Apply For A Business License New York City, New York

Are you looking to start a business in New York, NY and need a business license?

Those who wish to open a business in New York, New York will need to find out if they will be required by the City of New York obtain a business license. In addition, you may need to obtain several other permits or licenses that need to be in place in order to commence business. Each and every business will need to speak to a representative of the City of New York about their business license, which can be requested in person from the City Hall of New York at:

City of New York
DCA Licensing Center
42 Broadway, 5th Floor
New York, NY 10004

For more information, call 311 (or 212-NEW-YORK outside of New York City).

Not only can you receive any of the business license applications from the website, but you can also submit the application from your home computer using the program called Easy Start, which is found on New York City’s Business Express webpage. Once you have completed your applications and questionnaires, they should be brought in person to City Hall to receive planning approval. You should check with the Department of Planning before agreeing to any real estate contracts to determine whether your business is approved for the zone in which you wish to conduct business. After you obtain building and planning approval, you will bring your applications and questionnaires to the City Clerk’s Office where you will pay applicable fees and or receive more information for additional licenses, permits, and approvals that may be a requirement for your type of business. Even if you don’t have to obtain a business license, you still must have your property inspected by the Department of Planning. Their pertinent information can be viewed at

Why am I obligated to enroll in City of New York’s Business Express?

Every time a potential business owner registers, applies for the business, pays business fees, creates a business scenario themselves online, it speeds up the wait time for business licenses for everyone. Not only that, but when you utilize all of the resources at your fingertips right at home, it limits the amount of time that you will have to spend at the City Hall, which is frequently busy.

How do I navigate through the City of New York’s Business Express?

Start by registering for the website. Enter your email address and create an 8-digit password. Once you’ve followed the prompts, entering the displayed security letters, you should receive a verification email immediately. Next, you will need to create your business scenario by selecting Easy START. You will need to answer a series of questions about your business. Easy START prepares you for each step of the business process by displaying information in the following categories:

  • Create a business

    (Assumed Name, Employee Identification Number)
  • Opening your business

    (Fire requirements, recycling and waste, employee insurance and disability, and anything else related to your field)
  • Operating your business  

    (legalities related to your field, hiring, workers comp, etc.)
  • Regulations

    (current laws and regulations that you will need to be aware of)

Will my business qualify for special incentive programs?

You can find out if your business qualifies for any financial aid, including grants and loans, by using the Incentive Scenarios function on Business Express. You’ll simply answer some detailed questions about your business to receive a list of possible incentive programs that your business might be eligible for. In some instances, a dollar amount may be available.

Here’s some information you should be prepared to give:

  • Your physical location, size/square footage of your property, zoning info, and value of the property
  • The terms of your lease
  • Your basic business function/activity with number of employees and energy costs
  • Investments with dollar-value estimates for planned upgrades/improvements and any equipment purchases

If you have any questions regarding the incentive programs and possible financial aid, please contact the City of New York at 311 (or 212-NEW-YORK outside of New York City).

What information will you need for your New York business license application?

Your business license application will need to be complete. Any sections which do not apply to you or your business should be marked as “N/A”. No part of your application can be left blank. Some information that will be required includes, but is not limited to, the following:

  1. Your business name
  2. The physical address of your business
  3. Business mailing address
  4. Ownership information: a partnership, sole proprietor, an LLC, or part of a larger corporation
  5. Current contact information for all owners
  6. Federal tax ID number, state seller’s permit, state tax number, and contractor’s license number
  7. If applicable: home-based business information
  8. Signature and date

After completing your application, you must sign and date it. Please note that your signature on the application legally certifies that you have read all the information, that you agree to comply with all federal, state, and/or local regulations, restrictions, codes and laws pertaining to business operation, and that all information that you have provided is true and accurate to your knowledge. 

Who should be contacted for further information?

If you have questions about obtaining your business license, you can contact the City Clerk of New York at:

City of New York
DCA Licensing Center
42 Broadway, 5th Floor
New York, NY 10004
Call 311 (or 212-NEW-YORK outside of New York City).

You may also visit the New York City website for more information.


Click the link to your city below to apply for a business license

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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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