Before you can begin undertaking projects as a professional plumber, you will first need to obtain a license. To obtain a license, you will need to meet certain requirements that are determined by state and local governments. The licensing process will vary from state to state, but you can expect there to be some commonalities. The criterion of a plumber’s license is often based on experience, education, and exam scores.
Plumbing Regulations and Why They Are Necessary
Most state and municipal governments require plumbers to obtain a license before they can begin providing services as a contractor. This ensures that there are certain protections in place to prevent fraud and promote safety. Here is some information on why governments have certain licensing requirements:
“Much of the plumbing work in populated areas is regulated by government or quasi-government agencies due to the direct impact on the public’s health, safety, and welfare. Plumbing installation and repair work on residences and other buildings generally must be done according to plumbing and building codes to protect the inhabitants of the buildings and to ensure safe, quality construction to future buyers. If permits are required for work, plumbing contractors typically secure them from the authorities on behalf of home or building owners.”
Obtaining Your License
Depending on the state in which you live, you will need to meet certain requirements when it comes to education, training, and experience. Once you meet those requirements, then you can go about the licensing process. Most states also have different classifications of licensure, but you can expect there to be some overlap. Here are some common requirements:
- Proof of experience
- Certificates for insurance and surety bonds
- Employment history
- Personal information (name, address, phone number) and form of ID
- A passing score for your contractor’s exam
Once you fill out your application and include all the required information, you can then submit it to your local licensing board for review and approval. You should also follow the submission instructions issued by your local licensing board.
Many states will also require you to renew your license either annually or bi-annually. What you will need to do is fill out a renewal application, and possibly enroll in a Continuing Education (CE) course. The requirements will vary according to the state in which you live, but you can expect to complete at least 4 to 8 hours of CE. If you fail to undergo the renewal process, then your state or municipal government could suspend your license.
If you have any questions about the licensing process, we encourage you to contact your local government to learn more.