Department of Consumer and Regulatory Affairs

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Business & Professional Licensing Administration Divisions

The Business and Professional Licensing Administration (BPLA) consist of eight (8) divisions.  Each division has specific services that are meant to support agencies and entrepreneurs start, grow, and maintain local businesses.  We welcome you to view any of the eight (8) divisions below to view and obtain the information you need regarding Business & Licensing in the District of Columbia.


Business Licensing
In order to operate legally in the District of Columbia, all businesses must be licensed.  Get more information on Business Licensing here.


Corporations Division
The Corporations Division registers all entities, domestic (DC) or foreign (non-District) that conduct business in the District of Columbia. Get more information.



Consumer Protection
The Office of Consumer Protection (OCP) pursues businesses who take advantage of residents or profit or financial gain.


DC Business Center
Visit the DC Business Center and get all the information needed before making the trip.



Professional Licensing
To ensure the health, safety, and welfare of its residents is protected, people who work in certain occupations and professions to obtain a license to practice


Regulatory Investigations
DCRA investigates all unlicensed business activity to ensure residents and visitors of the District of Columbia are protected.  Get information on Regulatory Investigations.


Small Business Resource Center
The District of Columbia Small Business Resource Center (SBRC) is your gateway to information and services that can help you start and strengthen your business in the District.

Special Events

Special Events
Are you planning a Special Event and need Information? Get Special Event information and regulations regarding the the events you plan and venues you are interested in.


Get Vending Regulations regulations regarding the sell of goods and services exclusively from public space and for the immediate delivery upon purchase (i.e., food trucks, hot dog carts, sidewalk merchandise vendors, ice cream, etc.).


Weights & Measures
District businesses must register all Universal Product Code (UPC) scanners, pharmaceutical balances, scales used in dialysis clinics, and commercially used weighing and measuring devices including gas pumps, produce scales and many other devices.