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  1. #1
    Not now, I'm kinda busy. pdxi's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Oakland, California
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    Consulting in California - Questions


    To get ready to move to California in 2006, I'm taking inventory of everything that I will need to do to set up shop in San Francisco. If you conduct business in California, especially in the city of San Francisco, I'd like to ask you a few questions.

    Permits: What permits will I need? I'm looking at this page right now, and I'm not sure if I will need to file a Business Property Statement. Will I also need to get a business license?

    Sales Tax: I've lived in Oregon all of my life, and sales tax is completely foreign to me. What considerations need to be given for sales tax? Since I'm selling a service and not hard goods, am I technically not required to collect sales tax on consulting services? Help!

    Miscellany: Is there anything else that I'm not aware of?

    I know that I should contact both the state government of California and the City of San Francisco before I move, but I'd like to hear of other peoples' practical examples and experiences before I do.

    Jeffrey Hunt, freelance PHP & MySQL developer

  2. #2
    SitePoint Wizard johntabita's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    In a big, big house, with lotsa lotsa room
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    Sales tax won't apply to you. In California, web design, programming, consulting, etc. are non-taxable services. However, if you provide your client a copy of the files on a CD, then it becomes a tangible good and is subject to sales tax. But if you email the files, it's not. (Strange, I know.)

    You'll probably need a business licence, even if you're operating out of your home. Their main concern is that your not meeting customers/clients there, or getting tons of deliveries. Some cities do not even charge a fee, but I suspect San Francisco is not one of those cities.


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