license commission

Used Car Dealer Class I, II, III License


Used Card

Used Car Dealer Class I, II, III License

Issued by: License Commission

Governed By: Massachusetts General Law ch. 140 sec. 57-59

Process Length: Approximately four to six weeks

Fee: $175 hearing and newspaper advertising fee; $200.00 annual license fee; $10 for each Criminal Record Check form.

Notes: If the applicant has not held a license in the year prior to making the application, they must file a duplicate of the application with the Registry of Motor Vehicles.


Step 1:

The License Commission issues the Used Car Dealer Class I, II, III License. The applicant must obtain and complete the Application to Buy, Sell, Exchange or Assemble Second Hand Motor Vehicles or Parts thereof and the Licensed Premises Inspection Approval form, and the Criminal Record Check form.

Step 2:

The applicant submits the Licensed Premises Inspection Approval form to the Inspectional Services Department (ISD) for zoning approval and sign off. If the use does not comply with the provisions of the Zoning Ordinance, the applicant has the option of applying for a variance or a special permit to the Board of Zoning Appeals (BZA).

*On rare occasions, a proposed project may be subject to approval from the Planning Board instead of the BZA. ISD will advise the applicant if that is the case.

Step 3:

The applicant submits all forms, a sketch or plan on an 8.5" x 11" paper designating street and number and the proposed layout of the premises to be licensed, and a copy of the Articles of Organization (if a corporation ) or a copy of the Business Certificate obtainable from the City Clerk's Office. The applicant pays $175 for a hearing and newspaper advertising fee and $10 for each Criminal Record Check form. The License Commission will schedule a hearing on the second or fourth Tuesday of the month and advertise in The Cambridge Chronicle at least ten days before the hearing. The applicant must copy the ad and notify abutters (according to the latest Assessor's list) by certified mail, return receipt requested, and submit certified mail receipts. Before the hearing, the applicant must submit a letter from the landlord granting permission to use the property for such a business. The applicant must attend the hearing.

Step 4:

The applicant must submit the Licensed Premises Inspection Approval form to an ISD building inspector for their approval and sign-off. If the applicant has a current Certificate of Occupancy, this sign-off is not required.

Step 5:

The Fire Department will automatically inspect the site based on the License Commission hearing agenda.

Step 6:

The License Commission will issue the license and do a follow-up site visit.

Visiting City Hall

Cambridge City Hall

795 Massachusetts Ave
Cambridge MA, 02139
Ph: 617-349-4000
TTY: 617-349-4242

Hours of Service

Monday: 8:30am-8pm
Tuesday-Thursday: 8:30am-5pm
Friday: 8:30am-12pm

Louis DePasquale
City Manager

Lisa C. Peterson
Deputy City Manager