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Penalty in CA for baking from home

post #1 of 53
Thread Starter 
I have searched for hours to no avail. I am not in a position to cough up the large expenses and the dedication of time and energy to a new storefront or renting a kitchen, however, I do pride myself on my work and love creating beautiful baked goods. I recently baked a very large order for a friend and was so happy withe the final result however I did feel taken advantage of as I spent all week slaving over the desert table i created for her. I decided if i want to do this again for someone in the future I must charge because my time is very valuable and I do deserve it. I have known about people who bake from their homes in CA numerous times. Although I do not plan to start a large business, if i do bake for another acquaintance at a cost, can anyone tell me what the penalty would be for doing it out of my unlicensed kitchen? I just need to know what the fine or penalty is for this in CA. If anyone can tell me I would greatly appreciate it!
post #2 of 53
Your best bet is to contact your local health department! I emailed mine and they got right back to me.
post #3 of 53
There is a cottage food law in the works in California, AB1616. It might be worth your while to check into it and see it's status, and wait until/if it's passed before you start baking from your home.
post #4 of 53
The penalties in CA are stiff whether you produce from home or just do not have the proper licensing. Read this post about a big named business. It goes to show that the state is not playing around They keep up with things such as social media groups and advertising to find the people who think they don't have to play by the rules.

The Cottage Food Law, is in the State Senate already so that is encouraging for all those who are waiting to open a home kitchen.

Here is the link.
http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-741163.html
Virginia 323.253.8213
www.urbanainez.com
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Virginia 323.253.8213
www.urbanainez.com
He is the man of my dreams, my prince; He gives me the desires of my heart, He completes me. His name is Jesus
Reply
post #5 of 53
If you are in no position to pay to legitimately run a business, I don't think you are in a position to pay the fines/penalties whatever amount they end up being.

I can't believe you posted on a forum to find out the fines of running an illegal business to weigh your options of how much risk you run in doing so. If you can't legally sell cakes then you shouldn't. You are risking your future reputation if you ever do become legal, and you are risking a lawsuit in addition to fines and penalties.

I know you posted asking what the fines are- but I think that should be completely irrelevant. Running an illegal cake business is completely unethical and unsafe for both you and your "customers"; even if you are only selling to acquaintances.

Sorry if that is not what you wanted to hear.
post #6 of 53
I know in my city in Canada the fine can be up to $10,000, I do not think that running a illegal business is worth the risk of civil lawsuits and fines. I bake for my family but do not sell to anyone and I know lots of people do it, doesn't mean that it is right to do. It is only time before people get caught.
post #7 of 53
The CA Cottage Food Law is being voted on on Tuesday the 27th. I'd say hold your horses and see what happens there. I'm keeping all my fingers and toes crossed that it passes!
post #8 of 53
go to this forum on cake central there is a link that will take you to a pettition to sign for the California Cottage Food Law. I've already signed and sent it to many of my friends via facebook to have them sign also.
post #9 of 53
disregard that last link, I don't know how it went from the correct forum link that I am posting now to the google one above.

http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-739800.html
post #10 of 53
You could lose everything you own if she sues you because you make her and her guests ill... you have no insurance. Hypothetically speaking.
post #11 of 53
This is rediculous. Do you want us to help you cheat on your taxes too?

There are a multitude of CC members from CA who have sacrificed to be licensed. This post is unfair to every one of them.

Those laws are there for public safety, tax collection and business license fees. If you don't have the money to start, choose a career that doesn't require a specialty license. There are plenty.

How are you going to collect sales tax without a tax license, which needs a business license and an HD permit? As someone posted, how are you going to get insurance with no license? You can, but if there is a claim, it will be denied.

In areas where the investment to become licensed is high, you are more likely to be turned in. You only have to irritate one legal baker to have yourself turned in. And you have just managed to irritate hundreds in a few minutes, so I would guess that your chances are higher than normal.
post #12 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by scp1127

This is rediculous. Do you want us to help you cheat on your taxes too?


I highly recommend getting spell check, or learning to spell "ridiculous" before you repeatedly accuse other members of being so.
post #13 of 53
As an aside, there is no state sales tax on cake in California. The state board of equalization has told me repeatedly that cake is food and it is therefore not taxed in California. Therefore they do not want to give me a number or license or registration--which has it's own complications... ( However, if you deliver cake and stay to serve it THEN you have to collect tax on the service.)

My other comment would be that legal advice you get in a forum on the internet is worth almost as much as what you pay for it.
post #14 of 53
Quote:
Originally Posted by itsacake

As an aside, there is no state sales tax on cake in California. The state board of equalization has told me repeatedly that cake is food and it is therefore not taxed in California


Cake (and other food) is taxable in California in certain situations, for example if it is served for consumption on the seller's premises (i.e. you have a seating area and you sell cake by the slice on a plate with silverware).

http://www.boe.ca.gov/pdf/pub61.pdf
http://www.boe.ca.gov/lawguides/business/current/btlg/vol1/sutl/6359.html
post #15 of 53
Perhaps you should just get a job working for someone who IS legal? You may be very surprised at how difficult it really is to own and run a business, even a small one. If you work for someone else you can learn a lot from them, satisfy your love of creating beautiful baked goods and use that time to decide if owning a business is really what you want to do.
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