LLC business license california [Updated]

Last updated : Aug 17, 2022
Written by : Kenton Catacun
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LLC business license california

Does an LLC need a business license in California?

LLCs, Corporations, LPs, LLPs, or GPs operating in California need to register and form their legal entity with the California Secretary of State's Office, file appropriate taxes, register as an employer, and obtain business licenses and other permits from appropriate cities or counties.

What licenses do I need for LLC in California?

Any business owner must obtain a general business license in the city in which your business is located. Some California cities refer to a business license as a business tax certificate. Businesses that are operated in unincorporated sections of the state must obtain their license or tax certificate on a county basis.

Do you have to pay the $800 California LLC fee the first year?

Every LLC that is doing business or organized in California must pay an annual tax of $800. This yearly tax will be due, even if you are not conducting business, until you cancel your LLC. You have until the 15th day of the 4th month from the date you file with the SOS to pay your first-year annual tax.

How much does it cost to establish an LLC in California?

Starting an LLC in California – fees to file You'll pay two filing fees with your LLC application in California: $70 fee to file articles of organization with the California Secretary of State's office. $20 fee to file a Statement of Information, Form LLC-12, with the California Secretary of State.

Can I write off my car with an LLC?

The Internal Revenue Service identifies taxpayers who qualify to claim a business vehicle write off as: Self-employed individuals. Sole proprietors and owners of limited liability companies (LLCs) with a tax classification that allows pass-through income on Tax Form 1040 qualify for the write off.

How much is a California business license?

In general, most CA small businesses will pay between $50 and $100 for a general business license. Larger corporations may be subject to charges based on their projected revenue.

How do I start an LLC in California myself?

To form an LLC in California, go to, log in, select Register a Business under the Business Entities Tile, Articles of Organization - CA LLC and follow the prompts to complete and submit.

How long does it take for an LLC to be approved in California?

Mail filings: In total, mail filing approvals for California LLCs take 2-3 weeks. This accounts for the 3-5 business day processing time, plus the time your documents are in the mail. Online filings: In total, online filing approvals for California LLCs take 3-5 business days.

What happens if you don't have a business license in California?

Failure to obtain a Business License is a violation of Title 7 of the County of Los Angeles Code and a misdemeanor. Continued failure to comply with the requirements of Title 7 will result in fines and possible legal action.

Can LLC Get tax Refund?

Do LLCs get tax refunds? Generally, no. However, LLCs can elect to be treated like C corporations for tax purposes by filing Form 8832. If an LLC elects C corporation status and makes quarterly estimated payments higher than its tax liability for the year, the LLC can receive a tax refund.

How do I avoid LLC tax in California?

Can I avoid the California Franchise Tax? There's no way for a registered business to legitimately avoid the California Franchise Tax. Sole proprietors and general partnerships don't have to pay the California Franchise Tax, but they also don't have any personal liability protection.

How is LLC taxed?

To get a better understanding of the LLC's taxation norms, let us go through the private limited companies' taxation policy. The income generated in a private limited company is taxed at a rate of 30%. The law has assigned the Private Limited Company as a separate legal entity.

How much can an LLC write off?

If you have $50,000 or less in startup costs and are in your first year of business, the IRS allows you to deduct $5,000 in startup costs and $5,000 in organization costs from your taxes. If your startup expenses exceed $50,000, the total deduction will be reduced by however much your expenses exceed $50,000.

Why should I use an LLC?

The main advantage to an LLC is in the name: limited liability protection. Owners' personal assets can be protected from business debts and lawsuits against the business when an owner uses an LLC to do business. An LLC can have one owner (known as a “member”) or many members.

Is the $900 LLC fee deductible for California?

According to information provided by the California Tax Service Center, annual taxes are not considered to be deductible, but generally speaking, these limited liability fees are considered to be deductible as necessary and ordinary business expenses.

Should I put my car under my LLC?

One of the best reasons to buy a car under an LLC is liability protection. For example, if an accident involving your LLC's vehicle were to cause injury or property damage, the business's liability protection can prevent you from personally having to pay legal or medical fees.

Why should I put my car in my business name?

If you buy a business vehicle in your business name, you are maintaining separation of the two. You are also providing more protection against being sued personally if there is an accident involving the vehicle.

Is it better to buy a car through my business?

If you plan to use the car solely for your business, you'll get the most tax benefits by purchasing the car through your company. Companies are allowed to deduct general car expenses such as repairs, gas, oil changes and tires.

Do you need a license to start a business at home?

Any business, including home-based businesses, must obtain a local city or county business license. This is a basic license that allows the holder to engage in business activities within the local jurisdiction.

What do I need to get a business license in California?

