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Macomb County SBDC Office

Mt. Clemens
Phone: 586-254-3551

About Us

The Michigan Small Business Development Center (SBDC) in Macomb County is based in the Macomb County Planning and Economic Development and is operated by Eastern Michigan University. All counseling at the Macomb County SBDC is by appointment.  

The SBDC offers no cost, one-on-one counsel to help pre-venture, early stage and growing businesses create business plans, marketing plans, gather secondary research information or develop loan packages to gain access to financing.  

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)


What is the difference between a DBA/Partnership (County) and an LLC or S Corp (State)?
Filing a DBA with the County does not establish a separate company for legal issues. You (and partner if you have one) are personally liable for debt. Corporations and LLCs are formed through the State. You do not want to be registered with both the County and the State, because that would be two different legal structures with two different levels of liability. Choose one or the other, not both. If you have a partnership, it is strongly recommended that you have a written agreement no matter what your legal structure may be.

Where do I go to form a Limited Liability Company (LLC) or S Corporation? Corporations and LLCs are formed with the State of Michigan. You can do a name search and get the forms that you need at

How do I get my business license?  There are several different types of licenses that are routinely referred to as a “business license”. To find out if the State of Michigan requires a license: State License Search. If you are a food-related business, there may be a license at the County level. Go to Macomb Food Licensing . Also, many cities require businesses to be licensed. Check with your municipal Clerk’s office. If you are making a product there may be federal regulations. Link here for Regulatory Robot

How do I get my tax-exempt number? If you are referring to a sales tax license, so that you don’t have to pay sales tax on items that your business purchases to resell to the public, you can register at Michigan Taxes. Keep in mind, that if you purchase items for your business to use (and not to resell), then you are the final user – and must pay sales tax on these items. If you are referring to being exempt from paying sales tax because you are a nonprofit, see the section on nonprofits.

Do I need a Federal Tax ID?
An Employer Identification Number (EIN) is also known as a Federal Tax Identification Number, and is used to identify a business entity. Generally, businesses need an EIN. To apply online go to and search for EIN. If you have a DBA with no employees, then you may use your own Social Security Number instead of getting an EIN. However, if you also need a Sales Tax License, then it is recommended that you first obtain an EIN.

What’s the difference between an independent contractor and an employee? The question of an employee vs. independent contractor has a number of many different tests the IRS apply to determine whether an individual is an employee or contractor. Improperly classifying someone as a contractor, whom the IRS considers to be an employee can result in stiff penalties. For further information: Topic No. 762 Independent Contractor vs. Employee 

How do I form a nonprofit business?
If you wish to form a nonprofit business, you do not register your name at the County Clerk’s office. You can register the nonprofit corporation with the State of Michigan. Examples of nonprofit businesses include: Sporting Leagues, Homeowners Associations and Youth Group Associations. For more information: If you will be soliciting donations from the public, you need apply with the IRS: IRS: Charities and Non-profits Nonprofits who solicit contributions from the public must also register with the state: Charity Solicitation License-Michigan.

How to Request Counseling Services?

  • To request business counseling, please complete our counseling application profile? (click here).

  • NOTE -- You may be required to submit a draft business plan or attend a free business workshop prior to meeting one-on-one with a business consultant.  To access our "Guide to Starting and Operating a Small Business" booklet online, please click here

Online Request for Counseling


Macomb County SBDC Office
1 South Main, 7th Floor Mt. Clemens, MI 48043