Where can I find out information about the business license process?
There is extensive information available on-line, including step-by-step instructions for obtaining a license. For complete business license information click here.
What information is required to obtain a business license?
Trade name (Fictitious name filing may be required)
Type of Business Entity
Name and title of all memeber of the Business Entity (e.g., officers, partners etc.)
Contact information including: mailing address,email address, phone no., etc.
SSN or EIN
Estimated gross receipts for the first year
Category of Business
Date business is starting
Approved zoning review form
Additional forms are required for contractors
For complete business license information click here.
What is a fictitious name?
The legal name of a business is the name of the person or entity that owns a business. If a sole owner, its legal name is the person's name. If a partnership, its legal name is the name given in the partnership agreement or the last names of all of the partners. If an LLC or corporation, the legal name is the one that was registered with the State Corporation Commission.
A fictitious or assumed name is a name that a person (individual or business entity) uses instead of the person's legal name. Businesses must register or file their fictitious name to prevent customer confusion between two local businesses that use the same name and to provide the name and contact information of the owner. Per the Code of Virginia, no person, partnership, limited liability company or corporation can conduct or transact business under any assumed or fictitious name unless it signs and acknowledges a certificate setting forth the name under which the business is to be conducted or transaction, with the respective post office and residence addresses, and files the certificate in the Frederick County Office of the Clerk of the Circuit Court.
You will need to provide us with a copy if you are required to file a Certificate of Assumed or Fictitious Name with the Clerk of the Circuit Court (for more info, call 540-667-5770 or obtain an application form at http://www.courts.state.va.us/forms/circuit/cc1050.pdf).
What is the State Corporation Commission?
The State Corporation Commission (SCC) is an independent state agency established by the Constitution of Virginia which has regulatory authority over many businesses in Virginia. Its authority includes serving as the state's central filing office for corporations, limited partnerships, and limited liability companies in Virginia. Certain types of business entities are required to register with the SCC and make annual filings. For more information, go to www.scc.virginia.gov.
How can I file business license information?
An application is available on-line for completion and submission here.
Printable forms can be download from our website and faxed or mailed.
Come to the Commissioner of the Revenue's office at 107 North Kent St Winchester VA.
How long does it take to get a business license?
A business license can be obtained in the same day, if all documents are presented fully completed and payment is made.
How much does a business license cost?
Gross receipts under $100,000 are assessed a flat rate.
We prefer that you file online at www.frederickcountyva.gov/biztax. It's quick as a click! Business Licenses must be renewed by March 1 and paid for by April 1.
Do I need to renew my license if the business made less than $4,000 in the prior year or anticipates making less than $4,000 in the upcoming year?
Business licenses that are not subject to a flat tax rate are calculated on the prior year's gross receipts or estimated gross receipts if a new business. Businesses who gross under $4,000 in one calendar year may wish to obtain a business license for the minimum fee although not required to do so. However, we do ask that they file with the Commissioner's office. If a business is not renewing its license because it has or anticipates gross receipts of less than $4,000, it is important to notify the Commissioner's office so that your account record is updated accordingly and you are not sent a statutory assessment or Summons for failure to file. If the gross receipts are estimated to be under $4,000 and the business grosses more than $4,000, then all the requirements of a business license must be met and purchased within 30 days of reaching the $4,000 threshold.
How soon after the first of the year may I file my business license renewal?
The online filing should be available on the first business day after January 1. The existing business license is valid until the March 1 renewal deadline of the next year.
If I do not have access to a computer, how can I file for my business license?
Contact the Business Division at (540) 722-8328 and request that hard copies of the filing forms be mailed to you.
In reviewing the information I supplied to your office, I realized that I filed incorrectly or I need to change the physical or mailing address. How do I make necessary changes?
Corrections must be in writing and can be emailed to Bev Rosato. Reference the items that need to be changed. Supply as much information as possible such as account number, trade name, etc.
