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Electrician Licensing Requirements by State: A Comprehensive Guide

Electrician Licensing

 

As an electrician, you’re a skilled tradesman that undertakes highly specialized work. With strict licensing requirements in almost all states across the United States, you’ll have spent many years learning your trade. However, these requirements vary from state to state. It is vital to understand the electrician licensing requirements that are specific to the state in which you plan to work, whether you are an apprentice, journeyman or master electrician. Together with your electrician insurance, this license will be your first step to a successful career.

We’ve put together this comprehensive guide of licensing requirements in each of the 50 states. Our list is in alphabetical order to make it easier for you to find the state that you’re looking for. If you click on the highlighted state names, you’ll be directed to a link for the relevant government agency. If there’s no link that means there are no licensing requirements. Good luck!

Alabama

To work as an electrician in Alabama, you must hold a state license issued by the Alabama Electrical Contractors Board.

  • Journeyman Electrician – You must show proof of 8,000 hours of experience in the installation of electrical wiring, apparatus or equipment, light, heat or power. You can substitute one year of education in an electrical curriculum or apprenticeship program for 1,000 hours of experience, up to a maximum of 2,000 hours. You must pass an exam.
  • Electrical Contractor – You must have held a supervisory or managerial position in commercial, industrial or residential electrical work. You must have had a minimum of 8,000 hours of experience. You can substitute one year of electrical curriculum for half a year of experience up to a maximum of 2,000 hours. You must pass an exam.

Alaska

You must hold a state license to work as an electrician in Alaska. There are multiple licenses awarded by the Alaska Department of Labor and Workplace Development.

  • Journeyman Electrician – You must show at least 8,000 hours of work experience. A minimum of 6,000 of these hours must be commercial or industrial experience. A maximum of 1,000 hours of related education or power lineman experience can be included as part of the experience. You must pass an exam. You’ll need to complete 16 hours of continuing education to renew your license.
  • Residential Electrician – You must show proof of 4,000 hours of work experience. Up to 500 hours of related education can substitute for 500 hours of experience. With this license you will only be able to work as a journeyman on residential sites. The license will allow you to be a trainee on commercial sites. You’ll need to pass an exam.
  • Electrical Administrator – An electrical administrator must be assigned to a licensed contractor. There are six license categories – unlimited commercial wiring, residential wiring, controls and control wiring, inside communications, outside communications, and unlimited line work outside. You must show proof of work experience, which generally requires between two and four years of experience. You must pass an exam.

Arizona

Electricians must hold a state license to work in Arizona. There are three electrical licensing classifications with the licenses awarded by the Arizona Registrar of Contractors.

  • Specialty Residential Contracting, Electrical R-11 – This license allows you to install and repair residential electrical systems.
  • Specialty Residential Contracting, Electrical C-11 – This license allows you to install, alter and repair wiring, using electrical energy less than 600 volts.
  • Specialty Dual License Contracting, Electrical CR-11 – This license covers both residential and commercial electrical work.

You must show proof of four years of experience and must pass a business exam and a trade exam to be licensed.

Arkansas

As an electrician, you must have a state license to work in Arkansas. The license is awarded by the Arkansas Department of Labor. There are many classifications of licenses:

  • Master electrician – You must have a degree in electrical engineering plus 2 years of construction related experience, or 6 years of experience in the construction industry with 2 years of experience as a licensed journeyman electrician, or a combination of training and experience that is approved by the board.
  • Journeyman electrician – You must have completed a four-year apprenticeship program, or have eight years (16,000 hours) of electrical construction experience.
  • Residential master electrician – You must have three years of experience wiring one and two-family homes with one year of experience as a licensed residential journeyman, or a combination of training and experience.
  • Residential journeyman electrician – You must have two years of experience wiring one and two-family homes, or a two-year combination of training and education.

You must pass an exam for all licenses.

California

An electrician must hold a state license to work in California. The C-10 Electrical Contractor license is issued by the Department of Consumer Affairs, Contractors State License Board and will be required before you bid on any projects worth $500 or more. You must have four years of experience at a journeyman level or as a foreman, supervising employee, contractor or owner-builder. You’ll need to pass a Law and Business exam, and a trade exam.

Colorado

Electricians must hold a state license to work in Colorado. The license is awarded by the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies, Electrical Board. There are a number of classifications of licenses and you must pass an exam to qualify for each license.

