Business License Information

Dorchester County Circuit
206 High Street
Cambridge, Maryland 21613

The license year runs from May 1st through the following April 30th.

Business License Requirements

The License Department at the Circuit Court for Dorchester County issues State of Maryland Traders Licenses for businesses located in Dorchester County. Licenses can be obtained during our regular hours of operation from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday except Court Holidays. Please visit for a full listing of Holidays.

Applicants who will buy and sell merchandise in Maryland, should register to obtain a Sales and Use Tax account number at the Comptroller of Maryland website link at This link includes convenient online services and information for Starting a New Business in Maryland.

Applicants may use a REGISTERED Trade Name for their business. To register a Trade Name with the State Department of Assessments and Taxation visit or call 410-767-1340.

To obtain a business license, applicants will need to provide the following information: (1) full name of corporation or sole proprietor; (2) full location address and mailing address, if different; (3) EIN # (Federal Identification number if corporation) or Social Security number; (4) telephone number; and (5) workers' compensation number for those who are employers.

Type of Payment

The Clerk’s Office can only accept cash, checks or money orders.

Licenses Available Are

  • Traders
  • Chain Store
  • Construction
  • Restaurant
  • Billiard
  • Vending Machines
  • Cigarette and Special Retail Cigarette
  • Cleaning, Dying, Pressing & Laundry
  • Music Box
  • Peddler
  • Pinball
  • Storage Warehouse

If you have more than one business location, you are considered a chain store.

Traders license fee is based on the wholesale value of your retail inventory. Please refer to the following chart for the fees. All licenses include a $2.00 issuing fee for each type of license.

Trader's License Fees -
All Counties Excluding Baltimore City
0 to 1,000 15
1,001 to 1,500 18
1,501 to 2,500 20
2,501 to 4,000 25
4,001 to 6,000 30
6,001 to 8,000 40
8,001 to 10,000 50
10,001 to 15,000 65
15,001 to 20,000 80
20,001 to 30,000 100
30,001 to 40,000 125
40,001 to 50,000 150
50,001 to 75,000 200
75,001 to 100,000 250
100,001 to 150,000 300
150,001 to 200,000 350
200,001 to 300,000 400
300,001 to 400,000 500
400,001 to 500,000 600
500,001 to 750,000 750
750,001 and over 800

A contractor or subcontractor who holds a license under the Maryland Home Improvement Law may still be required to hold a construction license issued by the Clerk of the Circuit Court. 

The following websites offer additional information on business licenses and opening a Maryland business: