How to Get a Business Tax Certificate in Savannah, Georgia

December 22, 2014 | Charles Bowen

River_Street_006Who needs a business tax certificate?

Any company, individual, or legal entity engaging in a for-profit business in Savannah, Georgia must have a business tax certificate (also called a business license). Doing business without one can result in heavy fines. The application forms outlining the requirements for a business tax certificate are available online here.

What do I need to do before filling out my business tax application forms?

  • Zoning Approval. Contact the Zoning Division of the Development Services Department to make certain that your business/office location is zoned appropriately.
    5515 Abercorn Street, Savannah, GA 31405, (912) 651-6510
    Savannah Zoning Division

  • Tax ID number. If your business sells goods, you will need to get a Tax Identification number.  You can do this by registering with the Georgia Department of Revenue.  (Forms are available online and can be mailed directly to the Georgia Department of Revenue
    6606 Abercorn Street, Suite 220, Savannah, GA 31405

  • Federal Employee Identification Number. It is also a requirement to obtain a Federal Employee Identification Number from the IRS for your business.  You can learn about that in our article about how to get an EIN.  

  • Food Service Permit.  If your business involves selling unpackaged food, a permit must also be requested from the Chatham County Health Department.

  • Register with the Secretary of State.  This applies to LLCs or corporations.

How much does a business tax certificate cost? What is the fee?

This depends on the size of your business. At the lower end of the spectrum (expected income between $1.00 to $30,000.00 a year) the fee is $85.00. For businesses expecting income greater than $30,000.00 a year, refer to the corresponding tax fee charts found in the tax certificate forms.

How do I submit my application forms and get certified?

Once you have completed everything on the checklist above and filled out the business tax application forms, you will need to submit everything along with the the required fee.  You can submit the forms and fee by mail or in person.

To submit by mail, send application forms and payment to

Savannah Department of Revenue
P.O. Box 1228
Savannah, GA 31402

To submit in person, bring application forms and payment to

132 East Broughton Street
Savannah, GA 31401

Who do I contact if I have questions?

Call the City Of Savannah Revenue Department at (912) 651-6450 or click below to arrange a free legal consulation with an attorney from The Bowen Law Group.

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Topics: Starting a Business in Georgia