Architecture Licensing Compliance Guide
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Michigan Architecture Industry Licensing

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Licensing requirements for architecture industry firms and individuals in Michigan.

This page provides an overview of architecture industry licensing in Michigan for individuals and firms. You will find state requirements, application fees, filing instructions, and more. For assistance with licensing, please contact us to learn about our software and managed license services.

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Company Licenses

Michigan Architecture Company Licenses

Michigan Architecture, Engineering, or Surveying Firm Approval

Agency:Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) - Bureau of Professional Licensing
Law:

MCL 339.2010

Eligible Entity Types:
  • Business Corporations
  • Professional Corporations (domestic only)
  • Limited Liability Companies
  • Professional Limited Liability Companies (domestic only)
  • Partnerships
Ownership Requirements:

Business Corporations:

  • At 2/3 of the officers and directors must be licensed design professionals.

Professional Corporations:

  • All shareholders and officers must be licensed design professionals.

Limited Liability Companies:

  • At 2/3 of the members and managers must be licensed design professionals.

Professional Limited Liability Companies:

  • All members and managers must be licensed design professionals.

Partnerships:

  • At 2/3 of the partners must be licensed design professionals.
Notes:

Firm licenses are not issued at the state level, however, firms must receive approval from the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs before offering services to the public. Firms must also employ an individual in responsible charge of the professional services performed by the firm.

Fact Checked:5/28/20

Initial Registration

Agency Fee:

$0

Notes:

In order to obtain approval from the Department, send an email to BPLHelp@michigan.gov that contains the following:

  • Name of the firm seeking approval
  • Address of the firm
  • Name of the person submitting the request
  • A certification stating the following: "2/3 of the principals of (Firm Name) are licensed under Article 20 of the Occupational Code and the conduct of the firm and its principals complies with the law and rules promulgated by the Department."
Before you Apply:

Domestic Applicants:

  • For each professional service offered by the firm, identify a full-time employee who is a Michigan licensed design professional to be in responsible charge of the firm's professional activities in Michigan.
  • Ensure that your business entity will meet ownership requirements.

Foreign Applicants:

  • For each professional service offered by the firm, identify a full-time employee who is a Michigan licensed design professional to be in responsible charge of the firm's professional activities in Michigan.
  • Ensure that your Michigan entity will meet ownership requirements.
  • Obtain a certificate of good standing from your business entity's home state (to be filed during the foreign qualification process). The certificate cannot be more than 30 days old when filing foreign qualification documents.
How to Apply:

Domestic Applicants:

  1. File entity formation documents with the Bureau of Corporations, Securities & Commercial Licensing - Corporations Division.
  2. Send an email to BPLHelp@michigan.gov with the following: Name of the firm seeking approval, Address of the firm, Name of the person submitting the request, and a certification stating that "2/3 of the principals of (Your Firm Name) are licensed in Michigan under Article 20 of the Occupational Code and the conduct of the firm and its principals complies with the law and rules promulgated by the Department".

Foreign Applicants:

  1. File foreign qualification documents with the Bureau of Corporations, Securities & Commercial Licensing - Corporations Division.
  2. Send an email to BPLHelp@michigan.gov with the following: Name of the firm seeking approval, Address of the firm, Name of the person submitting the request, and a certification stating that "2/3 of the principals of (Your Firm Name) are licensed in Michigan under Article 20 of the Occupational Code and the conduct of the firm and its principals complies with the law and rules promulgated by the Department".
Fact Checked:5/28/20

Renewal Not Required

Not required



No renewal application is required, but upon request by the department, a firm shall report to the department the names and addresses of its principals, persons in responsible charge, unlicensed principals, and any other information the department considers necessary.

Michigan Interior Design Firm License

Not required



Interior Design Firm licensure is not required on the State level in Michigan.

Michigan does not currently license or register interior design businesses.

Individual Licenses

Michigan Individual Architecture Licenses

Michigan Architect License

Agency:Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs: Board of Architects
NCARB Certificate:Not required
Completion of CE/PDH:Required
Interview:Not required
NAAB-accredited degree:Required
NCARB IDP:Required
Additional Experience:Required
State-specific exam:Not required

Initial Registration

This section applies to architects that are applying for a license in Michigan for the first time.

Form:http://www.michigan.gov/architects Click on Forms & Publications
Agency Fee:

$65.00 application fee. No exam fee; Michigan is Direct Registration and is Not involved in the exam process.

Reciprocal Registration

This section applies to architects licensed in another state that are looking for reciprocal licensure in Michigan.

Agency Fee:

$65

Registration Renewal

This section applies to architects that are already licensed in Michigan and need to renew their license.

Agency Fee:

$70

Due:Biennially by October 31

Michigan Interior Designer License

Not required



Interior Designer licensure is not required on the State level in Michigan.

Michigan Landscape Architect License

Agency:Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) - Bureau of Professional Licensing
Fact Checked:1/16/19

Initial Registration

Form:

Landscape Architects License/Relicensure/Reinstatement Application

Agency Fee:

$260 if applying during the second half of the biennial license period and $320 if applying during the first half of the biennial licensing period.

Fact Checked:1/21/19

Registration Renewal

Filing Method:

Online

Agency Fee:

$120

Due:

Biennially by July 31.

Fact Checked:12/4/19

Learn about architecture licensing in other states:

ARE (Architect Registration Examination) - Assesses candidates for their knowledge, skills, and ability to provide the various services required to be a practicing architect.

AXP (Architectural Experience Program) - NCARB program for architectural internship, a requirement for licensure that occurs after filling the educational requirements.

BEFA (Broadly Experienced Foreign Architect) - An alternative NCARB certification that allows foreign architects to independently practice architecture.

COA (Certificate of Authorization) - The most common name of the registration required for firms to practice architecture in a given state.

Design Firm - Architectural firm registration is sometimes grouped with engineering and land surveying on a single “design firm” application form.

NCARB Certification - Licensed architects have the option to become Certificate holders to signify that they have met national standards established by U.S. licensing boards for protecting public health, safety, and welfare. Certification also facilitates reciprocal registration in all 54 jurisdictions, 11 Canadian jurisdictions, and can be used to support an application for licensure in other countries.

Reciprocity - This is when a licensed architect in one state can provide documentation (often a NCARB certificate) to more easily apply for licensure in another jurisdiction.

State Board - Often referred to as the State Architects Licensure Board or Board of Architects, an individual state’s board serves as the regulatory authority for architects. The board qualifies and licenses individuals seeking architectural licensure. The board is responsible for preserving the public health, safety, and welfare of individuals who occupy built environments.

National Architecture Accrediting Board
NAAB establishes criteria for and accredits professional architecture degree programs in the United States.

The American Institute of Architecture Students (AIAS)
AIAS is an independent, student-run group that promotes excellence in architecture education, training, and practice.

The American Institute of Architects (AIA)
AIA is a voluntary professional organization for architects providing advocacy, information, and community.

The Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA)
ACSA represents architectural education programs across the globe.

The National Council of Architectural Registration Boards (NCARB)
NCARB is the national organization representing the state registration boards.

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