Business license

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A business license is a form of permission granted by a federal or state agency that enables a natural person or entity to engage in a specific business activity within a jurisdiction. Although not all types of businesses require a license, some may need them according to the applicable state, municipal, or county rules and regulations.

Below are some examples of government agencies that grant licenses or permits for some types of business activities:

When starting a business, it’s advisable to conduct research and attain all required licenses to legally operate that specific business. Not having the legally required licenses may result in the imposition of fines or the forced closure of the business.

[Last updated in July of 2021 by the Wex Definitions Team]