Register a business

A business registration is always necessary if you start a standing business. This is the case with

  • the establishment of a new establishment,
  • establishment of a new branch,
  • establishment of a new dependent branch,
  • Takeover of an existing business, e.B. by purchase or lease,
  • conversion of a sole proprietorship into another legal form,
  • Transfer of an establishment from the area of one authority to the area of another authority (is considered a task for one authority and a new establishment for the other authority).

The business registration must be made at the same time as the start of the operation.

  • The obligation to notify only exists if it is a commercial activity. Excluded from the notification obligation are the activities mentioned in § 6 paragraph 1 sentence 1 GewO.
    Exceptions include:
  • Primary production (livestock, arable farming, hunting, forestry and fishing)
  • Liberal professions (including lawyers, notaries, tax consultants, auditors, doctors, scientific, artistic and literary activities)
  • Raising children for a fee
  • Education

The purpose of registering a trade is to enable the competent authority to monitor the exercise of the trade and to carry out statistical surveys.

  • Completed business registration form
  • Proof of identity (e.B.: identity card or passport )
  • in the case of electronic business registration, other options for identification are also possible (e.g. electronic identity card, De-Mail, PIN/TAN procedure).
  • Notarized articles of association or extract from the commercial register, consent of the shareholders (in the case of legal entities or partnerships)
  • Declaration of approval by shareholders
  • Supplement Authorized Representatives

Related Links

  • Business registration

Preconditions

You want to run a business. Traders are natural or legal persons (joint-stock company, limited liability company, registered cooperative or registered association, partnership limited by shares). The following are notifiable:

  • Individual trades of individual traders,
  • Partnerships (e.B. OHG, GbR) the shareholders authorized to manage the company,
  • KG each personally liable partner, the limited partners of a KG only if they have management authority
  • Corporations (e.B. GmbH, AG) the legal representative

Related Links

  • § 14 Industrial Code (GewO)
  • § 15 Industrial Code (GewO)
  • § 11 Industrial Code (GewO)
  • Business Registration Ordinance (GewAnzV)

You must register the start of a standing business with the responsible office. The same applies to the operation of a branch or a dependent branch.

Some commercial activities require a permit. Others are subject to the need for monitoring. Additional requirements apply to them.

Find out at an early stage which personal, financial and professional requirements you must meet in order to be able to work in these commercial areas.

You can register the business in person, in writing or electronically. To do this, use the form "Business Registration" (GewA 1) .

If you register the business as a trader not yourself, but as a managing partner or as a legal representative, you need a written power of attorney.

In the case of a written or electronic business registration, you will receive the confirmation of your business registration (the so-called "business license") within 3 days, provided that you have completed the registration form completely and correctly. If you speak in person, you will receive the confirmation directly upon registration.

The competent authority forwards the business registration to other bodies such as the tax office, the Chamber of Crafts or the Chamber of Industry and Commerce, the register court and the employers' liability insurance association.

If a permit is also required for your business (e.B. security trade, operation of a restaurant) and this is not available, the competent authority can prohibit the continuation of the business.

The procedure can be handled by a single point of contact.

Responsible for the content
Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy (BMWi)

Last update or date of publication
02.11.2015