Electrical Contractors in the Commonwealth of Virginia are required hold a certification card from the Virginia Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation. Certifications are issued by the Department’s Board for Contractors. As part of the certification process, contractors are required to meet the Board’s requirements for education and work experience, and pass a qualifying exam.
The Board offers the following certification classifications to Electrical Contractors:
- Journeyman Electrical
- Master Electrical
Any contractor performing work on electrical projects of $1,000 or more, must also obtain a Virginia Contractors License. For more information about licensing, contact the Board for Contractors:
By Phone: 804-367-8511
*Please note that many cities and municipalities in Virginia also have local laws and ordinances related to electrical contracting. Before beginning work on an electrical project, contact the local planning or building department to determine what is required at the local-level.
Process to Obtain an Electrical Contractor Certification in Virginia
- Contractors must be at least 18 years old
- Contractors must have at least 4 years of work experience in the electrical field and 240 hours of vocational training within the electrical trade to apply for a journeyman certification. If applying for a master certification, contractors must have 1 year of experience as a certified/licensed journeyman.
- Contractors must complete and submit an application to the Board, along with the required documents and fees in order to gain approval to take the exam
- Contractors must take and pass the Electrical Journeyman or Electrical Master exam, administered by PSI Services LLC
- Contractors must complete Board-approved continuing education courses prior to renewing their certification.
Age, Education and Work Experience Requirement
In order to qualify to take the exam, all contractors must:
- Be at least 18 years of age
- When applying for a Journeyman-level certification, contractors must have at least 4 years of verifiable work experience in the electrical field. Additionally, they must have 240 hours of formal, vocational training in the electrical trade.
- When applying for a Master-level certification, contractors must prove that they have 1 year of experience as a certified or licensed journeyman.
If the contractor has more than 4 years of work experience, each additional year of experience may count toward 80 hours of the formal vocational training requirement, not exceeding 200 hours.
Vocational training is not required if the contractor is able to prove that they have more than 10 years of practical experience in the electrical trade. In this case, the contractor is required to submit reference letters to prove their experience.
The Board also accepts the following in place of the work experience requirement:
- An Associate’s degree from a 2-year program related to the field of electrical contracting along with 1 year of practical experience in the electrical trade.
- A Bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering with 2 years of practical, hands-on experience in the electrical trade.
*In order for education to count toward the requirement, it must be from an accredited college or university.
All work experience, training and education must be verifiable to count. The following people may be used to verify the contractor’s work experience:
- Current/ Former Employers
- Current/ Former Clients
- Other Contractors
- Building Inspectors
- Building Officials
More information about the types of work experiences and vocational training that count toward the requirement may be found in the Tradesmen Individual License and Certification Regulations.
Call the Board at:
Preparing and Submitting an Application
Before submitting an application to the Board, it is important that all contractors read and become familiar with the Board’s Tradesmen Individual License and Certification Regulations.
In order to gain approval to take the exam, all contractors must prepare and submit an application to the Board.
To prove that they meet the work experience and education requirement, all contractors must also complete and fill out the Tradesman Individual Experience Form.
Be sure to read and follow all instructions when filling out the application and required forms. The Board requires that all contractors provide a physical address on their application. P.O. Box addresses are not accepted.
The cost to apply for a Journeyman or Master Certification is $130. The Board accepts payments in the form of check or money order, made payable to, “Treasurer of Virginia.”
Mail the completed application, along with all the required documents and fees to:
Commonwealth of Virginia
Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation
9960 Mayland Drive, Suite 400
Richmond, Virginia 23233-1485
For questions about the application, contact the Board:
By Phone: 804-367-8511
Visit the Tradesmen Program page of the Department of Profession and Occupation Regulation’s website.
Be sure to respond promptly if the Board requests any further information. Once the Board reviews and accepts the contractor’s application, they will mail an approval notice, along with the Candidate Information Bulletin. This bulletin contains all the information needed to register and prepare for the exam.
The Examination Process
The Board holds a contract with PSI Services LLC to administer the exam. Contractors are required to take and pass the Journeyman Electrical or Master Electrical exam, depending on which classification they are applying for.
The computer-based exam is open-book and based on the information found in National Electric Code and the American Electricians Handbook.
The PSI Candidate Information Bulletin contains a list of suggested references and materials allowed into the testing center on the day of the exam. It also contains the exam registration form.
Contractors may register for the exam ONE of the following ways:
- Online– follow the link for new user registration:
- By Phone- call PSI and use their automated system 24 hours a day. Representative are standing by to assist callers during regular business hours:
- Fax- when registering by fax, allow 4 business days for processing. Fax the registration form and payment information to:
- By mail: allow approximately 2 weeks for processing when submitting the exam registration form by mail. Complete the exam registration form from the Candidate Information Bulletin. Mail the registration form and payment to:
PSI Licensure: Certification
3210 E Tropicana
Las Vegas, NV 89121
Once PSI accepts the exam registration form, it is the applicant’s responsibility to call PSI to schedule their exam. To schedule an exam, call PSI at: (800) 733-9267
Testing centers are located in:
- Falls Church
- Virginia Beach
- Salisbury, MD
The cost to take the exam is:
- Journeyman Electrical- $100
- Master Electrical- $125
PSI accepts payments in the form of:
- Cashier’s Check or Money Order may payable to“PSI.”
- Visa or Mastercard when registering online or by phone or fax
Examinees should arrive at least 30 minutes for before their scheduled test on the day of the exam, to allow time for check-in. They are also required to bring 2 forms of identification:
- A government issued photo id with the examinee’s signature; such as a driver’s license or passport
- Another form of identification with the examinee’s name and signature; such as a credit card or debit card.
The minimum passing score on each exam is as follows:
- Journeyman Electrical Exam- passing score of 49
- Master Electrical Exam- passing score of 63
Scores are issued same-day before the contractor leaves the testing center. If the contractor does not pass the exam on the first attempt, they must wait one business day before they may re-schedule. Each time the contractor re-takes the exam they must re-register and pay the examination fee.
Once the contractor successfully passes the exam, PSI will notify the Board. The Board will then issue the contractor’s certification card, allowing them to begin working on electrical projects in the State of Virginia.
How Long is a Virginia Electrical Contractor Certification Valid?
Electrical Contractor Certifications are good for a period of 2 years in the Commonweatlth of Virginia. All certification cards expire 2 years from the last day of the month that they were originally issued.
All contractors must renew their certification card and pay the renewal fee within 30 days of the printed expiration date. Prior to the 30-day mark, the Board will issue renewal notices and instructions for renewal.
The cost to renew a certification card is $90.
Prior to renewal, all contractors are also required to complete 3 hours of continuing education courses. All continuing education courses and course providers must be approved by the Board in order to count toward the requirement.
More information about continuing education may be found in the Board’s Tradesmen Individual License and Certification Regulations.
For more information about certification renewal, contact the Board at:
Table of Fees
|Fee||What is it For?||When is it Due?|
|$130||Cost to apply for a Journeyman or Master Electrical Contractor Certification||Upon submitting the certification application|
|$100||Registration/Examination fee to take the Journeyman Electrical Exam||Upon registering for the exam|
|$125||Registration/Examination fee to take the Master Electrical Exam||Upon registering for the exam|
|$90||Cost to renew a Journeyman or Master Electrical Certification Card||Every 2 years upon submitting the renewal application|