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Before You Apply For A License Checklist

To secure a Business License, please perform the following:

STEP #1 – You Must Obtain A Building Permit or Occupancy Permit

You must visit the Buildings, Safety Engineering and Environmental Department, located at the Coleman A. Young Municipal Center, Two Woodward Avenue, Zoning Counter, Room 409, Detroit, Michigan 48226 to obtain the required permit necessary to open your business. This is a very important step that must be done.

STEP #2 - Choose A Name For Your Business or If You Incorporate Your Business, You Must Register

Choose A Name For Your Business:

If you conduct business in Detroit under an assumed name (a name other than your real name), you must file an application for an Assumed Name Certificate with Wayne County. Assumed Name application forms are available at the Wayne County Clerk's Office, Coleman A. Young Municipal Center, Two Woodward Avenue - Room 201, Detroit, MI 48226. Click here to obtain information on assumed names online.

If You Incorporate Your Business, You Must Register:
If you incorporate or establish a limited partnership, you must register with the State of Michigan. Please get legal advice about operating as a sole proprietor, a partnership, a limited partnership or a corporation. Click here to obtain the Incorporation forms that are available on the Web site for the Department of Labor and Economic Growth.

STEP #3 - You Must Obtain A Sales Tax Number or Apply For Your Federal Tax ID Number

You Must Obtain A Sales Tax Number:
If you have any type of business in Detroit, you must have a sales tax number. Click here to obtain the sales tax number form is available on the Michigan Department of Treasury, Collections Division website.

Apply For Your Federal Tax ID Number:
Corporations and partnerships require a Federal tax ID number. Obtain the federal tax ID forms at the McNamara Building, 477 Michigan Avenue (at Cass), Detroit, MI 48226. Click here to obtain the forms online.

STEP #4 - Apply For Your City of Detroit Business License

You must have a Detroit business license to operate certain types of businesses in the city. Click here for a list of businesses that need licenses.

Apply for the license at the Business License Center, Room 105, Coleman A. Young Municipal Center, Two Woodward Avenue, Detroit, MI 48226. The phone number is (313) 224-3178. You must pay all license fees when you apply.

Important Note: Permits and Inspections will be required prior to opening your business. A Detroit business license is NOT transferable to a person or entity other than the one to whom the license was first issued.