Thu 10 Mar 2016 | By:

Michigan Business Licenses and Regulations

Business Licenses

As a newbie entrepreneur, it is easy to get caught up in the excitement of incorporating a small business in Michigan. Despite of all the excitement though, you shouldn’t ignore your Michigan business licenses and permits. No matter how tedious and confusing this task may be, it is vital to the smooth operations of your startup so allocate time.

Licenses are procured at the federal, state, and county levels, and the requirements basically depend on the nature of your business, its size, business structure (LLC, Corporation, DBA, etc), among other important factors.

If you skip complying with the requisite business licenses in Michigan, serious consequences are strictly imposed. You could be denied the license once you decide to finally apply for one or you might be subject to a long period of wait when you decide to comply, or you could face temporary business closure.

To help you avoid any of these things from happening, this guide provides you with a few Michigan business license resources you can visit to ensure you comply with all your requirements.


1) Michigan Business One Stop

The Michigan Business One Stop resource is aptly named for it is the one-stop shop for everything you need to comply with Michigan business licenses and permits and tax obligations. A link of where you can find information and guidance when processing for Michigan business license requirements can be found on the website.

Also, you can find links to Michigan’s online registration systems including the Michigan Treasury Online (MTO) where you can manage business registration details; the eRegistration where you can register a new business and file various reports relating to business operations; and the MiWAM where you can file unemployment insurance tax and wage reports.

2) Michigan LARA Online Services

Michigan’s Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs Online Services information portal provides an easier and more convenient way to complete license and permit requirements. The portal is a hub of information when it comes to the required licenses you need to complete, including links to various resources such as the Corporations, Securities, and Commercial Licensing Bureau to the Bureau of Construction Codes among other important resources.

3) Michigan State License Search

The Michigan State License Search is a very simple tool that lets you find the different kinds of business licenses and permits for your Michigan small business. This tool simply helps you figure out whether your business is required to procure a state license or not. Aside from the standard search, you can also use the Alphabetical Search feature to check if you need a license for your business.

4) Michigan District Office SBA

The Michigan District Office of the SBA is also a good resource to find the necessary federal and state licenses and permits you need when starting a small business in Michigan. A separate link for the federal and the state requirements are provided.

Links as to the governing agencies for the specific licenses for both federal and state levels are also provided in this resource page. What’s more, the Michigan SBA also has numerous startup resources aside from licenses and permits you can utilize.

5) Michigan SBDC Small Business Guide

Another great resource to have a better understanding of the responsibilities that come with Michigan business licenses is the Michigan Small Business Guide created by the SBDC.

An entire section in this pdf guide is dedicated to licensing regulations to help startup entrepreneurs better understand the regulations to observe when starting a small business. As a whole, this guide is focused on providing entrepreneurs with accurate information on how to start and operate a small business in Michigan.

When you’ve complied with all of your Michigan business licenses and permits, remember that there are licenses that you have to renew when your business is in operations. There are licenses that require an annual, semi-annual, or bi-annual renewal; so make sure to closely monitor these obligations as well.

About Ryan James

Half hardworking hermit, half avid adventurer, Ryan founded Startup Savant to simplify entrepreneurship and pay it forward by donating a portion of all revenue to support children's education via