How to Get a Business License in PA
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 Pennsylvania Business Licensing
The only state-level permit or license in Pennsylvania is the sales tax license, also known as a seller’s permit.
You must obtain a sales tax license if you:
- Are engaged in business in Pennsylvania
- Intend to sell or lease tangible personal property and certain services that would ordinarily be subject to sales tax if sold at retail.
Visit the Department of Revenue to obtain a sales tax license.
Additionally, businesses in certain professions need to have specific state licenses or permits. The Pennsylvania Licensing System website provides more information about different types of licenses and how to register for them.
Local Pennsylvania Business Licensing
In Pennsylvania, you may need other licenses or permits from your local government depending on your business activity or location.
Check with your local government office for more information.
Steps for Obtaining a Business License in Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania Sales Tax License
You can register for a Pennsylvania sales tax license online. You will need to create an account to log in.
Other Pennsylvania Business Licenses
The Pennsylvania sales tax license must be renewed every five years.
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
PA 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 Pennsylvania business license?
Any business that sells taxable goods or services needs a sales tax license. Businesses in certain professions or locations may need additional licenses.
What licenses do I need to open a business in Pennsylvania?
Many businesses will at least need a sales tax license. Businesses in certain professions or locations may need additional 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 Pennsylvania, this is called a sales tax license.
How much does a Pennsylvania business license cost?
There is no registration fee for a Pennsylvania sales tax license. The cost of other licenses varies.
How do I get a Pennsylvania business license?
You can register for a Pennsylvania sales tax license online with the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue website. The processes for obtaining other licenses vary.