How to Get a Business License in ND
You can get a business license online by applying with the correct licensing or regulatory agency for your business.
Business licensing requirements generally depend on your business’s activity and location (zoning requirements).
There are three main licensing jurisdictions:
State of North Dakota Business Licensing
The main state-level permit or license in North Dakota is the sales tax permit, also known as a seller’s permit.
You must obtain a sales tax permit if you:
- Are engaged in business in North Dakota
- Intend to sell or lease tangible personal property that would ordinarily be subject to sales tax if sold at retail.
Visit the Department of Tax and Fee Administration to obtain a sales tax permit.
Additionally, businesses in certain professions or industries need specific licenses or permits. North Dakota State University provides a list of the different state licenses as well as contact information for the relevant government offices.
Local North Dakota Business Licensing
In North Dakota you may need other licenses or permits from your local government depending on your business activity or location.
For example, the City of Bismarck requires food service businesses and pawnbrokers, among others, to have specific city licenses.
Steps for Obtaining a Business License in North Dakota
North Dakota Sales Tax Permit
You can register for a North Dakota sales tax permit online. You will need to create an account to log in to the website.
Other North Dakota Business Licenses
Federal Business Licenses and Permits
You can get a business license by applying with the correct licensing and regulatory agency for your business. Business licensing requirements depend on your business’s activity and location (zoning requirements).
If your business conducts activities that are regulated by the federal government, you will need to apply for the appropriate business license or permit.
Choose a business activity below to learn how to apply:
Firearms, ammunition, and explosives
Fish and wildlife
Mining and drilling
Radio and television broadcasting
Transportation and logistics
ND Business License FAQ
What is a business license?
A business license is a permit issued to businesses by a government office that allows the business to operate in a particular area. They can be issued by federal, state, or local governments. There are typically different licensing requirements for different businesses and different locations.
What are the types of business licenses?
There are many types of business licenses. These include licenses at the local, state, and federal levels, licenses related to sales tax and other taxes, and specific licenses for various professions. There are also environmental licenses, zoning permits, and more.
Is there a national business license?
Most businesses don’t need a federal business license, but some industries, including broadcasting, investment advising, and drug manufacturing, do have federal regulations and licenses.
Is an EIN the same as a business license?
No. An employer identification number (EIN) is issued by the IRS to identify and keep track of businesses, but it does not license them to operate.
Is an LLC considered a business license?
No. An LLC is a type of business structure. While you are required to register as an LLC, it is not a business license.
Who needs a North Dakota business license?
Any business that sells tangible property subject to the state sales tax needs a sales tax permit. Businesses in certain professions or locations may need other specific licenses.
What licenses do I need to open a business in North Dakota?
Many businesses will at least need a sales tax permit. Businesses in certain professions or locations may need other specific licenses.
What is a seller’s permit?
A seller’s permit is the common name for a license or permit that allows you to sell products or services. In North Dakota, this is called a sales tax permit.
How much does a North Dakota business license cost?
There is no registration fee for a North Dakota sales tax permit. The cost of other licenses varies.
How do I get a North Dakota business license?
You can register for a North Dakota sales tax permit online through the North Dakota Taxpayer Access Point website. The processes for obtaining other licenses vary.