Starting your own business? — Great! Before you do, though, take a look at this. (Part 2 of 2)

Business Entities in Virginia

How to choose the right one for you and what to do before you open your business

Part 2 of 2

What to do after formation

As promised last week, here’s the next installment.  Now you have formed your business — you have analyzed what entity is best for you, you have assessed the legal liability, you have filed the appropriate state documents — now what?

Apply for an Employer Identification Number (EIN) from the IRS.

Apply for a County/City business license (if required by your locality).

Register any trade names (if different than the name of your entity).

Open a commercial bank account.

Prepare your core contracts and agreements — Always remember that good contracts prevent problems!

What professions require additional licensing?

The Commonwealth of Virginia may require additional licensing requirements.

Title 54.1 of the Virginia Code provides additional guidance regarding what addition professions require licenses and permits.  For additional information, please go to http://law.lis.virginia.gov/vacode/title54.1/

Finally, always be very aware of local business licensing and requirements.  Those are the ones that can bite you if you’re not prepared.

Local Business Licensing 

Town of Wytheville

Municipal Ordinance Section 7-19 provides that “[I]t shall be unlawful and shall constitute a misdemeanor for any person to conduct a business, or to engage in a profession, trade or occupation within the municipality, without first procuring a license as required under the provisions of this article.”  Simply put, if you have an office in Wytheville, you’re going to pay a tax.  If you have offices in multiple locations, your tax will be pro-rated to what revenue was earned in the Town of Wytheville.

Carroll County

A business license is not actually required in Carroll County. New business owners need to register their business name with the Commissioner of Revenue by completing a New Business Registration form (Form CC-1) found on Carroll County’s website at: http://carrollcountyva.org/docs/cor/business_form.pdf or by going to Commissioner of Revenue Carroll County Governmental Center 605-7 Pine Street, Hillsville, VA 24343 — (276)730-3080.

Grayson County

A business license is not required for Grayson County BUT please see rules for the Towns of Independence and Fries, as licensing requirements may differ. Businesses need to register with the Commissioner of the Revenue in Grayson County at:
PO Box 126, Independence, VA 24348.  Phone: (276) 773-2381 Fax: (276) 773-0444

City of Galax

Business Licenses:

Commissioner of Revenue
Room 109 of the Municipal Building 111 E. Grayson Street
Galax, VA 24333
276-236-2131 (phone)

Town of Fries

Business Licenses:

A business license is not required in Fries, although businesses do need to register with the Town Hall located at:
105 West Main Street
Fries, VA 24330

Phone: (276) 744-2231

Town of Independence

Business Licenses:

A business license must be purchased in Independence before a business can be opened. A business must list before May 15th each year and pay before July 15th each year. Contact the billing clerk in Independence for more information at: 136 East Main Street, Independence, Virginia 24348 Phone: (276)773-3703 Independence, Virginia 24348 Phone: (276)773-3703

Town of Hillsville

Business Licenses:

Business License applications are available at Town Hall, located at: 410 North Main Street
Hillsville, VA 24343  Phone: (276)728-2128

Applicants should have estimated gross receipts for their business upon application.

As you can see, there is plenty to consider.  Failing to file the appropriate tax and licensing documentation can lead to serious tax and legal liability.  Please note that the information above is not meant to be legal advice.  As such, I highly recommend you consult a legal professional for advice on what documents are necessary and when they should be filed.