Michigan Dealer License

Michigan Dealer Training Podcast

Michigan Dealer License Application Packet

Michigan Dealer Licenses are regulated by the Michigan Department of State. If you have questions on Michigan dealer licensing you can call the

Follow these easy step by step requirements in order to obtain your Michigan Dealer License.

Obtain Michigan Dealer Application

You can download your Michigan dealer license application by clicking on the following link:

Apply for Michigan Sales Tax Number

The Michigan Department of State requires many Michigan dealers to apply for a Michigan sales tax number. Just contact Michigan Department of Treasury,
Registration Division
at 517-636-4660 to find out if you are required to apply for a Michigan Sales Tax number before applying for a Michigan dealers license.


You will be required to submit a copy of your fingerprints before you are granted a dealer’s license in Michigan. The State of Michigan wants to ensure they are not licensing any known felon with extensive criminal histories. In order to get your fingerprinting process started just click on www.michigan.gov/mst then click on Criminal History Records, then click Employment Licensing. You must download the following form to be completed by the fingerprinter:


Be sure to include the receipt for your fingerprinting in your Michigan Dealer Application packet.

Michigan Dealer Surety Bond

The Michigan Business Licensing and Regulation division requires all Michigan dealers to be bonded. You must obtain a dealer surety bond in the amount of $10,000. You can purchase a dealer surety bond from most licensed Michigan insurance agencies or a Michigan bonding company. A bond is required in order to protect customers from unethical dealers, it gives the customer financial recourse in the case of any legal judgments against the dealer. If you have a great credit score you should be able to obtain a Michigan dealer surety bond for about $130 a year. If you credit is not so good, your bond prices can increase dramatically. You can download the Michigan Dealer Surety Bond form by clicking here:


Michigan Dealer Insurance

Michigan State Law requires Michigan dealers to carry a minimum amount of insurance before you are granted a dealer license. You must obtain what is known as Michigan No-Fault Fleet Insurance. You must have 20/40/10 fleet-type Michigan no-fault insurance indicating coverage that specifically states “any vehicle” or “all vehicles owned”. Be sure to obtain several quotes for your dealer insurance as the quotes will vary greatly from insurance agent to insurance agent. Obtain your Michigan Dealer Insurance by clicking here.

Click here for Michigan Dealer Insurance!

Business Building

To keep a Michigan dealer license you are required to have a business building. Your building must be an enclosed building and it is not allowed to be shared with another Michigan dealer. Michigan law strictly forbids more than one dealer to operate out of the same building. Michigan law also forbids having a dealer license at any residence. All of your dealer business records must be stored in the business building at all times. Your business building must have an office space with at least 150 square feet of space and you must also have a restroom in the business building. You must have standard office furniture, working utilities, and a working telephone listed in the dealership name.

Vehicle Display Lot

You must have an area to display vehicles that is at least 1300 square foot with enough room to display 10 vehicles and you are also required to have at least 650 feet for a customer parking lot. The State of Michigan wants to ensure your customers have plenty of room to park other than on your display lot. You are only allowed to park vehicles that are for sale by your dealership on your display lot.

Dealership Business Sign

You are required to have a permanent business sign attached to your Michigan dealer license building in order to be granted a dealers license from Michigan. The sign may also be attached to land at your location and you must display your hours of operation. The State requires your hours of operation to be prominently displayed allowing your customers to know when it is possible to contact you.

Maintain Business Hours

To keep your Michigan Dealer License compliant you must maintain a minimum of 30 business hours a week. The dealership must be staffed by the owner an employee.

Click here for Michigan Dealer Insurance!

Repair Facility Agreement

To receive a Michigan dealer license you must either be a Registered Michigan Repair Facility, apply to become a Registered Michigan Repair facility , or have an agreement with an Registered Michigan Repair Facility. Michigan wants to ensure that you have the ability to either repair the vehicles your customers purchase from your or that you have access to a registered vehicle repair facility. You can complete the Repair Facility agreement by clicking here :


If you are obtaining an agreement from a Registered Michigan Repair Facility you must have the repair facility complete the following form:


Zoning and Municipality Approval

Your must show the Michigan Business Licensing & Regulation Division that you meet all zoning and municipal requirements before you are allowed to obtain a Michigan Dealer License.. If your dealership is going to be located in an unincorporated part of a county you can obtain approval from your County Planning and Zoning Commission that is normally located in your County Courthouse. If you are locating your dealership in Detroit, contact the Department of Buildings and Safety Engineering, Zoning Division, 4th floor, City-County Building. If you are locating your dealer lot in any other Michigan city, you can contact your City Hall’s Planning and Zoning Office. Just print the Michigan Zoning and Municipality form then take it to your County Courthouse or City Hall and have the appropriate zoning authority complete it. The Michigan Zoning and Municipality Form is not allowed to be completed by the dealer applicant, it can only be completed by the proper zoning officials.

