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  • Writer's pictureMark Stumer

HOW TO OBTAIN A CABARET LICENSE IN NYC

To receive a Cabaret license, you must first request a Fire Department inspection of your premises. If the inspection results are positive, you will be notified and permitted to submit your application within 60 days of receiving such notice. If you fail to submit your application within the 60-day period, the inspection process must be repeated. If the inspection results are negative, you will receive notice of the Fire Department’s objections. You will then be responsible for taking corrective measures to address such objections. In addition, the Community Board where your business is located has 45 calendar days to respond with a recommendation. An electrical inspection is also required. In lieu of a Department of Buildings electrical inspection, DCA will accept a notarized statement from a licensed electrician on the electrician’s letterhead, stating that the premise complies with all current electrical building codes. If you submit a current Certificate of Occupancy issued by the Department of Buildings within three months of the application date, the notarized statement from a licensed electrician is not necessary. However, if a temporary Certificate of Occupancy is submitted, the statement from the licensed electrician is required. If you pass inspection, submit the following documents in person to the Special Applications Unit at DCA.

Basic License Application For Sole Proprietorships, submit a notarized copy of your Business Certificate, certified as a true and accurate copy by the County Clerk of the borough in which your business is located. The address appearing on your Business Certificate must be identical to the address for which you are seeking a license. If you are a sole proprietor doing business under your own name, and not a trade or Doing Business As (DBA) name, you do not need a Business Certificate. For Partnerships, submit a notarized copy of your Partnership Certificate, certified as a true and accurate copy by the County Clerk of the borough in which your business is located. The address appearing on your Partnership Certificate must be identical to the address for which you are seeking a license. For Corporations, submit a stamped Certificate of Incorporation or a filing receipt. If applicable, you must also submit your corporation’s Assumed Name Certificate. These certificates must be stamped by the New York State Secretary of State. Enter the Sales Tax Identification Number (9-digit number) on your New York State Department of Taxation and Finance Certificate of Authority on the license application form. Photo ID of the person submitting the application.

Environmental Control Board Clearance. The Department of Consumer Affairs will review the Environmental Control Board’s (ECB) records to see if you have any outstanding violations. If you are found to have outstanding fines or violations, you can submit full payment for all fines at the Licensing Center and we will forward such payment to ECB. If you wish to dispute ECB’s records, you can go to the ECB at 66 John Street, 10th floor, in Manhattan to settle these fines or violations and to obtain a clearance letter. A copy of a current Place of Assembly Permit from the Department of Buildings must be obtained if total capacity exceeds 74 persons. The permit must indicate the usage for which a license is sought. The permit must not be altered or defaced in any way. The Fire Department will inspect your premises if you do not have this permit. If the Fire Department inspection is positive, the Place of Assembly Permit does not have to be submitted. Certificate of Occupancy for proper usage, which has been stamped by the Buildings Department within the past two years. The Certificate must show the approval for “Use Group 12” and “Cabaret” or “Eating and Drinking establishment without restriction on entertainment.” Current Food Service Establishment Permit. Notarized Affidavit of Security Personnel Background Check. If you are a SOLE PROPRIETORSHIP or a PARTNERSHIP, the proprietor and each partner must submit a Notarized Child Support Certification form. License Fee. Must be paid by check or money order payable to NYC Department of Consumer Affairs.

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