Thank you for your interest in doing business in the City of Lincoln. Licenses are valid for one year, January 1st through December 31st, and must be renewed annually.

The following will need a license if planning on conducting business in Lincoln:

  • Individuals (residential or commercial)
  • partnerships
  • corporations
  • sole proprietors

Tax-exempt corporations pursuant to Internal Revenue Code section 501(c)3 are no longer required to obtain a business license for their charitable operations in the City of Lincoln. 

Business license fees are nonrefundable. You will need to display your certificate at your place of business at all times. This certificate does not:

  • state clearance for zoning
  • fire code
  • occupancy
  • or any other city, county, state or federal permit or license which you may need for your type of business.

 Business License Application

Submit the business license application in person or mail the application, along with payment, to the City of Lincoln.   If you prefer, you can submit your application electronically.  A 2.95% credit processing fee will be added to the business license fee. 


Submit Electronic Business License Application


If you are a resident, operating a business from home, you will also need to submit the home occupation clearance form. As a home-based business, zoning regulations limit what type of business can be conducted from home. Email the Planning Department for questions.

If your new business will be operating out of a commercial space, applicant must complete the Emergency Contact Form.

If your business license application requires a NPDES (National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System) permit, you can research the information with the EPA - United States Environmental Protection Agency 


  • Building, fire, and health inspections may be required before a business license can be approved, depending on the type of business you are operating.
  • Notice to applicants for business licenses and commercial building permits:  Disability Access 2019


 Fireworks Application

You can submit the Fireworks Application in person or mail the application, along with payment, to the City of Lincoln.  

Review information for  Operating a Fireworks Stand

To submit electronically: Fireworks Application

 Renewal Notices

Renewal notices are sent out to existing license holders prior to year-end to inform them that the annual renewal period has begun and to request updated information and payment of applicable fees by January 1st of the renewal year.  However, it is the responsibility of the business owner to renew the business license on time even if the renewal notice is not received.

Penalties are assessed for delinquent accounts, regardless of whether a renewal notice was received.

A 10% penalty will be added on by February 1st. By March 1st, licenses may be ceased and applicant will need to re-submit a new business license application.

Licenses can be renewed by submitting the renewal letter and a cash/check payment to the City of Lincoln Attn: Business License. 

 Fees Table

$ 4.00 Veteran
$ 94.00 Commercial
$ 124.00 Residential / Home Occupation
$ 144.00 Solicitor
$ 164.00 Street Vendor


Frequently Asked Questions

Close Out/Cancel Business License

It is important to have the City staff close your account when you are no longer conducting business in the City. Failure to notify the City staff may result in additional taxes, interest, and penalties being assessed against your account.

What if I sell my business? Is my business license transferable?

A business license is not transferable. The license is terminated when business ownership changes. The new owner will be responsible for obtaining his/her own business license. If your business changes its name, ownership, or business location, a new Business License Application may be required. Please contact the department for further information.

What if I move to a new location in Lincoln? Do I need to reapply if I change my business name?

To process a change, fill out a Business License Application form to file for an address change. A processing fee will be due at the time the change is made.

Do I need to display my business license?

All business licenses must be displayed on the premises in public view. For those businesses not having a fixed place of business in the city, the license must be physically carried on the person while conducting business and presented upon request.

Will I be preparing or selling food?

If your business intends to prepare and/or sell food of any type, you must complete an application for a Health Permit. Businesses will need to contact Placer County Health at Department.


Additional Resources

Fictitious Business Name Statements or Doing Business As (DBA)

If you propose to use a fictitious business name that does not contain your surname, contact the Placer County Office.

States Sales and Use Tax Permit

If you sell tangible personal property, retail or wholesale, you are required to obtain a Seller's Permit (Retail Sales Tax Number) from the California Tax and Fee Administration (CDTFA) for the purpose of collecting and reporting sales tax to the State of California. This seller's permit is required before your business license will be released. To obtain a Sellers' Permit, contact the CDTFA at (949) 440-3473 or visit the website at

Federal Employer Identification Number

If your business is organized as a corporation or partnership, or if you engage or plan to engage employees, you will need a Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN) for the purpose of withholding FICA taxes and Social Security taxes. A FEIN is required even if your business has no employees. To obtain a FEIN, contact the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) at or (800) 829-1040 or download an application for a Federal Employer Identification Number at

State Employer Identification Number

If your business is organized as a corporation or partnership in the State of California, or if you engage or plan to engage employees in the State of California, you will need a State Employer Identification Number (SEIN) for the purpose of withholding State Income Tax, Disability and Unemployment Insurance. To contact the State Employment Development Department - Division of Audits, call (888) 745-3886 or visit their web page at

State Franchise Tax Board

If you intend to have employees within the State of California or to obtain a Form 540 to estimate State Withholding Tax for yourself, contact the Franchise Tax Board (FTB) at (800) 852-5711 or visit their website at

Alcoholic Beverage Control Licenses

If your business will be selling or serving alcoholic beverages contact the Alcoholic Beverage Control Board. Contact the Alcoholic Beverage Control by phone at (714) 558-4101 or visit their website at



If you have any questions regarding business licenses, please contact the Business License Division at (916) 434-2430 or email Business Licenses.