Per Chapter 5 of the Union City Municipal Code (UCMC), a Business License is required for all businesses, trades, professions, callings and occupations operating in Union City or having business transactions with customers, clients, tenants, etc. in Union City. You are required to submit a separate Union City Business License Application for each reason listed below:
- New Business
- 2nd Business Location
- 2nd Business Purpose/Same Location as an Existing Business
- Location Change for Existing Business
- Name Change for Existing Business
- Ownership Change for Existing Business
- General Update/Adding New Location to Existing Business
Steps to Apply for a Business License (forms are downloadable in links below):
- Complete all sections of the Business License Application. Incomplete applications will be returned.
- Also, complete any Supplemental Forms that apply to your business operations or location:
- My business is located at a Commercial or Industrial site
- My business operates from or stores business related vehicles, equipment, or supplies at a Residential Home, townhouse, apartment, etc.
- I am a General or Sub-Contractor
- A majority of my business is Professional Services
- I Rent Residential Property to others
- I Lease Commercial Property to others
- My business offers Massage Services which require the following forms:
- Massage Services Application
- Massage Services Ordinance
- I am a Mobile Food Vendor
- My business offers Public Transportation Services (e.g., Taxicab, Airport Shuttle, etc.)
- My business performs Canvassing or Soliciting activities
- My business will be protected by an Alarm System
- My business will be protected by a Security Dog; thereby requiring a Dog License
- My business intends to Remodel or Make Physical Changes to the business premises (including signage) which will require the following forms:
- Building Permit
- Submittal Requirements for Commercial Tenant Improvements
- Temporary Commercial Sign
- My business will utilize High-Piled Combustible Storage and will conform to the requirements of Ch. 32 of the CA Fire Code which will require the following forms:
- High-Piled Permit Application
- ALCO Permit Application
- Additional High-Piled and Fire Code information is as follows
- How to Apply for High-Piled Permit
- Fire Code Chapter 32 High Piled Combustion Storage
- Business License Taxes and Fees vary based on the type of business that you operate and are shown in the Business License Tax Schedule (01-01-2017).
Review process typically takes 3 weeks, but can vary based upon nature or complexity of your business. The City will notify you when its review process is completed and if approved or conditionally approved, you will be issued a Business License. If denied, you will be presented with the reasons for denial and you will have the opportunity to remedy those reasons if they can reasonably be corrected given your business operations, City zoning restrictions, Union City Municipal Code provisions, and other local, county, state, and federal regulations.
Steps to Close a Business License (forms are downloadable in links below):
Use the Declaration of Closed Business form to deactivate an account that is no longer conducting business in Union City. If more than one entity within a combined group is deactivating the entities’ business accounts, complete this form for each entity that is no longer conducting business in Union City.
Return Declaration of Closed Business form and documentation required to the address, e-mail, or fax number shown below along with any unpaid business licenses taxes and fees that may be owed to date before closing of business.
Your business license account will be closed after the Declaration of Closed Business form, necessary documentation, and unpaid business licenses taxes and fees (if applicable) have been submitted and it has been determined by City staff that there is no evidence of business continuation in Union City.
If you should resume business activities in Union City, please re-apply using the steps shown above.
If you have questions, please visit us in person at the following address or contact us by phone, fax, or e-mail:
Administrative Services Department | Revenue Division
34009 Alvarado-Niles Road, Union City, CA 94587
Phone: 510-675-5312 | Fax: 510-489-5074
The City’s Hours of Operation are Mon – Thurs 8:00am to 6:00pm; Fri 8:00am to 5:00pm; City Hall is CLOSED ALTERNATE FRIDAYS. This is our Calendar of Days Open.
Quarterly New Business Listing
For a list of new businesses in Union City over the past quarter, please see our New Business Listing OCTOBER 1 - DECEMBER 31 2016. This list will be updated quarterly. If you should need prior listings, please contact Business Licensing at Biz-License@UnionCity.Org.
Green Business Program
Union City encourages all businesses to consider becoming a Certified Green Business, which is a voluntary, no-cost program that offers technical assistance, free advertising and incentives to businesses that wish to go beyond basic requirements of environmental performance. Being certified helps you conserve energy and water, minimize waste, prevent pollution and shrink your carbon footprint and may provide rebates for plumbing and lighting improvements. More than 20 different industries are eligible, including restaurants, grocery and retail stores, drycleaners, warehouses, manufacturers, distributors, and home-based businesses.
Being green gives you a competitive edge, and communicates to your customers that you care deeply about the environment. Customers love it! The first step is to complete a simple online application on the Bay Area Green Business Website.