City of Tacoma and MuniServices
In August 2014, the Fiscal Sustainability Task Force, established by the City Council, recommended that the City hire a third party to conduct a business license compliance review. Through a competitive bid process MuniServices was selected as the vendor to conduct this project.
The purpose of this project is to identify businesses that may be operating in the City without a business license and to provide the information needed to get these businesses licensed.
Starting in November 2015, MuniServices began sending letters to businesses they have identified that may be doing business in the City without a license. If your business received a letter from MuniServices please follow the instructions in the letter.
For more information view the FAQs.
Tax and License Customer Service Hours
Tax and License's customer service counter hours are Monday through Friday from 8 AM until 5 PM.
The customer service counter has high traffic during the week before and the week after a quarter filing due date. To avoid the lines in office, pay your license and taxes online or mail your payment in. When visiting the office, the best time to avoid longer wait times is between the hours of 8:00 AM to 11:30 AM and 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM.
Applications for business licenses received after 4 PM will be accepted. However, they may not be processed the same day.
Guide to City of Tacoma Business & Occupation Tax
Need information about Tacoma's B&O Tax? Use the Guide to City of Tacoma's Business & Occupation Tax. This pamphlet will give you the basics about Tacoma's B&O. It includes information about current tax rates, common deductions and exemptions to how to file and pay.
Tacoma Open Data
Need to know if a business is licensed in Tacoma or other public information? Visit the City of Tacoma's Tacoma Data website. It is a free service provided for informational purposes only. Creating a list from for commercial purposes is prohibited by law.
Did you know that all sub-contractors working at a job site in Tacoma must be licensed with the City of Tacoma? If any of your sub-contractors do not have a City of Tacoma License please have them contact the Tax & License Division at (253) 591-5252. Download the Contractor Licensing Flyer to let your sub-contractors know.
Do You Own Rental Property in Tacoma?
All rental properties must meet the standards set forth in the State Landlord Tenant Act, Title 59 Section 59.18.060 and the property must not present conditions that endanger or impair the health or safety of the tenants. To assist landlords in making sure their property(s) is safe and meets these standards download the Guide to Residential Rental Inspection.
New Resources for Businesses Seeking State of Washington Information
Customers looking for regulatory permit information can find a link to the Governor's Office of Regulatory Assistance. This office was specifically created to help companies and people navigate the complex environmental permitting and licensing required by local cities, counties, state and federal agencies. The Office of Regulatory Assistance also provides small business assistance and works to improve the regulatory process. Visit the Office of Regulatory Assistance for more information or call (800) 917-0043. For business licensing assistance visit the Washington State website.
Zoning, Permits, or Inspections
The City of Tacoma's zoning, permit, or inspection information is just a click away when you use the City of Tacoma's govME. Are you unsure if your business address is inside the city limits or your current zoning allows you to have an auto body shop? Do you want to see if you are located in an historical area? This information and more is available at govME today.
Do you have a monitored burglar or fire alarm inside the City of Tacoma?
Tacoma Municipal Code 6B.40
requires any business that monitors alarms located within the City of Tacoma have a Monitored Alarms Device License for each alarm system in Tacoma. The $40.00 annual fee is paid on a per system basis.
The alarm ordinance imposes all fees on the licensee the alarm company. The City does not impose any fees directly on the alarm company customers. The alarm companies may choose to absorb these fees or they may pass the fee along to their individual customers. It is purely a business decision the alarm company makes based on their own business strategies and contracts with their customers.
If you receive an invoice for a false alarm, only your monitoring company can file a dispute on your behalf. Please contact them directly with any questions, comments, or concerns.
City of Tacoma Voluntary Registration
In the case of any unregistered taxpayer doing business in the city that voluntarily registers prior to being contacted by the department, the department shall not assess for back taxes or interest for more than four calendar years prior to the year of registration. The late payment penalty imposed for taxes under TMC 6A.10.110(a) shall not apply.
For additional questions please contact the Tax and License Department at (253) 591-5252 or visit the Title 6 of the Tacoma Municipal Code page.