Transfer of ownership for a retail tobacco store license

Apply online

Step 1.Gather all required documents

Make sure you have everything from the "Required documents" section below. 

  • All materials must be digital files saved as a .pdf or .jpg. Do not include any other file types. The Department of Excise and Licenses cannot accept other file types.
  • Use numbers or letters but not characters such as symbols (/ ? < > \ : * | “ ^) or spaces that could cause complications.
    • For example:
      • Good filename: drivers-license-name-2022.pdf
      • Bad filename: last name/ id.pdf
  • In some cases, you might need to combine documents and upload them in a single .pdf. You can use a free, online tool to merge documents into a single file. 
  • Legal documents must be signed, dated and executed. All pages of large legal documents (such as a lease) must be included in the application.
  • All materials must be legible. 
  • Incomplete applications will be rejected.

Step 2.Navigate to Denver's Online Permitting and Licensing Center

In Denver’s Online Permitting and Licensing Center, the seller must:  

  • Under Business, Short-Term Rental, and Occupational Licensing, click "Renew or Manage." This will take you to the “My Records” page.
  • To submit an amendment or transfer of ownership of your licensed establishment, look at the “License Type” column. Find the row that has the licensed establishment, record name and address that you want to transfer. In the right column, click on “Amendment.”
  • Select “Initiate Transfer of Ownership” and click “Continue Application.”
  • Read the introduction page and click “Continue.”
  • Select the licenses you will transfer and click “Continue Application.”
  • Provide the email address for the buyer. This should be the email address the buyer used to create their account in Denver's Online Permitting and Licensing Center. The system will confirm this information, and the buyer’s first and last name will appear. If the buyer does not have an account or the seller provides an incorrect email address, you will not be able to proceed.
  • Click “Continue Application.” 

In Denver’s Online Permitting and Licensing Center, the buyer must: 

  • Log in to Denver’s Online Permitting and Licensing Center.  
  • Under Business, Short-Term Rental, and Occupational Licensing, click "Renew or Manage." This will take you to the “My Records” page.
  • To continue the transfer of ownership of the license(s), in the “License Type” column find the row that has the transfer ownership, record name and address that will be transferred. In the right column, click on “Resume Application.” 
  • Read the introduction page and click “Continue.”
  • This will begin and guide the buyer through the application process.  

Any time during the process, you can save and resume your application within 30 days. After 30 days, you will need to start again.

Step 3.Pay required fees

Application fee:

Step 4.City application review and next steps

Excise and Licenses tries to conduct an initial review of a complete application within seven business days. The review process might take longer if it is incomplete or requires police review (if applicable).
  • All application related communications will be sent through email, from Do not respond to these emails as this inbox is not monitored.
  • If the application is incomplete, the applicant will receive a "notice of deficiency" email. This allows 14 days for corrections. License endorsement requests and incidents on a background check need police review. 
  • All applications will be closed if they are not completed within 12 months.

Step 5.License issuance

Once approved, the applicant is emailed a copy of the business license. This allows the license holder to start operating.

The licensee should read "Once you have your license" below and follow the requirements.

During the application process, a package will be assembled for you from the following three applications.

Licensed establishment application

This captures information about the location where you sell tobacco products. You will need to provide:

  • Possession of property certificate(PDF, 130KB) or lease that shows you own the property or will have possession of it for at least 90 days after the day you submit your application. If submitting a lease, include sublease, amendments, assignments, signature pages, etc.
  • Details for one to three on-site managers, including their name, date of birth, home address and contact information. On-site Managers are those you designate who have the authority to make decisions regarding the licensed establishment. They must have access to and control over the licensed establishment at all times.

Entity registration application

This captures ownership information about the person or entity that will hold the license. You will need to provide:

  • Entity type (one of the following):
    • Sole proprietor
    • Limited liability company
    • Partnership
    • For-profit corporation
    • Nonprofit corporation
  • True name of the entity or person who will hold the license
  • List of any trade names under which the entity operates
  • Details about any individual who owns 10% or more of the entity, including their name, date of birth, home address, and contact information
  • valid state or federally issued ID for each natural person listed as an owner
  • Corporations, LLCs, and partnerships must provide a copy of their organizational documents, such as bylaws, an operating agreement, a partnership agreement, articles of incorporation, certificate of good standing, etc., as applicable
  • Please provide the general contact information for your business. This information may be shared publicly in an open data catalog or upon request. The information you provide should allow members of the public to contact your business regarding your licenses or licensed establishments.

Any entity or person that will hold multiple retail tobacco store licenses in Denver will only have to complete this application once. An entity registration ID will be issued to provide in lieu of this application in the application packages you will need to submit for other locations where you sell tobacco products.

Retail tobacco store license application

This verifies you are eligible to obtain a retail tobacco store license and reviews the rules and laws you must abide by as a license holder. You must provide:

  • Copy of your Denver sales tax license
  • Copy of your State of Colorado sales tax license
  • Records of any alleged violation of law or rule related to tobacco sales issued by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the State of Colorado, or the City and County of Denver, to the entity or person applying for this license, or any of its owners, within the last five years.

License must be displayed

Excise and Licenses will email a professional license to all licensees. This license (or a clear picture of it) must always be displayed.

Requirement to keep contact information up to date

File an online amendment application to notify the Department of any contact information changes (place of business, onsite manager, etc.). These updates must be filed within 72 hours of the change. 

Requirement to renew annually

Professional licenses expire annually. It is unlawful to operate with an expired license. Renewal applications must be filed online before a license expires.

To update your contact information, ownership, or business name, go to the entity registration webpage to submit those applications.

To update your on-site manager, go to our licensed establishment webpage to submit those applications.