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Frequently Asked Questions

In total, there are over 100 business and liquor licenses issued by the Denver Department of Excise and Licenses. 


Some of the license types include retail and wholesale food operations, emergency and non emergency vehicles, body artists and facilities, boarding homes and childcare centers, merchant guards, pedal cabs and peddlers, taxi/limousine drivers, central alarm operators and apprentice,  and medical marijuana centers (in conjunction with the State of Colorado.)


Click here for a complete list of business licenses.  

A zone use permit is a document granting the applicant/owner of a lot, building, or structure permission for the requested use of the land. The Commercial Zoning group within Community Planning and Development issues zone use and construction permits for existing multi-family and commercial buildings in the City.  Find application materials and what must be submitted at the Commercial Zoning website, select the appropriate item under Zoning Use Permits for your business type. 


If the business license you are applying for requires a zone use permit, be sure to check with Commercial Zoning first to get approval  of the use of the land before submitting an application to the Department of Excise and Licenses.  


If you are an existing business and need a copy of any applicable zone use permits, email with the property address.


Permit Counter (including Commercial Zoning) Hours and Location

Commercial Zoning Permit Counter Hours:  8:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

Webb Municipal Office Building

201 W. Colfax Avenue, 2nd Floor



All City Services:  (720) 913-1311

Commercial Zoning:  (720) 865-3000



Liquor and Cabaret Licenses

  • Application and license fees for the City of Denver should be made payable to the Manager of Finance.   
  • Application and license fees for the State of Colorado should be made payable to the Department of Revenue. 



Business Licenses

  • Business licenses may be purchased with cash, check or credit card.
  • Application and license fees for the City of Denver should be made payable to the Manager of Finance.   

Denver Department of Excise and Licenses office.

Fingerprinting and background checks are performed daily between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. 

Click here for more information


Click here to see a list of current medical marijuana center licenses.

Sales, Lodgers, Use, Occupation Privilege Tax Information

201 W. Colfax Ave.

Denver, CO  80202


720-865-7075 Taxpayer Service Unit
Click here for the Treasury Division's website

Denver Department of Excise and Licenses

201 West Colfax, 2nd Floor


You will need to apply for the Retail Food Establishment license.

A special event permit is a permit issued to non profit organizations and political candidates to sell alcohol at a specific event where the facility does not currently hold a liquor license.

Denver Department of Excise and Licenses

You will need to apply for the Retail Food Mobile License.

Your check must physically be in our office on or before your expiration date to be considered on time with no late fees. 

Yes. One of the documents that is accepted to prove lawful status is Form I-766 (Employment Authorization Document).


Compliments or Complaints?

If you have a complaint, compliment or concern about a business operating in Denver, please complete the Business License Compliment/Complaint Form and return it to our Department.  We will investigate any complaint regarding the business licenses that we issue for the City and County of Denver.

Download compliment/complaint form (PDF)