A Certificate of Occupancy (CO) states the legal use and/or type of permitted occupancy for a building. New buildings must have a CO, and existing buildings must have a current or amended CO when construction will change their use, egress or type of occupancy.
No one may legally occupy a building until the Department has issued a Certificate of Occupancy or Temporary Certificate of Occupancy.
The Department issues a final Certificate of Occupancy when the completed work matches the submitted plans for new buildings or major alterations. It issues a Letter of Completion for minor alterations to properties. These documents confirm the work complies with all applicable laws, all paperwork has been completed, all fees owed to the Department have been paid, all relevant violations have been resolved and all necessary approvals have been received from other City Agencies.
Using the Project’s Job/CO Number:
Using the Property Address:
You can print a copy of a building CO from any computer. Use the Buildings Information System to look up the property. Under the Building Profile, the View Certificates of Occupancy link will display the CO. You can also obtain a copy of a Certificate of Occupancy from the Department’s Customer Service Counter in your borough office.
Buildings built before 1938 aren’t required to have a Certificate of Occupancy – unless later alterations changed its use, egress or occupancy. If you require proof of a building’s legal use – and it’s exempt from the CO requirement – contact the Department’s borough office where the property is located to request a Letter of No Objection.
Owners must make sure a building or unit has a Certificate of Occupancy. In some circumstances, the Department may determine that a property is safe to occupy, but there are outstanding issues requiring final approval. A Temporary Certificate of Occupancy – or TCO – indicates the property is safe for occupancy, but the TCO has an expiration date. TCOs typically expire 90 days after issuance.