city clerks office, who is responsible for issuing all local business licenses.
Mississippi Any entity that conducts business within the state of Mississippi may be required to register for one or more tax specific identification numbers, permits, and/or licenses. In Mississippi there is not a central licensing authority for the various regulatory and business licenses which may be required for businesses, so it is advisable to contact all agencies that you feel may affect your business.

Local: To find out what local business license requirements may be needed in Mississippi, contact your city License Division, who is responsible for issuing all local business licenses.
Missouri Missouri does not have a standard state business license that applies to all businesses.

Local: To find out what local business license requirements may be needed in Missouri, contact the License Collectors office at your City Hall, who is responsible for issuing all local business licenses.
Montana The State of Montana does not have a general business license. For an A to Z index of the business licenses required for certain industries in the state of Montana, visit the Department of Revenues website.

Local: To find out what local business license requirements may be needed in Montana, contact the Revenue Division at your City Hall, who is responsible for issuing all local business licenses.
Nebraska The state of Nebraska does not have a general business license. For a list of the business licenses required for certain industries, visit the Licensing Divisions. Certain businesses must also register with the Nebraska Department of Revenue if you will have employees, engage in retail sales, rent/lease tangible personal property, or provide services that are subject to sales tax.

Local: Most cities in Nebraska have local licensing requirements. Contact your local city Business License office to determine what local business license/permit(s) apply to your LLC.
Nevada All business entities doing business in Nevada are required to have a state business license. Applications for state business licenses are processed online through SilverFlume

Local: Most cities in Nevada require a local business license. Contact your local city Business License office to determine how to apply for a business license for your LLC.
New Hampshire For information on any business licenses that may be required by the state of New Hampshire, visit the Licensing & Permits.

Local: Counties in New Hampshire do not have local licensing requirements. Cities in New Hampshire vary in their local licensing requirements. Contact your local city Permits and Fees office to determine if any will apply to your LLC.
New Jersey The New Jersey Business Action Center provides a list of links for frequently requested licenses and registrations for businesses in New Jersey.

Local: Most counties in New Jersey require you to register your business. Contact the Office of the Clerk of your county to determine whether this is required in your county. In addition, most cities have local licensing requirements. Contact the Division of Commerce/Business License office to determine what local business license/permit(s) apply to your LLC.
New Mexico The State of New Mexico does not have a general business license. For an A to Z index of the business licenses required for certain industries in the state of New Mexico, visit the Regulation and Licensing Departments website .

Local: Most cities in New Mexico require you to register your business. To register your business and determine if there are other licenses or permits required for your LLC, contact the Business Registration office at your local citys Treasury Division.
New York There is no standard state business license in New York.

Local: New York offers a Business Wizard to help you determine if your business requires a certain license.
North Carolina The state of North Carolina does not have a general business license. For information to determine whether your LLC requires certain licenses or permits, contact BBusiness Link North Carolina.

Local: Most cities in North Carolina require a general business license, and may require other licenses/permits, depending on your type of business. Contact the Revenue Services/Licensing office at your City Hall to determine what license your LLC may need.
North Dakota In North Dakota, not all businesses are required to have a license and some businesses are required to have more than one license. There is not a "generic" state business license. In order to help you determine whether your business is required to have a license, consult the New Business Registrations Licensing Information. The state of North Dakota has also published a List of Licenses Required of Businesses .

Local: Most cities in North Dakota do not require business licenses for every type of business, but do require licenses for some. To determine whether a license is required for your LLC , contact the Business Licensing office at your local City Hall.
Ohio The State of Ohio does not have a general business license. For an A to Z index of the business licenses required for certain industries in the state of Ohio, visit the Department of Business, Licensing and Permits

Local: To find out what local business license requirements may be needed in your county, contact the License & Permits office, who is responsible for issuing all local business licenses.
Oklahoma Some businesses in Oklahoma are required to obtain a business license. To determine whether your business needs licenses or permits, the state of Oklahoma has developed an online licensing interview to guide you through the process.

Local: To find out what local business license requirements may be needed in Oklahoma, contact the City Licensing office at your City Hall, who is responsible for issuing all local business licenses.
Oregon State and local business license information can be found at the Oregon License Directory.
Pennsylvania Pennsylvania does not have a standard state business license that applies to all businesses.

Local: Each city/county in Pennsylvania has different requirements for local business licenses. Contact your County Clerks office and your City Clerks office in order to determine if any business license requirements apply to your LLC.
Rhode Island The state of Rhode Island does not have a general business license. For information to determine whether your LLC requires certain licenses or permits, consult the state of Rhode Island business license website here.

Local: To find out what local business license requirements may be needed in Rhode Island, contact the Board of Licenses office at your City Hall, who is responsible for issuing all local business licenses.
South Carolina Information about general business licenses can be found online at South Carolinas Business Portal.

Local: Most cities in South Carolina require a local business license. Contact the Business License office at your local City Hall to determine the requirements and fees.
South Dakota The South Dakota Governors Office of Economic Development has outlined the requirements for state business licenses in a guide entitled "Licensing and Registering Your Business."

Local: To find out what local business license requirements may be needed in South Dakota, contact the Finance office at your City Hall, who is responsible for issuing all local business licenses.
Tennessee In Tennessee, not all businesses are required to have a license and some businesses are required to have more than one license. There is not a "generic" state business license. In order to help you determine whether your business is required to have a license, consult your local County Clerk's office.
Texas Texas does not have a standard state business license that applies to all businesses.

Local: A local business license is not required in most cities in Texas. However, there are some businesses that are subject to certain licensing requirements. Contact the Business License office at your local City Hall to determine the requirements and fees.
Utah Utah does not have a standard state business license that applies to all businesses.

Local: In Utah, almost all businesses must have a local business license. In order to help you determine whether your business is required to have a license, consult the Utah Department of Commerces Business Licensing and Registration Guide, which helps Utah businesses comply with local licensing requirements.
Vermont The state of Vermont offers a list of businesses that are subject to state licensing requirements.

Local: Business licenses in Vermont are issued by the City Clerks office. Visit your local clerks office in person or online for a business license application.
Virginia Virginia does not have a standard state business license that applies to all businesses.

Local: Most businesses in Virginia need a local business license. Contact the Commissioner of the Revenues office at your City Hall, who is responsible for issuing all local business licenses.
Washington All business entities doing business in Washington are required to have a state business license. Applications for state business licenses are processed online through the Washington Business Licensing Service.

Local: Most cities in Washington require a local business license. Contact the Business License office at your local City Hall to determine the requirements and fees.
West Virginia Business for West Virginia provides a list of businesses that are subject to West Virginia state licensing requirements.

Local: Most cities and in West Virginia require a local business license. The Finance Division at your City Hall typically issues these licenses.
Wisconsin Wisconsin does not have a standard state business license that applies to all businesses.

Local: Business licenses in Wisconsin are issued by the City Clerks office. Visit your local clerks office in person or online for a business license application.
Wyoming Wyoming does not have a standard state business license that applies to all businesses.

Local: Business licenses in Wyoming are issued by the City Clerks office. Visit your local clerks office in person or online for a business license application.