How to Check a Contractor's Electrician Licenses


Electricians receive their license to practice through state agencies, and the electrician is responsible for contacting the state licensing authority to apply for a license for each state he will be working in. When bidding on a construction job or agreeing to complete a project by signing a construction contract, electricians and their fellow contractors must provide their name and license number. Consumers, fellow contractors and clients can check the validity of the electrician's license by checking the certificate number against licensing databases.

Obtain the license information from the electrician. A copy of a license typically shows the date the license will need to be renewed, the contractor's name, the state in which the license was awarded and a license certificate number. This information can also be obtained directly from construction agreements and bid documents.

Locate each state's licensing authority. Most state's license electricians through a department of professional licensing and regulations, a department of commerce or a state board of contractors. Visit each state's government websites to find the correct licensing agency. For example, Texas houses its licensing information through its Department of Licensing and Regulation. Ohio houses licensing information through its Department of Commerce's Division of Industrial Compliance Labor.

Look for the licensing search tool at the state's licensing website. States usually provide a free search tool or tools that allows someone to find all persons and companies that hold a state license. Some states may have separate databases and search features for each type of license or may separate the search for individuals and businesses. Others may lump all types of licenses into one search interface.

Use the license number to search for the certificate. Search capability might also allow you to search using the person's name, an address or a business name.

Verify all information. A license number usually returns further information about the electrician such as a business location, phone number or even information about a business license such as a DBA. Verify as much as you can to feel confident the license information matches with the individual or company you are searching for.

Contact the state agency directly if you cannot find a web-based search tool. Agencies may provide phone or in-person verification of the electrician's license information.

Tips & Warnings

  • You will need to search each state's licensing website. There is no central tool to search for all electrician licenses because states do not share their license information with other states.
  • Some online search businesses offering paid search results may return information from state licensing databases. However, there is no definitive way to know if they have licensing information for the state you are looking for.

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