If you are looking to become an insurance broker in California, one huge part of what you are going to need to do is get your license. Here's how to get a California Insurance Broker License.
How to get a California Insurance Broker License
Applying for a California Insurance Broker License
The below steps are for how to apply for an individual license if you are a resident of the state of California. There are different instructions for the following license types:
- Business entity license - resident of CA
- Individual license - non-resident of CA
- Business entity license - non-resident of CA
Step #1: Get fingerprinted
Fingerprints can be submitted anytime prior to taking the license examination. You can also submit your fingerprints before submitting your actual license application.
You can learn how to submit your fingerprints by visiting the California Resident Licensing Fingerprint Requirements page.
Step #2: Apply for Written Consent, if Necessary
If you have been convicted of a felony crime or any violation of Title 18 U.S.C. Section 1033(the "Act"), you must get the written consent of the Commissioner before you can get your license.
Here is information on how to file for written consent.
Step #3: Complete education and take qualifying exam
Before you can get your license there are some educational requirements you will need to meet.
- You will be required to complete 20 hours of classroom study and another 12 hours of study on ethics and California's Insurance Code.
- After your education, you will need to pass a qualifying exam on the material.
You must pass your qualifying exam before you can apply for your license.
Step #4: Apply for License
After you have passed your qualifying exam, you are free to apply for the actual California Insurance Broker License.
California has made their application process available online here.
Step #5: Pay licensing fees
The two-year filing fee is $170.
Step #6: Take License Exam
For more information on how to schedule your license exam, view the California Insurance License Exam page.
Step #7: Purchase California Insurance Broker Bond
A property broker-agent is not required to have an appointment with an insurance company to be issued a license. Upon approval, you can download your license and print it using the California Department of Insurance's Print or Download Your License online service.
But, if you wish to transact, solicit, or negotiate the sale of insurance, you must submit a California Insurance Broker Bond to the California Department of Insurance.
What is a California Insurance Broker Bond?
A client puts a lot of trust in an insurance broker. When you get a California Insurance Broker Bond, you show your clients that you have a history of acting responsibly on their behalf. You also show them that you will use their personal information for its intended purpose.
A California Insurance Broker Bond is a type of surety bond. These bonds protect your clients and ensure that you will work in a way to supports your clients' best interests.
How this bond works is this: If your client feels you have not acted in their best interest, they can make a claim on your California Insurance Broker Bond. When this happens, the surety company who issued the bond will start an investigation.
If the claim is determined to be valid, you will be allowed to satisfy the claim. If you fail to do so, the surety bond company can compensate your client. It will be your responsibility to repay the surety company.
How Much Does An Insurance Broker Bond Cost?
California Insurance Broker Bonds are set at $10,000. You do not need to pay the full amount. Instead, you pay a percentage of the total bond amount. The percentage you pay is largely based off your credit score.
When you seek a California Insurance Broker Bond, an underwriter will assess your company's history of claims, your credit history, and your business history. Generally, you will pay from one to fifteen percent of the total bond amount.
To see what you'd pay for a California Insurance Broker Bond, get a free quote below:
If you have specific questions about how to get licensed as a California Insurance Broker, you can email the licensing bureau or call the California Insurance Broker Hotline:
License Expiration and Renewal
California Insurance Broker Licenses are valid for 2 years.
Property broker-agents will need to complete continued education courses to maintain their license. Your continued education must be equivalent to at least 24 hours of instruction during each two-year license period, including at least 3 hours of ethics training.
You must complete your continued education requirements before your license can be renewed.
If you are 70 years or older, and you have been licensed for 30 continuous years as a licensee in good standing in California, you may be exempt from the continuing education requirement.
If you are renewing late, the process is different.