What Business Licenses & Permits are Needed in Iowa?
Starting a in will mean potentially registering with a number of federal, and local agencies. Let’s take a look at common licenses and permits a will register for in .
Before applying for any licenses, the (LLC). Corporations and LLCs register with the of . of the will need to be established. Learn more about the differences between the , , , and
Related: Comparison of Entities
Learn more about forming an LLC in Iowa
Also see: Steps to starting a business in Iowa
There is no general of , however, many cities require businesses to be licensed in order to operate. The cost and rules for vary depending on location and what the does. Below are a few cities that have requirements.
– The City of requires for certain businesses such as those selling alcohol, mobile vendors, pawn shops, and several more.
Cedar Rapids – A few types of businesses need to register with the Cedar Rapids City Clerk, including bowling alleys, businesses selling alcohol, skating rinks, mobile food vendors, and several others.
Davenport – The Davenport Revenue Division issues licenses to businesses operating within city limits. Businesses selling alarm systems, food trucks, retail merchants, and others will need to register.
Sioux City – Certain businesses such as those that provide body piercing, pawnbrokers, transient merchants, and a few others will need to register with the City Clerk.
Waterloo – licenses in Waterloo are required for those operating tree trimming businesses, pawnbrokers, etc.
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Building & Permits
– Depending on the location of the , it’s important to verify whether the needs an occupancy or has specific regulations to follow. Depending on city requirements, home-based businesses may need to apply for a home occupation .
– A may be needed from the city or county building and planning department if there is any construction or renovations to a facility.
Signage – Some municipalities require a before adding signage.
Anyone selling taxable goods or services in through the of Revenue. A is needed for each location in and there is no charge to register. must register for a
Businesses purchasing merchandise to resell will usually want to obtain an Exemption in order to not pay for merchandise that is being resold to customers.
A variety of professions in the are regulated and need to be registered before offering certain services. A few common professions that require in include; alarm installers, brewpubs, commercial kitchens, dietitians, fur dealers, and many more. Additional information, fees, and requirements for professions are available from the Professional Bureau.
Employer Identification Number (EIN)
Many businesses will register with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for an EIN (also referred to as a FEIN, Federal Employer Identification Number, or Federal ID Number). The EIN is the equivalent for a Social Security Number for an individual. Corporations, Companies, Partnerships, and Sole Proprietorships with employees will all need to register for one. Sole Proprietorships without employees can use the owner’s Social Security Number.
There is no cost for an EIN, and it only takes a few minutes to get.
While not a small , it’s common for Sole Proprietorships and Partnerships operating under a name that is different from the full name of the owner(s) to register for a Trade Name (also known as a Doing As, DBA, or Fictitious Name) with the County Recorder’s Office in the county where the is located.
These are some of the most common licenses, but there are far too many licenses and permits for us to keep track of. Before starting your , be sure to check with the Economic Development Authority (IEDA), , Chamber of Commerce, and/or Economic Developer in your area to get more information regarding .