How to Renew Your Business License
In order to maintain a successful food business, you’ll need to register your business and keep your licenses up to date. But how do you go about renewing a business license in DC? In this guide we’ll review how to renew your Basic Business License to legally run and operate your business in DC. Follow the steps below to successfully renew your business license!
What you’ll need:
Firstly, you must have a valid social security number or Federal Employee Identification Number in order to be eligible to obtain a Basic Business License. Once you obtain your license, you have two years until it expires. You can renew your license starting 75 days prior to your license’s expiration date. About 30 days before your license’s expiration date, you will receive physical instructions and an email detailing the steps you will need to take to officially renew your license. Upon renewal you will pay the original $70 application fee and $25 for each endorsement. Endorsements are proof of legitimacy for your business that are required to obtain your Basic Business License. After obtaining your Basic Business License, an annual $200 fee is required and can be paid through cash, check, credit card, or money order. An assessment of your business will be completed twice every year to make sure you are keeping up with government codes and standards.
Look out for:
As your business license’s expiration date approaches, you will receive an email detailing the steps you need to take to renew it. The email will ask you to:
- Complete the required forms detailed on the Renewal Instructions
- Attach any required supporting documentation (if applicable)
- Review the Renewal Bill to determine the associated fees
- Make check or money order payable to "DC Treasurer"
- Include late fees (if applicable)
Just in case:
If you didn’t receive an email informing you of your approaching expiration date, contact the Business Licensing Division at (202) 442-4311 prior to the expiration date to avoid additional fees. A $250 late fee is applicable the day following the expiration date. The maximum late fee of $500 is applicable 31 days after the expiration date.
My DC Business Center:
If you obtained your business license through “My DC Business Center,” you can log in and renew it from there:
- Log in
- Select “My BBLs”
- Scroll down until your BBL record; DO NOT select the blue "Renew an Existing License"
- Select the blue “RENEW” hyperlink.
Things to remember:
- Applications (and renewals) cost $70 and $25 for each endorsement, as well as a $200 annual fee.
- You must have a valid Social Security Number (SSN) or Federal Employee Identification Number (FEIN) in order to obtain your business license
- Your license must be renewed every 2-4 years (unless otherwise specified)
- For online renewals:
- Sign into “My DC Business Center”
- Select “My BBLs”
- Scroll to your BBL record
- Select “RENEW”
- You will receive a letter or email with instructions 30 days prior to your license’s expiration date.
- If you have not received your renewal notice, contact the Business Licensing Division at (202) 442-4311 prior to the expiration date to avoid late fees/penalties.
As your license’s expiration date approaches, keep a lookout for a letter or email containing step-by-step instructions on how to renew your license. Renewals cost $70 with an additional $25 for each endorsement you have, with a $200 annual fee. If you haven’t received instructions, you can contact the Business Licensing Division at (202) 442-4311 before your expiration date to renew in a timely manner and avoid late fees/penalties.