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Electrical Contractor Licensing in Michigan

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Any person or business engaging in electrical work in the State of Michigan must hold a license from the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs.  Licenses are issued by the Department’s Bureau of Construction Codes/Electrical Division.

As part of the licensing process, contractors are required to complete an application and meet the Bureau’s requirements for age and work experience.  All contractors are also required to take and pass a qualifying exam.

*Licenses are issued to Electrical Contractors state-wide in Michigan, with the exception of contractors working in the cities of Grand Rapids and Detroit.  Contractors working in these cities are licensed at the local-level, and must pass a local qualifying examination in addition to filling out local application forms.  For more information, please visit:
City of Detroit- Electrical Contractor Checklist
City of Grand Rapids- Contractor Registration

License Classifications for Electrical Contractors in Michigan

The Bureau of Construction Codes offers the following license classifications to Electrical Contractors in the State of Michigan:

  • Electrical Journeyman
  • Master Electrician
  • Electrical Contractor
  • Fire Alarm Specialty Technician
  • Fire Alarm Contractor
  • Sign Specialist
  • Sign Specialty Contractor

For more information about the scope of work that each of these license classifications are allowed to perform, please call the Electrical Division at:

517-241-9320

OR

By Email

Process to Obtain an Electrical Contractor License in Michigan

  1. All contractors must meet the Bureau’s requirements for age and work experience, as well as other required credentials.
  2. Contractors must obtain and complete a copy of the application for examination
  3. Contractors must gather documents that verify their work experiences and credentials
  4. Contractors must submit the application to the Bureau along with all the required documents and fees at least 20 days before the next scheduled exam date
  5. Contractors must take and pass the licensing exam administered by the Bureau of Construction Codes
  6. Upon renewal, all contractors must complete 15-hours of approved continuing education courses.

Age, Work Experience and Other Licensing Requirements

In order to qualify to take the exam, all contractors must be in compliance with the Bureau’s requirements for age and work experience; as well as other qualifications and credentials.  Refer to the charts below to determine the requirements for each license classification:

Age Requirements

License Class Age Requirement
Electrical Journeyman 20 years old
Master Electrician 22 years old
Electrical Contractor N/A
Fire Alarm Specialty Technician 20 years old
Fire Alarm Contractor N/A
Sign Specialist 18 years old
Sign Specialist Contractor N/A

Work Experience Requirements

License Class Acceptable Work Experiences Number of Hours
Electrical Journeyman Work in the field of electrical construction, building maintenance, electrical wiring/equipment under the direct supervision of a licensed electrician 8,000 hours within the past 4 years
Master Electrician Work in the field of electrical construction, building maintenance, electrical wiring/equipment under the direct supervision of a licensed master electrician 12,000 hours within the past 6 years
Electrical Contractor N/A N/A
Fire Alarm Specialty Technician N/A N/A
Fire Alarm Contractor N/A N/A
Sign Specialist Work related to manufacturing, installation, maintenance, connection and repair of electrical signs 4,000 hours within the past 2 years.
Sign Specialty Contractor N/A N/A
*In some cases, education and training may count toward a portion of the work experience requirement. 

Other Requirements

License Class Other Requirements
Electrical Journeyman N/A
Master Electrician Must hold an Electrical Journeyman license for at least 2 years
Electrical Contractor Must hold a Master Electrician license OR employ a full-time licensed Master Electrician who resides and works within the state.  This person must be responsible for projects, installations and code compliance
Fire Alarm Specialty Technician Must hold a Level II Associate Engineering Technician Certificate from the National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technology (NICET) or an equivalent certification in the field of fire alarm systems technology
Fire Alarm Contractor Must hold a Fire Alarm Specialty Technician license OR employ a full-time licensed Fire Alarm Specialty Technician who resides and works within the state.  This person is responsible for the installation of fire alarm system wiring and equipment, as well as code compliance
Sign Specialist Required to complete an approved training course
Sign Specialty Contractor Must hold a Sign Specialist license OR employ a full-time licensed Sign Specialist who resides and works within the state.  This person is responsible the installation, connection and repair of electrical signs and wiring as well as code compliance.  ALL Sign Specialty Contractors are also required to hold public liability insurance.

