Once you have incorporated or formed your business in Louisiana, what next? The next step is to find out if you require a business license or permit to begin operations in the state. However, it is important to understand that not all businesses require a state license and there are some businesses that may require a specific city or county license as well. The required licenses or permit in some cases may fall into a regulatory category and these are normally issued by different Louisiana state agencies.
Louisiana Business License Requirements
How do you obtain a business license in Louisiana? More importantly, does your business require a license or permit? How does the process of identifying and acquiring a license work? Which business entities require a license and which requires permits? Who is the issuing authority for these licenses? These are some of the important questions that you might be confronted with and hence, we have created a guide that will help answer some of these questions.
Let us look at a step-by-step approach towards acquiring a Louisiana company license or a permit.
Step-1: Identify the Industry or Type of Business
Which industry is your business entity a part of? In the state of Louisiana, the requirement for business license or permit is dependent on the type of industry. Some of the most common industries include:
- Manufacturing, processing, mining, and/or fabricating
- Agriculture/Animals/Water/Logging/Land Use
- Contracting or Real Estate
- Entertainment, Gaming, Casino
- Sales: Retail, wholesale, on-line sales
- Service businesses
Essentially, the type of business license, the issuing authority, and licensing fee will depend on 2 factors:
- The industry
- The city or county where your business is registered or based
Step-2: Do you need a Business License
Once you have identified the industry, the next step is to identify whether you need a business license in Louisiana. Some of the businesses that require a license or permit include:
- Gaming, Casino and Video
- Food – Retail and Restaurants
- Alcohol – Retail, Wholesale, Manufacturer
- Hearing Aid Dealer
- Motor Vehicle (New/Used) and Recreational Vehicles
- Private Employment Service
- Provider: Foster Care, Adoption Agency, and others
- Security Company
- Wholesale Drug Distributors
If your business is not in the above list, you need to check with the county or city council to find out if your business requires a local permit or a license.
Step-3: Apply for a Business License
The application procedure, the processing and the fee for a Louisiana company license varies according to the industry or type of business. Here is an example that will help you understand how the process works.
Type of Business: Retail Food Establishment
If you are planning to start a “Retail Food Establishment” in Louisiana then the issuance of business license or permits will be handled by the Department of Health and Hospitals, Office of Public Health.
A Retail Food Establishment in Louisiana does not require a business license; instead you will be required to apply for a permit. Here is the procedure:
- You will be required to submit a scale-drawn floor plan of your food establishment and a site plan to the sanitarian and it should be compliant with all requirements of the applicable State Sanitary Code.
- Once the plan is approved, inspection will be conducted in the said premises.
- After a final permitting inspection, the Permit to Operate will be issued by State Health Department.
- The fee to be paid for the permit is $150 for 1 permit and is valid for Restaurants, Bars, Meat Markets, Seafood Markets etc.
- There will be an extra fee of $25 for a temporary special event permit.
Today, there are almost 34,000 food establishments that have business license in Louisiana and you can have one too!
In case, you have any questions regarding how to form a Louisiana business and apply for a business license, feel free to call us at 702-871-8678.