State of California California Department of Consumer Affairs

Businesses (Most Common Start-Up Requirements)

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The Chamber of Commerce publishes a Small Business Start-Up Kit for California which can be ordered by calling (800) 331-8877.

California Chamber of Commerce
1215 K Street Suite #1400
P.O. Box 1736, Sacramento, CA 95812-1736
Sacramento, CA 95814-3953
(916) 444-6670

The following web page includes information on the basic steps necessary to start a small business in California. It also includes online versions of the California License Handbook and the Permit Handbook.

Commerce & Economic Development Program:

The most common local, state, and federal government licensing and permit requirements to start a small business are the following:

Business License Requirements (Local County Clerk's Office):
County Clerk Recorder's Office list by county

Employer Identification Number (FEIN):
Internal Revenue Service (IRS)

State Identification Number:
California Employment Development Department

Fictitious Name (Local County Clerk's office):
County Clerk Recorder's Office list by county

Sales Tax Information:
California Board of Equalization

Workers' Compensation Insurance:
California Department of Industrial Relations

California Occupational Safety and Health Act CAL/OSHA:

Information on Patents and Trademarks:
California Secretary of State

The California License Handbook is only available on-line. It provides brief descriptions of state licensing requirements for the general legal forms for doing business in California. Also lists all state agencies, departments, offices and their divisions and branches administering licensing, permitting, certifying, registering or other regulatory oversight of a business activity, profession or vocation in California. Provides an index of business, vocational, or professional licenses, permits, or registrations required by the State of California, as well as a summary of business taxes that the State administers.

California License Handbook:

Information regarding Business licenses and permits are available at the CalGOLD web-site listed below:

Consumer Resource & Referral Guide Consumer Resource & Referral Guide
Directory of State Agencies Directory of State Agencies
Directory of Federal Agencies Directory of Federal Agencies
Return to DCA Home Page Return to DCA Home Page

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