Frequently Asked Questions

Business Structure

How do I know how to structure my business? Corporation, LLC, Partnership or Sole Proprietor?

For more information on the different types of business structures you may want to visit the Nevada Secretary of State. It is also highly recommended that you work with an accountant or a an attorney to determine which business structure is best for you and your business.  

Employee Identification Number (EIN)

What is an Employee Identification Number (EIN)?

As a business you are required to have an Employer Identification Number (EIN) to use as a federal taxpayer identification number. You will need this number to open a business banking account, pay employees and for tax purposes. For additional information please contact the IRS online or at (702) 868-5005.  

Fictitious Firm Name (DBA)

Do I need a Fictitious Firm Name (DBA)?

It is required by Nevada Revised Statutes, NRS Chapter 602 that every person doing business in the state of Nevada under an assumed or fictitious name that is different from the legal name of each person who owns an interest in the business must file with the County Clerk of each county in which the business is being conducted. The filing of a fictitious firm name does not give exclusive rights to the use of that name.  

A Fictitious Firm Name filing is also required by the Business License office before issuing a business license under a fictitious name.

Grants

How do I apply for a grant to start my business?

Please be aware that grant money is rarely, if ever available to for-profit businesses, or those looking for access to capital to grow their business. This applies to race and sex-based grants as well. Grants from the federal government are only available to noncommercial organizations, such as nonprofits and educational institutions in areas such as medicine, education, scientific research and technology development. The federal government also provides grants to state and local governments to assist them with economic development.

For more information on grants please visit our Access to Capital Directory on the Access to Capital tab, or in the Learning Center tab. There are other websites where an individual can search for grants such as: Grants.com, SBA at SBA.gov, Grants.gov and the Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance.

Hiring Employees

I may want to hire employees - what are the labor laws?

For information on Nevada labor laws, including minimum wage, overtime, prevailing wage rates and breaks please contact the State of Nevada, Office of the Labor CommissionerYou may want to read over Nevada Chapter 608 – Compensation, Wages and Hours for additional information.
Fore additional information on requirements when hiring employees please visit the Resource Directory and look at the hiring employees tab.

Insurance

Should I purchase insurance for my business?

There are several types of insurance available for any risk that your business might face. It is recommended that you contact your insurance agent or broker to determine what type of insurance you need to to best protect you and your business. For additional information on business insurance visit the SBA.

General Liability Insurance: Business owners purchase general liability insurance to cover legal hassles due to accident, injuries and claims of negligence. T

Product Liability Insurance: Companies that manufacture, wholesale, distribute, and retail a product may be liable for its safety. 
Professional Liability Insurance: Business owners providing services should consider having professional liability insurance (also known as errors and omissions insurance). This type of liability coverage protects your business against malpractice, errors, and negligence in provision of services to your customers. 
Commercial Property Insurance: Property insurance covers everything related to the loss and damage of company property due to a wide-variety of events such as fire, smoke, wind and hail storms, civil disobedience and vandalism. 
Home-Based Business Insurance: Homeowners' insurance policies do not generally cover home-based business losses. Depending on risks to your business, you may add riders to your homeowners' policy to cover normal business risks such as property damage. However, homeowners' policies only go so far in covering home-based businesses and you may need to purchase additional policies to cover other risks, such as general and professional liability.

To be sure you are in compliance you may also want to check with the State of Nevada, Division of Insurance. 

 

As a business owner am I required to purchase workers' compensation insurance?

Nevada law requires business owners with one or more employees in the State of Nevada to obtain and maintain workers’ compensation coverage. There are few exceptions to this requirement. Business owners failing to comply with this law face fines up to $15,000, may have their business ordered closed until the insurance has been obtained and be held financially responsible for all costs associated with an employee who sustains a work-related injury. In addition, the uninsured business owner may be subject to civil litigation brought about by an injured employee.

For additional information view the Nevada Employer Coverage Requirements and visit the Division of Industrial Relations

 

Licensing

Do I need a State of Nevada Business license?

Yes every business in the State of Nevada is required to obtain a state business license through the Nevada Secretary of State. You can now register for your business license online through the SilverFlume portal with the Nevada Secretary of State. Please see contact information below for the Nevada Secretary of State. 


Are there any other license requirements in Nevada?

In the State of Nevada all businesses are required to obtain a business license within the county/city in which they will operate or perform work. Depending on location and type of business you may be required to obtain a County license as well as a city license(s).  

