I want to open a business in Orange, California. Where do I start?
If you plan to open a business in Orange, CA, an application for a business license, payment, and any separate permits or licenses will need to be submitted to the Finance Department of Orange. You have a few options in obtaining the application for a business license: you may print it from the City of Orange website, you can call (714) 744-2270 and request that one be mailed to you, or you can visit the Business License Division of the Finance Department to apply in person Monday through Thursday from 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. They are located at 300 East Chapman Avenue in Orange. Depending on where your business is located, you will need to chose one of two applications. The options are for an inside-the-city application for those whose business base is located within the city of Orange or the outside-the-city application which is for those who will be entering into the city to operate a business which has its base outside the city limits. The outside-the-city business license application applies to those who deliver goods from a source outside the city, such as a handyman who will travel to the city from outside the city limits to conduct repairs or work on a job site within the city. There are several business which would fall under this classification. To be certain of which application you will need to submit, contact the Business License Division at (714) 744-2270.
What information will I need to provide for a business license application?
For a business that will be operating inside the city, you can expect to provide information on your business, owner information, business activities, and information that will help to determine your taxes and whether you will need additional permits or licenses. Business information includes a name for your business, all contact information, and a physical address for your business. You will need to declare the ownership type of your business (part of a corporation, a partnership, sole ownership, or LLC). Depending on your business type, there will be additional information requested. For example, if you are the sole owner, you will need to provide your social security number. If you are in a corporation, LLC, or partnership, you may need to procure federal and state tax ID numbers, etc. You will need to give a complete description of what your business activities will include, the number of employees you will be hiring, and what percentage of your business will be service, retail, warehouse, manufacturing, or wholesale. All owner (including partner or president) contact information, and driver’s license number are requested. You will need to submit the information on the property owner, a contact phone number, and also an emergency contact, their relationship to you, and a phone number to reach them in case you are unavailable during an emergency at your business. There is a series of yes or no answers to determine what additional permits or licenses you will need to obtain before you open your doors for business.
Your application needs to be filled in completely and with only true information. Withholding any information or leaving any part blank will result in your license not being issued. You will need to sign the application stating that you are agreeing to comply with any and all regulations, that you are in agreement with all Orange Municipal Codes and that all information that you have provided is true and complete. If you are filing an application for a business that is located outside of the city limits, your application is nearly identical to the inside city limits application except that there is no section used to determine if you will need special permits and that it includes information on where your job site inside the city will be located, an estimated value of the work that you will be doing, and if you have a motor carrier permit number. When you have completed your application, it will need to be returned to the Business License Division of the Finance Department of Orange.
Will I need zoning approval or any other permits?
It is generally recommended that you contact the Planning Department of the city you are planning to open your business in to be sure that city zoning codes do not prohibit the use of your proposed property for certain business. It would be wise to contact the Planning Department prior to purchasing or leasing any business property. You can reach the Planning Department at (714) 744-7220. If you are planning to conduct any of the following businesses, you will need to contact the Orange Business License Division to determine which permits or licenses you will need in addition to your business license. A complete list is available online at the City of Orange website.
- Adult or sexually oriented businesses
- Massage therapy
- Palm-reading or fortune telling
- Pool room
- Video games
- Secondhand shop
- Food vending vehicles
- Worship center
- Animal boarding
- Educational services
- Daycare center in a church
Any of these businesses and many others will require that you gain additional permits or licenses. It is your responsibility to know which permits or licenses you may need, and to procure them before your business opens.
I want to gather more information. Who do I contact?
Contact the City of Orange, Finance Department, Business License Division, located at 300 East Chapman Avenue, Orange, CA 92866. The phone number is (714) 744-2270 and the fax number is (714) 288-2170. You can also visit the website at http://www.cityoforange.org/business/default.asp.
Disclaimer: This site is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal, financial or tax advise. The information on this site should not be relied upon as an official source of information and should be independently verified.