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Starting a business in Utah will mean potentially registering with a number of federal, state and local agencies.  Let’s take a look at common licenses and permits a business will register for in Utah.

Business License – There is no general state of Utah business license, however many cities require businesses to be licensed in order to operate. Rules for business registration vary depending on location and what the business does.  Below are a few cities that have licensing requirements. 

Salt Lake City – Before starting a business in the city limits of Salt Lake City, a business license is required by the Business License Office in order to operate. 

The cost of a business license will vary depending on the type of business being operated.  Most licenses are approved within 30 days and some will require a background check.

West Valley In addition to commercial business licenses in West Valley are also needed for home-based businesses, rental units or solicitors. 

The base fee for business licenses in West Valley is $110.  Businesses selling alcohol, pawn shops and salvage yards are higher.

Provo – All businesses operating are required to obtain a Provo City Business License.  Business license costs vary, however additional fees are charged to food trucks, towing businesses and businesses selling alcohol.

West Jordan – All businesses will need to register with the City of West Jordan’s Business Licensing Department.

The cost of a business license starts at $50. 

Orem – All businesses operating in the city limits of Orem will need to register for a business license.  Two licenses are available; the Commercial Business License and Home Occupation License.    

Businesses that serve or handle food, offer public pool or spa access, tattooing or piercing establishments, or tanning salons will need to first register with the Utah County Health Department before registering for a business license.

Employer Identification Number (EIN) – Many businesses will register with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for an EIN or Employer Identification Number.  The EIN is the business equivalent for a Social Security Number for an individual.  Corporations, Limited Liability 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.

Learn how to apply for an EIN.

Utah Business Tax Number – Businesses that are engaged in selling or leasing tangible personal property or taxable services in Utah need to register for a Utah Sales Tax License from the State Tax Commission.

Sales Tax Exemption Certificate – Businesses purchasing merchandise to resell will usually want to obtain a Utah Sales Tax Exemption Certificate (often referred to as a Resale Certificate) in order to not pay sales tax for merchandise that is being resold to customers.

Professional License – A variety of professions in the state are regulated and need to be registered before offering certain services.  A few common professions that require licensing in Utah include; accountants, electricians, handymen, hunting guides, landscapers and many more.   Additional information, fees and licensing requirements for professions are available from the Utah Division of Occupation and Professional Licensing.

In addition to professional licenses from the Division of Occupation and Professional Licensing, businesses in a variety of industries also need licensing such as food establishments, daycares, salvage yards.

Business Name Registration – While not a business license, it’s common for Sole Proprietorships and Partnerships operating under a name that is different from the full name of the owner(s) to file a Business Name Registration (also known as a Doing Business As or DBA) with the Utah Division of Corporations and Commercial Code.

 

These are a few of the most common business licenses, but there are way too many licenses and permits in Utah for us to keep track of. Before starting your business, check with the City Hall, County Clerk, Chamber of Commerce and/or Economic Developer in your area to get more information regarding business licensing.  Additionally, there are companies like IncFile or CorpNet that can do the research to ensure you have the proper federal, state and local licenses.

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