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Business License Renewals
All business licenses expire on December 31 of each year. Typically, Business License Renewal Forms are mailed to business owners during the December or early January.

Business Owners seeking to renew licenses for the new year may now do so online.
  • If you are a new CAP user, you will need to complete a CAP ONLINE ACCOUNT AUTHORIZATION FORM online and Register for a CAP Account (completion of the authorization form will take you to the registration page). When registering for a new account, please allow 3-5 business days for the new account to be processed.
  • If you already have an existing account from last year’s renewal period, Log On to renew your license at our Customer Access Portal (CAP).
  • Online payments cannot be made until January 1st.

Businesses are responsible for the timely filing of their Business License Renewal Form and fees.  The required license fee for each business is due on January 1st of each year and payable by January 31st of that year. Delinquent renewal penalties will accrue after February 28th.  The license fee due date for insurance companies is May 31st. 

If the due date for payment falls on a Saturday or Sunday, or a federal, state, or City of Charleston observed holiday then payment is considered timely on the following business day.

Late Payment Penalties
Businesses that do not meet the business license renewal deadline are required to pay penalty fees.

The penalties for unpaid business licenses are:

  • First Month: 5% of the unpaid fee
  • Second Month: An additional 20% of the unpaid fee (25% total)
  • Third Month: An additional 10% of the unpaid fee (35% total)      

Late Payment Penalties may not be waived. Partial payment may be accepted by the License Official to toll imposition of penalties on the portion paid; provided, however, no business license shall be issued or renewed until the full amount of the tax due, with penalties, has been paid.

Cancellation of a Business License
If you no longer own your business or if your business closed during the previous year, you must download, complete, and submit the Cancellation of Business License Form, along with your Business License Renewal Form. If you sell your business, the new owner must file for a new business license. Business licenses are not transferable to new business owners.

Joshua Richards
Director Revenue Collections

2 George Street
Ste. 1700
Charleston, SC 29401

Ph: 843-724-3711
Fx: 843-720-3954