How to Get a Business License in Alberta?

How to Get a Business License in Alberta


A business license is required by law in Alberta, and it’s a must if you want to operate any type of business in the province. If you’re new to Alberta or just not sure where, to begin with, your business, this article guides you on how to get a business license in Alberta.

Why is a Business License Required?

To operate a business in Alberta, you have to have an active business license.

How to Get a Business License in Alberta

Businesses that are engaged in one or more of the following activities:

  • Selling goods or services (e.g., car sales)
  • Selling land or property (e.g., real estate)
  • Financial transactions (e.g., banking)

The province requires that all businesses obtain a valid business license every year by October 1st of each year so they can continue operating effectively and efficiently throughout Alberta’s busy holiday season

Types of Business Licenses Available in Alberta?

The Alberta government offers several business licenses that can be obtained by businesses in the province. Businesses with certain types of operations will require different licenses, so you need to understand what each license covers and how you can obtain one.

Some business licenses are required for all businesses, while others are only required for specific types of businesses. For example, if you’re looking at opening an insurance agency or a pharmacy (and these are examples), then you’ll need to get an Insurance Agent or Pharmacy License respectively from Alberta’s Department of Agriculture and Forestry (DAF).

If you want to operate as a sole proprietor or partner-owned company without having any employees (e.g., your small accounting firm), then there is no need for any additional paperwork besides filling out some forms online through their website; however, if this is not going right into practice now but may become part of your plans later on the down road then consider applying early so that everything goes smoothly once it comes time!

How to Get a Business License in Alberta?

To get a business license in Alberta, you can follow these steps:

  • Determine the type of license you need: The type of license you need will depend on the type of business you are starting and where it will be located. You can find out what licenses are required by contacting your local municipality or checking the Alberta Biz Connect website.
  • Register your business: Before applying for a license, you will need to register your business with the Alberta Corporate Registry. You can complete registration online or by mail.
  • Obtain any necessary permits: Depending on the type of business you are starting, you may need to obtain additional permits or licenses from the provincial or federal government. Check with the appropriate agencies to see what permits are required.
  • Complete the license application: Once you know what type of license you need, you can complete the license application form. This can be done online or in person at your local municipality.

Complete the license application

  • Pay the license fee: You will need to pay a fee when you submit your application. The fee will vary depending on the type of license you are applying for.
  • Wait for approval: Your application will be reviewed and approved or denied. If approved, you will receive your license in the mail.
  • Renew your license: Most business licenses in Alberta need to be renewed annually. You will receive a renewal notice in the mail before your license expires.

If you have any questions or need assistance with your business license application, you can contact your local municipality or the Alberta Biz Connect website for help.

Understanding the Fees Associated with Business Licensing in Alberta

The cost of a business license depends on the type of license you need.

The cost of each type is set out below:

  • A “General” Business Licence is $50 per year and valid for up to five years. It allows you to operate your business anywhere in Alberta without having any other requirements or restrictions on your activities.
  • An “Excise” (or Permit) Business Licence costs $100 per year and expires after three years unless renewed before this date (which can be done at any time). This type of license allows you to operate only within specific areas, such as an industrial area or industrial park; it also requires that certain conditions be met before issuing an excise permit for certain types of events/activities/places where alcohol may be served or sold (such as restaurants).

Tips for Successfully Obtaining a Business License in Alberta

Know what your business license needs to include and what kind of business license you need.

Be aware that there are fees associated with your new license, and these may vary depending on where in the province (or country) you are located.

Make sure that any tax-related documents such as invoices and receipts have been sent out before applying for a new business entity with the government agency responsible for issuing licenses like this one–in Alberta’s case, it’s called Service Alberta (SA). If not, contact SA as soon as possible so they can verify them before processing your application!

What happens if I don’t have a business license?

 how to get a business license in alberta

If you don’t have a business license, you could be fined up to $50,000. You may also be subject to criminal charges and could lose your business or home.

If you are convicted of breaking the law while working without a proper license, there are potential penalties that include fines ranging from $10-$100 per day until the business can resume at its previous level (or higher), imprisonment for up to six months, or both. If this happens more than once in five years then it could result in permanent prohibition from working as an employer or employee in Alberta’s trade industry sector

Renewal and Maintenance of Business Licenses in Alberta

If you are a new business, you will need to apply for a license. If you are an existing business, there is no need for renewal of your business license. However, if there have been significant changes in the operations of the company or if it has obtained a different name or address from its previous one (for example, if it has moved location), then it may be necessary to apply for new or amended licenses.

To renew your business license:

  • Submit an application form along with supporting documents (if required).
  • Pay the annual renewal fee ($100).

To maintain a current status on record: Submit an annual maintenance fee ($5).


Businesses in Alberta are required to obtain a business license in order to operate legally. This article will help you understand what types of licenses are available, how much they cost, and how to apply for one.

FAQs on how to apply for a business license

1. Do you need a business license to operate in Alberta?

All business entities operating in Alberta must register their company with the city and obtain location clearance before opening. Depending on your activity, you may need a business license to support both individual and public safety.

2. What happens if you operate a business without a license in Alberta?

The operation of a registered business without a current business permit is unauthorized and could result in fines, penalties, and even the termination of the business.

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