  1. A business name.
  2. An EIN (Employer Identification Number) or SSN (if you're a sole proprietor)
  3. A business entity type (LLC, partnership, corporation, etc.)
  4. A business address and phone number.
  5. A business plan that includes anticipated revenue and expenses.

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LLC business license california

Comment by Marion Neighbours

this is gonna be fun this is gonna be fun you wanna start a company i'll show you how so let's go to this california secretary of state website because this is how you start an llc and i think a lot of people are interested in this so here's what we did let's start over we're going to go to this is the california secretary of state website this is the only place that you need to go to start a company an llc for that matter let's talk about how to do it click on business and then we're going to go down here to ooh look at that it's under hot topics cool number seven forms samples and fees for business entities and if you need tips those are here too all right so we're going to click on the form samples and fees section so we can look at the type of forms that are available to someone who's just going here and checking it out and trying to figure this out on their own you can see there's two sections there's corporation and there's limited liability company two very different options most people are going to want to form an llc most people need an llc there's very few people that need corporation status all right so file online fastest service i always recommend filing these documents online totally totally the best way to do it if you have to mail it in it's going to take weeks i've done both and filing it online is way better so in order to form an llc in california you're going to want to click on llc formation you can see that the filing fee is seventy dollars there is a certified copy fee which is five dollars copies are free anyways we're gonna hit the start button this is a privacy warning you can scroll through this and read what they do with your privacy and the information that you uh submit some people are interested in reading it some people don't i asked my question or my attorney about it and we were good to go all right so here is where you fill out the limited liability company name notice that it says don't include llc or llc period in the name you don't need to include any of that the llc will be added to the end of your name so if i wanted to start vaniter llc i would simply type in vaniter right here is where you're going to choose the llc identifier so if you want it to be vanity or llc you'll pick vanity or llc if i wanted to be vanader limited liability co that's what i would choose and this is the name that's going to show up on your official tax records and your statement of information and articles of organization with the state of california this is what's going to show up name reservation check this box if you have reserved a name and would like to apply the reservation to this llc program now correct me if i'm wrong somebody but i'm fairly certain that the reservation name is a service that california provides to where if you want to reserve a business name but you're not ready to pay and start for it yet you can pay them to do so but we'll find that out another time okay we don't have one of those so we're gonna go to next here's where you're gonna put up uh put in your business address enter the initial street address of the designated office and if different the initial mailing address of the llc a lot of people have different business addresses and different mailing addresses for their llc's there's a ton of reasons why you'd want to do something like that or why you would have to do something like that and so they want to know if the business resides in california or where it resides in california everybody's trying to get a piece so just put in the address you can use your house i do if it's the same as the mailing address just hit yes just go to next agent of process so you can have an individual or a california registered agent an attorney or there's a registered agent in california you can choose but you can type in uh like a legit like registered agent service or you can just have an individual basically the secretary of state wants to make sure that if they want to get a hold of you they can and so that's why you put the registered agent in there you can't put a po box it has to be a place where you can receive mail it has to be a place where someone could get a hold of you and maybe serve you with papers to uh appear in court for example so if you feel comfortable with that and that's something you can handle you can be your own registered agent i have my attorney be my registered agent because i don't i move around a lot and all the time and you know i just pay him a couple bucks you know a couple bucks a year just to take care of that for me it's not really that big of a burden or you can pay a registered agent that provides that service you can go on online and look for registered agents and they'll they'll teach you and i'll teach you they'll do that all for you we have the first name okay this is all for the service of process of the individual let me go to next and the management structure okay is gonna be this is where a lot of people get confused who will be managing the llc select the management structure now if you have questions you can click on filing tips and this will tell you but it doesn't give you a whole lot of information in my opinion having one manager is the best right to start your own llc and then if you start another venture with another partner or you want to start another partner just start a second llc and both of your llc's can be the managing members that's how i prefer to do it because partnerships are kind of risky but anyways let's circle back to this real quick so i can explain it before i move on the llc will be managed by you have one manager more than one manager or all llc members so one manager is going to be the most common if you're starting your own llc now if you're starting an llc with a business partner for example like your sister or friend or anyone really doesn't matter you can select all llc members and then that will make sure that you all have managing authority however that means that when you want to open up a bank account you have to go down to the bank together these are things that you have to do together right so there are strings attached to it but you can always change this later on too it's not a problem there are forms that you can file with the secretary of state to remove members from the llc so don't think that once you do it it's done forever organizer electronic signature all right so this is the perfect person that's organizing or organizing or putting together the llc right so sometimes it's a company like legalzoom or inc file sometimes it's yourself but basically you're going to put this down right your name your email not the company name or the company email but yours so you have to acknowledge that you're the person forming the llc and that all this information is true and correct they need someone on the hook for that okay so type in the organizer name um your email and then double check the email uh what's this file date the future file date oh okay so this is if you want to file the llc you want to put it all together right now pay for it and then file it in january let me tell you why that might be a good re

