How to Obtain a Business License in Texas

by Shanika Chapman; Updated September 26, 2017

As an entrepreneur, there are a number of steps you will need to take in order to get your business up and running. While there isn't an official business license for the state of Texas, depending on the type of business you will operate in Texas, you may need to get a number of licenses and permits.

Step 1

Determine what type of business structure you will have. The LLC may offer a number of tax advantages. If you opt to form an LLC, download and fill out Form 205 from the Texas Secretary of State website (see Resources). Mail your form and $300 (the fee for forming an LLC) to P.O. Box 13697, Austin, Texas 78711-3697.

Step 2

Get your federal tax ID number or employer identification number (EIN). Apply online at IRS.gov (see Resources).

Step 3

Apply for your Texas sales tax permit (see Resources). Download a Form AP-201, fill it out and submit it to your local Texas Comptroller's office or mail it to their main office: Comptroller of Public Accounts, 111 E. 17th St, Austin, Texas, 78874-0100. Or, call (512) 463-4600 or (800) 252-5555.

Step 4

Familiarize yourself with your responsibilities as an employer and your projected tax liability for payroll taxes, federal unemployment tax (FUTA) and state unemployment tax (SUTA). Then, register with the Texas Workforce Commission (TWC). Call (512) 463-2747 for help.

Step 5

Visit the Official Portal of Texas (see Resources) to determine if you need to get any additional business licenses for the type of services or products you intend to sell. For example, if you intend to sell alcohol, tobacco or food in Texas, you will need additional licenses.

Warnings

  • As an employer, you must stay on top of all state and federal taxes, or you may incur steep penalties.

About the Author

Shanika Chapman has been writing business-related articles since 2009. She holds a Bachelor of Science in social science from the University of Maryland University College. Chapman also served for four years in the Air Force and has run a successful business since 2008.