How Much Is A Business License In Maine?

Business licenses, sales tax permits and Employee Identification Numbers (EIN) are some of the most important legal documents required to open or operate a business within Maine. A business license can be applied for in Maine through a local city or town office, or online through the website.

How much is a business license in Maine? Maine business license applications cost a non-refundable fee of $100 that must accompany the forms, and they are valid for a period of 1 year from approval date. Business licenses are the first basic legal requirement for companies who want to open a main office or representative branch in Maine.

Maine state laws require all companies and businesses with a main office or branch in the state to register for a business license or sales tax certificate. Other permits could also apply for specific business types, like liquor sales, food processing and entertainment. A basic business license allows the business to legally buy, sell and pay tax to Maine.

Business License Registration in Maine

Regulations in Maine require all business types to register for a basic business license before they are allowed to trade. Basic business licenses protect consumers and business, but also allow for tax-compliance within the state.

All business types will need a basic business license to trade in Maine. Additional licenses could be required by the state for specific industries, though the business will still need its basic business license first.

Business license applications in Maine cost $100, and can be done online or through the office of the town or city in which the business intends to operate from. Fees must be paid with the application to be valid.

State resources recommend online applications, as they process faster and can make it through the system in a few days as opposed to a few weeks. 

Maine business licenses are valid for a period of 1 year from their issuing date. 

Businesses in Maine are expected to renew their business licenses either on or before the expiry date, and could be charged late fees or fines if a renewal application does not make it through in time.

All fees paid for registration and renewal are non-refundable even in the event of an unsuccessful application. Advice is available for businesses and company owners who need help to complete the forms.

Once a license application in Maine has been approved, the application can take a maximum of 14 days to be processed. An online application becomes available immediately after approval, but the print copy will be sent through the mail.

Without a valid business license, companies are considered to trade illegally in the state of Maine. A business without licenses in place could be closed by the state of Maine until their documents have been brought up to date.

How long does a business license in Maine take?

Maine business licenses can be processed within 14 days or less from the initial application date. Online applications are recommended as the fastest option. Applications made in person at a physical office could be subject to potential delays.

When does a business license in Maine expire?

A business license remains valid in Maine for a period of 1 year after its application. Business licenses must be renewed before or on the deadline, or late fees and fines could apply.

Could business license applications be rejected?

Sometimes, an application could be rejected if the information on the forms is not correct. All state resources advise the business applying to make sure all details are as they should be, as fees are non-refundable even if the application is rejected.

Where can I apply for a business license in Maine?

The best way to apply for a Maine business license is through the online portal where applications are meant to be fast and effortless. Maine city and town offices provide a physical alternative for offline applications.

What if my business license is delayed?

Business licenses can be delayed at busy times of the year, but might also be delayed due to staff restrictions. Follow up if you have not heard anything about a pending application in more than 2 weeks.

Types of Business Licenses

An LLC or CompanyA Limited Liability Corporation (LLC) is a specific type of company where shareholders take limited responsibility for any business “negatives” like debt. A business license is still a first requirement.
A General Operating LicenseA general operating license or sales tax license is another name for the basic business license required to comply with law in Maine.
A Food LicenseFood licenses are only required for businesses who process or sell food-related items. A basic business license is still required first in Maine.
A NonprofitMaine nonprofit organizations are still subject to registration, and can do so through the same portal as business license registration.

Maine Business Facts

• Business licenses, tax certificates and Employee Identification Numbers (EIN) are three important documents required to do business legally in the state of Maine.

• Approximately 90% of businesses in Maine are small businesses or single-owner companies.

• Business license registration in Maine can take up to 14 days when the application is made online.

Business Licenses in Maine

Business licenses are an important legal permit that allows a business to buy, sell, trade and pay tax within the state of Maine. All business will require a business license first, regardless of whether additional permits (like food or liquor) are necessary too.

License applications in Maine cost $100, and renewals are charged at the same rate.

Business licenses in Maine are valid for 1 year from the application date, but must be renewed either before or on the deadline or the business could be held responsible for operating without the right legal documents.

Here are the business license costs in other states: