WHO IS ELIGIBLE?

The process may be quite complicated, let along the amount of paperwork required. Although you can get the forms and prepare the application yourself, it is highly recommended you acquire professional assistance to better your chances of getting approved.

CALL 1-800-685-1227 We are experts in Minority Certifications

Answers to Common Questions We are experts in Minority Certifications

What is a Minority Business Enterprise (MBE)?

To be eligible for certification as an MBE firm, a business must be at least 51% owned and controlled by one or more socially-and economically-disadvantaged individuals. Under current State law, an individual is presumed to be socially and economically disadvantaged if that individual belongs to one of the following groups: African Americans, Hispanic Americans, Asian Pacific Americans, Subcontinent Asian Americans, Native Americans, and Women. Persons who own and control their business, but are not members of one of the above groups, also may be eligible for MBE certification if they establish their social and economic disadvantage. Disabled individuals may also apply for MBE certification. A determination of whether an individual meets MBE eligibility criteria is made on a case-by-case basis.

What are the Personal Net Worth eligibility requirements?

Both the MBE Program and the DBE Program have Personal Net Worth (PNW) eligibility requirements. PNW is the net value of assets held by an individual, and includes, if married, those assets held jointly or as community property with the spouse.

The PNW cap for the MBE Program is $1,713,333 (January 1 – December 31, 2018). PNW calculations for the MBE Program DO NOT include the applicant’s personal residence, the value of the applicant’s business or any other business owned by the applicant that is certified as an MBE, or $500,000 of qualified retirement savings.

The PNW cap for the DBE Program is $1,320,000. PNW calculations for the DBE Program DO NOT include the applicant’s personal residence and the value of the applicant’s business.

When an individual’s PNW exceeds the threshold, the individual is no longer eligible to participate in the applicable program.

How can I participate in the MBE/DBE Programs?

In order to participate in the MBE and/or DBE programs, a firm must obtain certification as an MBE and/or DBE. The Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) is the official certification agency for the State of Maryland and is the only State agency that has authority to certify a firm as an MBE and/or DBE. Certification is based on the requirements prescribed for each program, including the eligibility criteria set forth above. Firms certified as MBEs may participate as MBE prime or subcontractors on State contracts. Firms certified as DBE subcontractors may participate as DBEs on USDOT-assisted contracts administered by the MDOT Maryland State Highway Administration (SHA), MDOT Maryland Aviation Administration (MAA), MDOT Maryland Transit Administration (MTA), and the MDOT Office of Planning.

What is DBE Interstate Certification?

The Maryland Department of Transportation's (MDOT) Office of Minority Business Enterprise (OMBE), the official certification agency for the State, reviews all out-of-state applications by firms currently certified as a Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) by their home state who wish to apply for certification as a DBE in Maryland.