South Carolina Business License

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General Business License Requirements for South Carolina.

Business licenses are often required of business entities, regardless of their products and services. This page provides an overview of business license requirements in South Carolina.

South Carolina General Business Licenses

South Carolina Business License

Not required



General Business License licensure is not required on the State level in South Carolina.

South Carolina does not have a general business license at the state level, but local licenses are often required.

Local General Business Licenses

Beaufort Business License

Agency:City of Beaufort Finance Department - The Business License Office

Initial Registration

Form:

Business Application 

Filing Method:

Mail or online.

Due:

The initial business license is valid from the time it begins operations through Dec. 31. Every year thereafter, the license requires annual renewal.

Registration Renewal

Agency Fee:

The required business license tax shall be paid for each business subject hereto according to the applicable rate classification on or before the due date of the 30th day of April in each year.

The business license tax must be computed based on the licensee's gross income for the calendar year preceding the due date, for the licensee's twelve-month fiscal year preceding the due date, or on a twelve-month projected income based on the monthly average for a business in operation for less than one (1) year

1st renewal of license: 40% of applicable tax 

2nd renewal of license: 60% of applicable tax 

3rd and the subsequent renewal of license: 100% of applicable tax

Due:

The business license is valid from the time it begins operations through Dec. 31. Every year thereafter, the license requires annual renewal.

Cheraw Business License

Agency:Town of Cheraw Town Clerk-Treasurer (SC)

Initial Registration

Form:

Business License Application 

Agency Fee:

Fees are based on gross receipts.

Registration Renewal

Agency Fee:

Fees are based on gross receipts.

Due:

Annually by April 30.

Notes:

Renewal forms are sent to licensees prior to the expiration date.

City of Aiken Business License

Agency:City of Aiken Business Licensing Office (SC)
Foreign Qualification is Prerequisite:No
Registered Agent (Special Agency) Required?No

Initial Registration

Form:

Business License Application

Agency Fee:
  • Varies by business type. Find your rate class on this page and then see the fee chart on this page to identify your application fee.
  • All minimum fees and rates are be doubled for non-residents and itinerants having no fixed principal place of business within the municipality.

Registration Renewal

Agency Fee:
  • Varies by business type and income. Find your rate class on this page and then see the fee chart on this page to identify your renewal fee.
  • All minimum fees and rates are be doubled for non-residents and itinerants having no fixed principal place of business within the municipality.
Due:

Annually by April 30.

Notes:

Renewal notices are sent in the mail roughly 2 months prior to the renewal date.

City of Cayce Business License

Initial Registration

Form:

https://caycesc.gov/business/businesslicense.pdf

Agency Fee:

Varies

Registration Renewal

Form:

https://caycesc.gov/business/businesslicense.pdf

Agency Fee:

Varies

Due:

Annually on January 1.

City of Charleston Business License

Agency:City of Charleston Budget, Finance, and Revue Collections Department - Revenue Collections Division (SC)
Foreign Qualification is Prerequisite:No
Registered Agent (Special Agency) Required?No

Initial Registration

Form:

New Business License Application 

Filing Method:

Mail 

Agency Fee:

Business license fees are based on the type of business and the projected gross income of the business for the balance of the calendar year.

Registration Renewal

Form:

Business License Renewal Payment Form 

Filing Method:

Mail or online

Agency Fee:

Business license fees are based on the type of business and the projected gross income of the business for the balance of the calendar year.

Due:

Annually by April 30. 

City of Greenville Business License

Agency:City of Greenville Business License - Revenue and Business License Division (SC)

Initial Registration

Form:

Business License Application

Agency Fee:

A base rate fee is required per business type + estimated total gross sales/revenue/contracts for the balance of the year.

Registration Renewal

Form:

Business License Application (Renewal)

Agency Fee:

Fee based on actual gross receipts/revenue/contracts for prior year ending December 31.

Due:

Annually by December 31.

City of Hardeevilee Business License

Agency:City of Hardeeville Finance Department - Business License Coordinator (SC)
Foreign Qualification is Prerequisite:No
Registered Agent (Special Agency) Required?No

Initial Registration

Form:

Business License Registration Application

Filing Method:

Mail. 

