Merchant and Manufacturing License Information

Who is a Merchant?
Missouri law, 150.010 RSMo 1994, states that every person, corporation, co-partnership or association of persons who deals in selling goods, wares and merchandise at any store, stand or place occupied for that purpose is a "merchant".

Do I need a Douglas County Merchant's License for my business? Yes, if you answer yes to all the items below:

  • The business is located in Douglas County either within or outside the city limits of any incorporated area.
  • There is a sales tax number issued to the business by the Missouri Department of Revenue.
  • Product or merchandise is sold at retail.
  • You collect and remit sales tax to the Missouri Department of Revenue.

How do I obtain a Merchant's License?
Call the Douglas County Collector's office at 417-683-4314. We will be happy to answer your questions and send you an application. Or, if you prefer, come by our office at 203 SE 2nd Ave, Ava, Missouri.

If you need more information regarding state sales taxes, please contact the Missouri Department of Revenue in Jefferson City (573)751-5860 or visit their Web site at

A Merchant's License is issued for the calendar year of January 1 through December 31. The annual license fee is $25.00. A business with more than one permanent location is required to obtain a separate license for each place of business. A county issued Merchant's License is in addition to any city or other local business license you may have.

I do not have a permanent site for my business but travel from place to place selling goods. Do I need a Merchant's License?
Yes! If you reside in Douglas County but engage in or conduct a temporary or transient business of selling goods you must have a Merchant's License, so long as you meet the other requirements of the checklist.

You do not need a Merchant's License if:

  • You are a registered motor vehicle dealer and your primary business is selling motor vehicles, or
  • You are a physician, dentist, or veterinarian selling medicines, at either wholesale or retail, used in your practice, or
  • You are a farmer who grows or processes any article of farm produce or farm products on your farm, as long as you do not have a regular stand or place of business away from your farm.