New Business License Application (PDF)
- Business License Closure Form (PDF)
- Contractor's License Application (PDF)
Any person or entity who conducts any business, trade, profession, enterprise, establishment, or occupation within the City shall obtain a business license whether or not the physical address is in or outside the City. These include, but are not limited to, the following:
- Apartment owners (see Rental Property License application)
- Commercial/Industrial rental property owners (see Rental Property License application)
- Businesses located within the City such as retail stores, wholesalers, manufacturers, and service providers
- Businesses, which are located outside the City, but transact business in the City such as contractors, cleaners, repair people, and gardeners
- Home Enterprise businesses
- Independent contractors such as doctors, hairdressers, and janitorial contractors
- Ice cream, produce, bakery, and catering trucks
- Sidewalk Vending
*Certain businesses may require other permit approval in addition to filing the business license application and the payment of the business license tax. *
Steps for Obtaining a Business License
There are several steps in the process of obtaining your business license. Before you get started, make sure to take care of these initial steps:
- Contact the Planning Division to find out if your business activity is permitted at the proposed business address.
- The Planning Division counter is open Monday through Thursday 7:00 a.m. - noon. Additionally, you may contact the Planning Division at (323) 584-6210 or [email protected]
- Check your Business Type to see if your business requires further review.
- Step One: Application and Review (Planning Division)
- Step Two: Pay Fees (Finance Department)
- Step Three: Safety Inspection (Building & Safety Division)
- Step Four: Final Documents (Finance Department mails License)
Please consider the following links, as they will aid new businesses getting started:
The California Department of Tax and Fee Administration website has specific information about the programs they administer, how to register for permits and licenses, and how to file and report correctly.
The CalGold website assists business owners in finding the appropriate permit information for their business. It also provides contact information for the various agencies that administer and issue permits, including those for cities, counties, and other departments.
Step One: Application and Review
Contact the Planning Division for review and approval; upon approval, you are ready to begin the business license process.
1. The business license application requires approval by the Planning Division. An occupancy permit requires an inspection. The purpose is to ensure the business operation is in the correct zone and the area you intend to occupy meets the City's building code standards.
2. Please make sure your application contains a detailed Business Operations Description. Additionally, a floor plan of the proposed business is required. Ensure the floor plan is drawn to scale and identifies all interior rooms and areas. *If tenant improvements are proposed additional permits may be required. *
3. Incomplete applications will not be processed.
4. Submit the business license application and the business license supplemental application to Community Development at the counter between 7:00 am to 12:00 pm, Monday through Thursday.
The Planning Division will review the application. In some cases, the review will require research of land use entitlements and a site visit.
Important Contact Information
Phone # (323) 584-6210 [email protected]
Step Two: Pay Fees and Inspection Requirements
When the Planning Division reviews and approves your application, they will direct you:
- Pay the Occupancy Permit Inspection at the Finance Cashier Window
- Below is the list of inspection items required for a Business License Occupancy Certification from the Department of Building & Safety:
- Property address clearly visible from the street.
- Double-keyed or locks are not allowed on exit doors.
- A sign on the entrance door, frame, inside the business, and above the door, is required stating “This door is to remain unlocked during business hours”.
- All outlets, switches, and junction boxes are to be properly covered.
- No exposed wiring.
- Bolt all storage cabinets and shelving over 6’ tall to the ground or wall.
- GFCI outlet is required if the outlet is within 6’ of a sink.
- No open breaker slots are allowed in any panel.
- A minimum of 3’ clearance is required in front of all panels and electrical meters.
Please contact the Building and Safety Division at (323) 584.6273, when you are ready for an inspection.
Step Three: Safety Inspection
Now that you have an inspection appointment, you need to:
- Designate someone to greet the inspector and provide access to the building.
- This person must be at the business location from 8:00am-5:00pm. Specific times cannot be provided.
- If the inspection fails, the inspector will leave a correction notice. When all corrections have been made, you need to call for a re-inspection. For a building inspector call (323) 584-6273.
- There is no charge for a re-inspection.
Step Four: Final Documents
You have obtained building inspector approval. This means you passed the inspection.
Here is what you need to do next.
- Complete the business license application and calculate fees. Contact Business License Division at (323) 584-6280, to confirm the amount.
- Complete the alarm permit application. There is a $20 permit fee. If you do not have an alarm, fill out the application and indicate there is no alarm.
- Submit the following forms and payment to the Finance Department.
Closing a Business License
Business owners who wish to close a business entirely or transfer ownership to another party must file a Business License Closure Form with the Finance Department.
Additional forms are required for Corporations, Specialty Professions, and Food Related Businesses. Contact Business License Division at (323) 584-6280 or [email protected] for required forms.