Step by step

Comply with the Accessibility Business Entrance (ABE) program

Hire an access professional, categorize your entrance, and submit plans to make it accessible.

Most businesses must fill out a category checklist.

Follow these steps to hire a professional and fill out your category checklist to comply with the program.

Exemptions and waivers

  • You may request an exemption from the program if you do not serve the public. Request an exemption
  • You may apply for a waiver if you have already done work to make your primary business entrance accessible. Apply for a waiver

Submit a checklist, waiver, or exemption as soon as you can. The deadline has passed. There are no immediate penalties, but you will be subject to code enforcement processes in the future.

Building permits for work to make a business entrance accessible must be obtained by September 29, 2025. 


Hire an access professional




1 to 2 hours

You must hire a licensed architect, licensed engineer, or a Certified Access Specialist (CASp) to work with to complete these steps.

They will fill out the Category Checklist form and help you create a plan to make your entrance accessible.

Show more

Evaluate the primary business entrance

Have your access professional conduct an in-person survey of your primary entrance.

If your building has more than 1 public accommodation, with separate entrances, they should check each entrance.

Show more

Fill out the Category Checklist form

Have your access professional fill out a separate form for each entrance.

They will choose your entrance’s category. The category will determine if you need to make changes to make it accessible. 

Your access professional must explain any proposed changes on the Category Checklist Compliance form.

Show more

Submit the Category Checklist form


10 minutes

Submit your form online

You do not have to submit a Disability Access checklist with your ABE application.

Show more

Make minor changes and resubmit the form


Varies by project


Varies by project

If you can make your entrance accessible with a small, non-structural change, make the change.

After you have made the change, hire the same access professional you worked with before. Have them submit another Category Checklist form showing that your entrance is now a Category 1. 

DBI will mail you a Certificate of Final Completion verifying compliance.

Show more

Get permits and make major changes


Varies by project


Varies by project

If your entrance requires more complex, structural changes, you will need building permits. Apply for your permit by December 31, 2024.

Work with your access professional and DBI’s Technical Services Division to get your permits.

You will likely need to fill out a Form 3/8.

In your permit application's project description (line 16), include:

  • "For compliance with the ABE program”

Please include your ABE number for each permit application. If you need to verify your ABE number, please email

Include your category checklist within your permit drawings.

You must obtain your building permits by September 29, 2025. 

DBI will mail you a Certificate of Final Completion verifying compliance once your permit project is complete.

Show more

Last updated May 9, 2024