  • Residential Wireman – You must show proof of 4,000 hours of electrical construction wiring experience for lights, heat and power, within the past two years.
  • Journeyman Electrician – You must show proof of 8,000 hours of experience within the past four years in electrical construction wiring for lights, heat and power, with at least 4,000 hours in the past two years being in commercial and/or industrial work.
  • Master Electrician – You must show that in addition to the journeyman electrician requirements you have at least 2,000 hours of experience in the past one year in planning, layout and supervising installation.

Connecticut

To work as an electrician in Connecticut, you must hold an electrical license awarded by the Connecticut Department of Consumer Protection.

  • Journeyperson – You must have completed an approved apprenticeship program or show proof of 8,000 hours of experience and proof of trade-related education. You’ll need to pass a trade exam.
  • Contractor – You must show a copy of a journeyperson license and must show proof of two years of experience at a journeyperson level. You’ll need to pass the trade exam and the business and law exam.

Delaware

As an electrician in Delaware, you must hold a state license to work. There are different categories of licenses awarded by the Delaware Division of Professional Regulation. These include:

  • Master – If you have not completed an approved apprenticeship program, you must show proof of six years of full-time experience supervised by a licensed master electrician. You can substitute two years of experience for technical training. You must pass an exam. You must show proof of general liability insurance.
  • Master Special – If you do not qualify for a master electrician license, this license qualifies you to work in the specialty areas of electric signs, elevators, HVAC, primary distribution systems, pools, and refrigeration. You must show six years of experience in an area of specialty, supervised by a licensed master electrician or licensed master special electrician. You must pass an exam. You must show proof of general liability insurance.
  • Limited – If you have not completed an approved apprenticeship program, you must show three years of experience supervised by a licensed master or limited electrician. You must pass an exam. You must show proof of general liability insurance.
  • Limited Special – If you don’t qualify as a limited electrician, this license qualifies you to work in the areas of HVAC and pools. You must show three years of experience in an area of specialty, supervised by a licensed master electrician or licensed master electrician special. You must pass an exam. You must show proof of general liability insurance.
  • Journeyperson – This license allows you to do electrical work under supervision. You must have completed an approved apprenticeship program. You must show proof of general liability insurance.

Florida

To work as an electrical contractor in Florida, you must hold a state license issued by the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation. You must pass a two-part exam. You must show proof of experience with at least 40% of the experience being in 3-phase services.

Georgia

To work as an electrician in Georgia, you must hold a state license from the Georgia Construction Industry Licensing Board, Division of Electrical Contractors. To be eligible to take the exam, you’ll need to show proof of four years of experience under a licensed contractor undertaking contracting work. You must pass a trade exam.

Hawaii

Electricians in Hawaii must hold a state license to work. The license is awarded by the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, Professional and Vocational Licensing, Board of Electricians and Plumbers. There are multiple categories of licenses, each with their own specific requirements. For each license, you must pass a board exam.

  • Journey Worker Electrician – You must show proof of five years and more than 10,000 hours of experience in residential or commercial wiring. You must have completed an appropriate program of study with 240 hours of electrical learning.
  • Supervising Electrician – You must show proof of four years of experience as a licensed journey worker electrician.
  • Journey Worker Industrial Electrician – You must show proof of four years of experience and more than 8,000 hours. You must have completed an appropriate program of study with 200 hours of electrical learning.
  • Supervising Industrial Electrician – You must show proof of three years of experience as a licensed journey worker industrial electrician.
  • Journey Worker Specialty Electrician – You must show proof of three years of experience and more than 6,000 hours. You must have completed an appropriate program of study with 120 hours of electrical learning.
  • Supervising Specialty Electrician – You must show proof of two years of experience as a licensed journey worker specialty electrician.
  • Maintenance Electrician – You must show proof of one year of experience and have completed an appropriate program of study with 80 hours of electrical learning. Or, you must have completed two years of related schooling with at least 1,000 hours of hands-on lab work.

Idaho

Electricians must hold a state license to work in Idaho. There are many categories of licenses each with its own electrician licensing requirements. The licenses are awarded by the Idaho Division of Building Safety.

