Permits & Licenses
The California Department of Tax and Fee Administration administers many tax and fee programs. Depending on your type of business, you may be required to hold one or more permits, licenses or accounts.
How do I register for a permit, license, or account?
The CDTFA has a secure, convenient, fast, and free way to register online for a permit, license, or account. The system guides you through the process and will assist you with the types of permits you may need for your business.
- New Permit Holders – There are many things you need to know during your first year in business. To review, please see our Guide for New Permit and License Holders.
- Sub-locations – Businesses that have a seller's permit, license, or an account and are expanding their operations to a new area may need to add a new location to their account.
- Temporary Seller's Permits – If you plan to make sales in one location for 90 days or less, you must register your business activity by applying for a temporary seller's permit. For more information, please see Temporary Sellers.
How do I renew my license?
Certain special tax and fee programs require a license that needs to be renewed each year. To renew your license, you must complete a Renewal Application for these programs:
Use our online registration system to renew your license for Cigarette and Tobacco Products, International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA) and/or request additional decals.
Online License Renewal Frequently Asked Questions
What are some common permits, licenses, or accounts I might need?
California Seller's Permit: If you are doing business in California and intend to sell or lease tangible personal property subject to sales tax sold at retail, you are required to have a seller's permit and prominently display it at your place of business. Read our Seller's Permit FAQ for more information.
Cigarette and Tobacco Products: If you sell cigarettes and tobacco products at retail, you must have a California Cigarette and Tobacco Products Retailer's License before purchasing or selling cigarettes or tobacco products. You must obtain this license in addition to your seller's permit.
Covered Electronic Waste Recycling Fee (eWaste): You must have an eWaste account if you sell or lease covered electronic devices (CEDs) such as computer monitors, laptop computers, or portable DVD players with LCD screens. You must obtain this account in addition to your seller's permit.
International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA). You must have an IFTA license if you are an interstate motor carrier reporting fuel taxes. An IFTA license allows a taxpayer to file one tax report that covers all member jurisdictions.
Lumber Products Assessment: Beginning January 1, 2013, a new law requires a one percent (1%) assessment on purchases of lumber products and engineered wood products for use in California, based on the selling price of the products.
Tire Fee: If you sell new tires, lease/rent motor vehicles, construction equipment, farm equipment, and motorized equipment with new tires you must have a tire fee account. You must obtain this account in addition to your seller's permit.
Underground Storage Tank: If you own an underground storage tank, you must register with the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration. You will be required to file underground storage tank fee returns and pay any fee amounts due for the reporting period.
There are also a number of other tax and fee programs administered by the CDTFA. Please see our complete list of Special Tax and Fee Programs.
How do I verify a permit, license, or account?
Our verification webpage will help you verify a seller's permit, cigarette and tobacco product retailer's license, eWaste account, underground storage tank maintenance fee account or prepaid mobile telephony services (MTS) account.
My business information or address has changed. What do I do?
Seller's permit or prepaid MTS account holders should fill out the Notice of Business Change form (CDTFA-345) and follow the instructions.
Special taxes and fees department account holders should fill out the Notice of Business Change form (CDTFA-345-SP) and follow the instructions.
State-Assessed Property Tax assessees should contact the State-Assessed Properties Division at 1-916-274-3270 to report a change of business information or address.
How do I close a permit, license, or account?
It is important that you close your permit, license, or account when one of the following happens:
- You are no longer engaged in business;
- You sell your business or stock of goods to someone else;
- You change the type of ownership for your business (for example, from a sole proprietorship to a corporation or partnership);
- When your partnership agreement calls for dissolution of the partnership and the formation of a new partnership when a change in partners occurs; or
- You change your type of business to expand or discontinue what you sell.
Seller's Permit or Prepaid MTS Account Holders
Other Permit, License, or Account Holders
Please call our Customer Service Center at 1-800-400-7115 to start the process to close your special tax or fee permit, license, or account.
Where can I find more information?
Visit this webpage to learn more about registering for our permits, licenses, and accounts.
The Governor's Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) offers extensive information on state, local, and federal permit requirements:
- CalGold – Provides information about other federal, state, or local government permits that may be required for your business.
- California Business Portal – Provides personalized business assistance including quick start guides for starting and growing your business and the California Business Navigator that provides custom information for your business including permits, licenses, and incentives.