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Before launching your business in Georgia, it’s a requirement that you apply for a business license. You have to register your firm with the relevant government departments and the state agencies. As a matter of fact, by following state regulations and obtaining a proper business permit you will avoid many legal issues that might crop up in future. Also, Georgia’s Secretary of State recommends that you consult an accountant or a lawyer to help you create a good business plan. However, before applying for a business permit, you should

  • Get more information about the process of licensing a business in your area by visiting the Chamber of Commerce or Development Authority.
  • Secure state tax identification number, zoning approval, and trade name registration for your business. You may also need to apply for professional licenses, corporate registrations, and any other special operating permits.
  • Learn more about how to start a business and registering its trade name by visiting the First Stop Business Information Centre.

After doing this, it’s important to be aware of the business regulations in Georgia. These include;

  • Incorporation filing- If you are a sole proprietor, Georgia will allow you to use their own name as a business name. If you prefer to use a fictitious name instead of the real one you should register the name with Georgia State Corporation Division. As a sole proprietor, you do not have to register the business with the state. However, if you own a limited liability company, a corporation, limited liability partnership or a nonprofit, you must file the articles of corporations with the corporation division. This is how to get a business license in Georgia.
  • Business license division- In Georgia, you must apply for a business license that corresponds with the type of business that you operate. For instance, if you run a bar or a grocery shop you must apply for a license to operate the business in Georgia. This service license is valid for one year and cost $50. Also, you must renew it annually.
  • Filing a fictitious name- If your business is not the same as your name you must also register with the clerk of the superior court in the country where you want to operate the business in. However, you do not have to file this if your business is a corporation, a non-profit, or a limited liability company.
  • Tax regulations guidelines- As a business owner, you are also required to obtain both state and federal identification numbers for the purposes of taxations. Companies must apply for licenses and registration permits that related to business functions. These include unemployment insurance tax, income tax withholding, and sales and use sales tax. Other taxes that you need to consider include corporate franchise tax and income tax.
  • Employer regulations- If you intend to hire employees, you are also required to follow the general employer’s regulations to operate a business in the state. You must abide by the rules that include new employee hiring regulations, insurance requirements, and employee eligibility verification among others.

It’s also important as a business owner to file an annual registration each year. But, if you want to open a second location for your business you are required to pay an additional fee since you are required to register both. However, before doing this it’s advisable to obtain professional business and legal advice to make sure that you follow all the regulations. Here are some key tips on how to get a small business permit in Georgia. This is also how to get a business license in Georgia.

  • Trade name registration- If you want to use a fictitious name, you should apply for a trade name during registration. To be on the safe side you must register your business with the clerk of the superior court. Also, your business must also publish its trade name in local paper once a week for two weeks.
  • Business tax certificates- You may apply for business licenses or business tax certificates from a county or a city based on the primary location of the place of the business. Once you have gotten a valid license your business is free to operate all over Georgia. However, specific businesses such as limited liability companies or partnerships must register with the office of the secretary of state corporations. You may also apply for a certificate of occupancy from the relevant county or city zoning department.
  • Specialized licenses-Certain categories of businesses also require you to obtain specialized licenses before beginning to do business. These include accountants, doctors, and contractors among others. Remember, the public can also search through the databases online to confirm whether these businesses are registered or not.

Important steps to follow

The first step is to ask yourself some tough questions about the business. You should ask yourself whether you are able to motivate and inspire people and whether you are an effective sales person. This is very important since Georgia is very competitive and many people might be doing the same business. You should also research your market and determine whether your business has the demand that is needed for it to run. This is important especially if you do not have enough experience in your business venture.

After carrying out a good research, you should select the legal form of the business and decide whether you want to run a sole proprietorship, partnership, or a company and the things that they require. Then, apply and obtain the relevant certificates that you need for these. Remember, for your business to succeed, it’s also important to arm yourself with enough information. You should be aware of things such as liability exposure, taxes, the number of owners, and other business terms. If you do not have enough information, it’s advisable to consult a financial consultant for help. This is because the legal form of business might affect it eventually.

Wrap up

Before starting a business in Georgia, it’s very important to know how to get a business license or permit. Remember, if you do not follow the right steps you might be denied the permit that you need to operate the business. It’s also important to know that each county has its own laws of starting a business. However if you are sure about what you are doing,consult an expert. This is how to get a business license in Georgia.

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