Agency Fee:

Fee determined by estimated gross income + class type (see caluclation worksheet)  + 3% convienience fee if paid online. 

Law:

Hardeevile, South Carolina Municpal Code - Chapter 11

Required Attachments:
  • City of Hardeeville permits or inspection reports (843-784-2231)
  • Completed business license application
  • Copy of (current) South Carolina State License, if applicable 803-896-4300)
  • Copy of Photo I.D. of Business Owner
  • Copy of South Carolina retail sales tax license, if applicable (843-852-3600)
  • DHEC approval, if applicable (843-846-1030)
  • If this is a one-time or Project License; you will need to provide a copy of the contract
  • Sub-contractor list (if you are using any subs, they are required to have a current City of Hardeeville business license before they can begin work for you). 

Registration Renewal

Form:

Business License Renewal Application 

Filing Method:

Mail. 

Agency Fee:

Fees determined by gross income of following year + class type (see calucation worksheet) + 3% convience fee if paid online. 

Due:

Annually by April 30.

Law:

Hardeeville, South Carolina Municipal Code - Chapter 11

City of North Charleston Business License

Agency:North Charleston City Hall (SC)

Initial Registration

Form:

Business License Application

Agency Fee:

Fee for a new business are computed on the estimated probable gross income for the balance of the license year.

Registration Renewal

Filing Method:

Online

Agency Fee:

Fee for a new business are computed on the estimated probable gross income for the balance of the license year.

Due:

Annually by December 31.

City of Spartanburg Business License

Agency:City of Spartanburg Business Licensing (SC)
Foreign Qualification is Prerequisite:No
Registered Agent (Special Agency) Required?No

Initial Registration

Form:

Business License Application

Agency Fee:

Fees vary. See the Business License Rate Schedule for details.

Registration Renewal

Form:

Business License Application (Renewal)

Agency Fee:

Fees vary. See the Business License Rate Schedule for details.

Due:

Annually by December 31.

Columbia Business License

Agency:City of Columbia Business License Division (SC)

Initial Registration

Form:

Business License Application

Agency Fee:

Fees are based on projected gross income from the start of business date through December 31st of that year.

Registration Renewal

Form:

The Business License Division mails renewal forms at the beginning of the year in January.

Agency Fee:

Renewal fees are based on the previous year's gross income reported to the Internal Revenue Service.

Due:

Annually by December 31.

Florence Business License

Agency:City of Florence Business License Office (SC)

Initial Registration

Form:

Business Application Form 

Filing Method:

Mailed or faxed. 

Agency Fee:

Fees are based on estimates of gross receipts for the first year.

Registration Renewal

Agency Fee:

A renewal license fee based on gross income shall be computed on the gross income for the preceding fiscal year, and on a twelve-month projected income, based on the monthly average for a business in operation at the time of renewal for less than one (1) year.

Due:

Annually by June 30.

Hilton Head Island Business License

Agency:Town of Hilton Head Island Revenue Services (SC)

Initial Registration

Form:

Business Application

Agency Fee:

$10.00 application fee + Business License Tax (based on projected gross revenue for the first year of operation)

Due:

Annually by April 30.

Registration Renewal

Filing Method:

Mail or online

Agency Fee:

Businesses are required to pay an annual business licenese tax.

Business License tax is calculated on your gross revenue reported on your prior year's Federal Income tax return.

Due:

Each yearly license shall be issued for a twelve-month period of May 1 - April 30.

Renewals are due by April 30th of each year. 

Horry County Business License

Agency:Horry County Business License Department (SC)
Foreign Qualification is Prerequisite:No
Registered Agent (Special Agency) Required?No

Initial Registration

Form:

Business License Registration Application 

Filing Method:

Mail 

Agency Fee:

Fee determined by busines type. 

Before you Apply:

Zoning approval is required prior to the issuance of the business license. Please contact the Horry County Planning and Zoning Department at 843-915-5340 to determine whether or not the use is in compliance with the zoning regulations and to obtain the required approval document prior to submitting the business license application. If the application is not received prior to the start date of the business a 10% monthly penalty will apply with a cap of 30%.

