A number of professionals in the financial field from across the U.S. undergo their licensing procedures through the Nationwide Multistate Licensing System & Registry (NMLS). If you are a mortgage broker or lender, collection agency, or money transmitter, among other specialists, you need to renew your license through the system by December 31.
As the end of 2020 is approaching, it’s a good idea to get started with the NMLS license renewal process. Being punctual is essential because, without an active license, you can lose your right to operate legally.
While the official deadline is December 31, you may need to meet earlier state deadlines. If your license requires it, you may also need to renew your surety bond, so make sure you obtain a continuation certificate or a new bond in time.
Here is what you need to know about the 2021 renewal through the NMLS platform!
The 2021 NMLS License Renewal in a Nutshell
The annual NMLS renewal period for most mortgage companies, money services businesses (MSB), debt, and consumer finance companies, as well as individual licensees, is between November 1 and December 31. In some states, though, the renewal deadline is as early as December 1!
One of the things you can prepare in advance is to see if you comply with the preliminary steps that will help you to pass your renewal process in a smooth and timely way.
You may also want to make sure that the computer you will use for the renewal has an updated browser. The NMLS has specific requirements about browser versions, so make sure yours will do the job.
Once you confirm there are no technical difficulties, log in to your NMLS account to ensure it is active and accessible. If you need to update your record in the system, you can introduce the changes at this point.
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License Renewal Requirements
Regarding the state licensing requirements you need to meet, ensure that there are no deficiencies in your renewal application package. You can review the NMLS renewal checklist where you can find links to each state authority’s specific criteria.
In case you have more than one license, you can also have a look at the Renewal Deadlines, Requirements, and Fees Chart which features a full list of all licenses across all states, their renewal dates, renewal submission deadlines, fees, and much more.
The NMLS also provides free online renewal courses for all types of licensees that take you through the process. See the link for your type of license for a full overview of the process:
To start the renewal process, you need to make a renewal request through the NMLS. Once you do that, you need to send to your state licensing body all the paperwork that it needs to review, which is not submitted via NMLS.
Most states require licensees to submit additional paperwork to licensing authorities. Some states only require you to submit a renewal request through and provide documentation through the system.
You can determine whether your state needs you to submit additional paperwork or not from the renewal checklist. If your state has an asterisk next to its name, then this year you are not required to provide any additional documentation.
Make sure you are aware of the renewal requirements in full, as it is your responsibility to fulfill them.
Don’t Forget to Renew Your Surety Bond
As of 2016, a number of licensing bodies require licensees to submit their bonds online via the NMLS. The electronic surety bond (ESB) will be needed by some licensees in Alaska, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Illinois, Mississippi, Georgia, North Carolina, Rhode Island, and Indiana. You can consult whether your state authority requires your trade to use the ESB in the State Adoption of NMLS ESB chart.
In order to renew the required bond, you will need to either obtain a continuation certificate or provide a new bond. The exact requirements vary by state and will also depend on your surety provider.
With every bond renewal, you can also work on reducing your bond cost. As your bond premium depends on your personal and business finances, you can try to improve them or make any outstanding payments before you apply for a renewal. This way you can pay less for your next renewal period.
Do you have any questions about renewing your license and bond? Don’t hesitate to contact us at 866.450.3412!