Apply For A Business License San Jose, California

What is the process of obtaining a Business Tax Certificate in San Jose, California?

If you are going to operate a business within the City of San Jose you will need a Business Tax Certificate. The Business Tax Certificate is the "business license" in San Jose. All businesses that operate in San Jose need a Business Tax Certificate, even if the business is located in your home, if you are operating individually and not through a corporation, or even if your business does not yet have revenues.

What other San Jose permits or licenses might you need?

There are any number of licenses or permits that you may need to obtain before your business commences in San Jose. Some of the additional agencies you may need to contact are as follows:

  1. Environmental Health Services (408) 918-3400
  2. Police Department (permit unit) (408) 277-4452
  3. Fire Department (408) 535-7750
  4. IRS (800) 829-1040
  5. Alcoholic Beverage Control 
  6. State Board of Equalization

This is an incomplete list of the other agencies that you may need to be in contact with during the process of obtaining your business license tax certificate. Call the Finance Divisions at (408) 535-7055 for more information on other licenses or permits that you may need. 

Do you plan to open a San Jose home-based business?

If you are planning to run a home occupation, you will still need to procure a business license tax certificate. In addition, you will need to be in compliance with several conditions set forth by the city of San Jose concerning operating a home occupation. You can find the list of conditions and requirements on the City of San Jose website. Some of these conditions include how many clients you may have on your premises at any given time, when clients are permitted to be at your residence, what constitutes a home occupation and what occupations are not permitted. You will need to be familiar with these guidelines and be in compliance with them at all times.

Do you have questions or need more information?

Contact the San Jose Finance Department for more information or any questions that you might have concerning your business license tax certificate. They can be reached via telephone at (408) 535-7055 or in person at 200 East Santa Clara Street on the first floor of City Hall. Also, be sure to browse the City of San Jose website to find helpful information on business license tax certificates.

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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.


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