Starting A New Business
If you are going into business for the first time, there are several agencies that you will need to contact for various permits prior to opening your business. Please visit the Open My Florida Business website for helpful tips and checklists for starting a business in Florida. All required state licenses for operation of your business will need to be obtained prior to the issuance of a Business License with City of Panama City.
Planning & Land Use & Code Enforcement
The City of Panama City's Planning and Land Use Division and Code Enforcement Department review all applications for Occupational and Merchants Licenses to determine if the proposed business location and business activity complies with the city's land use regulations. If your proposed location does not comply with the city's land use regulations, the Planning and Land Use Division will advise you of any zoning and / or land use change that would be required before you could be issued a business license at the proposed location.
The Planning and Land Use Division is open Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., and is located at:
501 Harrison Avenue
Panama City, FL 32401
For additional information please call the Planning and Land Use Division at (850) 872-3025.
The City of Panama City Municipal Code, Section 20, outlines the procedure to register as a door-to-door solicitor within the City of Panama City. For information regarding registering as a door-to-door solicitor, please contact the License Division.
A permit must be obtained before holding a yard and / or garage sale. Permits can be issued for a maximum of 7 days, with only 3 permitted per location in a year. Permit applications may be downloaded through this link..
Home Occupation License
The City of Panama City allows home occupations in mixed-use and commercial areas. A home occupation is an occupation or business activity that is service-oriented. Please review and sign the guidelines for for Home Occupation Home Office of Convenience Statement from Zoning (PDF) and complete the Business License Application (PDF). Once completed and signed, submit your application to the License Division for processing.
A license is required before a business can begin operation. The fee is based on the type of business and must be renewed every year.
Merchant Licenses are required for those individuals who have a business location in the City of Panama City and engage in retail and / or wholesale sales from that location.
Your application for a merchant license will be routed through several departments for approval. Once approved, the merchant license will be issued.
A merchant license is renewed annually and maintained as active upon receipt of the required monthly
An application for a Business License and Sign and Development Questionnaire should be completed and returned no later than seven (7) days prior to the opening of the business.Download our Business License Application (PDF) and Sign and Development Questionnaire.
Occupational licenses are required for those individuals who offer a service and charge a fee for the service. License fees range from $25 to $2,500 depending on the type of occupation.
Your application for an occupational license will be routed through several departments for approval. Once approved and payment is received, the occupational license will be issued. Occupational licenses expire at midnight on September 30th of each year. On August 1st of each year, a statement is mailed to each license holder. The license must be renewed by September 30th.
A license that is not renewed by October 15th will be considered delinquent and subject to a delinquency penalty of 10% for the month of October plus an additional 5% penalty for each month of delinquency thereafter until paid. The delinquency payment shall not exceed 25% of the occupational license fee.
You can also download our Business License Application (PDF) and Sign and Development Questionnaire. An application for a business license should be completed and returned no later than seven (7) days prior to the opening of the business.