FAQ

Print
Press Enter to show all options, press Tab go to next option

Occupational Tax Certificate is the same as a "Business License"

Q.   Why are businesses required to get an Occupational Tax Certificate?
A.   The City of McDonough’s code of ordinances requires an occupational tax certificate to insure that businesses are being operated in the appropriately zoned districts and in accordance with all applicable codes.

Q.   What is the hour of operation to obtain an Occupational Tax Certificate?
A.    The business hours are from 8am – 5pm, Monday – Friday. The Occupational Tax Clerk is available daily until 2pm. You may pick up or drop off application for your business anytime during normal office hours.  

Q.    What are the requirements to obtain an Occupational Tax Certificate?
A.     It depends on the type of business, but two forms of identification are required for all applicants: a valid driver’s license and a birth certificate or passport.  The new occupational tax forms will have the required information listed.

Q.  Is the occupational Tax Certificate transferable?A.  The Occupational tax certificate is non-transferable.  If you have moved your location with the city limits of McDonough, complete a change of address form and pay the fees associated with the change of location.

Q.   What if I move my location to another city or county?
A.  If you move your business location to another city of county, complete the out of business form and submit to the Business Development Department to close your account.  You will contact the other city or county to obtain your new occupational tax certificate with that jurisdiction.

Q.  How do I know when it’s time to renew my occupational tax certificate?
A.   Certificates expire at the end of the year.

Q.   How long does it take to obtain an occupational tax certificate?
A.    3-5 business days. The process varies based on the type of business, but in most cases you can obtain the occupational tax certificate the same day, if all the supporting documents are submitted.

Q.  When is the due date for filing the renewal application?
A.    Your certificate expires on December 31.  There is a grace period until January 15.  After January 15, a late fee of $100.00 will be assessed to your fees.
  
Q.        What is a DBA (Doing Business As)?
A.        a DBA lets the public know who the real owner of a business is. The DBA is also called a Fictitious Business Name or Assumed Business Name. It helps protect consumer, so dishonest business owners can’t try to avoid legal trouble by operating under a different name.

When someone files a DBA, it’s normally circulated in some kind of print newspaper (maybe you’ve noticed all those “fictitious business name” entries in the local classifieds). It lets the community know exactly who people are behind a business

Q.        Do I need a DBA? 
A.        In general, there are two reasons why a business would obtain a DBA:

1. for sole proprietors: If you’re operating your business as a sole proprietor, then you may need to file for a DBA if your business has a different name than your own name. So, let’s say I’ve started a gardening business called Spring Flowers Gardening; I’ll need to file for a DBA for “Spring Flowers Gardening.”

There are a few other details to know. In some cases, you don’t need a DBA if your business name is a combination of your name and a description of your product or service. In this case, if my business was called Ricky Johnson’s Gardening Service, I may not need a DBA. But, if it’s just my first name (aka Ricky’s Gardening Service), then a DBA may be required. If that sounds confusing, don’t worry; just touch base with Henry County Superior Clerk’s Office at 770-288-8022 and ask them if you’ll need a DBA.

2. For corporations and LLCs: If you have filed to become a corporation or LLC, then you’ve already registered your business name and may NOT need a DBA. However, you are encouraged to get a DBA if you plan on conducting business using a name that’s different than the name filed with your LLC/corporation paperwork.

So back to my Spring Flowers business…I incorporated my business as Spring Flowers Gardening. My business will need to file a DBA in order to operate under “SpringFlowersGardening.com” or “Spring Flowers.” Likewise, if I opened a Garden Shop, I’d need a DBA for “Spring Flowers Garden Shop.” In short, you’re encouraged to obtain a DBA to operate with any kind of variation of your original name.

Q.        How do I apply for a DBA?
A.        Contact Henry County Superior Court at 770-288-8022

Q.   Are all businesses required to have a Tax Identification Number (FEIN)?
A.   The Tax Identification Number is required by the IRS if your business is taxed as a corporation, limited liability corporation (LLC) or a partnership; if you file employment taxes or if you have employees.

Q.   How can I apply for a Tax Identification Number (EIN)?
A.   You can go to the website: www.irs.gov or call Georgia Department of Revenue at 404.968.0480.

Q.    What is a Sales and Use Tax Number (also called a Resale certificate or Resale Number)?
A.    Georgia businesses selling items or services requiring the collection of state sales tax must register with the Georgia Department of Revenue Tax Center. http://dor.georgia.gov/         It’s important to understand that a resale number only entitles you to avoid sales tax for items that you will resell to customers.

Q. What is E-Verify?
A.  E-Verify is an Internet-based system that compares information from an employee's Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification, to data from U.S. Department of Homeland Security and Social Security Administration records to confirm employment eligibility.  http://www.uscis.gov/e-verify           

Q.  What is an E-Verify Company ID?
A.  An e-verify company ID is not the same as your Tax ID Number.  It’s a 6 digit number assigned to your businesses after you have enrolled in the program based on the number of employees.

Q.  What qualifies as a home-based business?
A.   Home-based businesses are normally used as administrative offices only.

Q.   Are there any uses prohibited with a home-based business?
A.   Contact Community Development secretary at 678.432.4622 for questions regarding prohibited uses for home-based businesses.

Q.   What fees are associated with obtaining an occupational tax certificate for a commercial or home-based business?
A.    The occupation tax is calculated based on annual gross receipts. Tax on gross receipts is based on the associated tax class for each business description.  Once the gross receipts are provided for a 12 month period, the fees will be generated based on the tax class/type of business.

Q.    What are the fees for Insurance Companies doing business /writing policies in our city?
A.  The fee for insurance companies per our city code is $75.00 per location.

Q.   Are non-profits required to submit an annual application?
A.   Yes, non-profits are required to submit a renewal application every year the business is in operation, providing a copy of the IRS 501 (c) Registration of Exemptions

Q.  Who qualifies as a Practitioner of Profession?
A.   A listing of qualified practitioners of profession is available on www.municode.com/library/ga/mcdonough      

McDonough code of ordinances Chapter 5.04.080 - Professionals as Classified in O.C.G.A. § 48-13-9(c) (1)—(c)(18).

Q.  What other services does the Business Development Department provide?
A.   Our office issues Alcohol Licenses, Filming Permits and Special Event- Alcohol Outdoor Event Permit as well as Notary Service

Q. What forms of payment does your office accept?
A.  Payments are accepted in the form of cash (exact amounts); business checks; personal checks; cashier’s checks; money orders; debit and credit cards ~ DISCOVER OR AMERICAN EXPRESS are not accepted.

Q.   Can I make a payment on-line or over the phone?
A.    Currently, the above services are not available at this time.

Q.   I am interested in advertising my business, how do I obtain a sign permit?
A.   Contact Community Development secretary at 678.432.4622 for questions regarding all sign permits or banners.