Do you own a business operating in the state of Mississippi? If so, you may need to acquire licenses and permits to ensure that your company operates in a compliant fashion.
But how do you determine which permits and licenses you need (if any), and where do you acquire them? In this guide to Mississippi business licenses and permits, we’ll answer all the tough questions about this process.
Are There Federal Licenses That My Business Needs?
First off, let’s discuss the matter of federal licenses and permits. There are many business activities that are regulated by various federal agencies, from agriculture to transportation and logistics. We recommend taking a look at the U.S. Small Business Administration’s guide to federal licenses and permits to make sure you’ve got your bases covered.
In addition, most businesses should acquire a federal tax ID number, also known as an EIN (employer identification number). This is essentially a social security number for your business, and it enables you to hire employees, pay business taxes, open business bank accounts, and more. You can acquire an EIN from the IRS for free.
What State-Level Licenses and Permits Apply in Mississippi?
The state of Mississippi does not require all businesses to obtain a general business license. However, many industries and specific business activities require licensing from state and local authorities.
The Small Business Development Center provides a list of the most common business licenses in the state, as well as the relevant departments that manage them.The Mississippi state website also supplies a list of professional licenses you may be required to obtain, depending on the nature of your profession.
The Environmental Permits Division, under the authority of the Department of Environmental Quality, manages and administers all environmental permits in the state. These permits are divided into the following categories:
- General permits
- Hazardous waste
- Solid waste and mining
For more information on Mississippi’s environmental permit requirements, consult this link.
Which Tax Registrations are Required for Mississippi Businesses?
In addition to occupational licenses and permits, there are a number of state-level tax registrations, which are based on the industry you operate in and which business structure your company uses.
According to the Department of Revenue, “all corporations, associations, or entities doing business, earning income, or existing in Mississippi are required to file a corporate income and franchise tax return.” Additionally, most businesses will need to obtain a sales tax identification number, also known as a “Seller’s Certificate,” to sell products or services in the state.
In addition to the required state income tax registrations, there are various industry-specific taxes that apply to different types of businesses and commercial activities. These include, but are not limited to:
- Interstate commercial vehicles
- Oil and gas severance
- Salt severance
- Timber severance
- Waste disposal
Are There Local Licenses, Permits, or Registrations in Mississippi?
The answer to this question obviously depends on where in Mississippi you’re operating your business, but there are indeed quite a few licenses, permits, and tax registrations required by Mississippi localities.
You will need to check with the town or city clerk for the municipality in which your business is located to determine if your business needs any local licenses or permits.
If we were to break down the exact rules and regulations regarding permitting in every locality in the state of Mississippi, this article would become excessively lengthy. With that in mind, we’ll simply say that every business owner should check with their local government to determine whether there are licenses, permits, or tax registrations required to operate in compliant fashion.
Can I Hire Someone to Research Licenses and Permits for My Business?
If this process sounds like a bit of a hassle, that’s because it certainly can be. If you would rather hire a reputable business services provider to handle this for you, that is always an option.
Companies like Incfile and LegalZoom can research the necessary licenses and permits for your company on the federal, state, county, and municipal levels. They will then send you the applications you need to acquire these permits and licenses, meaning all you need to do is fill them out and mail them in.
There is no one-size-fits-all answer for the question of which licenses and permits your business might require to operate in the state of Mississippi. Instead, it’s important that you know how to access the resources to determine which permits your company needs to operate in a compliant fashion.
We hope this article helped you to do just that, and we wish you good fortune in your business future!