How To Start a Business in New York

Over 98% of New York’s 200,000 enterprises fall under the small business association definition of businesses (with fewer than 100 employees), and 89% fall under the category of very small businesses (fewer than 20 employees). They are 4.1 million individuals employed by small businesses throughout New York, and they account for more than half of the private sector jobs in the state; this represents 49.1% of all state employees.

New York Economic Statistics

Small companies support the economy of New York, serve as community hubs and generate employment opportunities. However, small businesses encounter several daily difficulties. Over time, several measures have been implemented to enhance the regulatory environment and improve the economic ecosystem for small companies in New York. 

Step 1: What Kind of Business Should I Start in New York?

New York tax incentives, geographical location, and great human and material resource Hubs make it an excellent place to start any business. By choosing New York as its base of operations, a variety of entrepreneurial companies can benefit from the city’s favorable atmosphere, enjoy large profit margins, and have the potential to grow. Per independent reports, the following businesses have the most significant potential for growth in New York.

How To Do Market Research in New York

In New York, market research involves looking into market trends and customer behavior to understand market demand opportunities and challenges in the state. Understanding the customer base can help minimize business risks and maximize value. Market research can be carried out through:

In addition, during a market study, an entrepreneur must query and respond to the following:

Step 2: How To Write a Business Plan

A New York business plan is a document that assists aspiring entrepreneurs in developing their business concepts and creating a comprehensive overview of their enterprise in the state. Writing a business plan is a crucial stage in the ideation process of every firm. Demographics, market analysis, competitive analysis, financial projections, new products or services, and more are all determined using business plans.

A good business plan helps minimize risk, maximize profitability, and provide a clear path to business funding. Business plans can also help persons to attract investors.

While developing a business plan in New York, it is essential to consider the economic climate and regulations to run in the New York environment.

A standard business plan must include:

Step 3: Do I Need a Business License in New York?

Yes. Most businesses in New York require a business license to operate. However, some companies do not require a license, while others may need a sales tax certificate or a professional business license. Business owners will need to look further to determine whether their operation needs a business license because there isn’t one standard business license necessary in New York.

Entrepreneurs can find business licenses by using the New York business portal. This portal allows users to look for city, state, and federal rules (such as licenses and permits) necessary to launch, operate, or expand a business in New York. The New York business wizard can also be used to find the business licenses needed to start a business in the state.

The New York Department of Workers issues licenses in New York, and Consumer Protection is tasked with issuing licenses to more than 400 industries in the state. Business owners can visit the DCWP online to check the license requirements that a particular business needs. Members of the public can use the DCWP portal to check whether a business is registered and has the necessary licenses.

New York also requires that eligible businesses apply for the general vendor’s business license. Business owners must have a General Vendor license when offering to sell or lease goods or services in a public setting other than a store. The general vendor business licenses are made for veterans and spouses or surviving family members of veterans in the state. The general vendor business license is also open to non-veterans but in a limited way.

 Applications can be made for a license either in person or online. To inquire about licensing business in person, individuals must make an appointment with the DCWP office at the Manhattan and Queens locations. Online applications for licenses are more reliable and can be done at any time, 24/7. Owners of businesses can see the List of DCWP License Industries, choose a sector to learn more about its licensing requirements, and submit an online license application. The DWCP licensing locations are at:


42 Broadway, Lobby

New York, NY 10004


90-27 Sutphin Blvd, 4th Floor

Jamaica, NY 11435

How Much Does a Business License Cost in New York

The cost of Business licenses in New York depends on the type of business, the number of permits the business needs to operate, and the duration of validity of the license. Generally, licenses cost anywhere from $100- $1000.The general vendor’s business licensing fee costs $200 for a validity of 24 months. 

How To Register for a Seller’s Permit in New York

The Certificate of Authority permit, also known as the sales tax vendor certificate, is a permit needed for businesses that sell tangible personal property or any taxable service in New York. The permit is issued by the New York state department of Taxation and Finance and is needed for a business to open for business. This permit is essential for businesses with a physical presence in New York, including companies that offer goods and services from home. Businesses applying for a tax exemption must first get a permit.

