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    How To Obtain a Business License

    To start a business in the City of Lynchburg, please follow these steps:

    • If you are using a trade name and are not registered as a corporation of any type, you must register the name with the Clerk of the State Corporation Commission.
    • You must obtain a Letter of Approval from the Community Development Department. There is no charge for this document. 
      Contact Community Planning  434-455-3900         
      Combined Commercial Business License/Zoning Approval Form   Combined Home Based and Mobile Food Sales Business License/Zoning Approval Form
    • You must obtain a Certificate of Occupancy from the Inspections Department.  If you are operating the business out of your residence, you do not need the certificate. There is no charge for this document.
      Contact Inspections  434-455-3910
    • The Business License Application has been streamlined and is now part of the Letter of Zoning Approval Application above in Step 2.  The business license fee is based on gross receipts (gross purchases for wholesalers). You must estimate the gross receipts from the start of your business until the end of the current calendar year. Once you have been in business for a full calendar year, the license will be based on the previous year's gross receipts.

    Effective January 1, 2017 the following schedule will be utilized to determine the amount of the business license tax:

    Gross Receipts/Purchases Business License Fee
    $0-$10,000 Not Subject To A License
    $10,001-$50,000 $30.00 Non refundable
    $50,001-$100,000 $50.00
    $100,001-$150,000 $160.00

    If gross receipts/purchases are greater than $150,000 the following schedule is utilized:

    • Retail merchant - 20 cents per $100 of gross receipts
    • Contractor - 16 cents per $100 of gross receipts
    • Business/personal service - 36 cents per $100 of gross receipts
    • Professional service - 58 cents per $100 of gross receipts
    • Wholesale merchant - $20 plus 28 cents per $100 of gross purchases

    *The City will no longer issue a Business License for any business with gross receipts/purchases of $10,000 or less.

    For further information regarding Business License Tax 434-455-3880.