How to Get a Small Business License in Michigan

Learn the steps required to obtain a business license in Michigan.

Looking to start a small occupation in Michigan ? You may need to obtain one or more express licenses or permits, or dispatch one or more kinds of state of matter registration, as part of the start-up process. here ‘s a quick spirit at some of the main informational resources available and a few of the steps you may need to take .

Michigan Small Business Information Programs

You can find answers to many Michigan small business questions by checking the web site for the Michigan Economic Development Corporation ( MEDC ). The Start Up section in particular contains links to key information on many topics including license and permits .
Another source of useful information is Michigan ‘s Small Business Development Center ( SBDC ). The SBDC can help you with many aspects of your business, such as occupation plans, raising capital, and fiscal management.

last, you may besides find utilitarian information, and options for on-line registrations, at Michigan ‘s Business One Stop web site. This a express politics web site presently focused on business tax and finance issues .

Get One or More Business Licenses

not every Michigan commercial enterprise needs a license. however, many types of businesses either can or must get a license. In many instances, the necessary license is issued by a state means. The State of Michigan ‘s basal web site,, has a part devoted to state licenses and permits. You can either do a search for a especial type of license or click on a link to view an alphabetic list .
The list of licenses is extensive : It contains hundreds of items, from acupuncture to x-ray engineer. In most cases, by clicking on a link for a particular license, you ‘ll be taken to a web page with information on which country means is responsible for the license, vitamin a well as extra information on laws or regulations relating to the license .

File Records For Your Form of Business

many legal forms of business, such as corporations and restrict indebtedness companies ( LLCs ), must file records with the submit. More specifically, corporations, LLCs, and certain early types of businesses must register with the Corporations Division of the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs ( LARA ) .

Obtain Professional Licensing

If you ‘re a extremity of any of dozens of professions and occupations, you ‘ll need to be licensed by the State of Michigan. Among the many professions requiring country license are doctors, lawyers, dentists, accountants, architects, engineers, nurses, and veterinarians. You can get data about many professional and occupational licenses from the Bureau of Professional Licensing ( BPL ), which is a division of LARA .
Example: Liz wants to open a accredited cosmetology clientele. She ‘ll need to apply for a Cosmetology Establishment License with the BPL. She can find information about getting the license, american samoa well as the application form, by going to the occupational license section of the BPL web site and clicking on the Cosmetology connect.

Licensing for many professions and occupations in Michigan is handled through LARA. You often can find the data you need through the BPL web site .

Register an Assumed or Fictitious Business Name

many belittled businesses do n’t simply operate under the names of their owners. alternatively, they operate under a business name. In accession, some businesses, such as corporations and LLCs, may in the first place register with the country under one list ( sometimes called the file list, actual name, or true appoint ), but later choose to operate under another name. Depending on where you ‘re doing business and how your business is structured, this alternate business name technically may be known as an assume name, a assumed mention, a trade name, or a DBA ( for “ doing business as ” ). Most forms of little business in Michigan, such as corporations and LLCs, must file a form with the state if they intend to operate under an bear or fabricated appoint .
Example: Gordon primitively organized his car rectify business as a Michigan corporation named Gordon ‘s Ann Arbor Garage, Inc. He now wants to operate the business under the name Washtenaw Foreign Auto Repair, Inc. Gordon must file a Certificate of Assumed Name with LARA .

Register a Trademark or Trade Name

There are offprint legal definitions for trademarks, service marks, and trade names. however, speaking identical generally, trademarks, servicing marks, and trade names are used to uniquely identify goods ( products ), services, or a occupation. This includes distinguishing a product, service, or business from potential competitors. Trademarks and service marks can be registered with the department of state. ( This is distinct from federal registration. ) You can find more data, including forms, in the Trademarks, Service Marks and Insignia part of the LARA web site .
Example : guam wants to sell his nut-filled fudge under the name “ Gus ‘s Grand Mackinaw Chunky Chews. ” So—after checking to make sure the name is n’t already in use—he files an application for Registration for Trademark/Service Mark, including the file fee, with LARA.

Additional Information

This article covers merely the identical point of the crisphead lettuce regarding little commercial enterprise licenses and registrations in Michigan. You can find a lot more information in the many early articles in the Small Business section here on Many of those articles are part of 50-state series—so you can get plenty of information that ‘s specific to the State of Michigan. You can besides find expand information in many Nolo books, such as Legal Guide for Starting & Running a Small Business, by Fred S. Steingold, and The Small Business Start-Up Kit, by Peri Pakroo .

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