Tampa businesses operate under state business licenses issued by the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR). According to the Tampa government website, the Department “licenses approximately one out of every 16 citizens of Florida.” While you can search Tampa business records and tax payments through the city's website, you must apply for a business license through the DBPR website.
Select the applicable option from the DBPR website (see Resources). Choose to renew a license or to set up an online services account. Selecting the first option allows you to apply for your initial business license, either online or with a paper application.
Select your business type from a list of 34 categories. You’ll then be taken to another page with a list of the various applications and licenses available for that type of business.
Fill out the application online and pay the application fee electronically. As of 2010, not all of the various applications were available for online completion. The other option is to print out the application and complete it. You'll need information such as your tax identification number, business name and address, type of business plus the contact information for the company's officers and directors.
Submit the completed application electronically or mail the printed application to the Department of Business and Professional Regulation with the application fee. The fee can be paid with the department’s online services, by check or by money order. Fees will vary depending on the type of business you are seeking to license. Mail a printed application to Revenue Unit, 1940 North Monroe Street, Tallahassee, FL 32399.
Florida offers a temporary business license for spouses of active duty military personnel, regardless of the type of business you want to operate.
For assistance, call the DBPR's customer contact center at 850-487-1395.