  • Apprentice Electrician – You do not need to be licensed, but you must be registered. You’ll need to be employed by a licensed electrical contractor and you must work under the constant supervision of a licensed electrical journeyman or master electrician. You must have completed or be enrolled in a training course.
  • Journeyman Electrician – To qualify to write the exam, you must have completed a four-year apprenticeship study program. You must show proof of at least 6,000 hours of experience as an apprentice with not more than 75% being in a single category (residential, commercial or industrial). All experience must be under the supervision of a licensed journeyman or master electrician. You must pass the exam and show proof of 8,000 hours of experience to qualify for the license.
  • Master Electrician – You must have held an Idaho Electrical Journeyman license for four years. You must pass an exam.
  • Electrical Contractor – You must be or employ a master electrician. You must pass an exam. You must have liability insurance and worker’s compensation insurance.
  • Electrical Specialty Trainee – You do not need to be licensed, but you must be registered. You’ll need to be employed by a licensed electrical specialty contractor in the same specialty category and you must work under the constant supervision of a licensed electrical specialty journeyman in the same specialty category.
  • Specialty Journeyman Electrician – You must show proof of two years and at least 4,000 hours of experience within the scope of the specialty. You must pass an exam.
  • Specialty Electrical Contractor – You must be or employ a licensed electrical specialty contractor in the same specialty category. You must pass an exam.

Illinois

There are no state electrician license requirements in Illinois. All licensing is done at the municipal level so you need to check these before you begin work.

Indiana

Electricians in Indiana do not need to hold a state license. However, there are electrician licensing requirements at the local level so make sure to check these before you begin to work.

Iowa

All electricians must hold a state license to work in Iowa. There are multiple classifications of licenses, each with its own electrician licensing requirements.

  • Residential Electrician – You must pass a trade exam.
  • Residential Master Electrician – You must be licensed as a journeyman, residential or special residential electrician.
  • Master Electrician – You must have held a journeyman electrician license for at least one year.
  • Residential Electrical Contractor – You must be licensed as a Class A or Class B Master or Residential Master Electrician. You must show proof of liability insurance and be registered as a contractor with the Iowa Division of Labor.
  • Electrical Contractor – You must be licensed as a Class A or Class B Master Electrician. You must show proof of liability insurance and be registered as a contractor with the Iowa Division of Labor.

Kansas

Electricians in Kansas do not need a state license to work. However, there are local electrician licensing requirements so make sure to check with your local jurisdiction before you start work.

Kentucky

As an electrician in Kentucky, you’ll need a state license before you can work. The licenses are awarded by the Department of Housing, Buildings, and Construction, Electrical Division. The requirements depend on the license you’re applying for and include:

  • Electrical Contractor – You must pass an exam. You must show proof of worker’s compensation insurance and liability insurance.
  • Master Electrician – You must show proof of eight years of work experience. You can substitute two years of experience for having completed an approved training course of at least 576 hours. You must pass an exam.
  • Electrician – You must show proof of six years of experience. You can substitute two years of experience for having completed an approved training course of at least 576 hours. You must pass an exam.

Louisiana

There are no state licensing requirements for electricians in Louisiana; however, as an electrician, if you perform work which is worth more than $10,000, you must hold a commercial contractors license issued by the Louisiana State Licensing Board for Contractors. You’ll need to pass a trade exam, as well as a business and law exam.

Maine

Electricians in Maine must be licensed at the state level. There are multiple licensing classifications including:

  • Apprentice Electrician – You must be enrolled in a four to five year educational and work program under the supervision of a licensed master, journeyman or limited electrician.
  • Electrical Helper License – You must have started working or have started an electrical program.
  • Journeyman Electrician – You must complete 2,000 hours of experience and pass an exam.
  • Limited Electrician – You must have completed an approved electrical study program of at least 576 hours. You must pass an exam.
  • Master Electrician – You must complete an approved course of 576 hours of study. You must have completed at least 4,000 hours as a journeyman electrician or have 12,000 hours of experience in electrical installations. You must pass an exam.

Maryland

Electricians in Maryland must hold a state license to work. The Maryland Board of Master Electricians issues one license category – Master Electrician. To qualify, you must have seven years of experience in providing electrical services under the supervision of a master electrician or similarly qualified government employee. You can substitute up to three years of approved education for years of experience. You must pass an exam.

Massachusetts

As an electrician, you must hold a state license to be able to work in Massachusetts. There are specific electrician licensing requirements, depending on the license you’re applying for. The licenses are awarded by the Board of State Examiners of Electricians.