In Southern Nevada for example, if you perform work in several jurisdictions within Clark County you may be required to obtain a city license from multiple jurisdictions. Clark County is made up of six jurisdictions, each with its own licensing agency-the City of Las Vegas, the City of North Las Vegas, the City of Henderson, Boulder City, the City of Mesquite and Unincorporated Clark County.

There are other special permits required in Nevada from Health, Police, Fire or Building Departments. Additionally there are permit requirements for liquor, gaming, health permits, home occupation permits, cosmetology and others. Check with the local jurisdiction in which you plan to operate your business to determine the licensing/permit requirements. 

Licensing contact information is available on our Resource Directory tab.

Loans

How can I get a loan to start or grown my small business?

Even with all of the economic programs and government incentives for small business, it can be a challenge to access and obtain financing to properly capitalize a business. It's difficult, especially for smaller businesses, to build credit and provide financials worthy of securing traditional business loans and lines of credit needed to grow and expand. 

There is traditional financing through a bank, non-traditional financing such as crowdfunding, mircolending and peer to peer lending, as well as grants although grants are very difficult to acquire.

For additional information on obtaining a loan please visit the Access to Capital tab in the Business Resource Center.

Patents, Trademarks, Servicemarks, and Copyrights

Where can I find information on patents, trademarks, servicemarks, and copyrights?

For information on patents, trademarks, servicemarks and copyrights please contact the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

Starting a Business

I want to start a business what is the first thing I should do?

The first thing you should do is find a mentor. Both the Nevada Small Business Development Center (Nevada SBDC) and SCORE have mentors/counselors that you can meet with for FREE. They will work with you from the point where you have a great idea to actually starting your business. Both can assist you with writing your business plan, marketing, exporting, strategic planning and much more.

 

Why do I need a business plan?

When starting a business it’s always a good idea to have a written business plan. Your business plan is like a resume for your business. Business plans develop a blueprint as an operating guide for your business. It describes you and your business. You will need a business plan when dealing with banks or other lending institutions. Both the Nevada SBDC and SCORE can assist you in writing a business plan. There are also several online tools available.

What do I need to start an online business?

To start an online only business in Nevada you will need to obtain a state business license through the Nevada Secretary of State. Online retailers are required to collect sales tax and be in compliance with sales and use taxes. Sales tax is collected by the seller at the time of the sale. For additional information regarding sales and use taxes please contact the State of Nevada, Department of Taxation. There are currently five states which do not impose sales tax: Alaska, Delaware, Montana, New Hampshire and Oregon. Local county and city licenses may also be required. It is recommended that you contact your local county and city to determine if local licenses are required. For home-based businesses, verify if a Home Occupation Permit is required. Also, take into consideration zoning laws. Home-Based Business Zoning Laws 

Taxes

I have questions regarding taxes for my small business who should I contact?

Please contact the State of Nevada, Department of Taxation for information on statutes and regulations, resale certificates, sales and use tax, consumer use tax and more. 

Training

Are there any training classes available to help me start or grow my business?

Yes, there are small business training classed offered through the Nevada Business Opportunity Fund, Nevada SBDC, SBA, SCORE, Vegas PBS and Nevada Industry Excellence to name a few. For a complete list of training classes and small business events in Nevada visit the Calendar tab to the left.  

Nevada Business Opportunity Fund
Contact: Leanna Jenkins
550 E. Charleston Suite E
Las Vegas, NV. 89104
Phone: (702) 734-3555
Email: ljenkins@vedc.org
Web: www.vedc.org

Nevada Small Business Development Center
Multiple Locations
Web: www.nsbdc.org
Small Business Administration (SBA)
Multiple Locations
Web: www.sba.gov

SCORE
Multiple Locations
Web: www.score.org

Vegas PBS – Global Online Advanced Learning (GOAL)
3050 E. Flamingo Rd. 
Las Vegas, NV. 89121
Phone (702) 799-1010
Web: http://www.vegaspbs.org/workforce/  

Nevada Industry Excellence (Exporting) (Southern Nevada)

Multiple Locations
Phone: (702) 895-2615
Web: http://www.nevadaie.com/    

Nevada Industry Excellence (Exporting) (Northern Nevada) 
Multiple Locations
Phone: (775) 784-1935
Web: http://www.nevadaie.com/