This category includes businesses that perform janitorial and cleaning services, pest control, landscape care and maintenance, and other services related to maintaining buildings and dwellings.
This industry comprises establishments primarily engaged in providing operating staff to perform a combination of support services within a client’s facilities. Establishments in this industry typically provide a combination of services, such as janitorial, maintenance, trash disposal, guard and security, mail routing, reception, laundry, and related services to support operations within facilities. These establishments provide operating staff to carry out these support activities; but are not involved with or responsible for the core business or activities of the client. Establishments providing facilities (except computer and/or data processing) operation support services and establishments providing private jail services or operating correctional facilities (i.e., jails) on a contract or fee basis are included in this industry.
This industry comprises establishments primarily engaged in providing services to buildings and dwellings to include establishments primarily engaged in exterminating and controlling birds, mosquitoes, rodents, termites, and other insects and pests (except for crop production and forestry production); fumigation services are included in this industry; cleaning building interiors, interiors of transportation equipment (e.g., aircraft, rail cars, ships), and/or windows; providing landscape care and maintenance services and/or installing trees, shrubs, plants, lawns, or gardens; providing these services along with the design of landscape plans and/or the construction (i.e., installation) of walkways, retaining walls, decks, fences, ponds, and similar structures; cleaning and dyeing used rugs, carpets, and upholstery.
Before starting a business, you probably will need to register with the Florida Department of State, the IRS and the Florida Department of Revenue. For businesses located outside of the State of Florida, evidence of registration with their Division of Corporations or Corporate Registry may be required.
Businesses within this category may employ or require individuals holding professional licenses as requirement for a business license. If you are only pursuing a professional license, you may not need to complete all of the additional steps listed on this checklist.
Although most businesses in this category do not require a state-issued license to operate, you may need to obtain a license from:
- Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services — pest or mosquito control
- Department of Business and Professional Regulation — asbestos consulting or removal
- Department of Health — certified environmental professionals and radon measurement or mitigation
Business owners in this category may also wish to explore assistance offered by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity.
The Florida Department of State’s Division of Corporations serves as the state’s central depository for a number of commercial activities. These activities include a variety of business entity filings, trade and service mark registrations, federal lien recordings, judgment lien filings, uniform commercial code financing statements, fictitious name registrations, notary commissions, and cable and video service franchises.
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The Department of State (DOS) is where you register your business. You can search and access filed information for corporations, limited liability companies, limited partnerships, general partnerships, trademarks, fictitious name registrations and liens. Also, electronic filing and certification can be processed via the Department’s website.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is the nation’s tax collection agency and administers the Internal Revenue Code enacted by Congress.
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If you are required to report employment taxes or give tax statements to employees, you need an Employer Identification Number (EIN) to send with all items you report to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) or Social Security Administration. If you do not intend to hire others, you may skip this step.
You may apply for an EIN online if your principal business is located in the United States or U.S. Territories. The person applying online must have a valid Taxpayer Identification Number (SSN, ITIN, EIN). You are limited to one EIN per responsible party per day.
The Florida Department of Revenue administers three programs: general tax administration, property tax oversight and child support. The general tax administration program works with Florida businesses that are required to register for, collect, report and remit the taxes and fees administered by the Department.
The Department also manages the State of Florida’s New Hire Reporting Center. Federal and state laws require employers to report newly hired, re-hired and temporary employees within 20 days of an employee’s start date. This information is used to assist the Department’s child support program with child support orders. The employment information reported through the state’s New Hire Reporting Center is also used to detect and prevent public assistance and reemployment assistance fraud.
For additional information, please visit www.floridarevenue.com.
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A business owner or contractor may need to register for, collect, report and/or remit one or more of the taxes, fees and licenses administered by the Florida Department of Revenue. This is dependent on the structure of a business, the activities of a business, and whether the business hires employees. In addition, businesses must report newly hired, re-hired and temporary employees through the State of Florida’s New Hire Reporting program managed by the Florida Department of Revenue.
Reporting Employment Information
The Department manages the State of Florida’s New Hire Reporting Center. Federal and state laws require employers to report newly hired, re-hired and temporary employees within 20 days of an employee’s start date. The Department’s Child Support program utilizes employment information and employer cooperation to assist with child support order compliance. The reported employment information through the state’s New Hire Reporting Center is also used to detect and prevent public assistance and reemployment fraud.
Register your business to report newly hired, re-hired or temporary employees within 20 days of an employee’s start date.
The Department of Revenue’s Child Support Program works with employers in a variety of ways to ensure compliance with child support orders when applicable. Employers must work with the Child Support Program to respond to income withholding requests and to enroll children in medical insurance plans. Once registered with the New Hire Reporting Center, businesses will be able to access the Child Support Employer Services website to report employee termination and bonus or lump sum payments, request replacement copies of income withholding notices currently in place for employees, and use the Program’s online calculator to get pro-rated child support amounts for employees that have more than one child support case.
Business Taxes, Fees and Surcharge
Businesses in this category may be required to register for, collect, report and/or remit one or more of the following taxes and fees.
Most corporations and certain entities conducting business, or who are incorporated in Florida, including out-of-state corporations, must file a Florida corporate income tax return.
Register online or by submitting a Florida Business Tax Application (Form DR-1), or by filing the Florida Corporate Income/Franchise Tax Return (Form F-1120).
Reemployment Assistance gives partial, temporary income to workers who lose their jobs through no fault of their own and are able and available for work. If your business will employ workers in Florida, you may register online or submit a Florida Business Tax Application (Form DR-1).
Before conducting business, anyone selling, renting, leasing or repairing goods, providing certain services, charging admissions, or renting or leasing short-term lodging, housekeeping accommodations, or commercial real property must register with the Department of Revenue.
