Business license

This probably varies by state. In SC I am required to have a
"retail license" in order to sell ANYTHING legally. This means I
also collect and pass on to the state sales taxes :wink: which keeps them
happy, and all the paperwork, etc., keeps my accountant happy! Just
a happy bunch around here! Having a retail license then qualifies me
for wholesale purchase of supplies that will be used in items that I
will re-sell, as well as not having to pay taxes on supplies used in
items I will re-sell. It does NOT mean I get wholesale or tax-free
status for general business expenses.

Again, this may vary in name and how it works in other states, as I
believe this is all set at the state level, not federal. Also will
be different in other countries, I am sure!


The name of the permit does vary by state - check with your state
tax office. In Texas it is called a "Texas Sales and Use Tax Permit."
It gives me the same rights and obligations Beth outlines below -
just a different name. -Dee Dee

Aloha Everyone, This is in response to Beth’s NY licensing
regulations. Our company is in Hawaii. Our tax laws say that all
products sold either retail (at a higher percent) and wholesale (at
.005 or half a percent) must be collected and submitted either
quarterly, semi-annually, and if paid annually, we have been
penalized with additional costs for filing late. Our State charges
us tax on the tax we collect. Even though it is double taxation and
lawful, we must pay tax on all money collected. So if our company
sells $100.00 to a person, the 4% tax is passed onto the customer.
The State says we made $104.00 in revenues thus we must pay taxes on
that amount, which comes to 4.167% of the $100.00 sale. Now many
businesss’ here label on their receipts TAX 1, TAX 2. We tax the
$100.00 the 4% tax, then we tax the $104.00 the .1672% tax, which is
all paid to the state. Our State also informs the businesses here
that any item purchased for business outside of our State, enters
our State of our company’s use, any company here must pay an
additional .005% tax on this type of merchandise. This means since
we are the only State entirely surrounded by water, our tax laws are
different and even the laws the govern property sales. We can’t
even own oil, gas, minerals, diamonds, gems and minerals, or any
thing of value, for our State law is: when we buy property what ever
is found to be of worth on it, belongs to the State. We do pay to
live in Hawaii Nei. Every state has its own restriction. If we sell
out of state, there is no tax on the merchandise purchased and is
being shipped out. If we sell to a person in another state, and
collect tax, the tax collected should be the buyer’s State Tax and
paid to their State Tax Office. What it boils down to is simple,
taxes must be charged to the customer’s total bill, and paid to the
Regulatory Office that collects said tax. If tax is charged for
outside of your State, then taxes collected will need to be sent to
the buyer’s said State Regulatory office that collects taxes. When in
doubt, it is practical experience to check on the laws that govern
sales in the State where any person who is doing business resides.
At least if we sold to another business, it would be classified as
wholesale, and only one half a percent of taxes is charged to the
customer. It is always best to keep accurate records of sales, taxes,
wholesale taxes, and give unto Ceaser, what is due. Much Aloha,
Barbara HQCE

Of course this does vary state by state but if you are selling
wholesale or having your work sold on consignment you need to have a
wholesale tax license. With the license you don’t pay sales tax on
the supplies you purchase that go directly into making your product.
In my case it’s silver, findings, and precious stone. At the end of
the year I must report how much I sold to licensed dealers. I can
also sell a certain amount of retail and collect taxes on those
sales. If I do a show I can get a temporary permit for the show.

Also, don’t forget your city taxes. My wholesale license only
covers state and county taxes. I found that I had to file a city
sales tax exemption from paying city sales tax on my resale

Rick Copeland – Silversmith
Colorado Springs, Colorado

I’m in Tucson now and will travel to Ohio for a store visit on
Sunday for a week. So I took care of personal business before I left

  • I ordered flowers to be delivered on Valentines Day for my wife and

Across the street from my old store is a florist that I’ve used for
years. Owned by a man and woman, not related to each other. The man
is older and used to be a customer. He asked how my consulting was
doing and I told him was as busy as ever. So I asked him how his
business was doing.

All I heard was how the economy since 9/11 was terrible and their
bridal business was really down.

“The stock market hurt the bridal business because dad doesn’t have
the money for a big wedding anymore. Flowers are the easiest things
to reduce in the budget. How have you seen business in retail,

I told him that I’ve met jewelers who were struggling and I’ve also
met jewelers who had 20-25% increases last year.

“How is that possible?”

I continued to answer with “Easy. These people continue to advertise
and market. There is less business but there are people who need
jewelry and they capture them. They also STEAL business from other
stores who have quit advertising and thus are out of the customers

“We dropped our yellow page ads, too expensive.”

“Well that’s fine, but what did you do to advertise for Valentines

Man was I surprised with the answer “We don’t need to advertise, we
can’t handle what we get in business. Valentines is great, the rest
of the year is poor.”

So now I give’m my David Geller!

“You’re in the perfect business. You JUST made an invoice for my
wife’s flowers and my address for delivery. You also did the same for
my college student daughter. All you’re missing is getting the
birthdays and my anniversary and you have 3 times during a ‘slow
year’ to call me and take care of one of my chores - what to give my
two women on their birthday and my anniversary.”

He says “Yeah, that’s a good idea. But how can you track that?”

“With this rolodex on the counter you have. Go to Office Depot and
buy a 12 month dividers and put me in for June and October. Simple.”

“Who’s going to call?” he asks. Now I’m riled!

“YOU WILL! Or get a student to call for crying out loud.”

It’s becoming a tough fight. He finally agrees that it would
increase business. I ask this question:

“Can I ask you a question?”

He says, “Yes David, sure. What.”


The answer:

“Not worth the trouble. I go on Social Security in June.”

“Then Thomas, you’re set, Please help me finish up this

“Can you wait a few minutes?” the lady taking the order at the
counter asks.


“Someone is on line 3 and I can’t use the credit card machine.”

"So I tell her “Just write the card number on the receipt and ring
it through later, OK?”


David Geller

    The answer: "Not worth the trouble. I go on Social Security in

David: Some people just can’t be helped as you just found out.
However, he will soon find out what I have said for years (used to be
a financial planner before I retired): Social Security is not enough
to allow one to be social and seldom enough to be really secure, so
let’s hope that the florist planned well over the years and has
additional savings or he’ll be in for a big surprise!

You know, I still think that statement "You get what you deserve"
was never truer than in this situation.

Your ideas are great and would have been embraced by most people.
C’est la vie!