MBE Certification process can be completed within a 31-day timeframe. This is the objective of the Certification Committee and staff. However, this timeframe is usually not the norm. The norm is closer to 45 to 90 days. This added time is needed to get requested (additional explanations) information from the applicant. If the documentation presented does not demonstrate that the applicant meets the national Certification requirements, the applicant will be contacted formally. The time it takes to be certified is dependent on the firm’s legal structure, the complexity of its ownership structure and the physical location of the firm. However, the process has some built-in statutory activities that must take place. If the application package is not complete, the process will take longer.

(*)Note: Annually, Certified MBEs have to be re-certified prior to their anniversary date (last day of the month that they were originally certified). The Annual Recertification non-refundable. The process includes a submission of the Recertification Application and Minority Business Information System (MBISYS) Database Profile Form. IMPORTANT!! Please start the recertification process 60 to 90 days before the expiration of your anniversary date.

Steps in the MBE Certification Process

Please note the following seven (7) steps must be completed “in full” to obtain valid Minority Business Enterprise (MBE) Certification:

  1. Submit a “COMPLETE” signed application and nonrefundable APPLICATION FEE to the Carolinas-Virginia MSDC office (Applications are stamped in).
  2. For an application to be COMPLETE, it must include all required support DOCUMENTATION and support EXPLANATION. If your application is INCOMPLETE, you will be formally notified by fax or email requesting either additional information or an explanation. (NOTE: You need to have both an operational fax number and email address). If your application is complete, you will also be notified.
  3. Certification Committee REVIEW (1st Tuesday of each month) and recommendation for site visit or denial of applicant.
  4. SITE VISIT with principals (at least 51% must be present).
  5. APPROVAL of an MBE application must be done by the Carolinas-Virginia MSDC Board of Directors.
  6. Applicants will be formally notified of APPROVAL. In addition, the applicant will receive a Minority Business Information System (MBISYS) Database Profile Form that is critical that you review, as this is how a corporation will “view” you in the MBISYS system.
  7. “OFFICIAL” Carolinas-Virginia MSDC WELCOME LETTER from President and MBE Certificate will be emailed. Following the email distribution, the originals will be mailed.


Certification offers numerous benefits. However, there are some “Conditions of New MBE Certification:” 

  • First, an annual re-certification fee must be paid with submission of your recertification application. If your MBE Certification lapses, you will be required to repeat the entire “Certification process.”
  • Second, you must notify (within 30 days) the Carolinas-Virginia MSDC of any changes in ownership, control or operations in your firm. This includes name changes. Annually, you are required to submit a Recertification Application.
  • Third, your initial Certification “anniversary date” is very important. Sixty (60) to ninety (90) days prior to your Certification’s anniversary/expiration date, we recommend you start the recertification process. You will receive an annual reminder to recertify, but ultimately, you are responsible for the timely processing of your Recertification. Your ownership of this Recertification process ensures there is no lapse in your MBE benefits! Your anniversary date will not be “moved or changed” and will remain with your organization throughout the Certified MBE process.