Whether starting a new business, looking to expand an existing business or considering relocating a business, entrepreneurs
searching for information that will support their business needs can visit the Florida High Tech Corridor Council (FHTCC) Virtual Entrepreneur Center. Visit today!
Business Tax License (previously called Occupational License)
Contact the city and county in which your business will be located in order to secure the necessary business tax license. License fees vary depending on the jurisdiction and the type of business.
Corporations, Partnerships and Sole Proprietors
To get a business operational, you must first decide on its legal structure. The choice of legal structure determines what kind of taxes the business must pay, who's liable, and in part, what forms to file. There are three main choices: Corporation, Partnership or Sole Proprietor. In a sole proprietorship, the owner has absolute authority over all business decisions. In a partnership, partners share control of the business. Any entity that transacts business as a corporation is required to file documents of incorporation or authorization with the Florida Department of State, Division of Corporations (800) 755-5111 and pay a filing fee. If you are forming an "S" Corporation, you must obtain the necessary forms from the Internal Revenue Service (800) 829-1040 in addition to contacting the Florida Department of State.
Fictitious Name Notice
If a business uses any name other than the given name of the owner, and the business is not incorporated, a fictitious name must be registered with the Florida Department of State (850) 245-6058. This provides official notice that you will be doing business under your company name.
State Sales Tax Number
All businesses that collect Florida sales tax must obtain a Florida Sales and Use Tax Number (DR-1) and report the 6% Florida sales tax and any local discretionary taxes to the Florida Department of Revenue. This is required unless the business is exempt from sales taxes. Contact the Florida Department of Revenue (800) 352-3671. The state charges a fee for each new registration.
Agency for Workforce Innovation
Businesses with one or more employees may need to apply for a state unemployment tax number. Employers pay a quarterly tax based on employee wages. To determine whether you are liable for unemployment compensation taxes and to apply for a state unemployment compensation tax number, contact the Agency for Workforce Innovation, (850) 245-7105.
Federal Tax Number
A Federal Employer Identification number (SS-4) is issued to most businesses. Necessary federal forms and a business tax kit are available from the IRS local office in Tampa at (813) 348-1831. Unless the business is a sole proprietorship with no employees, you are required to obtain a federal employer identification number (Form SS-4).
Income Tax, Social Security and Unemployment Compensation
Obtain forms 940 and 941 from the IRS (800) 829-1040 or the local office in Tampa at (813) 348-1831 to register for federal unemployment compensation taxes and for income tax and Social Security payments.
Florida Department of State's Division of Corporation
You are required to prepare, execute and deliver the proper articles of incorporation, along with any necessary fees and taxes, to the Florida Department of State's Division of Corporation (800) 755-5111. "S" corporations must also obtain forms from the Internal Revenue Service (800) 829-1040.
Other Special License Requirements:
Contact the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation (850) 487-1395 to determine whether your business will require any special regulatory considerations.
IRS Tax Center
The IRS Tax Center provides links to IRS.gov web pages specific to the needs of business owners and tax professionals within the small business community. These links provide access to various IRS services, information, forms, and publications. For information, click here to download the Word document.