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Question added to topic Legal Basics For StartupsNovember 21, 2008

What kind of business license do I need?

I'm starting my own cosmetic line, and I'm wondering what kind of business license I'm going to need to have my products sold in boutiques and retail stores. I currently live in California but plan on selling my products in various stores throughout the United States and Canada (and perhaps even abroad). I have looked into purchasing an LLC, but I'm wondering if there is a type of license that is more affordable for someone at the beginning stage of her business. If an LLC is my best bet, could you please recommend a specific company (a reliable one) where I could buy my license from and what kind of package I should purchase?
You are mixing up a couple of concepts here. The first is the need to form a business entity (corporation or LLC) for doing business. That just gives you general permission to do business.

The second is that there may be specific state or federal regulations/licenses that govern how you can operate your cosmetics business. You may need to do both. The fees are what they are -- they aren't scaled depending on (for example) how much business you're doing or how long you've been in business. Speak to a business attorney in your area so that you don't have to navigate this on your own.

Nina L. Kaufman, Esq. is an award-winning New York City attorney, edutainer and author. Under her Ask The Business Lawyer brand, she reaches thousands of entrepreneurs and small business owners with her legal services, professional speaking, information products, and LexAppeal weekly ezine. She also writes the Making It Legal blog.

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