This even applies to California small businesses and home-based businesses, or businesses that don't make a lot of money. If you are a sole proprietor and do business under your own name, you can simply use your name as the name of the business entity. The Small Business Administration (SBA) provides a list of federally regulated businesses and contact details for government agencies to which you should submit an application. Most companies don't need a federal business license, but some industries, such as broadcasting, investment advice, and drug manufacturing, do have federal regulations and licenses.
An LLC and a business license are not the same thing, although both are often part of creating a new business in a state. The California CalGold online resource, from the Governor's Office of Business and Economic Development, provides guidance on the types of permits your type of business may need. You can obtain a business license online by applying to the right regulatory or licensing agency for your company. San José: Within 90 days of starting, all businesses operating within city limits must obtain a business tax certificate from the City of San José.
However, if the federal government regulates your business activities, you must apply for and obtain appropriate federal business licenses and permits. Some businesses need to obtain special licenses and permits from the state, but most only need a general business license from their local county and perhaps their city. Any business purchasing merchandise with intent to resell must obtain a California resale certificate to avoid paying taxes to suppliers. The Golden Bear State is home to many entrepreneurs who must figure out how to get a small business license in California.
Before you can apply for licenses on behalf of your company, you must create your company in the state of California. While the state does not issue or require a commercial operating license, it regulates and requires licenses or permits for some business activities. Every county in California has its own rules and regulations, so check with your local city or county government office to determine what state licenses your new business might need. You can obtain a business license by applying to the right regulatory and licensing agency for your company.
That means you don't need to have a license from the State of California just to run your business in the state.