Opening a restaurant in India can be an overwhelming process. Obtaining a license can be easier with proper knowledge of rules and requirements. There is a list of licenses required before opening a restaurant for its smooth and legitimate functioning. You can find a detailed list below.

FSSAI License

One of the most important licenses required to open a restaurant is the FSSAI license, also known as the Food License. It comes from the FSSAI (Food Safety and Standard Authority of India).

This is the first and most important license that determines whether you can run a restaurant or not.

This restaurant license is more than just a license; it also serves as an approval by the authority and assures customers that the food at that particular restaurant meets India’s food safety standards.

FSSAI license can be obtained directly through the FSSAI portal, and inspections normally take place between one week and a month, depending on the paperwork.

Documents required:

  • Identity and Address Proof issued by a Government Authority
  • Valid email id
  • Valid Phone number
  • Declaration of Food Safety Management Plan
  • Proof of possession of the location/premise
  • No objection certificate from the local Municipal Corporations or local bodies
  • Kitchen Layout Plan
  • Water Testing Report provided by ISI-certified organization
  • List of Food Category
  • Medical certificates of employees
  • Types of equipment to be used

Note- In the case of a Partnership Firm/LLP/Company – complete details of partners, directors, shareholders etc.

How to apply:

  • Once you have these documents, you can apply for the license. The application process is simple and easy.
  • Login to the FSSAI website and complete the sign-up process by creating a username for the registration.
  • Then log in to your account and complete the online application with all of the necessary documents.
  • To ensure that your application is considered, submit a printout of the completed online application form along with all supporting documents to the Regional/State Authority within 15 days of making the online submission.

Health/Trade License

According to the Municipal Corporation Act, the public’s health should be the priority. This license is required by local authorities such as the Health Department or the Municipal Corporation.

This license ensures that your restaurant is in compliance with the Health Department’s Regulations after you submit the form and documents.

Documents required:

  • Sanction and Completion (Includes Ownership proof, Rent Agreement, or NOC from landlord)
  • Three copies of the site plan and layout
  • Indemnity bond for Rs.100
  • Structural Stability Certificate signed by Structural Engineer
  • Power and Water Bill (paid)
  • Sewer Connection Proof
  • Water Testing Reports
  • Plan of the Premises
  • Medical Certificates of Employees
  • Proof of Property Tax
  • Lal Dora Certificate (if applicable)
  • Medical Fitness Certificate of Workers
  • Rent Agreement or NOC from the landlord

Note- documents may change accordingly as per different Municipal Corporations

How to apply:

  • You can either apply online or at Citizen’s Service Bureaus.
  • The forms are available at the State’s Municipal Corporation website or Zonal Citizen’s Service Bureaus.

Note:  Municipal Corporations hold the power to shut down restaurants that do not have this license.

Eating House License

An eating house license is a license that is mandatory food license for a restaurant to open a public eatery where food and beverages are supplied for consumption.

The Eating House License is issued by the Licensing Police Commissioner of the city you wish to open your restaurant in.

Documents required:

  • 7/12 Extract of Land Records
  • NA Certificate
  • Cleanliness certificate
  • NOC from Police Station
  • NOC from National Highways (if applicable)
  • Map of the proposed premises
  • NOC from Municipal Corporation
  • Certificate for Pollution Check
  • NOC from Electricity Department
  • Water Usability Test Certificate
  • NOC from Food and Drug Department
  • Certificate from District Health Officer
  • Commercial License with parking facility
  • Building Construction Completion Certificate
  • Registry of Land on the name of the applicant
  • NOC from Fire Department (Fire Brigade Office)
  • Xerox of the register maintained by the Municipal Corporation

How to apply:

  • The eating house license can be obtained from the city or state licensing policing commissioner’s websites.
  • Users must register with their user id and upload the required documents for verification.
  • The self-attestation of all the materials you place is a must since it will ensure validation

Shop and Establishment License

To run a restaurant in India, you must register your establishment under the Shops and Establishment Act. From a food truck to a fine dining establishment. You must register your restaurant within 30 days of starting your business.

This is a city-specific license.

Documents required:

  • Pan Card
  • Identity Proof
  • Address proof of the proprietor, partner or the company
  • Details of the employee

How to apply:

  • Get the application form from the website of your state’s government.
  • Submit the documents with the application form to the Local Chief Inspector, mentioning the name of the shop, the postal address of the establishment, and proof of ownership such as the Rent Agreement or Shop Lease Papers.
  • After the government official has verified all of the documents, he or she will enter the restaurant into the Register of Establishments and issue a registration certificate.
  • This certificate must be prominently displayed in your restaurant and must be renewed prior to its expiration date.

