How to get Louisiana Business License, Permit, and Registration | Full Guide

The decision to start a new business is one the comes with a rush of excitement. As the processes involved in setting up this business drag on, it presents unique challenges to the prospective business owner.

In the pelican state of Louisiana, there’s a high chance of success with your business venture, provided you meet all the requirements for the issuance of the Louisiana business license.

A business license is simply the government of an area granting you permission to carry out the business activity your license was issued for. Some states have a very cumbersome process for giving out a business license to newly registered businesses. In the State of Louisiana, obtaining a Louisiana business license is a key part of the registration of any business.

This business licensing is done by the office of the secretary of state. While the state of Louisiana doesn’t administer or require a general business license per se, many cities in the state require that the person(s) looking to start the business obtains certain licenses and permits before commencing operations. This is what we refer to as the Louisiana business license.

Some cities in Louisiana have made it mandatory that new businesses acquire a Louisiana occupational license before they can operate in that city. In New Orleans, for example, a Louisiana business license is a requirement for conducting business in that territory.

The importance of this requirement cannot be over-emphasized, as the Louisiana business license is an indispensable regulatory tool in the hands of the authorities to ensure that a high level of quality is maintained in the state. For example, the Louisiana occupational license issued to food businesses ensures that consumers have access to only healthy food products.

This licensing has been of tremendous benefit to the businesses because consumers are assured that the food products they purchase and consume are processed in facilities that have been approved by the authorities as hygienic, resulting in an increase in sales.

Despite these amazing benefits of obtaining a Louisiana business license or permit, some might still hesitate to register their businesses for various reasons. They might assume that the cost of these licensing is very exorbitant and beyond their means.

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Others fear that process of registration is cumbersome and isn’t worth their time. This article examines those two concerns and outlines an easy-to-follow process of obtaining a business license.

The Cost Of A Louisiana Business License

Let’s look at the cost of a license that can be used by a small business operating in Louisiana. In the city of New Orleans, Louisiana, the authorities mandate that businesses get an occupational business license or a general business license.

Under the laws of the land, this license must be filed for annually by every person carrying out any trade, profession, or vocation as a business in the city. The cost of this Louisiana business license is $50 for a business that records annual sales of between $0 to $50,000.

This implies that the business license costs 0.10% of the business’s annual gross receipts. This, of course, is a reasonable fee for a license. So, if a registered business does between $50,000 and $75,000 the following year, renewing the occupational license would cost $60.

For a business that sells goods, getting a vendor’s license is a very is an important requirement by the city of New Orleans. The cost of obtaining this permit varies because of its numerous subdivisions, but an annual permit currently goes for $50.

Here’s a breakdown of all that you should know about a vendor’s permit in New Orleans, Louisiana. If a person wishes to start a business that’ll perform cleaning services in Louisiana, they would have to get the Louisiana Cleaning Service Business License. This vests on them the permission to offer their services to the residents of Louisiana.

How To Get A Louisiana Business License And Permit (Step-By-Step Guide)

If you’re looking to start your business in any of the cities or counties in Louisiana, be sure to take the following steps to comply with the requirements for a business license, permit, and tax registration.

Before your business can be licensed, it has to be registered under a corporate form. Since ‘Louisiana business registration’ and Louisiana business licensing’ are distinct terms, we will assume that you’re familiar with the registration processes and thus, proceed to outline the steps for obtaining a Louisiana business license.

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For more information on how to register your business, check here. Now to the steps for getting a business license.

1. Register your business for taxes with the state of Louisiana. Once you complete this step, you’d be required to obtain a Louisiana tax account number. Armed with this number, you can then apply for a tax identification number.
2. After completing the process of tax registrations, you’d be allowed to apply for a business license. Of course, the type of licensing you to apply for would depend on the nature of the business you operate.
3. Apply for licenses and permits issued by the local authorities. Now, the requirements and regulations for the issuance of these permits differ from municipality to municipality. Always check with your local authorities to find out what the process involves.
4. After submitting an application for a business license, you’d receive feedback from the licensing agency stating the estimated time that would pass before you get a response from the authorities. This means that you have to wait patiently for that time to elapse.
5. If the licensing agency makes an online portal available, be sure to consistently track the progress of your business licensing application.
6. If all the steps were followed to the letter, all stipulated requirements fulfilled, and regulations adhered to, you will receive your business license. This means that you’re legally permitted to operate a business in the state.

Types Of Louisiana Business Licenses And Permits

In the course of this article, I’ve extensively examined what a Louisiana business license and a permit are, and why it’s important that you get those required by your city.

This is very imperative because, depending on your city and type of business, you may need to obtain several of these licenses and permits before you can legally operate as a business in Louisiana. You need a Louisiana business license for as many businesses as you operate in each of its cities.

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This means that if you own a cleaning business in New Orleans and a food business in baton rouge, you have to obtain multiple licenses in compliance with the regulations and requirements of those cities.

The different types of business licenses and permits required in the state of Louisiana include :

  • The occupational permit
  • Business license or tax permit (or both)
  • Building permit
  • Alarm permit
  • Signage permit
  • Zoning permit
  • Health permit
  • Professional license
  • Liquor License etc

A business makes the relevant authorities aware of the existence of your business. Failure to do this will attract penalties of various degrees.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can an existing Louisiana business license be renewed?

Yes, it can be. In most cities, you must renew your licenses annually.

What are the penalties for not having a business license?

Without getting a business license, you could get fined and your business activities suspended.

Can I get a single license for multiple businesses?

No, you can’t. Each business must be licensed separately.

How do I know which business permit to obtain?

Check the requirements of your city or county authorities in relation to the nature of your business.

What is the cost of obtaining a business license in Louisiana?

The cost of obtaining a business license in Louisiana is dependent on the city or county.


The Louisiana license is a must-have if you plan to operate a business in any of its municipalities. Be sure to meet all set requirements and obtain your license and permits. This way, you’ll enjoy doing business in the pelican state.



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