Opening a Business in the City

License Requirements
New commercial and professional enterprises should contact the Commissioner of the Revenue's Office for license requirements prior to opening a business in the city.

Purchase of an existing business also requires a license. Businesses are required to renew their licenses no later than March 1 every year.

Before applying for a license, business owners must apply for a Certificate of Occupancy with the Department of Development Services.
Business Opening - A group at the ribbon cutting ceremony

Federal Employer ID

Every employer is required to have a federal employer identification number. To apply for the number, file Federal Form SS-4, which can be obtained from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).

For more information, contact the IRS by calling 800-829-4477. Ask for employment section employer ID number (EIN) topic #755.

Federal Taxes

The IRS has an array of reporting requirements depending on the type of business you conduct. Contact the IRS to request a business tax kit.

Employee Taxes

Employers are required to withhold Social Security (Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA)) taxes from employee wages. Employers are liable for the taxes whether or not they have been collected. Income taxes must be withheld at the request of the employee. The taxes should be filed quarterly on Federal Form 941 and deposited in any authorized bank with coupon 8109 quarterly.

Unemployment Tax

Unemployment tax, also known as Federal Unemployment Tax Act (FUTA), is paid by the employer only. An annual tax return, Form 940, must be completed and any payment can be mailed with the return.

Individual, Partnership & Corporate Income Tax

Individual (for sole proprietor, Schedule C), partnership and corporate income taxes must be filed with the IRS on an annual basis.

Trade Name Registration

The City of Falls Church cannot register trade names independently and therefore maintains an agreement with Arlington County to register trade names for businesses operating in the City. To apply for a trade name click this link and apply online.

State Corporation Commission

To apply for incorporation or limited liability a business must apply with the State Corporation Commission. Their website has helpful information on the legal requirements and implications with registration. The SCC also permits registration online here