CIGARETTE RETAIL DEALER (127)
DCA Licensing Center
42 Broadway, 5th Floor
New York, NY 10004
For more information, call 311 (or 212-NEW-YORK outside of New York City).
A cigarette retail dealer is any person, other than a wholesale dealer, engaged in selling cigarettes. A license must be obtained for each place of business in New York City, where the person sells cigarettes. The possession or transportation at any one time of 5,000 or more cigarettes by any person other than a manufacturer, an agent, a licensed wholesale dealer, or a person delivering cigarettes in the regular course of business for a manufacturer, an agent, or a licensed wholesale or retail dealer shall be presumptive evidence that the person is a retail dealer.
This is only a general explanation of which businesses need to have a Cigarette Retail Dealer license.
Important: As of February 25, 2010, it is illegal for businesses (excluding tobacco bars) to sell “flavored” tobacco products, including, but not limited to, tastes or aromas relating to any fruit, chocolate, vanilla, honey, candy, cocoa, dessert, alcoholic beverage, herb, or spice. This law does not apply to cigarettes. The sale of flavored cigarettes is prohibited under federal law. Sale of tobacco products containing only the taste or aroma of tobacco, menthol, mint, or wintergreen is permissible. For more information, businesses can download Local Law 69 of 2009 (Int. No. 433-A). (This law also renumbers the sections of the Tobacco Product Regulation Act.) Businesses can also download the Final Rule
Note: New York City businesses must comply with all relevant federal, state, and City laws and rules. All laws and rules of the City of New York, including the Consumer Protection Law and Rules, are accessible using the Public Access Portal. For convenience, sections of the New York City Licensing Law (and Rules, if enacted) are available as a downloadable handout.
Please note that businesses are responsible for knowing and complying with the most current laws, including any City Council amendments. The Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) is not responsible for errors or omissions in the handout. The information is not legal advice. You can only obtain legal advice from a lawyer.
It is illegal to sell tobacco products (including bidis and gutka) to individuals under the age of 18. For further information, see http://www.health.state.ny.us/nysdoh/smoking/tobguide.htm. Retailers must conspicuously post a sign on a white card with red letters at least ½ inch high that says:
“Sale of cigarettes, cigars, chewing tobacco, powdered tobacco, or other tobacco products, herbal cigarettes, rolling papers or pipes to persons under eighteen years of age is prohibited by law.”
Sale of tobacco products may be made only to persons who show a valid driver’s license or non-driver’s ID from the United States or Canada, a valid passport from any country, or an ID issued by the U.S. armed forces. The appearance of a customer cannot be used as a defense if the salesperson is charged with selling tobacco to a minor. For information about the New York State Department of Health tobacco sales training program, call (800) 458-1158 or visit: http://www.health.state.ny.us/nysdoh/smoking/certlist.htm
Anyone working in your establishment must be over 18 years of age to handle tobacco products, or be under the supervision of someone who is over 18 to sell tobacco products.
The sale of loose cigarettes is prohibited, with fines beginning at $1,000 per sale. Other violations of City or State law provisions may result in a fine up to $1,000 (City) and $2,550 (State).
Selling cigarettes to a minor or violating any other provision of City law on more than two occasions within a two-year period may result in revocation of your City license and/or your State registration.
All products must be in the manufacturer’s original container, display a health warning, and be stored for sale either behind a counter inaccessible to the public or in a locked container. Vending machines that sell tobacco products may be located only in bars, private clubs, or workplaces with few employees under 18 years of age. For a summary of State law regarding vending machines, see http://www.health.state.ny.us/nysdoh/smoking/vendmach.htm
Before You File Your DCA License Application:
You must obtain the following required documents before filing your application. Although DCA does not require submission of these documents in order to process your application in person or online, DCA reserves the right to request and examine the documents under section 20.104 of the New York City Administrative Code.
- Applicable Business Certificates based on your Business's Legal Structure
Sole Proprietorships operating under a name other than your own must file a Business/Assumed Name Certificate with the clerk of the county in which your business is conducted.
Sole Proprietorships doing business under your own name—and not under a trade or Doing-Business-As (DBA) name—do not need a Business Certificate.
General/Business Partnerships must file your Partnership Certificate with the clerk of the county in which your business is conducted.
