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Do I Need A Business License For Photography In Washington State

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Wheat Field between Winthrop and Twisp past Susan Donahue.

Country Business Licenses

  • All individual artists living in Washington State who gross over $12,000 a year from art-making activities or generate income from the retail sale of their art must obtain a business license from the state. Yet, any Washington country artist regardless of their income as an artist tin all the same obtain a business organization license.
  • To obtain a business license from the state you must make full out a four-page Master Business Application. Contact the Washington Country Department of Licensing Principal License Service to receive an awarding and data on starting a new business. The application fee is $19. Or apply online: world wide
  • A Unified Business concern Identifier number, or UBI number, is assigned after you consummate your application. This number is used by state agencies involved in business regulation, taxation and registration.
  • The ix-digit UBI number also allows you to purchase items (materials, supplies, etc.), that will be incorporated into an artwork for resale, without paying retail sales tax. The UBI number is your resale number. The UBI number also makes information technology possible for you to purchase products/materials from companies that only serve wholesale clients.
  • Any artist who charges retail sales tax when selling their artwork must obtain a business organization license. If y’all are selling your artwork to a retail consumer or client you must charge sales taxation. When you sell to a wholesale client (someone who resells your piece of work) you practise non charge sales tax.
  • Sales tax registration and all other necessary state registrations and licenses including merchandise proper name registration are included in the Master Business Application. There is no fee for tax registration.
  • An artist’s trade proper name or “doing business as” name must be registered with the Washington Department of Licensing when you employ for a business license. A trade name is any proper noun used in the course of concern that does not include the full legal proper name of the owner of the business concern. In that location is a $5 fee for each proper noun yous annals. This registration does not provide protection of the name. Federal and/or land trademark registration is required in providing proper noun protection.
  • To run across if a trade proper name you lot wish to use is already registered, cheque the Washington Section of Licensing’south trade proper name search online at You tin can also search this database by mail. The toll is $4 to search up to 3 names. To request a search by mail service, send a letter with your return accost, a list of the names you want to research, and a check or money order to pay the fee to:
    Concern Licensing Service
    State of Washington
    PO Box 9034
    Olympia, WA 98507-9034
  • Questions? The State of Washington Concern Licensing Service has a great website total of information at You can besides call 1-800-451-7985 or email
  • The Washington Land Department of Licensing website provides contact information for proper licensing with land and local governments based on your business activity. Later on entering data most the business you are starting, you volition be able to print a sheet of referrals. Y’all will too be able to download some of the application forms you will need or request that they be mailed to you. INFO: organisation/.

Urban center and County Business concern Licenses

  • Urban center business licenses may exist required for business activity within the city limits of whatever city. Y’all should contact whatsoever incorporated urban center in which you will be conducting your business to make up one’s mind if a license is required. Contact information can also exist found on the WALI website.
  • Seattle – The license is issued by the urban center for a agenda yr and must be renewed every yr by Dec. 31. INFO: 206/684-8484 or
  • Spokane– INFO: 509/625-6070 or
  • Ellensburg– INFO: 509/962-7204 or
  • Yakima– INFO: 509/575-6121 or
  • Bellingham– INFO: 360/676-6900 or concern/pages/business-registration.aspx
  • Everett– INFO: 425/257-8610 or
  • Olympia– INFO: 360/753-8327 or
  • Tacoma– INFO: 253/591-5252 or
  • Vancouver– INFO: 360/487-8410 or http://world wide web.cityofvancouver.united states/fms/folio/business-and-special-licenses

Most cities will prorate a business license fee based on the time of yr purchased.

Counties may also issue concern licenses to businesses that are not located within incorporated metropolis limits. Again, you should contact any county in which you volition be conducting your concern to determine if a license is required.

For information on how to obtain a city or county business license, look under the City and/or Canton Government Pages in your telephone volume. Locate “business” nether the heading of “licenses” for data. The Washington State Department of Licensing website also provides this data.


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