Examples of businesses that need this certificate include goods and services subject to taxation, such as:

The seller’s permit is also necessary for online businesses that make a gross income of $300,000 a year or makes sales of over 300 tangible products a year. Business owners can register online for the sales tax permit by completing the application form. Inquires can also be made in person at:

NYS Department of Taxation and Finance

Sales Tax Registration Unit

W.A. Harriman Campus, Building 8

Room 431

Albany, NY 12227-0155

Phone: (518) 485-2889

Step 4: How Much Does It Cost To Start a Business in New York?

How To Get Business Funding in New York

There are multiple ways to get funds for a new business in New York. Some of the ways to fund a startup business include:

How To Self-Fund a Business in New York

Self-funding a business involves using personal resources such as savings, credit cards, assets, and loans from friends and family to finance the early stages of a business startup. It also involves reinvesting the profit of a business back into it in a process known as bootstrapping. Self-funding enables a company’s founders and owners to keep their ownership stakes without burdening it with early-stage debt payments. The following are steps to self-fund a business practically and safely:

How To Find Investors in New York

Investors in New York can partner with a business and provide the necessary funds and resource opportunities for new companies in New York. An investor is an entity or individuals that put their money into their business in exchange for future profit and an immediate stake in the business. Before involving an investor in a business, the business owners must e provide a solid business plan and analyze the company’s need at that time to determine the requirements for the business and the amount of funds needed for the business to grow. In investor partnerships, the business owner must choose an investor with the necessary experience in the particular sector of the industry. Business owners can find investors in New York through:

How To Get a Loan To Start a Business in New York

Due to the high rate of interest, the federal and state governments of New York offer access to many loan categories that are available to business owners in the state. Given the many small business funding alternatives available, it can take time to determine which loan product is best for a specific company. Making educated judgments and locating trustworthy small business lenders are crucial when looking for loans to start a small business.

Entrepreneurs can access different classes of loans through:

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA)

The US small business administration provides loans to small businesses by matching them to lenders. These SBA-backed loans make it easier for small businesses to get the funding they need by setting a flexible payment plan and reducing risk. Businesses can access three types of SMA loans based on their business capacity.

The US Department of Agriculture business programs loans

 The US Department of Agriculture allows business owners to access funds to finance agricultural-based businesses through Loans, loan guarantees, and grants made available to individuals, businesses, cooperatives, farmers, and ranchers. By expanding business prospects and ensuring long-term self-sufficiency, the financing is meant to assist in boosting the quality of life in rural communities.

New York Alternative Lenders Directory

The alternative lender’s directory is used to search for cooperations and unions that offer different categories of loans available to startups in the state. Businesses can search alternative lenders in this database by the regions they service to learn more about the programs and services provided, loan amounts, interest rates, and terms, and contact the lenders directly.

Other initiatives to access loans in New York include:

How To Find New York Business Grants

In New York, entrepreneurs are given small business grants to help launch and expand their companies without repaying the government for their assistance. Consider small business grants as a company funding source. Some valuable sources of grants for New York businesses are:

New York Seed Funding Grant Program

The NYSFG program was developed to help early-stage small enterprises thrive in the New York State economy. The eligible applicant must demonstrate the ability to operate and meet program standards in a manner acceptable to New York State for a business to get the grant funding. Each microbusiness or small enterprise must submit appropriate evidence as part of their application to show they are eligible for the program. Due to the limited financing and anticipated large volume of requests, the type of business, location, and industry may affect a business’s grant eligibility.

New York Grant Opportunity Portal

The New York Grant Opportunity Portal can be used to find opportunities in the state. To use this portal interested persons can sign up with a username and password. The Grant Opportunity Portal can be used to find funding opportunities. Additionally, visitors can sign up to get email alerts whenever a State Department announces a grant opportunity. 

Can I Start a Business With No Money in New York?

