Start a Business in Culver City


Welcome to Culver City! 

We are pleased you have chosen to open your business in Culver City! Please call the Culver City Business Resource Center to speak with an economic development representative at (310) 253-5765. Our trained and responsive staff looks forward to answering your specific questions, helping you locate the best site for your business, and navigating you through the City process!  

First Step:  Business Tax Certificate (aka Business License)

A business tax certificate is required prior to the start of business operations. All individuals, corporations, firms, syndicates, joint stock corporations, partnerships, trusts, associations, organizations, clubs, and societies which offer goods, materials, commodities, wares, merchandise or services for sale to the public in Culver City and all professions, crafts, trades, occupations and callings of every kind and nature which are carried on for profit in Culver City are required to obtain a business tax certificate (also known as a business license) within 30 days of starting business.

Business Certificate Tax forms may be submitted online through the City's Business Support Center or at the Finance Department located on the first floor of City Hall.  Applications are then reviewed by the Planning, Building & Safety, and Finance Departments prior to approval. Moving in to a commercial or industrial property? Make sure to consider zoning regulations. Contact the Planning Division at (310) 253-5765 to obtain zoning clearance for your business location. 


Need a Development Permit?

Certain types of businesses/uses must obtain a special permit. Please call (310) 253-5870 to confirm whether your business will require one.

Need a Building Permit?

Special construction permits are required prior to construction or alteration of a structure in the City. If you have questions whether this will be required BEFORE you start the application process, please call the Business Resource Center at (310) 253-5765 or the Building and Safety Department at (310) 253-5800 for assistance.

Need a Sign Permit?

Culver City requires that businesses obtain a sign permit prior to installation. Contact the Planning Division at (310) 253-5725 prior to construction or use of signs in the City. 

Important Considerations/Resources

Recycling Services 
Culver City is committed to helping your business meet its trash and recycling needs. Environmental Programs and Operations Division (EPO) offers refuse and recycling services and will custom design a program to meet your business needs! Call (310) 253-6400 to find out how you can save money and help the environment.

Alcoholic Beverages
The sale of alcoholic beverages is under the regulation of the state Alcoholic Beverage Control Board, not the City of Culver City. You will need to obtain a separate license.

Fictitious Business Name
The Los Angeles County Clerk's Office accepts applications for recording fictitious business names. Contact County Clerk's Office for further information. (Commonly called DBA, "doing business as".)

The sale of food is regulated by the Los Angeles County Health Department.