For more information about the requirements for each license classification, please contact the Electrical Division at:

517-241-9320

OR

By Email

Preparing and Submitting an Application

Download a copy of the application for examination from the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs website.

*Be sure to choose the right application link for the contractor’s desired license classification. 

Applications may also be completed online using the Michigan Business One Stop portal.

Along with the application, contractors are required to submit proof of their work experiences and other required credentials.  Contractors must keep all original documents for their records.  Provide clean legible copies of these documents for the Bureau to review.

There is also a $100, non-refundable examination fee that must be submitted with the application.  Please make checks payable to, “State of Michigan.”

Submit the completed application, along with all the required documents and fees to:

Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs
Bureau of Construction Codes/ Electrical Division
P.O. Box 30255
Lansing, MI 48909

All applications are due, and must be on file, at least 20 days before the next scheduled exam date.  Contact the Electrical Division for a list of scheduled exam dates by calling:

517-241-9320

 

The Bureau of Construction Codes reviews all applications to make sure they are complete.  Be sure to respond promptly if the Bureau requests any further information. Additional information is due within 15 days of the Bureau’s request.

Once the application is verified as complete, the Bureau will pass the application along to the Michigan Electrical Administrative Board for review.  The Board meets once per quarter to review applications.  All applicants will receive an acknowledgement letting them know the date and time of the next Board meeting.  Applicants have the option of appearing before the Board for their application review to answer any questions the Board may have.

Once the Board approves the contractor’s exam application, they will be sent a notice and admission card, letting know the date and time of their scheduled exam.

The Examination Process

All contractors are required to take and pass the qualifying exam, administered by the Bureau of Construction Codes.  The material covered on the exam is based on the following codes and acts:

  • Stille-DeRossett-Hale Single State Construction Code Act of 1972, PA 230
  • The Electrical Administrative Act of 1956, PA 217
  • General Rules of the Michigan Electrical Administrative Board
  • Michigan Electrical Code

Contractors are allowed to bring a copy of the National Electrical Code Book with them to the testing center on the day of the exam.  For more information about obtaining a copy of this book, visit International Code Council.

On the day of the test, contractors are also required to bring their exam admission card and a signed photo ID, such as:

  • Michigan Driver’s License
  • Michigan State ID
  • Passport
  • Immigration Card

Testing Centers are located in:

  • Lansing
  • Escanaba
*The exam application has a space that allows contractors to choose their preferred exam site. 

The minimum passing score for the exam is 75% or higher.  Contractors are allowed 2 attempts to pass the exam within the year.

If the contractor does not pass on the second attempt, they must wait one year from their last exam date to take the exam again.  During that year, they are also required to attend courses on:

  • Code
  • Electrical Fundamentals
  • Theory

Once the contractor passes the exam, they will receive further instructions for obtaining their license.  In some cases, an additional licensing fee is required.  For example:

  • Electrical Journeyman- $40 initial licensing fee
  • Master Electrician- $50 initial licensing fee

For questions about the exam, examination process and additional fees, please call the Electrical Division at:

517-241-9320

How Long is Michigan Electrical Contractor License Valid?

All Electrical Contractor license classifications are good for 3 years in the State of Michigan.  Licenses expire every third year on December 31st.

The Bureau mails out renewal notices approximately 3 months prior to expiration.  Be sure to complete and submit the renewal application, along with all the required documents and renewal fees prior to the expiration date to avoid penalties.

The fee to renew a Electrical Journeyman license is $40.  The fee to renew a Master Electrician license is $50.  Contact the Electrical Division to determine the fees for other license classifications.

At renewal time, all contractors are also required to attend 15 hours of approved continuing education courses.  For a list of approved courses, visit the LARA Electrical Division website.

For more information about license renewals and fees, please call or email the Electrical Division at:

517-241-9320

OR

By Email

Table of Fees

Fee What is it For? When is it Due?
$100 Examination Fee Upon submitting the application for examination
$40 Initial Licensing Fee for an Electrical Journeyman License Upon passing the exam
$50 Initial Licensing Fee for a Master Electrician License Upon passing the exam
$40 Renewal Fee for an Electrical Journeyman License Upon submitting the renewal application
$50 Renewal Fee for a Master Electrician License Upon submitting the renewal application
*For additional fees for other license classification, please contact the Electrical Division at 517-241-9320

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