How To Become An Insurance Agent In Pennsylvania
What Kind Of Agent Are You Going To Be?A majority of people who are applying for their insurance license have a plan in already in place of where they are going to use it. If you don't yet have a plan on how you will be using your insurance license, this is the place to start. Here are some of the questions that you should ask yourself:
- What type of insurance am I going to sell?
- Am I starting my own agency or working inside of an existing agency?
- It may depend on how your agency is set up to tell you what type of licenses you need to hold.
- What types of licenses does my company require me to hold?
How To Get Your Insurance License In Pennsylvania
1. Pre-License Education
The first step in getting a Pennsylvania insurance license is taking pre-license education courses. These are state required courses pertaining to the subject matter that will be on the license exam. To fill the pre-license requirement, you must complete a certain amount of credit hours depending on the lines of authority (types of licenses) you wish to attain.
Pennsylvania combines all of its pre-license education into one twenty-four (24) hour requirement, including three (3) hours of ethics coursework. This means that you will take the same amount of coursework whether you're getting just your Life Insurance License, or if you plan on getting Life, Accident, and Health and the Property and Casualty License. You will receive a certificate upon completion of the course. Keep this certificate, as you will need it when taking your exam.
Most applicants choose to take these courses online, as it fits their schedule better, but there are also in-person courses available. You should choose which format in which to take your courses based on your preferred method of learning. The goal isn't just to get the courses out of the way, it's to prepare you to pass your license exam on the first attempt.
2. Insurance License Exams
The next step after completing all of your pre-license coursework is to take the insurance exam. You will take one exam for each line of insurance you wish to carry. Life, Accident, and Health (LA&H) and Property and Casualty (P&C) are combined into two exams.
This is a proctored test, which means that you will be in a controlled environment with a person watching you. For people who haven't tested in a situation like this should be aware of this fact, and work on taming their nerves prior to sitting for the exam.
The fee for each attempt of the exams is $50.
The Pennsylvania Life, Accident, and Health test is one hundred fifty (150) questions long, and you have one hundred seventy (170) minutes to complete the exam. PSI Exams offers this Life, Accident, and Health Exam Content Outline.
The Pennsylvania Property and Casualty test is also one hundred fifty (150) questions long, and you have one hundred seventy (170) minutes to complete the exam. PSI Exams offers this Property and Casualty Exam Content Outline.
The minimum score to pass these exams is 70%. For more information, check out the PSI Pennsylvania Licensing Examination Candidate Information Handbook.
Check out our Insurance Exam Guide. It's extremely in-depth, and will hopefully help you pass the first time.
Insurance license tests are intentionally difficult, but not impossible by any means. You should study to the point of comfortability with the information before you attempt the test. Failing the exam isn't the end of the world, but keep in mind that you will need to pay the fee each time you attempt the test.
Note: StateRequirement recommends that you study for one exam at a time, then after passing, starting on your next line. The exams are difficult enough on their own without confusing information from one line to another.
Along with testing, you will also need to have your fingerprints taken. You will set this appointment up with PSI Exams on the same day that you take your exams. There is a $25 fee for fingerprinting services.
You may register to take your exams and fingerprints on the PSI Exams Pennsylvania website.
3. License Application
Once you have completed your exams and fingerprinting, you are now ready to apply for your license. If you have more than one line of authority that you have passed the exam for, be sure to apply for all of those lines.
The fee for an online application is $55, and $25 for any amendments (like adding a line of authority). This means that if you pass your exam for one line, then apply for the license, it will be $55, but adding another line in the future will cost an extra $25. If you were to pass both exams prior to applying for the license, you would essentially save yourself the $25 amendment fee.
Note: Even though you may save $25 by applying for the licenses all at once, StateRequirement still recommends that you study and test for one line at a time. It is much easier to pass the exams this way, and one failed attempt will outweigh the cost of the amendment fee.
Fill out your online application on the Sircon Pennsylvania web page.
4. Fingerprinting And Background Check
Pennsylvania requires that all insurance license applicants provide fingerprints prior to licensing. Giving your fingerprints will initiate a background check. If you have any prior misdemeanors or felonies, this may affect the outcome of your licensing efforts.
Schedule to have your fingerprints taken with IdentoGo. You may also schedule your appointment by phone at 855-321-2101.
The Pennsylvania insurance fingerprint code is 1KG8Q3.
The fee for fingerprinting services is $22.60.
Note: Any fingerprint results received without a corresponding license application will be destroyed, and individuals will be required to repay the fingerprinting fee and resubmit their fingerprints at an IdentoGO center.
5. Application Review
Once you have submitted your application and have filled all the other requirements, your license application will be reviewed by the state. Your background check will also be reviewed.
If everything is to acceptable standards your license should be issued after your fingerprints return from the FBI, plus three (3) business days. If there are any items from your background check that need to be reviewed, it may slow down the process of issuance. If this is the case, the state may contact you to provide context to the issues that they have run into.
Once the state accepts your license, you should receive an email from the licensing department informing you of the license approval.
You may look your license up yourself in the Sircon Pennsylvania License Lookup Tool.
You've done the work, put in the time and effort, and now hold the key to your own success! We're proud of you. Take five (5) minutes and celebrate.
Pennsylvania Department Of Insurance Contact Information
Pennsylvania Insurance Department
1326 Strawberry Square
Harrisburg, PA 17120
Information on this page has been gathered by a multitude of sources and was most recently updated in November 2018.
Any Information on this site is not guaranteed or warranted to be correct, accurate, or up to date. Huge Hammer LLC and its members and affiliates are not responsible for any losses, monetary or otherwise. For more information, please contact your state's authority on insurance. Disclosure: StateRequirement has an affiliation with Kaplan Education company, and may receive compensation based on user activity on this site. We truly believe that Kaplan offers excellent products and services, and compliments the mission of StateRequirement.
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