Regulatory Licensing Information
All persons engaged in any business activity that is regulated by the City of Seattle must obtain and maintain a City regulatory license. Businesses may obtain a regulatory license by submitting an application, accompanied by the required fee, to the Revenue and Consumer Affairs Division. In addition to the regulatory licenses, it may be necessary to obtain a Business License. The following list describes various regulatory licenses.
Adult Entertainment Premise, Entertainer And Manager Licenses
The definition of adult entertainment means any exhibition, performance or dance of any type involving a person who is unclothed or partially unclothed.
Adult Entertainment Premise Licenses are required for all persons operating or maintaining an adult entertainment premise in the City of Seattle. It is unlawful for any person to work as an entertainer or manager at any adult entertainment premises without having first obtained the necessary license.
Alarm-System Monitoring License
The City requires each alarm-monitoring company in Seattle to obtain an
annual license. Alarm monitoring companies also are responsible for each
false-alarm occurrence in the city. These annual license fees and false-alarm
fees are the responsibility of, and billed to, the alarm-monitoring companies
rather than individual alarm-system subscribers. Click
here for additional information.
All-Ages Dance License
An all-ages dance license is required for all persons operating an all-ages dance. Exceptions are when the dance venue admits fewer than 250 patrons, or if the dance is sponsored by an accredited educational institution.
Amusement Devise License
Amusement Devices means any machine or device which provides recreation or entertainment for which a charge is made for use of play, and includes, but is not limited to, pool and billiard tables, shuffleboards, music machines, video games, pinball games, and riding devices.
Burglar Alarm Dealer License
A Burglar Alarm Dealer License must be obtained by any individual engaged in the business of selling, leasing, renting, servicing, inspecting, installing, maintaining, or repairing alarms or alarm systems for the purposes of preventing or detecting burglaries or robberies.
In addition, each individual engaged in the installation, servicing, or selling of an alarm or alarm system at a location other than the location on the license application must apply for an identification card with the Seattle Police Department.
Horse-Drawn Carriage, Horse and For-Hire Driver Licenses
In the City of Seattle, a license is required for the for-hire horse-drawn carriage, the horse used in drawing the for-hire horse drawn carriage, and the driver for-hire of the horse-drawn carriage.
Mobile Home Park License
Persons who operate a Mobile Home Park must have a Mobile Home Park License.
Panoram Location/Panoram Device Licenses
All person who display, exhibit, expose or maintain upon any premises, any devices commonly known as panoram or peepshow, which exhibits photographed, videotaped, or magnetically produced images or exposes live entertainment to the viewer while the viewer is in a booth or stall, must obtain a Panoram Location License and a Panoram Device License for each device.
Public Bathhouse License
It is unlawful to conduct, manage, operate or work in a public bathhouse or reducing salon unless the establishment is licensed.
Public Garage/Parking Lot License
Persons operating any room, building, shed, enclosure, outdoor space, uncovered plot, lot parcel, yard or other place open to the public where motor vehicles are parked, stored or kept, and a charge is made for parking, storing, or keeping the vehicles must obtain a Public Garage License.
Collectors and Processors of Recyclable Materials License
Businesses engaged in collecting or processing recyclable materials are required to provide the City with timely and accurate data on the quantities of recycled materials they collect and/or process so that the City may achieve the most cost-effective system for collection, processing, disposal or recycling of all solid wastes, including construction, demolition and land-clearing wastes generated in the City.
Rental Housing Agency License
Any individual, partnership, firm, corporation, company, society, association, or other group or organization who engages in the business of rental agency, solicits business for rental agencies or advertises the services of a rental agency in Seattle must obtain a license from Revenue and Consumer Affairs.
Residential Sellers License
Any person who initiates contact with consumers at their place of residence for the purpose of selling, attempting to sell or solicits appointments/contacts for future sale of goods or services must obtain a Residential Sellers License. This license is valid only for the product or services specified on the application.
Each licensee who employs others as agents shall procure residential seller agent identification for each agent.
Taxicab Association, For-Hire Driver And Taxicab Licenses
It is unlawful to own, drive or otherwise operate within the City of Seattle any taxicab or for-hire vehicle unless the driver has a valid For-Hire Driver License; the vehicle has a valid For-Hire Vehicle License; and all vehicles are affiliated with a licensed Taxicab Association.
Trade Show License
A trade show license is required for any temporary exhibit, lasting less than fourteen (14) days, with twenty-five (25) or more participants. This includes, but is not limited to, home shows, street fairs, community festivals, coin, stamp and hobby shows and commercial or business fairs. An Admission Tax may be due for events charging fees for entrance. A business license tax return filing is required when taxable revenue exceeds $100,000. Download the Trade Show License Application (fillable .pdf format).
Used Goods Dealer-Scrap-Pawnshop Licenses
Used Goods Dealer means any pawnbroker, scrap metal processor, scrap metal hauler, or person engaged in the business of purchasing, selling, trading, auctioning, consignment selling, or otherwise transferring for value, used goods. This does not include coins that are legal tender, books, magazines, and postage stamps.
Weighmaster and Weighers License
Any person, firm or corporation possessing a scale that complies with the specifications, tolerances, and other technical requirements for weighing devices must obtain a Weighmaster License. The Weighmaster must obtain a Weighers License for all of his employees who have the ability to correctly weight and use the scale to determine the gross and net weights of any article or commodity.
Location of Offices:
Department of Finance and Administrative Services Division
The office is open weekdays 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Telephone: (206) 684-8484
The material in this site is intended for general informational purposes only. While it is current at the time of publication, changes to the Seattle Municipal Code (SMC) or state law may invalidate some of this information. In the event of a conflict between this guide and the SMC, the SMC prevails.