The Manhattan Beach Municipal Code requires all businesses operating in the City to pay an annual business license tax. The business license tax year begins March 1st and ends the last day of February the following year. For new businesses the Business License tax is prorated quarterly.
In-town businesses can apply in person at the cashier in the Finance Department at City Hall (Community Development Department approval is required). Home-based businesses also need a one-time Home Occupation Permit from the Community Development Department. Out-of-town businesses, such as contractors and sub-contractors, can file in person or through the mail to the City of Manhattan Beach, Business Licensing, 1400 Highland Avenue, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266. For additional instructions and tax rates please call (310) 802-5557.
The Business License tax is paid in advance. Some businesses pay a flat business tax. Most businesses pay the Business License tax based on their calendar year gross receipts; a base tax is paid and added to a percentage of the total gross receipts that were collected for the previous calendar year. A new business may pay the initial tax based on estimated gross receipts; after the first year this tax can be adjusted based on the actual gross receipts. Businesses renewing based on gross receipts must include supporting documentation, such as a Schedule C, Profit & Loss Statement or State Board of Equalization return, with their annual business license renewal.
Renewals are mailed out in February and are delinquent if received on or after May 1st (if you change your mailing address you must promptly notify the Business License Office at (310) 802-5557). If you do not receive a renewal notice by March 1st, please contact the Business License Office to obtain a duplicate copy. Failure to receive a renewal notice does not relieve the business owner of his/her responsibility to renew the Business License.
To learn more about doing business in Manhattan Beach:
Business License Application (Word)
Business Information Brochure (PDF)
Sub-Contractor List (Word)
Sub-Contractor Book (PDF)
The City requires the completion and approval of a sub-contractor listing as a condition of finalizing the planning and building of city developments. The list of business-license approved contractors is available from the licensing division in City Hall and on-line: Sub Contractor Book (PDF). A blank Sub Contractor List (Word) is available on-line. Please note: while the Sub Contractor Book lists a Sub Contractor's City Business License number, it does not necessarily indicate that the Sub Contractor's City Business License is current.