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Business license and insurance questions, blargh!

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Business license and insurance questions, blargh!

Post by girlbyjuly on Tue Jun 07, 2011 1:44 pm

Ok, so first off, I am located in Orange County, CA. Me and my face painting partner work as independent contractors but use one business name, and we don't yet have a business license. On our tax forms we just put our individual name, use our own social security numbers, etc. It seems kinda shady, I know, and we knew we'd need to get one eventually but when we started working last November we desperately needed money and that extra expense was too much.

Now we have a gig coming up at a public park in Irvine where the park event coordinator is insisting we need a business license. I called the city and yes we do need one to work in a public place even though we're independent contractors. So we are looking into getting a license for this and any other upcoming gigs (we have one for the county next month) that ask for it. Our main question is, if we buy a business license in the city we live in even though we don't have a physical place of business, does it also apply when we work in other cities? And we're also going to finally buy insurance. I know we missed the best chance in April but unfortunately this is just how it worked out.

My question is, is there an insurance option to buy it for both of us at once or do we absolutely have to buy it individually. I know Specialty covers performers or vendors (I read the big long thread on Specialty and the performers/vendors question), and we would definitely get performers. I just thought, if we're paying for a business license that we'll have to renew every year (I assume, I haven't done ALL the research yet), is there any way to get insurance that covers both of us as a business?

Also, we also work with balloon twisters but they're separate, also independent contractors. We just have a sort of partnership with them and we don't include them in Glimmer technically. I assume they need their own insurance, yes? If we as painters had insurance but the twisters we work with didn't, would we get in trouble in the instance of someone suing us because of a balloon twisting issue or would it all be on them?

Sorry for all the questions! I'm going to continue scouring the forum for some answers, and also look at the Orange County website to see about business licenses. I may just call up Specialty and see what kind of answers they can give me. I just don't want us to spend a lot of money without doing all the research first!


Last edited by girlbyjuly on Tue Jun 07, 2011 2:28 pm; edited 1 time in total
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girlbyjuly

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Re: Business license and insurance questions, blargh!

Post by Tra on Tue Jun 07, 2011 1:48 pm

i would think if you got 1 business license in one name and got insurance under that name it would cover everyone working in your booth.
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Tra

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Re: Business license and insurance questions, blargh!

Post by girlbyjuly on Tue Jun 07, 2011 1:50 pm

Thanks for the quick reply! I read in another long thread about insurance on this site that performers' insurance covers you in booth situations (ie public) as well as private parties, and vendors' doesn't really apply when you also work at private parties, which we do.
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girlbyjuly

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Re: Business license and insurance questions, blargh!

Post by Tra on Tue Jun 07, 2011 1:53 pm

i think the preformers is less expensive as well
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Re: Business license and insurance questions, blargh!

Post by leapinglizards on Tue Jun 07, 2011 6:32 pm

Well, don't guess- ask your insurance agent when you get the insurance, they will let you know. They may have various tiers.

More than likely, the insurance will NOT cover other independant contractors working under you. They are not employees. But in the event of a claim, that all becomes semantics too.

Most counties have "Mobil" licenses, meaning you are BASED from your house, but do not conduct business there.

If you get a business license, you may wish to look into a federal tax ID # (So you are not giving out your personal SSN.) and a fictitious name.

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Re: Business license and insurance questions, blargh!

Post by Guest on Tue Jun 07, 2011 10:53 pm

Yes, ask the insurance company AND the city/county directly. We all work in different juridictions so what WE say may not be applicable to your specific situation.

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Re: Business license and insurance questions, blargh!

Post by ChangingFaceDesigns on Tue Jun 07, 2011 11:24 pm

See in my municipality. You don't need to have a business license if you are a business run from home and you don't actually have a storefront. So I don't need one. I do need to file with the county a "doing business as" but that's moreso to have another bank account with my business name so regardless of whether someone makes out a check to my name or the business name it can be cashed with no issue.

As far as the IRS makig over a certain amount in a year would mean you would have to file the taxes for the business seperately. Under that amount you can just file it as part of your regular return
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