  • Journeyman Electrician – You must have a high school diploma. You must have completed 600 hours of journeyman curriculum. You must also have four years of experience with at least 8,000 hours. You must pass an exam.
  • Master Electrician – You must have completed a 150-hour Master curriculum. You must have had at least one year as a licensed journeyman. You must pass an exam.

Michigan

You’ll need to hold a state license to work as an electrician in Michigan. The licensing of electricians is regulated by the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA), Bureau of Construction Codes. Electrician licensing requirements include:

  • Journeyman Electrician – You must be at least 20 years of age. You must have at least 8,000 hours of experience over not less than four years under the supervision of a licensed electrician. You may be able to exchange years of education for experience. You must pass an exam.
  • Master Electrician – You must be at least 22 years of age. You must have at least 12,000 hours of experience over not less than six years, under the supervision of a master electrician. You must pass an exam.

Minnesota

As an electrician, you must hold a state license to work in Minnesota. The license is awarded by the Department of Labor and Industry.

  • Class A Master Electrician – You must show proof of 60 months of experience in multiple categories. You must pass an exam.
  • Class A Journeyman Electrician – You must show proof of 48 months of experience in multiple categories. You must pass an exam.
  • Maintenance Electrician – You must show proof of 48 months of experience in multiple categories. You must pass an exam.

Mississippi

You must hold a state contractors license to work as an electrician in Mississippi if you perform any residential electrical work worth more than $10,000 or commercial work worth more than $50,000. The license is awarded by the MS State Board of Contractors and you must pass an exam. Electrician and Journeyman electrician licenses are only awarded at the local level.

Missouri

There are no state electrician licensing requirements in Missouri, but many local governments have their own requirements. Make sure to check these before you begin work.

Montana

As an electrician, you must be licensed by the state to work in Montana. The licenses are awarded by the Montana Department of Labor and Industry, State Electrical Board.

  • Residential Electrician – You must have completed an approved residential apprenticeship program, or you must have proof of 4,000 hours of practical experience or you must have worked in the electrical maintenance field for at least 20,000 hours. You must pass an exam.
  • Journeyman Electrician – You must have completed an approved apprenticeship program or you must show proof of at least 8,000 hours of practical experience or you must have worked in the electrical maintenance field for at least 20,000 hours. You must pass an exam.
  • Master Electrician – You must be an electrical engineer graduate of an accredited college with 2,000 hours of practical experience or you must show proof of 8,000 hours of experience at a journeyman level with between 20-50% being residential experience. You must pass an exam.

Nebraska

Electricians must be licensed by the state to work in Nebraska. The licenses are awarded by the Nebraska Electrical Division.

  • Apprenticeship Electrician – You must be registered with the board.
  • Journeyman Electrician – You must have at least four years of experience. A two-year post-high school electrical course with a degree in electrical technology can substitute for one year of experience. You must pass an exam.
  • Electrical Contractor – You must have graduated from an accredited four-year electrical course and have one year of experience as a licensed journeyman electrician or you must have at least five years of experience in planning for, laying out, supervising and installing wiring apparatus or equipment for heating, power and electrical light. You must pass an exam.

Nevada

Electricians in Nevada must hold a state electrical contracting (C-2 classification) license in order to work in the state. The license is awarded by the Nevada State Contractors Board. You must show proof of four years of experience in the past ten years, and you must pass a trade exam as well as a business and law exam. Journeyman electricians may require licensing at the local level.

New Hampshire

You must be licensed by the state to work as an electrician in New Hampshire. The license is awarded by the Office of Professional Licensure and Certification, Electrician’s Board.

  • Journeyman Electrician – You must have 8,000 hours of experience and have 600 hours of electrical schooling or have ten years of experience as a journeyman or master electrician in another jurisdiction. You can substitute up to 2,000 hours of experience for education. You must pass the journeyman exam.
  • Master Electrician – You must have previously passed the journeyman exam and have 2,000 hours of experience as a journeyman. You must pass the master exam.

New Jersey

As an electrician, you must hold a state license to work in New Jersey. The electrical contractor license will be awarded by the Department of Law and Public Safety, Division of Consumer Affairs, Board of Examiners of Electrical Contractors. To qualify for the license you must be at least 21 years old and hold a high school diploma or the equivalent. You must have had at least five years of experience or have one of the following:

  • Completed a four-year apprenticeship program
  • Qualified as a journeyman electrician and have one year of experience
  • Earned a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering and have two years of experience

You must pass an exam.

