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Certificate of Occupancy

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Currently, the City of Dana Point does not require a City Business License, however, the City does require a Certificate of Occupancy to be issued for any new business, existing business undergoing any tenant improvements that require a Building Permit, change of ownership when no tenant improvements are constructed, any new use, or change of business use or type in existing space(s). 


When there are no improvements involved, the process consists of completing a Certificate of Occupancy application, providing a basic plan, obtaining the approvals, paying the required fee, and passing an on-site inspection. The Certificate of Occupancy will be available for pick up the next business day or mailed to you within 5 business days. 


When improvements are part of the project, a building permit application and construction specific plans are required to be submitted for review. Upon obtaining the approvals and paying the required fees, the permit is obtained by a licensed contractor performing the work. Commercial projects of any type do not qualify as an Owner/Builder permit. After passing the required inspections, the Certificate of Occupancy will be available for pick up the next business day or mailed to you within 5 business days.

Related Link:

  • Tenant Improvements Plan Check Submittal Requirements (B105-TI SUB)



Food related businesses are subject to specific Water Quality Grease Management Requirements & Orange County Health Department approval. Prior to issuance of a Certificate of Occupancy, compliance with the grease management requirements shall be certified on the WQ Grease Management & Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) Ban Certification Form. Some of these requirements may require a separate Building Permit.

Signs or Banners: Signs or Banners require a separate permit process and must have a valid Certificate of Occupancy in place prior to Sign/Banner permit issuance. Please visit the Planning Counter for all permitting processes and information.