My sister and I started making cakes, cookies, etc. about a year ago. Since then the "business" has picked up considerably. Our husbands have begun to express concern that we should really be doing this legally. Registering the business and also finding a licensed kitchen. I'm in Jersey so what I'm doing is a no no...can't use your home kitchen. I would like to find out more information about registering my business and if I absolutely need to be licensed or if that is just a formality. I mean not all contractors are licensed but they are still in business. Can anyone share there experiences or even some good resources where I can look to for information.
Yes, you need to be licensed and registered. It's not just a formality, it's a necessity.
Try calling around to some local caterers and see if they would be willing to rent their kitchen to you. As far as getting registered and licensed, just search online, you will find plenty of info on getting registered and licensed in your state. Try starting here: http://www.business.gov/states/new-jersey/
I mean not all contractors are licensed but they are still in business.
Please don't run a business under the idea of "well everyone else gets by with it!" your husbands are right in encouraging you to do it right. There's a Sticky in the forums with info on each state that might be helpful, too.
The most important thing is to have liability insurance, and you can usually only get that if you are operating legally (with a business license and an inspected commercial kitchen). Without liability insurance, all your personal assets (including your home) are up for grabs in the case of a lawsuit. Look at the recent thread "Plastic in sugar" for an example of what could go wrong.
Thanks...I'm going to start calling around. I'll start with the local churches they may be the cheapest way to go. Then I'll call some catering vendors..