San Joaquin County recognizes the importance of businesses to the community. Government regulations exist to protect the public. Businesses located in or conducting business in the unincorporated areas of San Joaquin County are required to be licensed.

Business licenses are issued by the Treasurer-Tax Collector and must be renewed annually. For licenses to conduct business in incorporated cities within San Joaquin County, please contact the city. Links to the cities' business license web pages are provided at the bottom of this page.

Conducting business in the unincorporated areas of the San Joaquin County without a license can result in notices of violations, penalties, jail time, and court actions. To verify the license for a business, please contact the Treasurer-Tax Collector’s Office. To report a business operating without a license, please contact Code Enforcement in the Community Development Department.

Business License

The San Joaquin County Ordinance §7-1000 states “No person shall maintain, conduct or carry on a business, whether or not for profit, located in whole or in part at a fixed place of business within this County and outside the limits of any incorporated city, without first obtaining a license to operate […] Furthermore, no person shall establish a new or additional business use of any building, or participate in a change of business ownership without first obtaining a new license to operate.”

To apply for a new business license, applicants should consult with the Community Development Department first. An application must be completed and the applicable fees must be paid. The Community Development Department is located at 1810 East Hazelton Ave., Stockton, CA 95205 and can be reached at (209) 468-3124 or For more information, visit their website at Community Development Business License.

After approval by the Community Development Department, the Treasurer-Tax Collector will issue and mail a business license. Business licenses must be renewed annually. The Treasurer-Tax Collector will send out renewal notices before business licenses expire. Late renewals will result in a $10 late fee. Failure to renew a business license within 90 days of expiration will require a new business license as if none were ever issued.

Section 16102 of the California Business and Professions Code allows every soldier, sailor, or marine of the United States, who has received an honorable discharge or a release from active duty under honorable conditions from such service, to hawk, peddle, and vend any goods, wares or merchandise owned by him, (except spirituous, malt, vinous, or other intoxicating liquor), without payment of any license fee. A Veteran’s Waiver of License Fee application must be completed and approved.


A peddler is any person who offers or sells goods in their possession and makes immediate delivery in unincorporated areas of San Joaquin County. A peddler license is for such activity that occurs other than a fixed place of business which holds a business license.


A solicitor is any person who goes from house to house, place to place, in or along the street for buying, selling or taking orders for goods, or who makes telephone calls for such purposes to persons within the unincorporated areas of San Joaquin County. A solicitor license is required for such activity.


Service is any work or labor or any installation, maintenance or repair of real or personal property, whether or not performed in conjunction with the sale of goods. A service license is required by a person to perform such activity in unincorporated areas of San Joaquin County when it is performed on a regular, rather than occasional, basis and constitutes a principal source of income for the service provider. Those holding a business license from San Joaquin County or any city within the County or employed by a business with a business license from San Joaquin County or any city within the County are exempt.

For Business Licenses in Cities Please Visit the Appropriate Link Below

Business License Amendment Requests

If you need to amend information on a business license please fill out and submit the form below. Please note: Business Licenses are non-transferable. Changes to the physical location of a business requires a new business license. Changes to the type of business, service or product may require a new business license.