Commercial Employer-Individual Owners, Co-Ownerships, General Partnerships

A commercial employer is a business connected with commerce or trade, operating primarily for profit and employs workers subject to California employment taxes. A commercial employer is responsible for reporting wages paid to their employees and paying Unemployment Insurance (UI) and Employment Training Tax (ETT) on those wages, as well as withholding and remitting State Disability Insurance (SDI) and Personal Income Tax (PIT) due on wages paid.

Wages paid to certain family employees are excluded from UI, ETT, and SDI but are subject to PIT:

  • Individual Owner employing spouse, parent(s) or minor child(ren)
  • Co-Ownership employing minor child(ren)
  • Partnership (consisting of siblings only) employing parent(s)

Registration Process

During the registration process, you will be asked a series of questions. Gather the following information that applies to your business and have it available as you complete your application:

  • Name and Social Security number of all responsible parties (Individual Owners, Co-Owners, and General Partners).
  • Business location address and mailing address.
  • Business phone number and email address.
  • First payroll date wages paid exceeded $100.
  • Nine-digit federal employer identification number (FEIN) - a FEIN can be obtained by going to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) website and completing the Employer Identification Number application process.
  • Industry Description - What is the industry, product, or service that represents the greatest portion of your sales or revenue?
  • Previous EDD employer payroll tax account information, if applicable.
  • Legal Name of Organization – enter exactly as it appears on your official documents (i.e., income tax returns, licenses, partnership agreements, contracts).
    • For General Partnerships, use the exact Legal Business Name as spelled and registered with Secretary of State (SOS), if registered with SOS.  
  • Doing Business As (DBA) or Partnership Name.
  • Contact person’s name, phone number, email address, address (if different from business or mailing address).

Register for an Employer Payroll Tax Account Number

Enroll e-Services for Business to register for your employer payroll tax account number. It's fast, easy, secure, and available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Step 1. Create a username and password.

  • Go to e-Services for Business.
  • Select Enroll.
  • Enter the required information and select Next.
  • Choose your security questions and answer each question, then select Continue.
  • Review the Enrollment Summary and print a copy for your records, then select Submit.
  • Select the verification link in the email we sent you to complete the enrollment process.

Important: If you do not verify your email address within 24 hours, you will need to restart the enrollment process.

Step 2. Log in to e-Services for Business.

  • Select New Employer, then select Next.
  • Select Register for Employer Payroll Tax Account Number.
  • Complete the online registration application.
  • Select Submit.

Additional Resources

Information Sheets

Additional Information Sheets are available online at Payroll Taxes – Forms and Publications.

Other Resources