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Business Tax: Annual Renewal

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Pursuant to the City's municipal code, each year business located in the City or performing work in the City, are required to complete their business tax form and pay their business tax for the prior year.

Please note, all Business Tax Certificates expire on February 1st of each year, however, the City allows a 3 month period for businesses to file their tax forms, thus a new Business Tax Certificate is not required until May 1st of each year.  The Business Tax is based upon business conducted within the City of West Hollywood during a calendar year (January 1 through December 31).

Once your business tax has been paid for the prior calendar year you will receive a new business tax certificate. For example, to obtain a new business tax certificate by May 1, 2020, businesses must pay City business tax on their 2019 calendar year receipts.

To file a new Business Tax Certificate Application you must go Apply for a New Business Tax Certificate.


Payment of Business Taxes and Tax Certificate Renewal

The Business Tax may be paid as early as February 1 of the year the taxes are due.  You may report and pay your business different ways:

Online Submittal:  Online Business Tax Renewal - pay by credit card

Paper Submittal:  Complete the paper renewal form that was mailed to you.
                                 Instruction forms for each Business Rate Type (Group)  can be found below

  • Send the completed form and the payment (check) to the City in the envelope provided.  The US Postal Service postmark on the envelope will be considered the date of the receipt.
  • Bring the completed form to the cashier window at City Hall during business hours (see below) and pay with cash, personal check, money order, cashier's check as well as Visa, MasterCard and American Express credit cards


Instruction Pamphlets for Paper Renewal Forms

If you wish to complete your business tax reporting by using the paper renewal form mailed to you, please use the applicable instruction pamphlet below.  Your business Rate Type can be found on your renewal form (near the top of the renewal form, just below “Start Date”).

Group 1 Rate Type Instruction Pamphlet [PDF]
Group 2 Rate Type Instruction Pamphlet [PDF]
Group 3 Rate Type Instruction Pamphlet [PDF]
Group 4 Rate Type Instruction Pamphlet [PDF]
Group 5 Rate Type Instruction Pamphlet [PDF]
Group 6 Rate Type Instruction Pamphlet [PDF]
Group 7 Rate Type Instruction Pamphlet [PDF]


Late Payments and Penalties for Non-Compliance

Failure to submit your renewal form and pay your business taxes by May 1st, will result in penalties being added to your tax due, it may also result in other compliance actions being taken against your business.

Late Payment Penalties 

Payment is due no later than May 1 of the year the taxes are due. Payments received after this date are delinquent and are subject to penalties as follows:

From To Penalty Interest
May 2, 2020 May 31, 2020 15% of tax None
June 1, 2020 June 30, 2020 30% of tax None
July 1, 2020 July 31, 2020 45% of tax None
August 1, 2020 After 50% of tax 1/2% per month

If payment is made after August 1, interest is assessed (IN ADDITION TO PENALTIES) as follows: one-half of one percent (1/2%) per month or portion of a month, until the tax is paid.

Administrative Citation: 

Failure to have a current business tax certificate after the May 1st filing deadline may result in an administrative citation of up to $250 being issued to your business..

City Discretionary Permits: 

Failure to have a current business tax certificate after the May 1st filing deadline may result in the denial or withholding of discretionary City permits, including, but not limited to, special event permits, encroachment permits, parking permits, and/or business regulatory licenses.

Collection Agency: 

Failure to have a current business tax certificate after the May 1st filing deadline may result in your business being referred to the City’s collection agency for further collection measures.


Refund Policy

Refunds may be issued for business tax renewal payments if there was an error in the calculation of the payment.   Businesses that believe their online business tax renewal payment was not correct, you must submit a refund request to the City of West Hollywood, Revenue Management Division at    Revenue staff will review the request and determine if a refund is due.  If a refund is due a check will be issued to the business.


Display of Certificates

After the payment of your Business Tax you will receive a Business Tax Certificate (or Exemption Letter for exempt businesses). Businesses with fixed locations shall display the Business Tax Certificate in a place which is visible to the public. Certificates issued for businesses which are not conducted at a fixed location shall be carried by the responsible party while conducting business in the City of West Hollywood. 

If business is conducted within the City through several individuals, duplicate Certificates issued by the City shall be carried by each individual conducting business. Tax Certificates are issued for a maximum one year period. Each Business Tax Certificate expires on January 31 of the year following issuance. Tax Certificates are to be displayed until receipt of the following year's certificate.


Change of Address

Submit any change of address, in writing, to the Finance Department of the City of West Hollywood. Include a copy of your existing tax certificate with your new information. Mail changes to Revenue Management Division, 8300 Santa Monica Blvd., West Hollywood, CA 90069 or submit via fax to 323-848-6563.

Please be aware, all notices required to be given to businesses regarding the Business Tax are considered to be received if mailed to the most recent address on record.

Business Tax Certificates are not transferable. If a business is sold or transferred, the new owner is required to apply for a new Business Tax Certificate. Whenever an existing business is sold or quits operation, a Business Tax Return shall be filed and all taxes shall be paid.


Revenue Division Hours of Operation:

 Monday through Thursday
8:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m

8:00 a.m. - 5:00 pm


Mailing Address:

City of West Hollywood
Attn: Cashier
8300 Santa Monica Blvd
West Hollywood, CA 90069-6216

mailing address envelope

Acceptable Methods of Payment:

Cash, personal checks, money orders,
cashier’s check, Visa, MasterCard and 
 American Express credit cards accepted