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Sample Ohio Business License

Ohio Business License

If you are planning to start a business in Ohio, you should get to know the laws and regulations of the state. There are a few nuances that you should know before getting into a business. You can use our Ohio business license lookup tool to search for requirements and laws. Business license search Ohio can help you find if you need to have a license for your business.

Do you need a business license in Ohio?

A business license allows the state to keep track of your business, verify your qualifications, and hold you responsible for your work. License specifications vary depending on the type of work you do.

The Secretary of State has made it simple to find information about your field of business. Many of the occupations that need an Ohio business license are listed on this license and permit page.

Cities and counties have the authority to impose licensing conditions, which ensures that certain companies may be required to obtain a local permit/license. An antique dealer in Cincinnati, for example, as well as someone selling cigarettes in Franklin County, must have a license.

To become licensed and appear on an Ohio business license search, multiple licensing and registration requirements must be met properly in order to obtain a business license. Read on to learn more about business licensing in Ohio.

How do I obtain a business license in Ohio?

Determine the department that issues your occupation’s license

Finding your occupation on this list is the first step toward obtaining an Ohio business license. Once you have found your business type on the list, you’ll need to determine which department is responsible for licensing. The page also contains links for renewing your license, so bookmarking that page can be beneficial.

When you have found your business type on the list, click on the agency’s link to go to the website where you’ll find your licensing requirements.

The following are some examples of professions and their licensing departments:

  • Barbers — Ohio State Cosmetology and Barber Board
  • Contractors — Ohio Department of Commerce

Check the requirements for city and county licenses

You should always look for city and county requirements whether you need a state-level business license or not. A state license, a local license, or both may be required.

The following are links to licensing sites for Ohio’s most populous cities and counties:

It’s time to gather your materials after you have checked which Ohio business licenses apply to your business. In general, providing all of the requisite details before beginning the application expedites the process. Before you submit, we suggest that you have the following details and information ready:

Proof of examination or education

To obtain a license, you may be required to pass an exam or prove that you have adequate experience or education. Architects, for example, include a professional degree from a recognized institution as well as a passing score on the Architect Registration Examination.

Personal information

Identifying details such as your name, phone number, and address will be requested on all applications. If you are a sole proprietor, your Social Security number would almost certainly be needed. Background checks or criminal records may be required for certain licenses.

Business information 

The application will request your Employer Identification Number, which is a federal tax identification number for a corporation. If your business address is different from your home address, you might be required to include it as well. Some licenses require proof of business insurance, so a certificate of insurance may be required (COI).

Submit your application

The application and submission process differs depending on the type of license. Business owners frequently use eLicense.ohio.gov to apply for a license online.

Here’s how to apply for a new license:

  • Click “Log In” in the upper-right corner
  • Click “I don’t have a license” button
  • Create an account with your name, social security number, and email address.
  • Choose “+Apply for a new license” on the eLicense Dashboard
  • From the dropdown menu, choose your governing board, license category, and application form.

To complete the submission, follow the instructions.

If you are looking for the results of the state of Ohio business license search, you can also find it here.

How Much Does an Ohio Business License Cost?

The cost of an Ohio business license is determined by your occupation, license level, and whether you are applying for the first time or renewing an existing license. In general, new applications are more expensive than renewals. Here are some price examples to help you estimate your costs:

  • Contractors: a new license costs $25;
  • Massage therapists are required to pay a $150 application fee;
  • $175 registration fee for real estate appraisers;
  • $225 application fee for dietitians.

Is an LLC the same as a business license?

Many new business owners mistakenly believe that creating an LLC or company entails obtaining a business license. Consider it this way: forming an LLC is the first step in establishing a legal basis for your business. A business license authorizes you to do business.

An LLC offers an official, legally recognizable certificate of engagement in a specific business in a specific jurisdiction; a license approves your participation in a specific business in a specific jurisdiction.

You are a business owner, not an employee, whether you are a member of an LLC, whether you are a single member or one of the several members. When you form an LLC, each participant contributes something of value, typically money, to ensure that everyone has a stake in the company.

Since LLC members are self-employed business owners rather than employees of the LLC, no tax withholding is required. Instead, each LLC member is responsible for putting money away to cover taxes on their portion of the income.

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