Establishment & Mobile Licence

Many businesses in Hamilton must be licensed to operate legally for public health and safety, consumer protection and/or nuisance prevention. A business licence protects the health and safety of the public who use their service or products and also helps ensure consistency for business owners and customers. Hamilton’s Licensing By-law No. 07-170 (PDF, 2 MB) provides the rules and regulations for each type of business.  

There are two categories of business licenses:­­­

  1. Establishment licence
  2. Mobile licence

For a complete list of businesses that require a license, refer to the Business Licence Reference Guide (PDF, 779 KB).

A business licence application must be submitted by:

  • an individual owner
  • a partner in a partnership
  • the president or a signing officer of the corporation
  • or written authorization by the president and/or signing officer of the corporation

Complete the Business Licence Application Form (PDF, 51 KB) and submit it in person to one of the following locations:

If your business licence requires a photo ID, submit your application to:
Municipal Law Enforcement - Licensing and Permits Office
Hamilton City Centre
77 James Street North, Suite 250, Hamilton, Ontario

If your business licence does not require a photo ID, submit your application to:
One Stop for Business, Licensing Counter
City Hall
71 Main Street West, 1st Floor, Hamilton, Ontario

Refer to the Business Licence Reference Guide (PDF, 779 KB) to determine:

  • if your business licence requires a photo ID
  • the costs and fees required for your licence
  • a complete list of required documents you need to submit with your licence application

Business licence expiry: Most business licenses are valid for one year from the date issued.You must renew the licence every year. As a courtesy, the City may send out renewal notices by mail. However, it is the licence holder’s responsibility to ensure the licence is current.

Documentation required varies depending on the type of business licence you are applying for. In addition to the business registration or corporate profile some licences require a:

  • Zoning Verification certificate
  • Premises plan or floor plan
  • Police criminal check
  • Ministry of Transportation driver abstract

For a complete list of documents required to be submitted, refer to the Business Licence Reference Guide (PDF, 779 KB)

Contact us

Municipal Law Enforcement - Licensing and Permits Office
Phone: 905-546-2782 and select option 3
Email: licensing@hamilton.ca