You can download the Michigan Zoning and Municipality form by clicking on the following link:


Michigan Business Documentation

If you are applying for your Michigan dealer license as an individual or partnership, you must enclose an Assumed Name Filing from the County which the dealership is to be located in. Many Michigan Counties allow this to be done online but you may be required to file this paperwork at your County Courthouse. Just contact your County Clerk for further instructions if you are filing as an individual or partnership. If you are applying for a Michigan Dealer License as a corporation or limited liability corporation you must include copies of your Michigan Department of Consumer & Industry Services. You may call them directly at 517-241-6470 for further questions or visit them online at:


Michigan Dealer Lot Inspection

Must have a representative from the Michigan Business Licensing & Regulation Division inspect your dealer lot to make sure you have met your minimum physical lot requirements. This is a quick painless inspection that should only take a few minutes. To schedule an inspection of your dealer license location you can call the Licensing and Regulation division at 1-888-767-6424

Mail Michigan Dealer License Application Packet

Be sure to include the following documentation in your Michigan Dealer License Application Packet:

Dealer Surety Bond in the amount of $10,000 with Power of Attorney from bond company
Repair facility registration application or agreement with registered repair shop
Michigan Fleet Type no fault insurance
Franchise Agreement if your are selling new vehicles
Signed receipt to serve as proof of fingerprinting
Copies of articles of incorporation or assumed name filing
Completed Michigan Zoning and Municipality form
Check or money order payable to State of Michigan for $95 for licensure fees and 2 dealer plates.

Mail the Michigan Dealer License Application packet to:

Michigan Department of State,
Bureau of Regulatory Services,
Business Licensing and Regulation Division
Lansing, MI 48918

Michigan Dealers, Michigan dealers are regulated by the Michigan Business Licensing Section
Michigan Department of State
Business Licensing Section
Lansing, MI 48918


I want you go in depth in the 6 Steps to an Michigan Dealers License
Step Number 1 Dealer Surety Bond and Sales Ta Number
You must obtain a dealer surety bond in order to obtain Michigan dealers license. I always recommend this as the first step in obtaining a Michigan dealers license. The cost of a dealer surety bond is based on your credit score and the cost of your insurance is based upon your driving record. I am often asked what it costs to obtain a Michigan dealers license and I can never answer that question accurately because the total cost will depend on your credit score and your driving record.
The State of Michigan requires you to obtain a $10,000 dealer surety bond in order to be granted a Michigan dealers license, is the bond going to cost you $10,000, of course not, with good credit you should be spending about 100 to 200 dollars a year for your bond, your insurance company will normally send you an invoice every year or every other year. If you have a couple of blemishes on your credit score, the price of your bond can increase dramatically. The bond must be a surety bond eecuted by an insurance or bonding company authorized to do business in Michigan,
The bond must be signed by the individual, all partners (if a partnership) or one corporate officer (if incorporated). Bonds may not be handwritten and must contain all required signatures and an embossed stamp, seal or sticker.
I want to show you how to easily download a Michigan Dealer Application packet that will contain all the forms needed to apply for your Michigan Dealer License

You must also obtain a sales ta number before the State of Michigan will allow you to have a dealers license.
You can call Sales Ta Number
Call 517-636-4660.to obtain your Sales Ta Number over the phone

Step2 Fingerprints
You must be fingerprinted before you apply for Michigan dealers license.
The State of Indiana requires dealers to be of a higher ethical standard than the average person walking down the street. Very soon you will have oversight over very large financial transactions. Most of the vehicles you sell with your dealers licenses will be worth several thousands of dollars. This are very large financial transactions that the State of Indiana is allowing you complete oversight. So, before the State of Indiana approves your dealers license, they want to make sure you never rolled back odometers, they want to make sure you have never stolen a car, the State of Indiana wants to make sure they are not giving a dealers license to someone that was managing some auto theft ring. As I stated a moment ago, the state of Indiana requires dealer to be high ethical standards so you a background check will be ran on you when you obtain your mandatory fingerprints.

