How Do You Get a Life Insurance License?

How Do You Get a Life Insurance License?

Get a life insurance license in 5 easy steps. Understand the requirements, pre-licensing coursework, licensing exams, and more. Start your journey today!


Did you know that, the life insurance industry is projected to grow to $1.1 trillion by 2026? Are you ready to join this successful career? You need a license to sell life insurance. With a license, you can offer protection and financial security to clients. It also opens up new opportunities for your career growth and earning more money.

Meet the Basic Requirements

Life insurance licensing requirements differ by state, with most typically including pre-licensing education courses, passing an exam, and going through a background check. Some states also require applicants to be sponsored by an established insurance agency or company before becoming licensed.

Pre-licensing education courses are tailored specifically for industry knowledge required on state licensing exams, providing you with an effective way to prepare and increase your chances of passing them. Once finished with your pre-licensing course, apply with your state’s insurance regulatory department to apply for your license.

How Do You Get a Life Insurance License?Meet the Basic Requirements

Before sitting the insurance licensure exam, ensure you bring with you valid photo identification and an original certificate from your pre-licensing education provider. Processing of your license application typically takes 48 hours after passing your state exam; however, processing times could increase should something arise during your background check that requires further explanation.

Complete the Required Pre-Licensing Coursework

Once you have completed your prelicensing courses, the next step is passing your state licensing exam. Test content can differ by state; most contain between 50 and 200 questions that must be completed within two or three hours. Each state test is proctored, meaning a person known as a proctor supervises its taking by supervising test takers during proctored sessions; to better prepare you, an excellent prelicensing course will include practice exams that simulate how your state’s test works before the test day arrive!

Kaplan’s prelicensing courses offer comprehensive study guides and content designed to prepare you for state life and health insurance licensing exams, helping you pass the first time. In addition, if you are marketing or selling advanced life products such as variable annuities or indexed life policies, an additional license from FINRA (Series 6, 7, or 63) may also be necessary.

Once you have taken and passed your state licensing exam, submitted fingerprints, and gone through a background check, you can receive your life insurance sales agent license from that state. Processing times typically take several weeks or months.

Complete the Required Pre-Licensing Coursework

Pass the Licensing Exam

Once you’ve met all of the prerequisites, the last step in becoming a licensed life insurer in your state is taking and passing its licensing exam. Each state imposes different requirements but you must score 70% or above to become licensed.

Most states mandate pre-licensing education hours before sitting for the exam and offer online or in-person courses to fulfill this obligation. Attending one of these courses will help familiarize you with what questions may be on the test as well as prepare you for what to expect during testing day.

Exams tend to be multiple-choice exams with timed questions and a pass/fail score attached; those who fail their initial attempt must wait several weeks before taking another try.

Before taking the exam, fingerprinting must also be submitted, with some states having additional eligibility criteria like not owing past-due child support payments to take part in taking it. Once passed, applying for your license through the National Insurance Producer Registry typically costs between $20 and $150 depending on what lines of authority are sought out.

Get Appointed with an Insurance Company

Once you’ve passed both your state licensing exam and background check, and been accepted into an insurance company, the final step in your life insurance licensing process should be becoming appointed with one. This step is vitally important as it sets up your business.

When researching companies for which you are applying, be sure to thoroughly explore their requirements on their website or call them directly. Get an understanding of what they require of you such as having a proven record of customer service or experience in specific lines of business.

Consider how professional their offices appear and ensure they offer multiple options if that’s important to you as an agent. Once you find an agency, submit your license application and wait until its review; this could take weeks or even months!

Get Appointed with an Insurance Company

Maintain Your License with Continuing Education

Once you have passed the state insurance exam and successfully submitted fingerprints, the next step will be completing an electronic license application. Usually through your state Department of Insurance or National Insurance Producer Registry website. When your application has been approved, an email will notify you that your insurance license has been granted.

Most states mandate that licensed insurance producers complete continuing education (CE) courses to stay current on industry trends. CE requirements can differ by state; generally speaking, insurance producers must complete 20-40 credits annually either online or in person through classes such as classroom training, interactive webinars, or self-study materials.

Some states, like California, impose additional licensing requirements that include obtaining relevant securities licenses and passing the Securities Industry Essentials (SIE) exam before selling life insurance policies. Once these criteria have been fulfilled, selling life insurance products will begin in earnest.


Start your journey to becoming a licensed life insurance professional today! Follow these 5 easy steps and take the first step towards a rewarding insurance career. Have a look at Free Insurance Exam Study Materials & Guide to get started. Let us help you achieve your goals and succeed. Get licensed and make a difference in people’s lives. Start your journey now and watch your career flourish! Visit our website to learn more.

Read More About Life Insurance


What is the first step to getting a life insurance license?

Meet the basic requirements, which include pre-licensing education courses, passing an exam, and a background check.

How long does it take to complete the pre-licensing coursework?

The duration varies by state, but most courses can be completed in a few weeks to a few months.

What is the passing score for the licensing exam?

Most states require a score of 70% or higher to pass the exam.

What is the purpose of continuing education (CE) courses?

CE courses help licensed insurance producers stay current on industry trends and maintain their licenses.

Which insurance license makes the most money?

Health, life, and property & casualty insurance licenses tend to be the most lucrative. However, earnings vary based on factors like location, experience, and industry.

How do I get a life insurance license in the USA?

Complete pre-licensing education, pass the state licensing exam, get appointed by an insurance company, and apply for the license through the NIPR.

How do I start a life insurance policy?

Choose a policy type, select an insurance company, apply, provide the required documents, and pay premiums to keep the policy active.

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