Thanks for your comment Marion Neighbours, have a nice day.
- Kenton Catacun, Staff Member

Comment by Duncan

hey this is elizabeth potts weinstein and today we're going to talk about how to get a business license in california especially as a small or online business first we need to talk about do you even need a business license in california well it depends upon where you're located and the particular kind of business you have there are two kinds of business licenses one kind of business license is something very specific to your industry it could be a professional license like an attorney or it could be a license that's to sell alcohol or in a particular industry where the local or state government is interested in regulating that industry you probably know if you're in one of those industries if you're have some kind of professional license or if you're in a highly regulated industry and if you're not sure if you are we'll talk about where to look to find that out the other kind of license is just a general business license so a general business license is something every business needs to have even if it's a tiny little business you operate out of your home where you make a thousand dollars a year or a big huge giant corporation kind of business but everyone doesn't need one of those general business licenses because in california those are local what do i mean by local how do you find out if you need one of these general business licenses well what i mean by local is that the state of california doesn't give them out it's something done on a local level in the sense of your county your city your town your village the physical place where you are located is where you're going to get that business license now you may say to me i'm an online business i work from home i'm not located anywhere well that's not true legally speaking while it may be true that you don't have a retail storefront and you don't meet with clients in person you are physically located somewhere because you are a human person who physically is located somewhere and that location where you are operating doing the work even if you don't see anybody in person is your location and that's where you need to look for whether or not you need a business license in that local jurisdiction many small businesses and online businesses and businesses that operate out of a house don't get a business license and you can kind of sneak by without a business license sometimes for a while but it doesn't always work a lot of times it doesn't work and so what can go wrong if you don't get a business license well first your local city or county can find out that you don't have a business license and then not only do you have to pay for the license you may have to pay a whole bunch of fees a whole bunch of penalties interest that you owe them where you wouldn't have had to pay that if you just got the business license in the first place and how can they find out well you're going to need to do other kinds of filings with other government entities you may need to do a dba so you can get the name of your business on your bank account you may file with your state government some other forms your incorporation documents for your llc perhaps or just tax forms for whatever kind of business you have some local governments will look at those databases and see who has a business in their jurisdiction in their area and then they'll send you a giant bill another reason you may need a business license is to give it as evidence to your clients or to someone you're doing business with in some other way to prove that you're legit business so let's say you're a consultant some companies only want to hire consultants that are not accidental employees here in california so they want to know that you've formed a legit business and have other clients so you may want to form an llc you may want to have a dba you may want to have your business license so you can show all those documents to the person to the person who works at the corporation who wants to hire you to do that consulting to prove that you're a legit fully foreign business so how do you actually get one of these business licenses well what you do is you go on the website for your county for your city for your town and you go to the part where it talks about businesses there will be some section that talks about business licenses usually both business licenses and permits now in different places it could be called a business license it could be called a it could be called a tax certificate it could also be called a business registration just think of it as some form you gotta file and some fee you have to pay so let's go through the websites of a couple different cities and counties to give you an idea of what you're looking for what i did here was i just googled los angeles business license and this is one of the first websites that you get to is the website for the finance department of the city of los angeles so one of the things that they have here is for you to figure out if you're in the city of los angeles or just in the county if you're in the county you might get a business license from the county and if you're in the city of la you would get a business license in the city this issue happens in a lot of areas where there's little pockets of unincorporated land that you may not be may not be obvious that you're not part of the city but you actually are and you need to figure that out so here they have an address finder where you put that in to figure out what you need now if you go to the county of los angeles website they talk about how if you're just in the unincorporated part of la county you may not need a business license unless you're in there have a business that impacts health and safety so you do freeze services for example if you click here do i need a business license it opens up a page that normally would let you be able to make an appointment to meet with them in person but they don't have that right now because of cover 19. so you can send them an email or call them on the phone to figure out if this applies to you one thing to remember is that a lot of local jurisdictions a lot of cities and towns and counties especially if they're smaller the best thing to do is just call them or if we're not a pandemic go down there in person because a lot of these places it's difficult to figure out if something applies to you if you need a particular license or permit and they're used to people just coming up a business owner who doesn't have a lawyer or anything just coming up and asking what do i need and they'll tell you exactly what you need so the city of san diego is one of the cities that has a business tax certificate not always the same thing as a license but that's just what they call it there every business in the city of san diego has to have one of these and you have to first find out if you're actually in the city uh if you're in and you also as part of this you have to have the zoning correct and this is something that i'm going to do in another video which is more about permits but for certain kinds of businesses they can only be operated in certain places that are zoned correctly if you have a business you're operating ou

Thanks Duncan your participation is very much appreciated
- Kenton Catacun

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