New Mexico

In New Mexico, all electrical work must be performed by someone who has a journeyman license in the specific classification of work that is being done. The licenses are awarded by the New Mexico Regulation and Licensing Department. You must pass an exam.
You’ll need four years (8,000 hours) of experience to be eligible for the following licenses:

  • EE-98J – Journeyman residential and commercial electrical
  • EL-1J – Journeyman electrical distribution systems, including transmission lines

You’ll need two years (4,000 hours) of experience to be eligible for the following licenses:

  • ER-1J – Journeyman residential wiring
  • ES-1J – Journeyman electrical signs and outline lighting
  • ES-2J – Journeyman cathodic protection and lightning protection systems
  • ES-3J – Journeyman sound, intercommunication, electrical alarm systems, and systems 50 volts and under
  • ES-7J – Journeyman telephone communication systems and telephone interconnect systems

New York

Electrical licenses are not awarded at the state level in New York. However, many cities and counties have strict requirements so make sure to check these before you start work.

North Carolina

You must be licensed by the State Board of Examiners of Electrical Contractors. There are ten classifications of electrical contracting licenses and you must apply for the specific license you need. You must pass an exam. The requirements for the main classifications include:

  • Limited classification – You must have at least two years of experience, with at least one year being primary experience.
  • Intermediate classification – You must have at least four years of experience, with at least two and a half years being primary experience.
  • Unlimited classification – You must have at least five years of experience, with at least four years being primary experience.
  • Single-family detached residential dwelling – You must have at least two years of experience, with at least one year being primary experience.

North Dakota

As an electrician, you must hold a state license to work in North Dakota. The license is awarded by the North Dakota State Electrical Board. You must pass an exam for each license category, as well as satisfy the following electrician licensing requirements:

  • Journeyman Electrician – You must have 8,000 hours of experience obtained in more than three years, as a registered apprentice electrician, under the supervision of a contracting master. You can substitute up to 2,000 hours of experience for graduating from a 2-year program at an approved electrical school.
  • Class B Electrician – You must have 3,000 hours of experience in farmstead or residential wiring in one- or two-family dwellings, under the supervision of a master or Class B electrician. You can substitute up to 1,000 hours of experience for graduating from a two-year program at an approved electrical school.
  • Master Electrician – You must have 2,000 hours of experience working as a licensed journeyman electrician under the supervision of a contracting master electrician.

Ohio

Electricians in Ohio must hold a state license to work as a commercial contractor in the electrical classification. The license is awarded by the Ohio Construction Industry Licensing Board. You must have at least five years of experience as an electrician and have three years of business experience in the construction industry. You must pass an exam and show proof of liability insurance. There are no state journeyman electrician licensing requirements.

Oklahoma

You must hold a state license issued by the Oklahoma Construction Industries Board in order to work as an electrician in Oklahoma.

  • Electrical Apprentice – You don’t need a license, but you must be registered.
  • Unlimited Electrical Journeyman – You must have 8,000 hours of experience as a registered apprentice under the supervision of a licensed journeyman or a licensed contractor. At least 4,000 of those hours must be in commercial or industrial work. You can substitute 2,000 hours of education for experience. You must pass an exam.
  • Residential Electrical Journeyman – You must have 4,000 hours of experience as a registered apprentice under the supervision of a licensed journeyman or a licensed contractor. You can substitute 1,000 hours of education for experience. You must pass an exam.
  • Limited Electrical Contractor – You must have a degree in electrical engineering from an accredited college, plus 8,000 hours of electrical experience, or you must have proof of 16,000 hours of experience in electrical work. You must pass an exam.
  • Unlimited Electrical Contractor – You must have proof of 12,000 hours of experience in electrical construction work. You must have 4,000 hours of experience as a licensed unlimited journeyman. 6,000 of the hours of experience must be in commercial industrial work while employed by a licensed electrical contractor. You can substitute 2,000 hours of education for experience. You must pass an exam.

