How to Get an Illinois Contractor License
The state of Illinois issues two types of contractor licenses – roofing contractor license and plumbing contractor license. The licensing requirements for both of these licenses include passing an examination, obtaining insurance, as well as an Illinois contractor license bond.
All other types of licenses are issued on a municipal or city level. So if you’re looking to get licensed as a general, electrical, or HVAC contractor in Illinois, you must get in touch with your local licensing agency.
For an overview of the licensing requirements for Illinois roofing and plumbing contractors, see our guide below!
1. Choose Your Illinois Contractor License Type
The Illinois roofing contractor license is for you if you want to construct, reconstruct, alter, maintain and repair roofs. You must apply for it at the Illinois Department of Financial & Professional Regulation (IDFPR). The Department issues two types of roofing licenses – a limited, and an unlimited one. The difference is that contractors with limited licenses can only perform work on properties consisting of up to 8 units.
If you want to install and maintain “piping, fixtures, appurtenances, and appliances for a supply of water for all purposes” you must get an Illinois plumbing contractor license from the Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH).
2. Register your business
A general requirement faced by applicants for both licenses is to register their business in the state.
There are two stages of this process. First, you must register your business with the Secretary of State. On top, you must also pass a registration with the Illinois Department of Revenue.
You will need to have these requirements in check before you can proceed with applying for your Illinois contractor license.
3. Learn About the Illinois Contractor License Requirements
To get an Illinois contractor license, you must comply with slightly different requirements, depending on what kind of license you are applying for. The different licensing requirements will be detailed below.
Roofing contractor licensing requirements
You must satisfy the following requirements before you can apply for your license:
- Appoint a qualifying party and have them pass a state examination
Depending on the type of examination taken, a fee of $226 or $277 is also due
- Obtain workers’ compensation insurance OR a certificate of approval as a self-insurer, OR out-of-state workers’ compensation insurance
- Provide proof of insurance for at least $250,000 for each occurrence of property damage, and at least $500,000 for each occurrence of personal injury or bodily harm
- Proof of a $10,000 Illinois contractor license bond for a limited license, and $25,000 bond for an unlimited license
- Business documentation, such as a Partnership Agreement or Articles of Incorporation
- A statement of account from the Illinois Department of Employment Security (if applicable)
Plumbing contractor licensing requirements
Before you apply for a plumbing contractor license, you must have satisfied the requirements for getting a plumbing license. To obtain the latter, you must have passed an exam, as well as having worked as a licensed apprentice under a licensed plumber for several years.
Once you have satisfied the requirements to become a licensed plumber, you can proceed with applying for a contractor license. When applying to become a contractor, you must still have a valid plumbing license. In addition, you must comply with the following:
- Business documentation such as Articles of Incorporation or Organization, or a Partnership Agreement
- Proof of hours of approved continuing education
- Certificate of insurance – minimum $100,000 general liability, $300,000 bodily injury, $50,000 property damage, and $500,000 workers compensation (if applicable)
- A $20,000 Illinois contractor license bond
4. Get Your Illinois Contractor License Bond
The purpose of the Illinois contractor license bond, required of license applicants, is to guarantee their compliance with state laws and rules. The bond serves as protection to the public and the state and guarantees financial compensation if a contractor violates the law.
- Roofing contractors must post a $10,000 bond for a limited license and a $25,000 bond for an unlimited license
- Plumbing contractors must post a $20,000 bond
The cost of the bond is not the same as its amount – it is a fraction of the full bond amount. You can get a free quote on your bond by completing the bond form below.
5. Apply for Your Illinois Contractor License
When you have satisfied the various pre-licensing requirements, you can proceed with your license application.
To apply, roofing contractors must complete the contractor license application form as well as the qualifying party application (included in the main application form). They must also attach all the supporting documentation as well as include a $125 non-refundable fee, made payable to the IDFPR. Applicants must then submit all of this at the following address:
Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation
Attn: Division of Professional Regulation
P.O. Box 7007
Springfield, Illinois 62791
Applicants for a plumbing contractor license must also complete an application form and include a non-refundable registration fee of $150. The application, along with all supporting documents must be mailed to:
Illinois Department of Public Health
525 W. Jefferson St., 3rd Floor
Springfield, IL 62761
If you have any questions about the licensing steps and requirements for plumbing and roofing contractors in Illinois, make sure to contact the IDPH or IDFPR to learn more!