Everything you need to know about

Tax IDs
and Licenses


Download a PDF of this guide now!

Step ONE

Registering Your Business in the State of Virginia

Skip the paperwork and do it online by creating a login here: Virginia Business One Stop Registration.

Before you register, you’ll need to consider:

Business Structure

SOLE PROPRIETORSHIPS: These are usually owned by a single person or a couple. You’re personally liable for all business debts, can freely transfer all or part of the business, and for taxes, you can report profit or loss as personal income.

LIMITED LIABILITY COMPANIES: (LLC’s) are very popular for business owners. With an LLC you have limited legal liability like a full corporation however, for taxes they are more like sole proprietorships or partnerships.

GENERAL PARTNERSHIPS: Profits, losses and duties are all shared among the partners, and each is personally liable for any debt entirely. Short-term partnerships are called ‘joint ventures’.

C-CORPORATIONS: These corporations are taxed separately from their owners. While they protect against personable liabilities, they do not have many of the tax and operating advantages that LLC’s and partnerships offer. IN some cases, lower tax rates may be applicable to those C-Corps with an annual income below $75,000.

S-CORPORATIONS: These are not taxed as a separate legal entity and protect their owners against personal liability, but there are limitations on the number and type of eligible stockholders. They also have less favorable tax and operating advantages than LLC’s.

BENEFIT CORPORATIONS: A new form of Stock Corporation that incorporate aspects of nonprofit organizations.

Business Name

You need to make sure you’re not using a name that is too similar to another brand in your industry. Make sure you are scanning national databases- especially if you plan on doing business out-of-state. Once you are sure that your brand name is unique and won’t cause any market confusion, register your company name and trademark with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

The application should take less than 90 minutes, and costs between $275 and $325. If you are using a trade name and are not registered as a corporation, you’ll need to register your name with the Campbell County Circuit Court Clerks Office located in Rustburg. The registration is $10.00.

Step Two

Getting a Tax ID

Once your business is registered, you’re ready to get a tax number. The same way a person has a Social Security Number, a business has a federal and state tax number.

Local Taxes

You can obtain a tax ID online at the Virginia Business One Stop Registration website.

Local Altavista taxes can be found here.

Step Three


To start a local business. You will need the following:

Zoning Permit: Please visit this website, stop by Altavista Town Hall, or call 434-368-5001 to speak with the Assistant Town Manger.

Certificate of Occupancy: Unless you are operating your business from home, you will need this certificate from the Campbell County Community Development Office. Please visit this website, call 434-332-9597, or stop by the Citizen Services Building in Rustburg located at 85 Carden Lane, Rustburg VA.

Business License: Please visit this website for an online application, or visit 510 7th Street, Altavista to fill out the application in person. Business Licenses expire at the end of each year. For existing business, renewal applications are mailed out in January and must be returned with the license fee no later than May 1.

Contact us at 434-369-5001 to see whether or not licensing and zoning requirements apply to your business in Altavista.


 Marketing & Financing

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Now that you have submitted all of the necessary registration tax and licensing information, you are ready to start your business!

PICKING A LOCATION: Do you plan on working out of a home office, storefront downtown, or do you need a space for manufacturing? We keep an inventory of properties and can help you pick the right location based on local zoning requirements, your budget, staff size, accessibility, and customer traffic. In the meantime, you can browse some of the available properties in the next section.

WRITING A BUSINESS PLAN: A business plan is essential; it is the foundation for your business and will help you determine your business goals. To get started, you can visit online resources at the Small Business Association website: www.sba.gov/business-guide/plan-your-business/write-your-business-plan.

Make sure to contact The Lynchburg Region Small Business Development Center. They offer business consulting, facilities, support networks, and financial assistance, and are a great resource for entrepreneurs whether you are just now writing your business plan or you have been in business for 20 years!

MARKETING YOUR BUSINESS: Do you have a website or social media pages yet? In today’s economy, it is essential to market your business online to promote deals and events. Online marketing is a great way to gain new customers and promote your unique business. Along with online marketing, consider advertising with local newspapers such as the Altavista Journal, News & Advance, or the local radio station, WKDE Country Radio.

Grants and Financing Incentives

The Town of Altavista offers an array of financing opportunities for small business owners.

THE ZERO INTEREST FAÇADE LOAN PROGRAM: Does your business façade or inside commercial space need some renovations? Apply for our 0% interest façade loan program!

VIRGINIA MAIN STREET DESIGN SERVICES: Is your business located in a downtown historic building? You can request free design assistance from Frazier Associates for the exterior of your building. The designs will help give you recommendations on how to keep your historic building in pristine shape, and then you can use the Façade Loan Program to implement the designs. Contact us if you are interested in filling out an application for design services.

THE ALTAVISTA ADVANTAGE REVOLVING LOAN: Are you starting or expanding your business? Your business could be eligible for the Altavista Advantage loan program with an interest rate at prime minus 1%, for a period of 60 months. Please contact us for more information.


 Commercial Real Estate


7,000 sq/ft restaurant with Bar and Patio

Location: 525 Main Street
Commercial kitchen, dining room, bar/lounge, outdoor patio
Parking Lot + Street Parking
Alleyway for deliveries
Historic Tax Credits available
Located in historic Main Street district
More Details

.75 Acre Commercial Lot in Downtown Ready for New Build

Buildable lot in downtown area
.75 acre lot
Parking Lot
Water, sewer, and electricity available
More Details

For Rent: Offices or Retail Space with Parking on Main Street

Location: 521 Main Street
2,000-3,000 Sq. Ft
Perfect for office space or small retail space
Street parking + alley entrance available
Located in Main Street district
Contact: 434-369-6777

Huge Mixed Use Commercial + Residential Building

Location: 616 Broad Street
Parking Lot + Street Parking
Historic building located in Main Street district
Historic Tax Credits available
Recently renovated floor structure
Potential for upper story apartments
Great location for retail, office, and apartment space

4,000 sq/ft Multi-Office Space with New Upgrades

Location: 105 Wood Lane
4,000 Sq. Ft.
Potential for multiple offices
Storage available
Parking lot
Recent updates: new roof, heating, windows, bathrooms.
More Details

Open Concept Commercial Space with Fenced Outdoor Area

Location: 504 Pittsylvania Avenue
1,860 Sq. Ft.
Parking lot
Open floor plan
Fenced in storage yard
Two restrooms
More Details

For Rent: Historic Office Space with Original Hardwoods in Downtown

Location: 503 7th Street
Parking Lot + Street Parking
Historic building located in Main Street district
Perfect for retail, office space
Original hardwood floors

For Rent: 600 Broad Street

Parking Lot + Street Parking
Historic building in Main Street district
Perfect for multiple offices or retail
Contact: 434-369-6883

Important Contacts

We’re all here to help you every step of the way!

Altavista On Track

Visit the Website

Altavista Chamber of Commerce

Visit the Website

Small Business Development Center - Lynchburg Region

Visit the Website

Planning and Zoning Office

Visit the Website

Business License, Taxes, Water & Sewer

Visit the Website


Visit the Website

Altavista Police Department (non-emergency)

Visit the Website

Campbell County Office of Community Development

Visit the Website