How to Get a Life Insurance License in Kentucky

Written by: Mary Gerardine

Last updated:

Getting your Kentucky life insurance license is the first step toward becoming a life insurance agent in the state.

The Kentucky Department of Insurance requires you to complete a five-step process to become a life insurance agent in Kentucky — from taking the life insurance exam to applying for a license.

These steps will take a few weeks to complete so we recommend you bookmark this page so you can use it as a reference throughout the process.

How to Get Your Kentucky Life Insurance License

  1. Complete a Kentucky Insurance Pre-license Course (Kaplan Education Company – $149+)
  2. Get a Background Check (Kentucky Court of Justice AOC FastCheck – $25)
  3. Complete a Kentucky Life Insurance License Application (National Insurance Producer Registry (NIPR) – $40 application fee + $5.60 transaction fee + $50 exam fee)
  4. Take the Kentucky Life Insurance Licensing Exam (Kentucky Department of Insurance – $50 exam fee paid via the NIPR)
  5. Watch for Your Application Results

Life Insurance License Kentucky

Obtaining your Kentucky life insurance license isn’t difficult. Just follow these five steps to start your journey toward becoming a life insurance agent. Once you earn this license, check out our guide on how to get your Kentucky property and casualty (P&C) license as well.

Step 1: Complete a Kentucky Insurance Pre-license Course

Before you take the Kentucky life insurance licensing exam, it’s important to make time to acquire the knowledge you’ll need to pass this exam on your first attempt. Completing a pre-license education course will equip you with the necessary information and tools you’ll need to prepare for your exam.

In Kentucky, you must complete a 20-hour, prelicensing classroom or self-study course for your requested life line of authority. Upon completion of the course, your course provider will report the completion electronically to the Kentucky Department of Insurance.

A pre-license education course provides very specific industry knowledge that will be tested during the exam. There is very little information on the test that could be considered “common sense.” Pre-license education courses are self-paced and include study materials like practice exams and flashcards.

Beyond helping you effectively prepare for and pass the life insurance licensing exam on your first try, taking a pre-license education course also will give you a solid understanding of your duties as a life insurance agent.

Recommended

Doing a pre-licensing education course dramatically increases your chance of passing your exam on your first attempt, which can end up saving you both time and money in the long run. For pre-licensing education, StateRequirement recommends:

4.7 out of 5 starsKaplan Education Company

Step 2: Get a Background Check

Kentucky requires that all insurance license applicants undergo a background check prior to licensing. To apply for a criminal background report online, visit the Kentucky Court of Justice AOC FastCheck system and follow these steps:

  1. Select “Register.”
  2. Leave the top radio button selected, and fill out the form to register yourself in the system.
  3. You’ll then receive an email with a verification link. Open it and click on the link.
  4. Log in to the AOC FastCheck system with the information you just used to register.
  5. Select “Create New Record Request.”
  6. For the category, choose “Licensing,” for the group, choose “Dept. of Insurance (DOI),” and for the reason, choose “Licensing.”
  7. Complete the form with all of your information, and then select “Add To Batch.”
  8. Click on the “Submit Request” button in the lower-left corner of the page, which should now be active.
  9. Follow any further instructions.

If you have any questions, call the Kentucky Court of Justice at 502-573-2350 and ask to speak to “Records.” The fee for the background check is $25. An AOC criminal background report is valid for 60 days.

Step 3: Complete a Kentucky Life Insurance License Application

After you complete a prep course and submit your background check request, you can apply for your Kentucky life insurance license. The application fee is $40 plus a $5.60 service charge and $50 for the exam fee. You must apply online via the NIPR.

The Kentucky Department of Insurance will issue a life insurance license to individuals who are at least 18 years old and have passed the proper licensing requirements. Additionally, you must set up a Kentucky Online Gateway (KOG) account to manage your application, learn about licensing requirements, and more.

To apply for a life insurance license in Kentucky, make sure you comply with the insurance licensing requirements as defined under the Kentucky Insurance Code.

Send any questions or supporting documents to DOI.LicensingMail@ky.gov.

Step 4: Take the Kentucky Life Insurance Licensing Exam

You must schedule your exam through the KOG portal after the Kentucky Department of Insurance processes your application. For more information on the exam providers, check out the Kentucky Department of Insurance’s Exam Schedule and Testing Sites

The Kentucky life insurance exam outline contains a total of 150 scored questions, covering topics from the types of insurance policies to Kentucky law. Your prelicensing coursework will address all of the included topics.

You’ll have 190 minutes to complete the exam. The Kentucky life insurance exam fee is $50, which you must pay at the time of reservation by credit card, debit card, or voucher. The exam is a proctored test, meaning an official proctor will closely monitor you in a controlled environment.

If you happen to fail the Kentucky life insurance exam, you’ll need to schedule another examination via the KOG portal on the next business day and pay the $50 fee again. You may retake the exam an unlimited number of times within 120 days.

Tip

Check out our in-depth insurance exam guide for tips to help you pass on the first attempt.

The best way to understand if you are prepared for the test is to take a Life Insurance Practice Exam.

Step 5: Watch for Your Application Results

After you complete the previous four steps, the Kentucky Department of Insurance will review your application and background check. It reviews applications in the order it receives them, and it usually takes three to five business days to review and process your application. 