Technically yes. Entrepreneurs can start a business with no money in New York if they have community support, especially if they want to start a service business. A service-based company is one where the main product is the provision of services. Since there would be no product sales, there would be no need for inventory, a business to produce the goods, or a warehouse to keep them. For instance, a person can start a dog-walking business without capital and with significant community support. As the business develops, the owner may look for new sources of finance.

Step 5: Choosing a Business Structure in New York

A business owner should select a business structure that provides the appropriate balance of legal protections and rewards, taking into account everything that will be impacted by it, including day-to-day operations, taxes, ability to raise funding, the amount of document the owner needs to file and the number of personal assets that are at risk. In New York, prospective business owners can select from a variety of business structures. The typical types consist of:

How To Start a Sole Proprietorship in New York

A business with just one owner and no legal separation between the owner and the company is known as a sole proprietorship. The business owner maintains all of its earnings under this arrangement, but they are also solely liable for all responsibilities. This is the simplest type of business structure, and it can be established with minimal paperwork.

Unlike other business structures, the entity ceases to exist after the owner’s death and is taxed through the sole proprietor’s tax returns. Sole proprietorships are the best fit for businesses that plan to run independently, with the employees reporting to a single employer. If they want to establish their business quickly or avoid filing fees and paperwork, many people in New York choose a sole proprietorship business structure.

To start a sole proprietorship in New York, an individual must: 

How To Start a Corporation in New York

Business cooperation is an entity that has a unique business structure functioning as an independent legal entity. Shareholders hold ownership, while a board of directors oversees operations by designating officials to run the daily business operations. A corporation can buy, sell, and own property because it is legally a person, as the term indicates. It can also make contracts, bring legal action against people, and be sued. Owners and stockholders are typically shielded from personal accountability by corporations.

Corporations can be taxed in one of two ways: as a C-Corporation (C-Corp) or an S-Corporation (S-Corp). S-Corporations do not have separate tax obligations from their shareholders as C-Corporations do. When earnings are distributed as payments or when an owner sells the stock, C-Corps are taxed on their profit, and their owners are also taxed on this income. On the other hand, the shareholders of S-Corporations are taxed on their portion of the corporation’s taxable income.

There are four types of cooperations that persons can open in New York:

The process for creating the different types of cooperation is similar. Business owners must file an article of incorporation either in person or online with the Department of State according to Business Corporation Law section 402. The completed article of incorporation must be submitted with a statutory fee of $75 for non-profit corporations and $125 for all other corporations to:

The Department of State, Division of Corporations,

 State Records and Uniform Commercial Code, 

One Commerce Plaza, 

99 Washington Avenue, 

Albany, NY 12231.

The next step to establish a corporation is to submit a business name to the division of cooperations office in New York. According to the law, any corporate firm’s name that is not “distinguishable” from already registered names must be rejected for use by the Division of Corporations. Making a name availability inquiry is the only way to learn if a name is accessible for a corporation. Queries on the status of entities already on file with the Department of State are designed to be made through the Corporation and Business Entity Database online.

By sending a written request to the Department of State, it is possible to search the records of the Division of Corporations for name availability using the information from the database search. The written inquiry should specify the name or names to be searched and the need to ascertain the availability of a name. According to Section 96 of the New York State Executive Law, there is a $5 fee per name submitted to search the records for availability.

The NYS Department of Taxation and Finance (TAX) establishes an NYS Corporation Tax Account for all newly formed corporations. The NYS Department of State (DOS) announces the formation to TAX. To notify the corporation of this “TF” number, TAX generates a temporary New York State identification number preceded by the letters TF and mails Form CT-198, Corporation Tax Account Information, to the address given by DOS. The form provides the corporation with its file number, identification number, and filing term as of the current filing date. To provide its Federal Identification Number, the corporation must complete the CT-198 form or contact TAX. 

