Business Compliance Enforcement
The Chicago Department of Business Affairs & Consumer Protection (BACP) Business Compliance Enforcement (BCE) division is charged with preserving quality of life in our communities by ensuring that businesses comply with Chicago’s Municipal Code through enforcement action taken against unscrupulous and fraudulent businesses and business practices. BCE also has a robust compliance education program to work with businesses to help them stay in compliance.
Business Compliance Enforcement (BCE) Investigators conduct investigations at businesses throughout the City of Chicago to ensure compliance with Chicago’s Municipal Code. Investigators respond to residents’ complaints and conduct proactive investigations where necessary.
The BCE Nights and Weekends Enforcement is a specialized team that investigates businesses that do not operate during regular business hours or are more likely to commit violations during the night and weekend timeframe.
BACP leads the Business Compliance Task Force, a coordinated, multi-agency Task Force in collaboration with the Chicago Police Department and the Chicago Department of Buildings to prevent egregious and dangerous violations of the Municipal Code of Chicago.
BACP Investigators are easily identifiable. BACP Investigators will:
- Always identify themselves with City employee identification card and an identification
- Identify themselves upon entry to a business
- Never request onsite payment
Report anyone impersonating a BACP Investigator to the Chicago Police Department.
If violations are found, investigators will issue various types of enforcement actions to curtail irresponsible business ownership, including Notices to Correct (NTC), Administrative Notices of Violation (ANOV)/citations with potential fines and Cease and Desist Orders. BCE also conducts pre-license inspections for certain business activities.
No business activity can take place in the City of Chicago without first obtaining the required business license(s). For information about how to obtain a business license, visit Chicago Business Licensing. Some licenses will require a pre-license inspection by BACP, the Chicago Department of Public Health, Chicago Department of Buildings and/or other City departments.
Alternative Pricing System (APS)
Alternative Pricing System, or APS, is a system used by retails to inform consumers of the price of particular products, exempting the retailer from the requirement of individual price marking. BACP certifies stores that use APS to ensure that consumers are charged the correct price at checkout.
City of Chicago Rules Portal
Find the City’s Rules governing business activity. You can scroll through an alphabetical listing of the City’s Rules or search for Rules for the Department of Business Affairs and Consumer Protection.
BACP processes, investigates and prosecutes complaints filed through the City’s 311 system related to consumer fraud, business licensees, and cabs and ride share operators.
Hearings and Community Meetings
BACP prosecutes violations and issues disciplinary action when businesses are found to be in violation of the Municipal Code of Chicago.
Plan of Operations
Some businesses, especially liquor establishments, operate under individual Plans of Operation for their business.
Public Vehicle Investigations
BACP ensures Chicago’s public vehicles are safe, reliable and provide residents and visitors positive transportation options.
BACP investigators respond to complaints and conduct targeted investigations to ensure compliance with tobacco rules and regulations. These enforcement efforts maintain a fair marketplace for retailers and support the health of Chicago residents.