Oregon

You must have a state license to work as an electrician in Oregon. The license is awarded by the Department of Consumer and Business Services, Building Codes Division. You must fulfil the following electrician licensing requirements for the specific license classification in order to be eligible:

  • General Journeyman Electrician – You must complete an approved apprenticeship program in Oregon or you must have proof of 576 hours of classroom training and 8,000 hours of experience with at least 1,000 hours in each of the categories of residential, commercial, and industrial. You must pass an exam.
  • General Supervising Electrician – You must hold an Oregon journeyman electrician license and show proof of 8,000 of experience as a journeyman electrician. Or, you must meet the qualifications to be licensed as a journeyman electrician with 8,000 hours of journeyman experience. You must pass an exam.
  • Limited Building Maintenance Electrician – You must complete an approved one-year training program or you must have 2,000 hours of experience in electrical maintenance. You must pass an exam.
  • Limited Maintenance Electrician – You must have completed an approved apprenticeship program in Oregon or you must have 288 hours of classroom training and 4,000 hours of on-the-job training or experience, or you must have 8,000 hours of experience from outside Oregon. You must pass an exam.
  • Limited Residential Electrician – You must have completed an approved apprenticeship program in Oregon or you must have 288 hours of classroom training and 4,000 hours of on-the-job training or experience, or you must have 8,000 hours of experience from outside Oregon. You must pass an exam.
  • Limited Supervising Electrician – You must be licensed as an Oregon limited journeyman and have 8,000 hours of experience. You must pass an exam.

 

Electrician Licensing Requirements by State

Pennsylvania

Electricians don’t need a state license to work in Pennsylvania. However, there may be local electrician licensing requirements so make sure to check these before you begin work.

Rhode Island

As an electrician, you must hold a state license to work in Rhode Island. The license is awarded by the Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training, Division of Workforce Regulation and Safety, Professional Regulations Unit.
Electrical Journeyperson – You must show proof of four years of experience and 576 hours of approved training. You must pass an exam.
Electrical Contractor – You must show proof of six years of experience and must hold a Rhode Island journeyperson license which has been valid for at least two years. You must pass an exam.

South Carolina

You must hold a state license to work as an electrician in South Carolina. The licenses are awarded by the South Carolina Department of Labor, Licensing, and Regulation, Residential Builders Commission. To be licensed as an electrical specialty contractor, you must have proof of one year of experience and must pass an exam.

South Dakota

To do any electrical work in South Dakota, you must hold a state license. The license is awarded by the South Dakota Department of Labor and Regulation, Electrical Commission.

  • Journeyman Electrician – You must have completed four years (8,000 hours) as an apprentice electrician, working under the supervision of an electrical contractor. You must pass an exam.
  • Electrical contractor – You must complete two years (4,000 hours) as a journeyman electrician, with at least 2,000 of those hours being in commercial work. You must pass an exam.

Tennessee

In Tennessee, electrical licenses are awarded both at the state and local level, depending on the type of license you’re applying for and the value of the projects you’ll be working on. The state licenses are issued by the TN Department of Commerce and Insurance, Board for Licensing Contractors.

  • Contractor – Electrical License (classification CE) – Required for work costing $25,000 or more. You must pass an exam. You must show proof of three years of experience and you must pass a trade exam, as well as a business and law exam. You must show proof of insurance.
  • Limited Licensed Electrician (LLE) – Required when the total cost of the work is less than $25,000, and there is no local license agency in the municipality where you’re working.

Texas

To work as an electrician in Texas, you must hold a state license issued by the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation.

  • Journeyman Electrician – You must have at least 8,000 hours of on-the-job training under the supervision of a master electrician. You must pass the journeyman exam.
  • Master Electrician – You must have held a journeyman electrician license for at least two years. You must have at least 12,000 hours of on-the-job training under the supervision of a master electrician. You must pass an exam.

Utah

Electricians must be licensed to work in Utah. The licenses are awarded by the Utah Department of Commerce, Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing. The electrician licensing requirements vary depending on the license you’re applying for. You must pass an exam for each license category.

  • Journeyman Electrician – You must have completed an approved apprenticeship program and must have at least 8,000 hours of training in not less than four years. Or, you must have at least 16,000 hours of experience in not less than eight years.
  • Residential Journeyman Electrician – You must have completed two years of an approved apprenticeship program and have at least 4,000 hours of experience in not less than two years. Or, you must have at least 8,000 hours of training as an apprentice in not less than four years.
  • Master Electrician – You must have at least four years of experience as a licensed journeyman electrician. Or you must have graduated from an accredited electrical trade school with a year-year AAS degree, plus have two years of experience as a licensed journeyman electrician. Or you must have an accredited BS degree in electrical engineering, plus have one year of licensed experience.
  • Residential Master Electrician – You must have at least 4,000 hours of experience as a licensed residential journeyman electrician in not less than two years.