Additionally, use tax is due on the use or consumption of taxable goods or services when sales tax was not paid at the time of purchase.
Register online or by submitting a Florida Business Tax Application (Form DR-1).
This surtax, imposed by most Florida counties, applies to most transactions subject to sales or use tax. Businesses must also collect the applicable discretionary sales surtax from the purchaser at the time of sale, then report and remit it to the Department of Revenue.
No additional registration is required.
The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) supports and promotes Florida agriculture, protects the environment, safeguards consumers, and ensures the safety and wholesomeness of food. FDACS licenses and inspects various businesses and professions in Florida, such as bakeries, milk producers, weights and measurements, pesticide dealers, oyster harvesting, pre-packaged food sales, beekeepers and travel agents, among others. A variety of different businesses may need to coordinate with FDACS to obtain applicable licenses, registrations and/or permits.
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Division of Agricultural Environmental Services
Each Pest Control Business must employ a Florida-certified operator, certified in the categries in which the business operates: General Household Pest and Rodent Control, Termite and Other Wood-Destroying Organisms Control, Lawn and Ornamental Pest Control and/or Fumigation.
The Limited Commercial Landscape Maintenance (LCLM) Certification Program allows commercial landscape maintenance personnel to make pesticide applications (using herbicides, insecticides and fungicides) to ornamental plants and plant beds only. It does not allow landscape maintenance workers to make any kind of pesticide applications (including weed control and/or weed and feed products) to any turf areas. Furthermore, this certification does not allow or authorize the maintenance company or the certificate holder to supervise company employees under their certificate or operate a pest control business.
The Limited Commercial Wildlife Management Certification (LW) is only required for trapping rats and mice in, on or under structures. FDACS recommends that persons commercially trapping nuisance wildlife (e.g., raccoons, opossums, armadillos, skunks, squirrels) in structures also obtain this certificate.
Limited Governmental or Private Applicator Certification is designed for government employees or other individuals who make applications of general or restricted use pesticides in, on, around or under structures or to the turf or ornamental areas of the property. For smaller municipalities and/or companies, each applicator must be individually certified. For larger operations, the program has provisions for an employer to hire a Florida Pest Control Certified Operator to be in charge of the pest control program and they are responsible for providing training and guidance to any applicator(s) in lieu of individual applicator certification.
All commercial fertilizer applicators must be certified by FDACS to make any type of fertilizer application to commercial turf or ornamental areas and/or the turf or ornamental areas of parks or fields (other than agricultural areas) and/or the turf or ornamental area of any residential property. Prior to issuance of Limited Urban Commercial Fertilizer Applicator Certification, you must provide proof of having received training in Green Industry Best Management Practices.
License to install and service automated mosquito misting devices and/or offer residential or commercial fogging and barrier treatments to other than local government entities.
The practice of commercial pest control in Florida is strictly regulated under the provisions of the Structural Pest Control Act, Chapter 482, Florida Statutes.
The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR) is the agency charged with licensing and regulating businesses and professionals in Florida. A variety of businesses will need to coordinate with DBPR to obtain applicable licenses, registrations and/or permits.
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The Division of Professions, Asbestos Licensing Unit is responsible for licensing and regulating asbestos contractors and asbestos consultants in Florida
The Florida Department of Health, nationally accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board, works to protect, promote & improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county, & community efforts. The department’s goal is to be the healthiest state in the nation through innovation, collaboration, accountability, responsiveness and excellence.
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A qualified person who is employed or assigned the responsibility for assessing the environmental health or sanitary conditions, as defined by DOH, within a building, on an individual’s property, or within the community at large, and who has the knowledge, skills, and abilities to carry out these tasks.
A person or business certified in delivering professional radon services.
In collaboration with our partners, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) assists the Governor in advancing Florida’s economy by championing the state’s economic development vision and by administering state and federal programs and initiatives to help visitors, citizens, businesses, and communities.
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The Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) utilizes public and private sector expertise to attract, retain and grow businesses and create jobs in Florida. It also provides valuable resources for businesses and entrepreneurs; assistance with recruiting workers; and statistical information regarding Florida businesses and employment. Your business may qualify for various state or federal assistance.
Federal & Local Government Requirements
This checklist provides state requirements only. Remember to check federal requirements and your local county and municipal agencies. The following organizations and websites can help:
- Florida’s Small Business Development Center Network (FLSBDC) – State designated as Florida’s principal provider of small business assistance, the network provides no-cost, professional business consulting, in-person and on-demand training, and access to business research resources to help Florida businesses—no matter their stage of business—grow and succeed.
- Florida Chamber of Commerce – The chamber is a Florida business organization whose goal is to further the interest of businesses in Florida.
- County Websites – Florida’s county governments require various licenses, permits and filings above and beyond state requirements, depending on the type of business you wish to open. Find out about other public services and opportunities related to Florida counties and their governments by visiting the Florida Association of Counties website.
- City Websites – Business owners should be aware of local government requirements, especially local business taxes (occupational licenses), building permits and inspections, planning and zoning, and community and economic development opportunities. The Florida League of Cities offers a comprehensive, alphabetical listing of municipality websites and additional information about local events and government requirements.
Disclaimer: The State of Florida operates OpenMyFloridaBusiness.gov as a public service to Florida residents and visitors worldwide. While efforts were made to verify that the content of this website is accurate and comprehensive, it is recommended that you consult with a professional (e.g., attorney, CPA, SBDC, etc.) to ensure you meet all requirements before starting your business. OpenMyFloridaBusiness.gov is not responsible for the content of external websites.