You can print your license from the NIPR website or through the KOG portal. There’s no charge to create an account or print a license. You also may track the status of your application via your KOG account. 

Congratulations! You’re now ready to get started as a life insurance agent in Kentucky.

Congratulations!

You’re now ready to get started as a life insurance agent in Kentucky.

Steps After Securing Your Kentucky Life Insurance License

Once you complete the above steps and have your Kentucky life insurance license, there are a few steps you’ll need to take in order to a) excel as an insurance agent, and b) maintain your life insurance license.

Let’s take a brief look at these below.

Obtain All Relevant Securities Licenses

If you’re planning on selling advanced life insurance products, you’ll likely need to pass the Securities Industry Essentials (SIE) exam and obtain the relevant securities licenses (e.g., Series 6, 7, and 63).

For more information on this step, you can have a look at our in-depth Securities Licensing overview.

Choose a Means of Selling

You’ll have to decide whether you’d prefer working as a captive agent employed by one company, or running your own business as an independent agent.

If you’re just starting out, you’ll likely benefit from working as a captive agent, but this will ultimately depend on your personal aspirations and opportunities.

Develop Your Marketing Approach

To succeed as an insurance agent, you’ll need to adopt a marketing approach that’s effective for you.

We recommend finding and sticking to a niche, as well organizing all client appointments for the start of your week. This is because this can improve your overall client conversions.

Keep Your License Valid

In Kentucky, you must complete 24 hours of continuing education (CE) every two years to renew your license.

Three of those 24 hours must focus on ethics. You may complete your required hours in any combination of in-person classes and self-study.

Keep in mind that you won’t be able to renew your license until you complete your CE hours and pay any outstanding fines.

To avoid delays in renewing your license, you must complete your required CE hours at least 90 days before your license expires. 

Kentucky requires insurance agents to renew their applications online instead of using paper applications. You may renew your license via the NIPR. There’s no fee to renew your license if you have an active appointment in Kentucky. If you don’t have an active appointment in the state, you’ll have to pay a late fee of $40.

For a more in-depth look at each one of these steps, check out our Steps After Getting Your Insurance License guide.

Kentucky Department of Insurance Contact Information

Physical Address

Kentucky Department of Insurance
500 Mero Street
2 SE 11 Frankfort, KY 40601

Mailing Address

Kentucky Department of Insurance
P.O. Box 517
Frankfort, KY 40602-0517

Phone: 502-564-6004

Email: DOI.LicensingMail@ky.gov 

Website: http://insurance.ky.gov/ 

License Search: Kentucky Insurance Licensee Search

Kentucky Life Insurance License FAQ

How much does it cost to get a life insurance license in Kentucky?

Obtaining a life insurance license in Kentucky requires these fees: 
Insurance Pre-license Education Course Fee: $149+ via Kaplan Education Company
Background Check Fee: $25 via the Kentucky Court of Justice AOC FastCheck
Application Fee: $40 application fee + $5.60 transaction fee + $50 exam fee via the NIPR
Exam Fee: $50 exam fee paid via the NIPR to the Kentucky Department of Insurance

How long does it take to process a life insurance license application in Kentucky?

This process typically takes three to five business days. You’ll receive an email once the Kentucky Department of Insurance reviews your application.

Can I get a temporary life insurance agent license in Kentucky?

Yes. Kentucky provides a 180-day, temporary life insurance license. You must first submit an application for a regular agent license and examination through the NIPR. Then, you must complete a paper application for a temporary agent license in addition to your application for the regular agent license. You must then submit your completed application by email to DOI.AgentLicensingMail@ky.gov or mail to:
Kentucky Department of Insurance
P.O. Box 517
Frankfort, KY 40602-0517

Can I get an emergency life insurance agent license in Kentucky?

No. An emergency license isn’t available for life insurance agents in Kentucky.

Do I need to get my securities license on top of a life insurance license in Kentucky?

Probably. While you can sell certain basic life insurance products with just a life insurance license, a securities license removes the limits on what you can sell and puts you in a much better career position. As a securities license holder, you can provide your clients with products tied to the securities market as part of their retirement and life insurance plans. But, you’ll need FINRA accreditation to obtain your securities license.

What can I sell with a life insurance license in Kentucky?

With a Kentucky life insurance license, you can sell life insurance policies that pay a designated beneficiary when the insured person dies. You also can sell annuities that pay a set income at retirement.

How much can you make with a life insurance license in Kentucky?

According to ZipRecruiter, life insurance agents earn an average of $79,730 per year.

What are the limitations of a Kentucky life insurance license?

Unless you have multiple licenses to sell various types of insurance products (e.g., the combined life and health insurance license), having a Kentucky life insurance license only qualifies you to sell life insurance policies as well as retirement plans and annuities. You can’t sell other types of insurance. A securities license on top of your life insurance license removes that limitation and enables you to offer securities, including stocks and bonds.

Can I cancel my life insurance license in Kentucky?

Yes. To cancel your license, you must download and fill out the Application for Voluntary Surrender of License (Form VS) and mail it to: 
Kentucky Department of Insurance
P.O. Box 517
Frankfort, KY 40602-0517

How hard is it to get a life insurance license in Kentucky?

The process is quite simple! Follow the steps above and get started today!

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