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Business Licensing  

Welcome. The City is pleased that you have chosen Tukwila as the place to operate your business. The Finance Department is available to assist you with your business license application. A city business license is required prior to opening a business. Please read the "Frequently Asked Questions" about Tukwila's Business License Program.

Issued Business Licenses

Per Tukwila Municipal Code 5.04.015, No person or persons shall conduct, maintain, operate or engage in any business within the City without first applying for and obtaining a business license and paying the fee(s) as prescribed herein unless the business is exempt. The exemption is only from the need to pay a fee for issuance of the business license and shall not be construed as relief from compliance with other requirements of the Tukwila Municipal Code. All businesses operating within the City are required to submit a business license application or renewal, as appropriate, regardless of whether a business license fee is due to the City.

Business license fees help pay for services that businesses need including those provided through the City's Public Safety Programs. To learn more about why the City collects a business license fee, and what services are supported by the fee read the "License Fee Supports Business Services" handout.

Business Licenses are valid January 1 - December 31

  • All Licenses expire December 31
  • Licenses are not pro-rated; the fee for a full 12 months shall be paid regardless of how long the business has been open.
  • You must have a valid UBI # (Unified Business Identifier also known as the State License #) in order to apply for a City Business License.

Business License Forms

Currently we do not accept applications on-line. Please print and complete the form.

♦ View or print the 2016 Business License Application Form (for those working in 2016 only)

If operating prior to January 1st, please call 206-431-3680 for additional fees due.

♦ View or print the 2016 Out of City Business License Application Form
(for those working in 2016 only)

♦ Sign Contractor's Affidavit of Acknowledgment
(This form is required to be completed by all Sign Installers and must be submitted with their business license application. By completing the affidavit they are stating that they have read and understand TMC - Title 19 Sign Code.)

♦ Home Occupation Affidavit
(Must complete if operating a business from your residence within the city limits of Tukwila)

♦ Permission for Business to Use Private Property

Residential Rental Business Licenses

Looking for Residential Rental Business Licenses? Please visit our Residential Rental Licensing & Inspections Program section.


Fee Structure for Business Licenses

The license fee for the annual license issued shall be $67.00 per full-time equivalent (FTE) employee consisting of a $12.00 per FTE business license fee plus a $55.00 per FTE Revenue Generating Regulatory License (RGRL) fee. The application must be accompanied by payment for the amount of the license fee.

  • One Full-Time Equivalent (FTE) employee = 1,920 hours
  • You may estimate for a 12 month period or use last year's total 12 month reported hours
  • If business is located outside of Tukwila, report only those hours worked in Tukwila

To calculate the fee:

  • First determine the total number of hours for all employees, managers and owners for a 12 month period.
  • Multiply the number of hours by $0.034896.
  • If less than $67, pay $67 minimum license fee.
  • If greater than $67, pay the greater amount.

Example:    Your business has 5 Full-time and 6 Part-Time employees/managers/owners The total number of hours worked in a 12 month period = 15,360 hrs. 15,360 x $0.034896 = $536.00 (this is the amount of your license fee)


Payments Types

Payments may be made by cash, check (payable to City of Tukwila), or credit card (Mastercard or Visa)

Please contact us at 206-431-3680 or at licensing@tukwilawa.gov with any questions regarding your business license.


Approval Process

Please be advised that your submission is an application only, NOT a license to conduct business. You will not be issued a temporary license and you should not consider your business registered until the licensing process is complete. In most cases, you will be issued (or denied) your business license within 15 to 30 days. Upon receipt of the business license, it is to be prominently displayed at your place of business in Tukwila.

Upon receipt, your application will be routed to various City departments for review. The following criteria may be used during the departmental review process. If you have any questions regarding this review, please feel free to contact the appropriate department with your questions.

Finance Department (206-431-3680): Reviews applications for completeness and to determine if any supplemental licenses are required and/or if state business license requirements have been met.

Planning Department (206-431-3670: Reviews application to determine if the proposed use is permitted in the zone where it will be located. They will also review to determine if there is appropriate parking and that no other land use applications are required. Please note that the installation of any signs requires the approval of a sign permit. You are encouraged to talk with Planning staff prior to opening a new enterprise so that they can assist you with any permitting issues.

Building Department (206-431-3675): Reviews the application for conformance with the International Building Code.

Fire Department (206-575-4404): Will inspect those businesses where the nature of operations warrants a site inspection to ascertain conformance with fire code regulations and building compatibility (i.e. premise is suitable for the business activities being licensed).

Police Department (206-433-1808): Uses the license application information for emergency notification in the case of nighttime break-in or triggered alarm.


Changes in Business Use, Name Change, UBI Change, Address Change

If your business has any of the above listed changes, you are responsible to notify the City immediately by completing a new Business License Application. See application link above.

You may mail or deliver the completed application and the appropriate business license fee to:   City of Tukwila, 6200 Southcenter Blvd., Tukwila, WA 98188

Additional licenses are required if your business has live music/entertainment, tow trucks, amusement devices, if you are a solicitor/peddler or are an adult entertainer.

Any retail sales tax generated in Tukwila needs to be reported to the Washington State Department of Revenue, under sales tax code #1729.


Contact Information:

Tukwila Finance Dept.
6200 Southcenter Blvd.
Tukwila, WA 98188

Phone: 206 433-1835
Fax: 206 433-1833
Hours: 8:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m.

Email the Finance Dept.