Vendor License

About the License

A vendor license is required by law when a business makes retail sales. The license is a Sales Tax Account for the State of Ohio Department of Taxation. Every Ohio retailer (vendor) making taxable retail sales must obtain a vendor license, collect sales tax, file tax returns with payment of tax collected, and maintain complete records of transactions. The license is issued by the County Auditor’s Office in which the business is located.

Visit the State of Ohio Department of Taxation to determine what type of vendor license to purchase and to view links to different types of vendor license applications.

Access the Vendor License Application.

Types of Licenses

Vendor License

Issued by the County Auditor to vendors with a fixed place of business within the county. Vendors must have one vendor license for each fixed place of business. There is a $25.00 application fee with no annual renewal. An individual is able to obtain the vendor license at the Auditor’s or online through the Ohio Department of Taxation.

Transient Vendor License

Issued by the Ohio Department of Taxation to vendors who transport stocks of goods to temporary places of business to make sales. A transient vendor may exhibit goods in a county where they have no fixed place of business. There is a $25.00 application fee with no annual renewal. An individual must obtain the transient vendor license through the Ohio Department of Taxation.

Is A Vendor License Transferable?

You must have an active regular vendor license for each fixed place of business from which taxable retail sales are made. A regular vendor license may be transferred from one existing business location to another when you move an existing business to a new location within the same county. However, a vendor must submit a transfer application with the County Auditor in this situation. There is no fee for transferring a regular vendor license from one location to another within the same county.

If the business location is being moved to a different county, a new regular vendor license must be obtained from the County Auditor of the different county. These applications can be obtained at the County Auditor’s Office, 419-223-8520, or at the Ohio Department of Taxation, 1-800-282-1782. If approved, the Department of Taxation will update its file, issue a transfer license, and advise the County Auditor.

Any change in ownership (sole proprietor to partnership, partnership to corporation, corporation to sole proprietor, partnership to sole proprietor, etc) requires a new license.

If you are required to obtain a new vendor license due to a change in ownership or location, a final return must be filed with the State within fifteen days of the last day of business under the original vendor license.

A change in mailing address does not require a new license.

How Do I Cancel A Vendor License?

If a vendor stops making taxable retail sales, a final return must be filed with the state and all taxes must be paid within 15 days of the final sale. Vendors must verify the last day of business on the final return.

Filing Sales Tax Returns Online With the State of Ohio

Important Reminders

Determining ownership structure is the first step in starting a business. Many companies jump right in and realize they should have decided legal structure first. Sole Proprietor (Owner), Partnership (General or Limited), Limited Liability Partnership, Limited Liability Company, Corporations (Different Types), Fiduciary, Association, Business Trust are examples of the various legal structures for a business. Each structure has its advantages and disadvantages. Please remember to research each structure to determine the best structure for your business.

If you are using a business name, you should check the availability of that name with the Secretary of State.  You should check to determine if you should register it with them at (614) 466-3910 or visit their website at

You should also check with your local Zoning Department to determine if you may transact a business from the desired address.