Corporations, Limited Partnerships, Limited Liability Companies, or Limited Liability Partnerships must register and remain active with the New York State Department of State. Active status will be verified by DCA prior to license issuance. You can confirm the status of your business entity at NYS Web site. If applicable, you must also file an Assumed Name Certificate for your business.
Businesses incorporated out of state must obtain a Certificate of Doing Business in Good Standing from your home state’s Secretary of State and file this with an application for Authority to Conduct Business in New York with the New York State Secretary of State.
When You File Your DCA License Application:
Below are requirements when filing your license application:
- Basic License Application
Applying for the license online does not mean the license is automatically approved. A major credit card is required to submit applications online. Convenience fees apply. After reviewing application requirements, please click the Apply Online link at the bottom of this Web page to submit your application online.
For in-person application submission, applicants can download and complete the Basic License Application Form (in PDF).
Sales Tax Identification Number OR Certificate of Authority Application Confirmation Number
The Sales Tax Identification Number is the 9, 10, or 11-digit number on your New York State Department of Taxation and Finance Certificate of Authority. You must enter this number on the Basic License Application form. If you have not received your Certificate of Authority, please enter the 6-digit confirmation number you received when you successfully submitted the application for a Certificate of Authority.
To obtain an application for a Certificate of Authority, visit the NYS Department of Taxation and Finance online at http://tax.ny.gov or call (518) 485-2889. Allow four to six weeks after applying to the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance to receive your Certificate of Authority.
- New York State Department of Taxation and Finance Retail Dealer Certificate of Registration for Cigarettes
You must submit a current copy of your NYS Department of Taxation and Finance Retail Dealer Certificate of Registration for Cigarettes. To obtain an application for a Certificate of Registration for Cigarettes, visit the NYS Department of Taxation and Finance online at http://tax.ny.gov. Note: A retail dealer must be registered at each location where cigarettes are sold. (For example, a dealer selling cigarettes at four counters or booths at a civic center or a fair would need four New York State Certificates of Registration). Certificates of Registration must be renewed every year.
- Child Support Certification Form (download)
If your business is a SOLE PROPRIETORSHIP or GENERAL or LIMITED PARTNERSHIP, the proprietor or each individual general partner must submit a Child Support Certification Form.
- Granting Authority to Act Affirmation (download)
If this application will be filed by someone other than the license applicant, the license applicant must submit a Granting Authority to Act Affirmation.
- License Fee
For in-person application submissions, the License Fee must be paid by credit card, money order, or check. Cards accepted include Visa, MasterCard, American Express, and Discover Card. Checks or money orders must be payable to NYC Department of Consumer Affairs. The chart below lists the amount due depending upon when your license application is filed. Note: An odd year is any year ending in an odd digit; for example, 2009, 2011, etc. An even year is any year ending in an even digit; for example, 2010, 2012, etc.
Please note that convenience fees apply if you submit your license application online. A major credit card is required to submit applications online.
|CIGARETTE RETAIL DEALER LICENSE |
|License Term||License Expiration Date||If You File Your Application|
Between These Dates:
|Your License Fee is:|
| 2 years||December 31|
|From January 1 in an odd year to June 30 in an odd year|| $110|
| ||December 31|
|From July 1 in an odd year to December 31 in an odd year|| $85|
| ||December 31 |
|From January 1 in an even year to June 30 in an even year|| $110|
| ||December 31|
|From July 1 in an even year to December 31 in an even year|| $85|
APPLICATION FILING PROCESS:
Please make sure that you have reviewed and recorded the information required to submit a license application online before clicking the button below. Note: As outlined in the “When You File” section, applicants must submit proof of business address, proof of home address, a copy of a current New York State Department of Taxation and Finance Retail Dealer Certificate of Registration for Cigarettes, and a Granting Authority to Act Affirmation (if applicable). If you do not upload required documents as part of the application form submission, you must fax, e-mail, or bring documents to the DCA Licensing Center within five (5) business days after successfully filing the application form online. Applicants should follow instructions on the printed confirmation page. Your license application will not be complete without these requirements.
You will be routed to NYC Business Express.
Applications may be filed in person at the DCA Licensing Center at the address above between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday, and from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday.