What should I know about business licenses in Tennessee?
Obtaining business licenses in Tennessee poses a couple of unique challenges – the rules are often arbitrary, physical locations don't always determine the need for a business license, and some businesses need the same license at both the county and city levels.
Business Licenses, LLC recently had one customer opening a mobile food truck in Tennessee. He had already established his home office in his personal residence (that's 1 business license), and in Tennessee it was necessary for him to also obtain the same license at the county level (that's 2 business licenses). Since his truck would periodically serve food in a nearby city, he needed to obtain a license there as well (that's 3 business licenses). Finally, that business license required a duplicate with the county, too (that's 4 business licenses). And that's all for 1 business in Tennessee with 1 physical location.
Common Tennessee business license questions
The home of country music is the perfect place to start a new business! Here we have answered some of the most common business license questions for aspiring business owners in Tennessee.
You do not need a local business license issued by a county in Tennessee. But if your business earns more than $10,000 or more a year, a standard business license is needed from your county and/or municipal clerk for your business to operate and it must be posted in your business' location.
For each new business, there is a $15 business license registration fee that must be paid to the county and/or municipal clerk.
In Tennessee, the main thing to do is register for business tax via the individual county and/or municipal clerk. Plan for it to take up to 10 business days for the Department of Revenue to register your business.
Need help? Avalara can walk you through the initial stages of getting registered as a business in Tennessee.
Licensing information for Tennessee cities
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