Registration Renewal

Form:

Business License Registration Application (renewal)

Filing Method:

Mail 

Agency Fee:

Fee determined by business type. 

Due:

Annually by April 30. 

Lexington Business License

Agency:Town of Lexington Business Licensing (SC)

Initial Registration

Form:

Business License Application 

Filing Method:

Email (slee@lexsc.com) or fax (803-358-1552). 

Agency Fee:

Business type fee (NAICS code)+ $20.00 zoning fee. 

Registration Renewal

Filing Method:

Emailed or faxed. 

Agency Fee:

Determined by the type of business (NAICS code). 

Due:

Annually by April 30.

Law:

(Ord. 2018-38 , § 1(Att. I)

Mount Pleasant Business License

Agency:Town of Mount Pleasant Business License Division (SC)

Initial Registration

Form:

Business License Application

Agency Fee:

Fee is determined by business activity and estimated gross receipts figure.

Registration Renewal

Form:

Business License Application (Renewal)

Agency Fee:

Fee is determined by business activity and gross receipts figure.

Due:

Annually by July 31.

Myrtle Beach Business License

Agency:City of Myrtle Beach Business License Division (SC)
Foreign Qualification is Prerequisite:No
Registered Agent (Special Agency) Required?No

Initial Registration

Form:

Business License Registration Application 

Filing Method:

In person or mail 

Agency Fee:

Determined by gross reciepts. 

Registration Renewal

Form:

Business License Renewal Form 

Filing Method:

Mail 

Agency Fee:

Determined by gross reciepts 

Due:

Annually by April 30. 

Richland County Business License

Agency:Richland County Business Service Center (SC)

Initial Registration

Form:

Application for a New Business License

Agency Fee:

Fee is determined by the projected gross revenue through end of the calendar year. Additional fees specific to business type is listed on the application.

Registration Renewal

Filing Method:

Online

Agency Fee:

Fee is based on gross revenue.

Due:

Annually by December 31.

Rock Hill Business License

Agency:City of Rock Hill Planning and Development Department(SC)

Initial Registration

Filing Method:

Online

Agency Fee:

New businesses pay license fees on projected gross income from the start of business date through December 31 of that year.

Registration Renewal

Filing Method:

Online

Agency Fee:

Renewal fees are based on the previous year?s gross income reported to the Internal Revenue Service.

Due:

Annually by December 31.

Sumter Business License

Agency:City of Sumter Business License Department (SC)

Initial Registration

Form:

Business License Application 

Instructions:

You must complete an Application and a New Clearance Form which is sent to the planning department for approval from the Zoning Department, Building Inspections Department, and the Fire Department.

Filing Method:

Mail. 

Agency Fee:

Based on the estimated probable gross income stated in the license application for the balance of the license year. 

Registration Renewal

Agency Fee:

Based on gross total income for year. 

Due:

The City renewals are mailed in January and due by the 15th of February. The County renewals are mailed in February and due by the 15th of March.

Penalties:

5% per month beginning February 16th (City) and March 16th (county). 

Surfside Beach Business License

Agency:Town of Surfside Beach Business License Office (SC)

Initial Registration

Form:

Business Application 

Filing Method:

Mail

Agency Fee:

The license fee for a new business is based upon an estimation of gross receipts from the first day of operation until May 31.

Registration Renewal

Filing Method:

Renewals are mailed on April 5th and due by June 1st.

Agency Fee:

The reporting period for renewals is based upon the preceding calendar or fiscal year as reported on your federal tax return

Due:

Annually June 1.

Williamston Business License

Agency:Town of Williamston Clerk/Treasurer's Office (SC)

Initial Registration

Form:

Business Application 

Filing Method:

Mail.

Agency Fee:

The fee for a new business shall be computed on the estimated probable gross income stated in the license application for the balance of the license year.

Registration Renewal

Agency Fee:

Inside Businesses: Pay $65.00 for the first $2,000.00 and then $0.65 for each $1,000.00 after + $82.49 Solid Waste Fee.

Outside Businesses: Pay $97.50 for the first $2,000.00 and then $0.98 for each $1,000.00 after

Due:

Annually by March 1.

Learn about general business licensing requirements in other states:



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