Is it illegal to start a business first and get the business license after you make some money to pay for it ?
Sorry, but the right to do business must preceed the doing of business. Normally the license if very inexpensive.
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International Law Attorney
In certain states it may be. Depending on the type of business the expenses are low. Banks or angels are available for loans or line of credits. Having a business plan is a sound move. I would recommend to hire an attorney. Good luck
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The other posts are correct. You need to check on what permits or licenses are required for your area and obtain them before you can lawfully operate your business. You may be surprised at the license fees. Unless you are in a business targeted for policy reasons for higher fees, the fee should not be difficult to pay.
The key here is to make sure you need the license. Here in Fort Wayne, the city does not require a business license and in some places only certain types of businesses are required to be licensed. On the other hand, you may need a health permit if you are serving food or a liquor license if you are serving alcohol. If you contact the approprate office where these licenses are processed, the staff there will be able to tell you quickly whether or not you need a license and how much it will be.