Vermont

Electricians must be licensed by the state to work in Vermont. The licenses are awarded by the Department of Public Safety, Division of Fire Safety. You must pass an exam for each license category.

  • Journeyman Electrician – You must have completed a Vermont apprenticeship program within the past two years or you must show proof of 12,000 hours of experience.
  • Master Electrician – You must have held a Vermont Electrical Journeyman license for at least two years or you must show proof of 16,000 hours of experience.

Virginia

You must be licensed by the state in Virginia to work as an electrician. You’ll fall into the category of contractor and will be issued a license from the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation. You must pass an exam for all licenses.

  • Journeyman Electrician – You must have four years of trade experience, plus 240 hours of formal training. Experience over four years can substitute for training hours, with one year of experience counting for 80 hours of training, up to a maximum of 200 hours. Or, you must have two years of experience, plus an associated degree or certificate of completion of a two-year accredited education program. Or, you must have one year of experience, plus a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college in a related engineering curriculum. Or, you must have ten years of experience.
  • Master Electrician – You must show proof of one year of experience as a licensed journeyman. Or, you must have ten years of experience.

Washington

As an electrician, you must hold a state license to work in Washington. The license is awarded by the Washington State Department of Labor and Industries.

  • General Journey Level Electrician – You must have 8,000 hours of experience working as an electrical trainee under the supervision of a certified electrician. At least 4,000 of those hours must be completed in commercial or industrial installation. After June 30, 2023, you must have completed a recognized electrical apprenticeship program. You must have 96 hours of basic classroom instruction. You must pass an exam.
  • Specialty Residential Electrician – You must show proof of 4,000 hours working as a residential electrician under the supervision of a certified electrician. You must have 48 hours of basic classroom instruction. You must pass an exam.

West Virginia

Electricians must be licensed by the state to work in West Virginia. The electrician licensing requirements depend on the specific license you’re applying for. All licenses are issued by the West Virginia Fire Commission.

  • Apprentice Electrician – You must be at least 18 years of age. You must pass an exam.
  • Journeyman Electrician – You must show a copy of your certificate of completion of your apprenticeship or vocational training or you must have 8,000 hours or 4 years of hands-on experience. You must pass an exam.
  • Master Electrician – You must have at least 10,000 hours or five years of hands-on experience. You experience must include residential, commercial, and industrial work. Vocational training will not substitute for experience. You must pass an exam.
  • Specialty Electrician – You must have at least 4,000 hours or two years of hands-on experience in the specialty area that you’re applying for a license in. One year of experience may be accounted for with an approved educational course. You must pass an exam.

Wisconsin

To work as an electrician in Wisconsin, you must hold a state license. The licensed are awarded by the Department of Safety and Professional Services.

  • Journeyman Electrician – You must have completed a recognized electrical construction apprenticeship program. Or you must have at least 48 months with at least 8,000 hours of experience or at least 1,000 hours of experience per year for five years. You can substitute experience with full-time education in an electrical-related program with each semester counting as 500 hours of experience, up to a maximum of 2,000 hours and two years of experience. You must pass an exam.
  • Master Electrician – You must have at least 12 months of experience as a licensed journeyman electrician. Or, you must have at least 60 months, with at least 10,000 hours, of experience or at least 1,000 hours of experience per year for seven years. You can substitute experience with full-time education in an electrical-related program with each semester counting as 500 hours of experience, up to a maximum of 3,000 hours and three years of experience. You must pass an exam.

Wyoming

Electricians in Wyoming must hold a state license to work. The licenses are awarded by the Department of Fire Prevention and Electrical Safety.

  • Journeyman Electrician – You must have four years (8,000 hours) of work experience and 144 hours per year, or 576 hours over a four-year apprenticeship program, of classroom instruction. Not more than 75% of the 8,000 hours can be in a single category. Up to 2,000 hours of education (beyond the required 576 hours) in electrical related courses can substitute for experience.
  • Master Electrician – You must have eight years (16,000 hours) of experience, of which, four years (8,000 hours) must be as a licensed journeyman. You must also have 576 hours of electrical-related classroom education. You must pass an exam.

This information is provided as a service. To the best of our knowledge, it is correct and up-to-date; however, it is not expected to be taken as legal advice and you must always check the requirements on both a state level and a local government level before you start any work.

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  • Guy GoldsteinGuy Goldstein
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