If my business involves meals/beverages or lodging/room rental, are there any additional filing or tax requirements?
In addition to the regular business license requirements, a person or entity who is responsible for payment of the imposed meals (food and beverage) or transient occupancy (lodging/room rental) tax must (a) register for collection of this "trust tax," (b) add the tax to the amount charged for the meal or lodging, (c) collect the tax from the purchaser at the time the charge for the meal or lodging becomes due, (d) make a report for each calendar month showing the amount of charges collected and the amount of tax required to be collected, and (e) deliver to the Commissioner a signed monthly report accompanied by a remittance of the amount of tax due payable to the Treasurer on or before the 20th day of the calendar month following the month being reported for the prior month's gross sales.
What other types of business taxes are there?
A "short-term rental property tax" is imposed on persons engaged in a short-term rental property business. All those engaged in the business of renting daily rental property are categorized as retail merchants for purposes of a business license tax in Frederick County. A "manufacturer / machinery and tools tax" is imposed on all tangible personal property owned, leased, rented, or borrowed, which was used or available for use in manufacturing which was located in Frederick County as of January 1 of any year. The deadline for filing an annual M&T tax return (Form 762M) is March 15th each year. A "processor tax" is imposed on all tangible personal property owned, leased, rented, or borrowed, which was used or available for use in processing which was located in Frederick County as of January 1 of any year. The deadline for filing an annual Processor tax return (Form 762P) is March 15th each year. See our website for more information regarding these taxes.
What is tangible personal property?
Business tangible personal property are moveable goods that are real, material, and substantive. Examples are office furniture, signage, desktop and laptop computers, keyboards, monitors, printers, scanners, copiers, fax machines, credit/debit card payment devices, hand-held tools, power tools, desks, chairs, telephones, filing cabinets, bookshelves, pallet jacks, forklifts, skidders etc..
How often must I file a list of my business tangible personal property?
Business tangible personal property ("business equipment") must be filed annually even if there has been no change since the previous year (Form 762B). This list represents the tangible personal property owned on January 1 of each year. The deadline for filing is March 1. If filed online, the following year the list will automatically appear as previously submitted for review and change or confirmation, then resubmission. Bills are sent two times a year with payment due June 5 and Dec 5.
What is the personal property tax rate for business equipment?
$4.86 per $100 of the assessed value. Assessed value is 30% of the reported cost.
Is there a late filing penalty for failure to file a return by the prescribed deadline?
Yes. The penalty is 10% of the assessed tax.
In addition, any person (or entity) who fails to file or renew its business license, business equipment, or other required tax filings can be summonsed by the Sheriff's office to appear before the Commissioner to answer, under oath, question touching on the tax matters, and to produce books, documents and records relevant thereto for the current year and three prior years. Furthermore, any person who refuse to comply with a Summons is deemed guilty of a misdemeanor and each day's refusal constitues a seperate offense.
Why do contractors need to supply a list of their subcontractors for jobs?
The Commissioner's office needs a detailed list of all contractors and subcontractors, as well as persons issued a Form 1099 used by a contractor for work performed in Frederick County to ensure that they are properly licensed, including a business license if required.
Do I need to report any changes to my business?
Yes, all changes to your business must be reported to the Commissioner of the Revenue. Changes can be emailed to Bev Rosato or provided online. Examples: location change, owner(s) change, contact information change, entity type change (e.g.,from a Partnership to a Sole Proprietor), change in "trading as" name, change of Federal Employer Identification Number, category change (e.g., was wholesaler, now retailer & wholesaler), etc.
What do I need to do to close my Business?
In order to close your business, we must receive notification in writing signed by the owner or an officer listed with our office. Fax ((540) 667-6487), mail to: PO Box 552 Winchester, VA 22604 , or email Bev Rosato and supply the following information:
Name of the business owner
Trade name of the business
Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN) or Social Security Number (SSN) associated with the accounts