Here are some steps to assist you with registering your business. These steps cover the majority of businesses, however, there are always exceptions! Please feel free to call us at (714) 738-6531 or (714) 738-5326 with your questions or for further clarification.
STEP 1 - Business Name
Using Your Name
Let's start with your name. Are you planning to use your own personal name just as it is without anything added? For example: John Smith is your personal name. If you use John Smith, then a fictitious filing will probably not be necessary.
Using a Fictitious Name
Register your Fictitious Business Name (DBA) with the Orange County Clerk-Recorder.
If the name you have chosen for your business is different from your personal name (for Example: John's Bikes), then you need to register your business name with the Orange County Clerk Recorders office. Start by searching for the name on the Orange County Clerk's website then register and pay for a Fictitious Business Name online or in person at the Orange County Clerk Recorder Office in Santa Ana or at one of their branch locations in Orange County.
Within thirty days (30) of filing your Fictitious Business Name Statement with the county, you will need to contact an approved adjudicated Orange County newspaper and publish a Public Notice once a week for four weeks to make the name legal for a 5 year period. If your business is based in Orange County then you must file your Fictitious Business Name Statement with the Orange County Clerk Recorder. A list of newspapers can be obtained from the Orange County Clerk's office or their website.
The North Orange County branch office is located at 201 N. Harbor Blvd., on the northwest corner of Harbor Blvd. and Amerige Ave. in Fullerton.
STEP 2 - Resale or Sales Tax Use Permit
The next step is filing for a "Resale or Sales Tax Use Permit" from the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration (formerly the State Board of Equalization). You will definitely need a resale tax permit if you are planning on any retail sales. It is always best to check with the CDTFA to see if this tax permit is needed for your particular business.
STEP 3 - Return the Application
Home Based Business
If you have a business that is based in your home:
Mail or bring it to Fullerton City Hall, 303 W. Commonwealth Ave., along with a check made payable to the City of Fullerton. City Hall Hours: 7:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 7:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on our open Fridays. City Hall is closed alternate Fridays.
If you are a business located from out-of-town and will be working in our City, you may follow the same instructions, but you do not need to read or initial the Home Occupancy Agreement.
If you are conducting your business from a commercial location in Fullerton:
You must hand deliver the application to our Community Development Department (2nd floor) for their approval before 3:00 p.m.. Any questions that the Planning or Building Division may have regarding your business can be answered at that time.
Once your application has been approved and signed by the Planning and Building Divisions, our office will issue you a temporary business registration receipt. The actual business registration certificate will be mailed to you within 10 business days.