Interested in starting a business in Tennessee but not sure what business licenses are needed? This video will help entrepreneurs get their business licensed and registered and is a part of the How to Start a Business in Tennessee video series. For more information and links on Tennessee business licenses, check out https://startingyourbusiness.com/get-business-license-tennessee/
Topics include requirements for Tennessee business licenses, how to get an EIN or Employer Identification Number, sales tax permits, professional licensing and local business licensing.
Starting a business in Tennessee may require licenses or permits from a variety of several city, county, state and federal agencies. This video is a brief overview of the most common licenses, permits and registrations a business may need, but it may not include all of ones needed for your business. More detailed information and links to all of the agencies mentioned in this video are on StartingYourBusiness.com.
The first registration you may need to get is the employer identification number, sometimes known as an EIN with the Internal Revenue Service. This is a unique identification number for a business, much like what a social security number is for a person. Businesses that are required to register include sole proprietorships with employees, partnerships, corporations or LLCs. If you are a sole proprietorship with no employees, you can simply use your social security number. You can apply directly at irs.gov and there is no cost to get the number. Getting the number takes only about 5 minutes and if you have questions, we have a video on how to apply for an EIN on our site.
Next, most businesses in Tennessee will need to get a business license. This license is for businesses that gross more than ,000 annually. Filing for a Tennessee business license requires a visit to the County Clerk in the county where the business is located and filing for a Standard Business License. Additionally, businesses will also file a tax return using the businesses gross receipts with the Tennessee Department of Revenue.
For businesses grossing more than ,000 and less than ,000 annually, there is a Minimal Business Activity License for businesses. No annual report on gross receipts is required like the Standard Business License. Filing is also through the County Clerk in the county where the business is located.
At the local level, many municipalities also require a business license for businesses within city limits. Check with the Municipal Clerk in the area where your business is located to verify. There are additionally more requirements for certain professions, zoning, construction, signage, liquor licenses, etc.
A variety of businesses and professions in the state are regulated such as food related businesses, appraisers, home inspectors, barbers, scrap metal companies and many more.
Next, most businesses in Tennessee will need to register for and remit business tax. Business tax consists of both the state business tax and city business tax. More information is available from the Tennessee Department of Revenue.
In addition to the Business Tax, most businesses with retail sales or businesses selling computer software and certain services will need to remit sales taxes. More information about what is taxable and to register is available from the Tennessee Department of Revenue.
Make sure your business secures all licenses in advance of finalizing a location as some will take some time to get approval. Finding the correct person to talk with in your community may take a few calls, but just start by contacting your town’s mayor, city hall or economic developer and let them know you plan on starting a business and if you need to register. Don’t be worried in calling as they want to help bring in new businesses since businesses bring jobs and tax revenue to the community.
If you liked this video, be sure to visit the other videos in our Starting a Business in Tennessee video series. Other videos include:
Types of Business Organization in Tennessee – https://youtu.be/SJVDVGDfpD4
Registering a Business Name in Tennessee – https://youtu.be/T2DlMwBJhs0
In addition to these videos, https://StartingYourBusiness.com/Tennessee has a lot of free resources to help you start your business. If you have questions, visit our site or ask questions in the comments and our team of business advisors will answer your questions at no cost!
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