How To Start an LLC in New York

A limited liability company (LLC) is a type of business entity formed by one or more people concerning the responsibilities and other liabilities of the company. The Limited Liability Company Act governs an LLC’s creation and management. The LLC is a hybrid structure that combines freedom like a partnership and restricted liability like a corporation. Due to the LLC’s flexible management structure, owners can customize it to their company’s needs. An LLC’s owners are “members” instead of shareholders or partners. An individual, a company, a partnership, another limited liability company, or any other type of legal organization may be a member.

According to Section 202 of New York’s Limited Liability Company Law, a company’s founders must submit an Articles of Organization to the Department of State to establish an LLC there. Any individual or organization can establish an LLC.

The members of the LLC must create an operating agreement to establish the rights, powers, and duties of the members toward each other and the functioning of the LLC. The document t describes how an LLC will conduct business. Members of an LLC must adopt a contract within 90 days of filing their articles of organization with New York. The operating agreement is a crucial part of the company’s structure even though it is not required to be filed with the Department of State. 

Finally, Limited Liability Company Law mandates that most limited liability firms publish a copy of their articles of organization or notification about their establishment for six consecutive weeks in two publications. The county clerk where the LLC’s office is situated must designate the newspapers. For the notice’s publishing in the newspapers, there is a cost. The original articles of incorporation must match the information in the published notice, including the name of the LLC, as recorded by the Department of State. 

How To Start a Business Partnership in New York

The process for starting a business partnership in New York varies with the partnership type. A typical business partnership structure consists of two or more owners who operate a business jointly. Three common partnership types are general, limited, and limited liability. 

How To Start a Limited Partnership in New York

A limited partnership comprises at least one general partner and one or more limited partners. The general partner runs and oversees the day-to-day business activities, while the limited partner does not take part in the business management. The general partner assumes total liability for the company debt. The limited partner has limited liability to the tune of the amount invested in the business. For taxation purposes, a partnership is not treated as a separate entity and is taxed through the partner’s personal tax returns.

To start a limited partnership, partners must register and submit the partnership name, the certificate of the limited partnership agreement, and a certificate of publication with the New York Department of State. The business’s life span should be stipulated on the partnership agreement certificate.

A limited liability partnership is similar to a limited partnership but comprises partners where each partner’s liabilities are limited to the amount they put into the business. The process for starting a limited liability partnership is the same as a limited partnership.

How To Form a General Partnership in New York

A general partnership consists of two or more partners equally responsible for a business’s liabilities, finances, debts, and profits. To start a general partnership, the partners must submit a certificate of assumed name to the clerk of the county where the business is located.

How To Start a Non-Profit in New York

 A non-profit is a business entity organized for the general public’s social benefit as opposed to a business that exists to generate profit for the benefit of its owners. The New York government provides many online resources to encourage non-profits and collaborates with non-profits to deliver different services to the public throughout the state. Interested persons can start a non-profit by following the steps:

To retain their status as a non-profit, businesses in New York must:

Step 6: Choosing a Business Location 

The location of the business determines its general trajectory in terms of growth. The US small business administration advises business owners to analyze all the options for the locations of their businesses before making a decision. The choice of a business location is influenced by factors such as the target market’s geography, business partners, and regional costs. The owners should also consider various governmental organizations’ expenses, advantages, and limitations.

 Another essential factor to consider when choosing a business location is the zoning requirements and permits needed for a particular location. Certain business company building structures are prohibited in some areas and while the local authorities incentivize others. Several states in New York are renowned for establishing tax systems that are exceptionally hospitable to particular types of businesses. This contributes to the tendency of manufacturers, financial institutions, and tech startups to concentrate in particular regions. 

What Kind of Business Can I Run From Home in New York?

Although there are numerous restrictions and conditions to run a business from home in New York, it is not illegal. The type of business a person can run from home in New York is governed by zoning and planning laws in the state. There is little room to combine business and residential properties under existing New York state regulations, which categorize properties as commercial or residential.

The following businesses are prohibited from being run out of a home office or as a home-based business by the city’s zoning regulations.

