Do I Need a Business License to Sell Products Online?

By Lanee' Blunt

Register with the appropriate
 government agencies--

Starting a business onlinethe same basic rules apply as with setting up a small business. If you aregoing to sell your products on your own website, or if you are planning to sellthem on EBay or Etsy, you will need to register your business with theappropriate government agencies.

You must set up yourbusiness as a legal entity. Decide which form of ownership is best for yourparticular business: sole proprietorship, partnership, Limited LiabilityCompany (LLC), corporation, or S corporation.

Apply for an employeeidentification number (EIN) with the federal government. Fill-out the necessaryforms and send them back to the federal government and they will return it toyou with your EIN number.  You will needthis to hire employees. The EIN is also known as an Employer Tax ID and FormSS-4. If you are not planning to hire employees you won’t need an EIN.

Most online merchants workfrom home but check with your county clerk’s office to find out what businesslicenses or permits you need. Many cities and county zoning and planningagencies require that you obtain a Home Occupation permit.

An online business in somestates is required to charge a sales tax and you may have to apply for a taxpermit or register with your state revenue agency. As an online business you areresponsible for collecting state and local sales taxes from your customers andthen paying these taxes to your state and local revenue agency.

Make sure that you complywith all of the regulations concerning privacy, advertising and copyright.

SBA: Making Money Online:When you are a Business; Bob K; 2010

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