Department of Commerce, Community, & Economic Development - Corporations, Business, and Professional Licensing
Inspiring public confidence through balanced regulation of competent professional and business services.
- License businesses to engage in commerce in Alaska, and grant endorsements for sale of tobacco products, electronic smoking products, or products containing nicotine.
- Administer 43 professional licensing programs; 22 of these are managed solely by the division, and 21 are governed by boards and commissions with divisional administrative and investigative support.
- Register Corporations and Trademarks for entities engaged in commerce in Alaska
- Provide the means to file a complaint or bring a matter pertaining to actions of a licensed or unlicensed professional or business to investigative staff.
|Mission Results||Core Services|
|A: Result - Commercial services are regulated through the business licensing program, and professional services are delivered by competent, qualified licensees.|
Target #2: Manage registration of corporations, limited liability companies, limited partnerships, and limited liability partnerships.
Analysis of results and challenges: Notifications to non-compliant corporations were reinstituted in FY2012, resulting in an increase in the number of entities in good standing. The trend of growth in compliant entities continued in FY2020.
|A1: Core Service - License businesses to engage in commerce in Alaska, and grant endorsements for sale of tobacco products, electronic smoking products, or products containing nicotine.|
Target #1: Businesses are licensed so that they may enjoy the "privilege of engaging in a business in the state" (AS 43.70.020). Endorsements are issued to businesses selling tobacco products, electronic smoking products, or products containing nicotine.
Analysis of results and challenges: Endorsements are issued to businesses selling tobacco products, electronic smoking products, or products containing nicotine under AS 43.70.075. This data tracks newly licensed businesses and new endorsements authorizing tobacco retail sales. Effective January 1, 2019, sales of electronic smoking products and products containing nicotine required an endorsement to a business license, resulting in a significant increase in the number of new endorsements in 2019.
|A2: Core Service - Administer 43 professional licensing programs; 22 of these are managed solely by the division, and 21 are governed by boards and commissions with divisional administrative and investigative support.|
Target #1: Professional services are available to the public and have competent, qualified licensees.
Analysis of results and challenges: Alaska benefits by increasing the number and availability of competent, qualified practitioners doing business in the state.
In an ongoing effort to refine its processes and more accurately represent its functions, the division improved its method of calculating the number of professional licensees. Beginning in FY2012, the new method implemented includes all license activity over the course of a fiscal year and is one of the reasons the number of professional licensees increased from FY2011. In FY2017, a few additional existing transaction types totaling 3,386 licenses, exemptions, or practice plans were included in the license count to better reflect the volume of licensing activity occurring within the division. Administrative adjustments were made again in FY2019, resulting in the appearance of a slight decrease in professional licenses.
|A3: Core Service - Register Corporations and Trademarks for entities engaged in commerce in Alaska|
Target #1: Provide for the registration of newly created corporate entities.
Analysis of results and challenges: Domestic (Alaskan) and foreign (non-Alaskan) entities (i.e. business corporations, professional corporations, nonprofit corporations, cooperative corporations, limited liability companies, limited partnerships, limited liability partnerships, and religious corporations) doing business in the state are required to register with the division. The above table shows the total number of new domestic and foreign entities registered within the fiscal year.
Target #2: Provide for registration and renewal of trademarks.
Analysis of results and challenges: Entities may choose to register trademarks, which include trademarks, service marks, certification marks, and collective marks. The above table shows the total number of trademarks within the fiscal year. New and renewed trademarks are good for five years.
|A4: Core Service - Provide the means to file a complaint or bring a matter pertaining to actions of a licensed or unlicensed professional or business to investigative staff.|
Target #1: Review 100 percent of complaints that have a potential for licensing violations and investigate when appropriate.
Business and Professional License Complaints and Cases
Analysis of results and challenges: One of the division's goals is to protect Alaskan consumers by thoroughly and efficiently responding to all complaints about unsafe practice or unlicensed professionals and businesses. Efforts are made to effectively prioritize and address complaints based first upon the seriousness of the alleged violation then on the date of receipt.
The number of open cases reflects ongoing investigative efforts of all types, which fall into several general categories described below:
Intakes: Initial contacts from citizens that do not result in a formal written complaint to the division. Intakes with no response from the complainant are generally closed within thirty days but may be reopened should a written complaint be returned.
Complaints: Formal written grievances about a licensee that are opened as matters and either:
- Closed without action because the allegation is not jurisdictional under licensing statutes or regulations or
- Closed without action because the board has determined the alleged conduct does not rise to the level appropriate for licensing action.
Investigations: Matters clearly demonstrating the potential for violation of licensing statutes or regulations. These are reviewed by a board member and may be forwarded to the full board for formal censure or discipline.
Probation and Monitoring: Additional matters opened by the division to track adherence to the terms of mandated license probation or monitoring as part of discipline determined by the board. Usually this is done because of board action after a formal investigation.
The number of closed cases includes investigative actions of all types which were resolved during the fiscal year. FY2014 resulted in a dramatic increase in both opened and closed cases due to a change in tracking methodology. Investigative reviews of license applications with affirmative responses to professional fitness questions were not assigned a case number during prior fiscal years. Tracking by case number of this work resulted in a statistical increase in both opened and closed cases from FY2014 forward. Recent fiscal years show a stabilization of cases due to the change in methodology and consistent management within the section.
The number of closed investigations reflects the most serious and complex investigative matters undertaken by the division. Most investigations result in formal censure or discipline by the board, commission, or division on behalf of programs without a statutory board.
Current as of December 15, 2020