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Business Taxes and Licensing

In its simplest form, a business is a commercial activity operated as a means of livelihood or profit, or an entity which engages in such actions.

Business Personal Property Tax Listing Deadlines

Each business is responsible for annually completing and submitting a business personal property listing form to the Tax Office. The listing period is January 1st through January 31st. Late listing penalties are charged for any listing that is not submitted by the January 31st deadline each year.

Additional business personal property listing information is available here.

Business Personal Property Tax Appeals

Appeals may be requested within 30 days of the billing date. You should verify the information on your bill as soon as you recieve it.

Business Openings

The Department of Economic Development in Orange County provides a variety of services for opening a new business.

Business Closings and Sales

  • Under NCGS 105-366, When purchasing a business asset, it is the responsibility of that purchaser to ensure that all back taxes on the property have been paid or that money has been held in escrow until such time that it has been paid in full.
  • If a business is closing after January 1st, the total amount of the taxes remain the responsibility of the business owner. There is no proration of the taxes allowed by statute.

Business Licenses

Orange County Tax Office issues two types of business privilege licenses:

  • Beer & Wine
    • All licenses expire April 30.
    • You must purchase a County business license when opening your business and renew it annually by April 30.
    • A copy of your North Carolina State ABC License is required to issue your County license for the first time.
    • If your business is located in the city limits of Hillsborough, Chapel Hill or Carrboro, you may also be required to purchase a city license in addition to the county license. Contact information for the cities below:
      • Town of Carrboro    919-942-8541
      • Town of Chapel Hill  919-968-2759
      • Town of Hillsborough 919-732-2104
  • Massage Practitioner or Massage Practitioner Business
    • All licenses expire April 30.
    • Contact the Orange County Sheriff's Office to request an application.
    • Once application has been approved through the County's screening process, you may purchase a license from the Tax Office.