Understanding the rules of the road is key to operating a business responsibly. The Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection (BACP) inspects thousands of businesses and public vehicles to ensure compliance with City laws and regulations. BACP also responds to and investigates consumer complaints. To file a consumer complaint please call 311 or use the online services below.
Operating without a business license - The City of Chicago Municipal Code mandates that no business activity may take place without first obtaining the required business license(s). A pending license application does not allow you to operate. Failure to comply can result in enforcement action. Many businesses operating as a Not for Profit Corporation require a City of Chicago business license. A business consultant may help you determine if you require a license. You can also look up businesses that are exempt from a City of Chicago license.
Business License Inspections- Certain types of businesses require that the establishment undergo and pass an inspection from one or more city departments. Common inspections include BACP, the Departments of Buildings, Fire Prevention and Food Protection. You should be prepared for these inspections when you file a business license application.
Alternative Pricing System (APS) - Alternative Pricing System, or APS, is a system other than individual price marking that is designed to inform consumers of the price of particular products and exempts the retailer from the requirement of individual price marking. Explore frequently asked questions, familiarize yourself with a blank inspection sheet, and read the governing rules and regulations.
There are a couple of things you can do that will help you prepare for an inspection:
BACP relies on feedback from our customers to improve services. We take customer satisfaction seriously and measure our performance based on your input. Click the button above or the link below to provide feedback on your interaction with BACP. The survey will take no more than two minutes to complete.