Liquor License

If your restaurant serves alcohol, you must obtain a Liquor License. This can be obtained from the Local Excise Commissioner, and the forms can be found on the websites of the respective state governments. Having this license is especially important because selling liquor without the above-mentioned permit can result in a large fine as well as the forced closure of the premises.

Documents required:

  • Documentary proof regarding the legal status of the restaurant or the hotel that is, whether it is a company, partnership firm, or any other type of setup.
  • Proof the restaurant or the hotel is in legal possession of the plot.
  • A certificate that validates the completion of the restaurant or the hotel building.
  • Trade License from the Local authority, that is, Municipal Corporations or such other authorities Certificate of registration of eating house license issued by the authorities.
  • Documentary proof regarding the applicant being an Income Tax Assessment and Sales Tax-Assess.
  • A complete layout plan of the establishment, site plan of the license outlets, and liquor stores.
  • NOC from the state Fire Service.

How to apply:

  • Fill out the form available at the state government website.
  • Serve the above-mentioned documents to the Excise Officer who inspects the restaurant premises.
  • Then submit a report to the authority in charge of issuing liquor licenses for verification.
  • Following approval, the applicant must submit the required fees and the license is issued.

Good and Services Tax (GST) Registration

The Indian government has made it mandatory for businesses to register for GST. In general, any business, including restaurants, with a turnover of more than 20 lakhs must have a GST number registered. Registering in GST is one of the most important things that your restaurant must do to ensure that it runs smoothly.

Documents required:

  • Applicant details
  • Mobile number
  • Email Id
  • Pan card number
  • Proof of place of business
  • Copy of valid rental agreement/lease agreement
  • Valid bank account from India
  • Provisional ID and password received from the state’s VAT department

How to apply:

You can apply on the official website.


  • The GST is set at 5% for all restaurants and hotels, AC or non-AC; serving or not serving liquor.
  • A 5% GST rate is applicable to all regular catering at restaurant premises.
  • GST is set at 18% for all outdoor catering provided by the restaurant.
  • Restaurants and hotels that fall under the 5% GST slab and/or are registered under Composition Scheme are not eligible for Input Tax Credit (ITC).
  • Restaurants and hotels that fall under the 18% GST slab are eligible for ITC benefits.
  • If alcohol is served in a restaurant, GST will not be levied on it. However, the consumer can be taxed for alcohol through VAT and other state taxes. The same does not apply to any bill, including food.

Fire Safety License

The restaurant’s ulterior motive must be to protect its customers from all dangers, whether they are food products or hazards like a fire. To operate a restaurant, a No Objection Certificate (NOC) from the fire department is also required.

How to apply:

  • The restaurant must apply for NOC from the State Fire Department in order to do so.
  • Applications are available on the state government’s website.

After installing all of the safety equipment, you must invite the Chief Fire Officer for an inspection and obtain the NOC

Certificate Of Environmental Clearance

Any restaurant is legally and morally obligated to ensure that its operations do not have a negative impact on the environment. As a result, you must also apply for the Certificate of Environmental Clearance.

This permit is issued by the EMA for specific projects or activities. After submitting the questionnaire for environmental assessment, you can obtain it from the Ministry of Environment and Forests.

You can apply for the certificate of environmental clearance from the Ministry of Environment and Forests website.

Acquiring the certificate also includes screening, scoping, and evaluating the project to determine its environmental impact. To obtain CEC, you must submit the following documents with your application: the Environmental Impact Assessment Report (EIA) or the Environment Management Plan (EMP), details of a public hearing, and NOC granted by state regulators.

Music License

To play music in your restaurant, you must obtain a restaurant music license in accordance with the 1957 Copyright Act. Phonographic Performance Limited is the company behind it (PPL). If a restaurant plays music and does not have the necessary license, it will face legal penalties.

How to apply:

Online registration at the PPL website.

Lift Clearance

If you want to install a lift in your multi-story restaurant, you must first obtain permission from an inspector from the electricity department as well as the Labour Commissioner for that city. The Electrical Inspector issues this license from the Labour Commissioner’s office after verifying the installation of life, layout, and safety equipment, among other things. Lift clearance can be obtained using state-specific applications.

How to apply: You can simply write-apply to the respective Chief Electrical Inspector

Signage License

You need to effectively market your product to ensure that your company makes the most profit. However, if you want to advertise your restaurant through word of mouth, logos, posters, pictures, and symbols, you must obtain a legal permit known as a signage license. This license can be obtained from local civil authorities such as municipal corporations.

How to apply: You can simply write-apply to respective Municipal Corporations.


Remember that the specific laws and regulations for each license are frequently unique to different cities and states. Make sure you understand all of the different licenses you’ll need at the state and city levels. Getting them is a critical step in opening your new restaurant and avoiding costly penalties.

Do not be overwhelmed by the number of restaurant licenses required for smoother operations. Obtaining the licenses should not be difficult if you have the necessary documents.