Srceen shots

The sign must be professionally designed on permanent material, and the lettering applied on the sign shall be a minimum of 16 square feet. At least one sign must be located and positioned to be clearly visible to consumers from the street.

Step 3 Building and Lot
You must have a building for your Michigan dealers license. Your business building must be a permanent enclosed building owned or leased by you, The established place of business must be devoted mainly to the operation of your dealership
A dealer may use a trailer as you building but state law requires you to remove the wheels.
Whether you are a retail dealer , broker, or a wholesale dealer you must meet local zoning requirements. You can contact the city hall or county court house’s planning a zoning division to ensure the location you want to use as your dealership meets all local zoning requirements for an Indiana Dealers license. Applicants should contact their local city or county office to ensure compliance with local zoning ordinances.
The dealer shall conduct business in a building on the same property as the display lot. If the dealer is a used car broker, and will not display an inventory of vehicles for sale, the requirements of this rule for an established place of business shall still be met, with the eception of the display area for vehicles. That would be for brokers. All sales activity must take place at the lot, you cannot sell vehicles away from the lot unless you are selling vehicles at a dealer auction

You must also have also have installed and maintain a working land line telephone whose number shall be listed in the licensee's trade name, the same as that which is listed in the application and in any advertising. You must have an office with at least 150 square feet.
Be staffe3d and open to the public at least 30 hours each week
The sign must be professionally designed on permanent material,. At least one sign must be located and positioned to be clearly visible to consumers from the street.

At least 1,300 square feet for our display lot with at least 650 feet of customer parking
Able to accommodate the display of a minimum of 10 vehicles
Well-lit during hours of operation
Must have a repair facility or an agreement with a repair facility within 10 miles of the dealership.

Step 3 Zoning Verifcation
The State of Michigan wants to make sure your building is zoned for an automobile dealership before you are granted a Michigan Dealer license so you must submit Zoning Verification form
Just go to www. www.lumvcMichigan.gov click on dealers, then forms and requirements,

then you will scroll down to the bottom of the page and click on Zoning Verification

And then you will have your local zoning authority sign this,
Step 4- 4 Hour License Class
Michigan State law requires any person obtaining a Michigan dealers license for the first time to attend a 4 hour pre-license class.

Here is the online registration form for the 4 hour class which can be found at www.lumvc.Michigan.gov

Step 5-Complete Application
The final step you need to do to obtain an Michigan dealers license is to complete an Michigan dealer license application in it’s entirety.
If you make mistakes on the application it will be returned, so you want to spend some time and ensure there are not mistakes on the application.
If there is a change in business entity, after you become a licensed dealer, a new application must be submitted with all applicable paperwork, including a new bond and a new dealer license number will be assigned.
Here is a check list to ensure you have all your required documents
Zoning Approval Form
Municipality approval Form
Copy of the Business Creation Document or Assumed Name
Fingerprint Background Check Request (RI-030) for Each Applicant
Repair Facility Application or an Agreement with Registered Facility
Certificate of Insurance
.Check or Money Order Payable to STATE OF MICHIGAN for License & Plates p
Original copy of a Dealer Surety Bond
Proof of Dealer Class AttendanceProof of Attending dealer class
You can download your application at the www.michigan.gov
, lets take a look at an Michigan dealers license application: once again I want to magnify the screen shots and once again you will have a brief respite from looking at my head.

Then you will mail your dealer application to the following address
Michigan Department of State
Business Licensing Section
Lansing, MI 48918

Once you obtain your Michigan dealers license you must display the license prominently, you are going to work hard to obtain your Michigan dealers license, you are going to be proud when you obtain your Michigan dealers license, Michigan law requires that you display your dealers license prominently when it is granted, don’t shove it in some desk drawer, or lock in in a vault, frame your official Michigan dealers license and display it on the wall, all Michigan dealers licenses must be displayed prominently

Good Luck In Obtaining Your Michigan Dealer License!

We are here to help you obtain a Dealer's License and maintain your Dealership Compliance!

Dealer License  

Delus Johnson-Lead Instructor
Automobile Dealer Training Association