Some businesses that can be run from Home in New York include

In New York, home businesses are required to adhere to the following:

How Do I Start a Small Business From Home in New York

Entrepreneurs who want to launch a home-based business must register with the New York Department of State and have all the required permits before they may launch. According to the legislation, zoning regulations must also be observed when operating a home-based business in New York. People who provide professional services must also possess all necessary certifications from the organization in charge of that industry. Persons can start a business from coming by completing the following checklist.

Starting a Business Online in New York

 Individuals who want to start an online business can use the New York Business Wizard. This Tool provides a step-by-step guide on registering an online business in New York and will provide all the licenses and permits needed to start an online business.

Step 7: Legal Requirements for Starting a Business in New York

How To Get an EIN Number in New York

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issues nine-digit EINs only used to record employment taxes. Business owners must have an EIN to pay federal taxes online and submit annual tax returns. Employers have three options for applying for an EIN: online, by phone (800-829-4933), or by mailing the IRS SS-4 form. Additionally, the EIN is necessary to start a business bank account, apply for business licenses and permits, and hire staff.

How To Get a New York Registered Agent

A New York registered agent is any individual or company with a physical location in New York willing to accept the document of process and other important mail on behalf of a business according to (n.y. llc. law § 302). Any business owner can choose to be the registered agent for their own business or hire the services of a company or business. A registered agent service may cost differently. A business that merely forwards legal notices or alerts a business owner when documents arrive might only cost $50 per year. However, other businesses might provide more services in exchange for a fee, such as submitting yearly reports or taking care of the New York publication requirement. These services could run customers between $100 and $250. To find a registered agent in New York, inquiries can be made to the Department of State, which keeps a record of certified agents in the state,

Patents, Trademarks, and Copyrights in New York

A patent is a right granted by the government to inventors to exclusively use, and import sale their inventions in the US patent grants the inventor a monopoly over how the public can use their invention although it is usually for a limited period. The patent system seeks to strike a balance between the necessity for innovators to make money and allowing the general public to profit from advancements. Patents are awarded by the US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), and the procedure for acquiring one in New York is the same as it is in every other state in the union. Inventions in New York can also be protected by a PPA(provisional patent application) before a patent is approved. With filing costs ranging from $50 to $260, a PPA is more affordable, quicker, and easier than a standard patent.

Trademarks are words, symbols, or names that can be used to uniquely distinguish products, goods, and services from one another. The purpose of registering a trademark is to establish ownership of the mark and to give the mark legal protection. New York trademarks can be registered at the Department of State by applying for a trademark. The application must be accompanied by evidence of the trademark being used and a $50 filing fee. The application can be submitted to

New York State Department of State, State Records, 

One Commerce Plaza,

 99 Washington Avenue, 

Albany, NY 12231-0001.

Copyrights protect literary works and other art forms, controlling their use and distribution. Business owners can determine how their work should be distributed, reproduced, and publicly displayed as copyright owners. New York does not have state laws that guide copyright use but enforces them under federal laws. Businesses can find information on registering copyright works through the US Copyrights Office circular.

New York Business Tax

The New York Department of Taxation and Finance serves as the body that is primarily in charge of handling Tax related matters in the state of New York. Businesses in New York are taxed according to their chosen business structure, the number of employees, and yearly income. To protect and encourage small businesses, New York offers many tax breaks and incentives to small businesses, although the state is generally known for its complicated and costly tax structure.

The main taxes for businesses in the state are corporate tax, income tax, sales tax, and use tax.

Are Business Records Public in New York?

Yes, business records are public in New York. The New York Freedom of Information law allows members of the public to view business records in the custody of any government agency, except the record is made exempt from public viewing. Business records in New York can be found by searching the cooperation entity database or by making a public records request to the Department of `business records. A search can be performed on the database using the assumed name of the business entity, and users can filter the search using the type of business entity(sole proprietorship, cooperation).

Confidential Business records are also made public by law during judicial cases under New Yorks courts records law. Falsifying business records in the second degree is a felony, according to New York, and it carries a one-year jail term.