Downtown Springfield Association

Downtown Investment Guide: Licensing

The Licensing Division of the Finance Department is responsible for assisting the public in obtaining the appropriate licenses for businesses that operate in Springfield. Any person or company that sells tangible goods or that provides services in the City of Springfield should obtain a City license at least two weeks prior to beginning business. You may obtain the necessary application forms by calling (417) 864-1617 or by visiting the Licensing Division on the first floor of the Busch Municipal Building at 840 Boonville; office hours are from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

When you apply for a business license, requests for zoning/building regulations approval and fire premise reports will be completed along with the City license application. This applies to all businesses that will be located inside the city limits of Springfield. These forms will be routed to the appropriate departments for approval prior to licensing your business. If you have questions regarding the appropriate zoning for the type of business you wish to conduct, contact (417) 864-1055; questions concerning fire code requirements may be directed to (417) 864-1515.

Those businesses which sell tangible items, including those which use parts to provide services, must provide the Licensing Office with a copy of their Missouri Sales Tax License or sales tax exemption letter for their location in Springfield before the City license can be issued. Information relating to the Missouri Sales Tax License may be obtained at (417) 895-6474.

If your business involves food preparation or handling, a health permit must be obtained from the Springfield-Greene County Health Department. You may contact them regarding specific health requirements by calling (417) 864-1424. License fees are due at the time of application. The license fee varies depending on the type of business you will be operating. Licenses are valid through the current calendar year and must be renewed by January 31 each year.

Special Requirements

Several business license categories require special approvals before a license can be issued. These categories include: liquor and beer sales; private detectives; massage technicians; escort services; liquidation sales; alarm sales and services; taxicabs; electrical contractors; plumbing contractors; gas fitters; mechanical/heating and air conditioning contractors; locksmiths; ambulances; house movers; refuse disposal areas; pawn brokers; salvage yards; trash haulers; day care facilities; and not-for-profit solicitations. If your business falls within any of the above categories, please contact the Licensing Division concerning the special requirements.

Bond and Insurance Requirements

The following license categories require bonds and/or insurance before the license can be issued: auction houses; automobile auctions; brokers; dealers; repossession agents; electrical contractors; plumbing contractors; mechanical/heating and air conditioning contractors; coupon sales; private detectives; refuse disposal areas; gas fitters; house movers; locksmiths; transient magazine and book solicitors; transient photographers; professional solicitors; taxicab companies; tree surgeons; and pest control services. Proof of performance bond and/or liability insurance must be on file with the Licensing Division prior to issuing the license. Please contact the Licensing Division for bond and insurance limits for the particular type of business that you plan to operate.

Greene County Business License

All businesses selling a tangible item and collecting sales tax within Greene County should obtain a Greene County Business License by calling the office of the Collector of Revenue at (417) 868-4036 or visiting the office at the Greene County Courthouse, 940 Boonville, Room 107.

Federal Employer Identification Number (EIN)

All corporations, partnerships and proprietorships (including KEOGH plans) which plan to pay wages to employees, or which are required to file excise, alcohol, tobacco or firearms returns or use tax returns should obtain a Federal Employer Identification Number. In order to obtain an EIN, you should file form SS-4 (available at the IRS office in the Empire Bank building at 3333 S. National, Springfield, MO 65807) by mailing it to: Internal Revenue Service, Kansas City, MO 64999.

Missouri Licenses & Taxes

All businesses that plan to pay wages to employees should obtain a Missouri withholding tax number. All businesses or professions that sell or lease goods to final consumers should obtain a Missouri sales tax license. All out-of-state vendors making sales of goods to final consumers located in Missouri, Missouri wholesalers, or those located in Missouri who purchase goods for use or consumption tax-free from out-of-state vendors should obtain a Missouri use tax license.

In order to obtain a Missouri withholding tax number, a Missouri sales tax license, and/or a Missouri use tax license you should file form 2643 (available from state tax offices at 149 Park Central Square, Springfield, MO 65806) and mail it to the Missouri Department of Revenue, PO Box 3300, Jefferson City, MO 65106. Telephone (314) 751-5860.

All businesses or professions which plan to pay wages to employees exceeding $1,500 per quarter or having employees in 20 or more weeks should obtain a Missouri unemployment tax number by contacting the Division of Workforce Development at 505 East Walnut, Springfield, MO 65806, for Registration of Employment Experience form (417) 895-6886.