Business Licences 

Under the Security Services and Investigators Act, contract businesses and the in-house departments of companies, offering security, investigation and locksmith services must be licensed; although some exceptions apply (see the Policy Manual for a complete list).  Performing or offering licensed services without a licence is an offense under the Act and may result in fines or court appearances.

Applicants for business licences must meet basic licensing requirements before applying to receive a licence.  Business licences are normally issued for 3 year terms and are subject to the terms and conditions of the Act, Regulation and Policy.  Applicants should familiarize themselves with these documents and their rights and responsibilities under the legislation. 

Business licensees are responsible for uniform and vehicle marking requirements.  In addition, business licensees set the standards for what equipment is used by their employees and contractors, within what is permitted.

IMPORTANT NOTE:  Business licensees are no longer responsible for licensing their employees, except applicants for training licences.  See Individual Licensing for details on Training Licences.

Licence Classes

Under the Security Services and Investigators Act, a contract business or the in-house department of a company may be licensed in the following classes: 

  • Security services
  • Executive protection
  • Loss prevention
  • Patrol dog services
  • Alarm response
  • Investigation services
  • Locksmiths
  • Locksmith equipment sales and promotion business
  • Automotive lock bypass services

For a complete description of the services each type of licence may deliver, refer to the definitions.   Business licensees may apply for more than one licence class.  There are some exceptions listed in the Policy Manual.

Exceptions from Licensing

Business regulated under other federal and provincial legislation may be exempt from licensing under the Security Services and Investigators Act.  Refer to section 10 of the Act and Regulation for a complete list of exemptions or call the Licensing Department at 1-877-462-0791.

Licensing Requirements

Contract businesses or in-house departments (registered-user businesses) applying for a licence under the Security Services and Investigators Act must meet the qualifications listed below.  Review the descriptions in the policy manual to determine which licence classes apply to your company.

Contract Business Licence

Companies providing contract security, investigation or locksmith services in Alberta must:

  • Be a registered company in Canada with an address in the province
  • Hold a business licence or permit, if such is required, in the municipality within which the business licensee operates
  • Hold $1 million liability insurance
  • The owners, partners and board of directors must:
    • Have no serious criminal record for which a pardon has not been granted
    • Have no outstanding criminal charges
    • Not be the subject of a criminal investigation
  • In the case of a sole proprietorship*, applicants must meet the business licence qualifications plus the individual licensing qualifications as follows:
    • At least 18 years of age
    • A Canadian citizen or legally entitled to work in Canada
    • Competent and of good character
    • Have no serious criminal record for which a pardon has not been granted
    • Have no outstanding criminal charges
    • Not be the subject of a criminal investigation
    • Fluent in speaking English
    *Soles proprietorships are only required to pay business license fees but must submit both the business and individual licensing application forms and documentation.

Registered-User Business Licence

The in-house departments of companies providing security, investigation and locksmith services in Alberta must:

  • Be a registered company in Canada with an address in the province
  • Hold a business licence or permit, if such is required, in the municipality within which the business licensee operates
  • Hold $1 million liability insurance
  • The owners, partners or board of directors will not be required to under go Police Information and Criminal Record Checks for this licence type

Branch/multiple locations

Businesses with multiple locations, branches or outlets will be required to have only one licence issued to the head or primary office.  The primary business licensee is required to issue copies of the licence certificate to each branch office and it must be displayed at each location.

Application Forms for Business Licence and Police Information and Criminal Record Checks

The following forms are required for an application for a business licence.  For information on licensing process and requirements, click on the links below.

Business Licence Application/Renewal Form & Guide
 
Business Licence Checklist & Fees
 

Ensure all forms are complete and supporting documents, photo and payment are attached when submitting an application.  Incomplete applications will be returned, resulting in a delay in processing the application.

Police Information and Criminal Record Checks (Contract Business Applicants ONLY):  The owners, partners and board of directors of a Contract Business Licence applicant must undergo a police information and criminal record check at the time of application and every 3 years at the time of renewal.  The owners/partners/board members of a Registered-User Business are not required to undergo this check.  

Applicants should report to the police service closest to where they reside, bring 2 pieces of government issued ID (at least one must be photo ID) and a colour passport-size photo (no more than 3 months old).  Request an Employment Police Information Check and provide the photo for signature of a police service representative.  Contract Business owners/partners/board members who require an individual licence should follow the instructions for Individual Licences. Contact the police service for hours of operation and fees.

Fees

Business licences are issued for a 3 year term.  If a licensee fails to comply with the requirements of the legislation, the Ministry may impose annual licence renewals until compliance standards are met.

All fees listed below are for 3 year terms.

One and 2 year terms are available.  Complete application packages must be submitted for every renewal period.

Investigator$ 1500.00
Locksmiths$ 1500.00
Automotive Lock Bypass and Locksmith Equipment Sales and Promotion $ 1200.00
Contract Security Services, Executive Security, Loss Prevention and Patrol Dog Services$ 1500.00
In-house/Registered-User Businesses$ 1200.00

Uniforms/Vehicles

Uniform and vehicle appearance requirements apply only to businesses offering security services, alarm response and patrol dog services.

  • Uniforms:  Security services personnel are required to wear a uniform while on duty, unless exempt.  The Policy Manual outlines the uniform appearance requirements and exemptions from wearing uniforms.
  • Vehicle Markings:  Vehicle markings are not mandatory; however, if a business licensee offering security services chooses to mark their vehicle, it must conform to the standards outlined in the Regulation and policy manual.

Reporting and Recordkeeping

Business licensees are required to keep certain business and human resources records for review during investigations or audits.  Recordkeeping requirements are outlined in the Policy Manual.

Business licensees are required to report any significant incidents, use-of-force or injury to the Registrar within 24 hours of the event.  In addition, business licensees must report all hires and termination within 30 days.  Reporting requirements are specified in the Act and Regulation and are outlined in the policy manual.