Topic:
EXECUTIVE AGENCIES; PERMITS; CRIMINAL RECORDS; OCCUPATIONAL LICENSING;
Location:
LICENSING;

OLR Research Report


April 3, 2007

 

2007-R-0299

LOCKSMITHS

By: Daniel Duffy, Principal Analyst

You asked how many states regulate locksmiths.

SUMMARY

We identified eight states that regulate locksmiths. One state, Nevada, requires locksmiths to obtain a permit from the county sheriff, but does not establish permitting criteria. The other seven states require locksmiths to obtain a license from a state agency and establish licensing standards. In five of the seven licensing states, the state agency administering the locksmith law also administers the licensing law of related security trades, such as burglar alarm system installers.

Five states require a locksmithing business, as distinguished from an individual, to obtain a state credential. Four of these require the business's principals, such as the partners of a partnership or the officers of a corporation, to undergo a criminal records check as a condition of licensure. All seven states require individuals performing locksmithing services to undergo a criminal records check. Six states also require locksmiths to prove competency, typically by passing an examination. Two states require applicants to pass both a written and a practical examination.

Five states require licensees to carry state issued identification, usually with their photograph. Four states require locksmiths to check the identity of the person requesting services. Three require locksmiths to make a record of the identification obtained and to keep it for examination by police.

MAJOR FEATURES OF EACH STATE'S LAW

Alabama (Ala. Code 341A-1 et seq.)

State Agency

Agency

Electronic Security Board of Licensure

Regulated with Other Security Trades

Alarm system installers

Licensing Businesses and Individuals

Business License

Required

Principal Criminal Background Check

Not required

Employee License or Registration

Required

Employee Criminal Record

Required

Competency Tested

Yes. Qualifying standards determined by board

State Issued ID

Issued. Employees must carry

Documenting Work

Client ID Check

Not required

Document Service Call

Not required

Record Retention

Not applicable

California (Cal. Bus. & Prof. Code 6980 et seq.)

State Agency

Agency

Bureau of Security and Investigative Services in the Department of Consumer Affairs

Regulated with Other Security Trades

All other security and investigative business, such as alarm installation and private detective agencies

Licensing Businesses and Individuals

Business License

Required for each location where the business operates

Principal Criminal Background Check

Required

Employee License or Registration

Required

Employee Criminal Record

Required

Competency Tested

Not required

State Issued ID

Yes. Licensees and registrants must carry

-Continued-

Documenting Work

Client ID Check

Required. Must record client's name, address, telephone number, birth date, driver's license number or that of another identification card

Document Service Call

Required, with address or Vehicle identification number, as appropriate

Record Retention

Two years

Illinois (Ill. Ann. Stat. 447/5-5 et seq.)

State Agency

Agency

Private Detective, Private Alarm, Private Security, and Locksmith Board

Regulated with Other Security Trades

Private detective, alarm system installers, private security agencies

Licensing Businesses and Individuals

Business License

Required

Principal Criminal Background Check

Required

Employee License or Registration

Required

Employee Criminal Record

Required

Competency Tested

Required. Applicants must pass written and practical examination

State Issued ID

 

Documenting Work

Client ID Check

Required. Must record client's name, address, telephone number, birth date, driver's license number or that of another identification card

Document Service Call

Required

Record Retention

Two years

Other

Training

Locksmith agencies must provide employees with at least 20 hours of training by a qualified instructor within 30 days of employment

Louisiana (La. Rev. Stat. 40:1664.3 et seq.)

State Agency

Agency

Louisiana Life Safety and Property Protection Advisory Board

Regulated with Other Security Trades

Fire detection and alarm system installers, and fire sprinkler systems installers

-Continued-

Licensing Businesses and Individuals

Business License

Required

Principal Criminal Background Check

Required

Employee License or Registration

Required

Employee Criminal Record

Required

Competency Tested

Yes. There are five levels of licensure. Locksmith (unlimited) and limited locksmith, door hardware, bank locking, and detention locking

State Issued ID

State ID issued. Statute does not specify whether it is a photo ID

Documenting Work

Client ID Check

No

Document Service Call

No

Nevada (Nev. Rev. Stat. 655.010)

Nevada requires locksmiths and safe mechanics to obtain a permit from the county sheriff but does not establish any permit criteria.

New Jersey (N.J. Stat. Ann. 45:5A-2 et seq.)

State Agency

Agency

Board of Examiners of Electrical Contractors in the Department of Law and Public Safety

Regulated with Other Security Trades

Burglar and fire alarm installation, electronic security systems

Licensing Businesses and Individuals

Business License

Businesses are not regulated, only individuals

Principal Criminal Background Check

Not applicable

Owner or Employee License or Registration

Required

Employee Criminal Record

Required

Competency Tested

Yes. Applicants must (1) pass a written examination after meeting board-set training requirements or (2) complete an approved locksmith apprentice program

State Issued ID

Yes. Must carry state-issued photo ID

Documenting Work

Client ID Check

Not required

Document Service Call

Not required

Record Retention

Not applicable

Other

Insurance

Must carry liability insurance

North Carolina (N.C. Gen. Stat. 74F-1 et seq.)

State Agency

Agency

North Carolina Locksmith Licensing Act

Regulated with Other Security Trades

No

Licensing Businesses and Individuals

Business License

Businesses are not regulated, only individuals

Principal Criminal Background Check

Not applicable

Employee License or Registration

License required

Employee Criminal Record

Required

Competency Tested

Required. An individual may be a registered apprentice for up to three years. If an apprentice cannot pass the licensing examination within three years, the board must not grant another apprenticeship.

State Issued ID

Issued. Licensees and apprentices required to carry

Documenting Work

Client ID Check

Must make reasonable effort to verify that client is legal owner or authorized by legal owner

Document Service Call

Not required

Record Retention

Not applicable

Tennessee (Tenn. Code 62-11-101 et seq.)

State Agency

Agency

Department of Commerce and Insurance

Regulated with Other Security Trades

No

Licensing Businesses and Individuals

Business License

Required

Principal Criminal Background Check

Required

Employee License or Registration

Required. Locksmiths are licensed in several categories, such as general locksmithing, safe and vault work, and automotive work

Employee Criminal Record

Required

Competency Tested

Required. Applicants must pass both written and practical examinations.

State Issued ID

Not specified

Documenting Work

Client ID Check

Required, which may be personal knowledge, driver's license, other photo ID, address taken from a reliable source, or description of specific or unusual items that may be found on entry

Document Service Call

Required

Record Retention Period

Not specified

Other

Insurance

Licensees are required to carry liability insurance

DD:ts