Business Licenses

This web page is to confirm that business certificates (licenses) are no longer required for businesses in the unincorporated portions of the County of San Diego. The Board of Supervisors deleted this requirement in August 1998.

Communities in the unincorporated portions of San Diego County include, but are not limited to:

Alpine, Bonsall, Bonita (91902), Borrego Springs, Boulevard, Campo, Crest, Cuyamaca, Dehesa, Descanso, Dulzura, Fallbrook, Granite Hills, Harbison Canyon, Hidden Meadows, Jacumba, Jamul, Julian, Lake Morena, Lakeside, Pala, Pauma, Pine Valley, Potrero, Rainbow, Ramona, Rancho Santa Fe, Rancho San Diego, San Dieguito, Spring Valley, Sweetwater, Tecate, Twin Oaks Valley, Valle de Oro, Valley Center, Warner Springs.

While a business certificate (license) is not required from the County, businesses must comply with rules and regulations affecting businesses. For information regarding applicable rules, regulations, and permits, please visit the State of California Business Portal CalGold.

Requirements for Incorporated Cities
Please be advised that incorporated cities may require a business license when conducting business within city limits. Applicants are encouraged to contact the respective city for rules and regulations governing their business license practices.


Carlsbad
The City of Carlsbad requires all businesses who wish to commence, carry on, or engage in any business, either permanently or temporarily, within the corporate limits of Carlsbad to have a valid, unexpired license.


Chula Vista
A business license is required in the City of Chula Vista by any person who transacts, engages in or carries on any business within the corporate limits of the city.


Coronado
Licenses are required.


Del Mar
The City of Del Mar requires all businesses conducting “transactions and carrying on of business within the city” to obtain an annual business license. Home-based businesses and those that operate through a post office box are also required to obtain a business license.


El Cajon
A business license is required of anyone doing business in the City of El Cajon. This includes those who work out of their home, and businesses from outside the City of El Cajon that perform services and/or sales at the customer's place of business or residence in El Cajon.


Encinitas
The City of Encinitas uses a Registry Program in lieu of a Business License Program. The registry is a flat-fee based program, intended neither to impose any taxation on the business community nor to collect any fees other than necessary to cover the administration costs of the program.


Escondido
All businesses operating in the City of Escondido are required to have a business license, including businesses that operate from home.


Imperial Beach
Requires a City Business Tax Certificate.


La Mesa
Maintaining your business license: Per City of La Mesa Municipal Code 6.04.050, it is the owner's responsibility to maintain the business license account at all times. The license is valid for 12 month increments and is due for renewal at the end of the 12 months.


Lemon Grove
All persons operating or doing business within the city limits of Lemon Grove are required to have a business license per Municipal Code.


National City
A Business License is required by anyone who wishes to transact or conduct business within the boundaries of National City.


Oceanside
All businesses operating in the City of Oceanside (including home-based businesses) are required to have a business license.

Poway
Every company/person doing business based in a commercial building in the City of Poway must obtain a business certificate.


San Diego
All businesses operating in the City of San Diego are required to obtain a Business Tax Certificate. This includes home-based Businesses.


San Marcos
Any person conducting business within the city must have a valid business license issued by the City of San Marcos.


Santee
All businesses operating in the City of Santee are required to have a business license.


Solana Beach
All businesses with a physical address or doing business in Solana Beach are required to obtain a business license certificate issued by the City of Solana Beach.


Vista
Anyone doing business in the City of Vista must have a business license.


The County of San Diego Requires:
Registration of a Fictitious Business Name
619-237-0502

Licensing for Health Permit & Food Handler’s License
619-338-2222