FEIN, Form R-1, BPOL and Other Grand Adventures

I scooped up a PO Box on Monday (running a bit behind) and today the first of the forms went out in the mail. Due to the oddities of Newport News, the second set of forms won’t go out until the first, but starting a home crafting business is much easier than I remember it being!

In the end all I had to fill out was Virginia Form R-1 and the Newport News Business Classification Information (BCI) form plus the Newport News Business, Professional, and Occupational License (BPOL) check. But that doesn’t mean it was easy to figure out… Instead I ended up running around on the various Virginia and Federal websites to make sure I’d covered all my bases.

Federal Requirements

Since I am a Sole Proprietor, I don’t have to do much (read as: anything) when it comes to federal registration. I don’t employ anyone so I don’t need a FEIN (Federal Employer Identification Number), my projected income is not high enough to worry about estimated taxes (I already overpay enough on my regular paycheck to cover them), and I couldn’t find anything on the website that indicated I needed to do anything else.

Once I can afford legal help, I’ll have someone else look into it– I’ll check the numbers again once the first estimated tax payment is due, but I think I’m in the clear.

Reference Links:

Virginia State Requirements

After digging about a bit, the only form I could find that I needed to turn in was the Virginia Form R-1. This registered me as a business and requested a sales tax ID number.

I thought I had gotten a business license last time around, but after a careful reading of The Virginia Department of Business Assistance’s page on License & Permit Index I was unable to find a category that I would fall under. So, erm, huzzah for writers and crafters?

I don’t have a fictitious name, so I can skip those forms as well. Maybe later I’ll sneak back in and pick one up, but I don’t think there’s much point using anything other than my name as an artist/writer.

Reference Links:

Newport News City Requirements

I actually had to call in to get clarification on the forms, since the website and the forms themselves aren’t very helpful. Turns out you have to wait until after the business starts to turn anything in and there is no form for the BPOL payment… you just mail them a check. I live in a very laid-back city.

UPDATE: I got a letter back requesting a copy of a current photo ID (military or driver’s license) in order to finish the registration. Not a big deal, but I wish that had been easier to figure out from the website! :p

Reference Links:

  • Newport News Business Classification Information (BCI)
  • Starting a Business in the City of Newport News
  • Business License Tax
  • Business License Tax Rate Schedule (BPOL tax information, no form you just mail them a check.)

Martha Bechtel

My name is Martha Bechtel and I write fantasy and science fiction stories, paint small model horses silly colors, cast resin and plaster magnets, code random code (and Wordpress plugins)... Come on in and join in the fun!

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