Pennsylvania Business License
Quickly learn how to get a Pennsylvania business license online to meet Pennsylvania state requirements. This guide provides the information and resources you'll need to get federal, state, and local licenses and permits for your small business, including the seller’s permit which is often referred to as the general business license.
Recommended: LegalZoom will do all the necessary legwork to find the exact local, county, state, and federal licenses that your business requires to stay compliant. Start Now with packages starting at $99.
How to Get a Business License in PA
You can get a business license in Pennsylvania online by applying with the correct state licensing or regulatory agency for your business.
Business licensing requirements generally depend on business activities and the business location. This applies to the State of Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania counties, Pennsylvania city permits at the local level, as well as professional licenses and permits, and even required licenses by the federal government.
Professional licenses and permits will depend on what industry your limited liability company or other registered business entity operates within.
Federal licenses and permits are also subject to business activities and regulatory licenses and permits are required to be had depending on the industry the business operates our of.
Other licenses and permits may also be needed for the sale of alcoholic beverages, and other services. These are known as professional licenses. Sometimes there are strict rules that need to be adhered to when operating these types of businesses.
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.
Apply for a Pennsylvania Sales Tax License
Apply Online With the Pennsylvania Department of RevenueApply Online
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
Radio and television broadcasting
Transportation and logistics
Visit our review of the best licensing service providers to learn more about the different professional services that can help you research and apply for business licenses and permits.
PA Business License FAQ
Who needs a Pennsylvania business license?
Pennsylvania requires most businesses that sell taxable goods or services to have a sales tax license. Businesses in certain professions or locations may need additional licenses. And this will require filing records and organizational documents to maintain the sales tax id and to satisfy Pennsylvania enterprise registration requirements.
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 depending on business needs.
Depending on the business structure, new businesses may need to file records and other documents at the state and local levels. You can check with the Small Business Administration to learn more about the specific licenses needed.
The SBA can also help you get a federal employer identification number for filing taxes with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
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 are no registration fees for a Pennsylvania sales tax license. The cost of other licenses varies. You must be licensed to do business in Pennsylvania and to operate in various industries. For example, a restaurant will need a food safety license along with a general business license. The license will have on it a service mark or trademark with the state. You can get a business license in Pennsylvania through the online portal.
How do I get a Pennsylvania business license?
You can register for Pennsylvania business licenses online with the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue website. The processes for obtaining other licenses vary. You can check with the Small Business Administration to learn more about how to get a business license in Pennsylvania. Fees, sales use tax, hotel occupancy licenses, etc. need to be taken up with the responsible issuer.