Getting your Virginia life insurance license is the first step toward becoming a life insurance agent. If you want to market and sell life insurance policies, follow this step-by-step guide for obtaining life insurance licensing in Virginia.
The Virginia Bureau of Insurance requires you to complete a five-step process to obtain your life insurance license — from taking the life insurance exam to applying for a license.
How To Get Your Virginia Life Insurance License – Quick Version
- Complete a Virginia Insurance Prelicense Course (ExamFX – $189+)
- Take the Virginia Life Insurance Licensing Exam (Prometric – $35)
- Get a Fingerprint-Based Background Check (Fieldprint – $35.72)
- Complete a Virginia Life Insurance License Application (Sircon – $15 application fee)
- Watch for Your Application Results
Steps To Get a Virginia Life Insurance License
Obtaining your Virginia 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 Virginia property and casualty (P&C) license as well.
Step 1: Complete a Virginia Insurance Prelicense Course
Before you take the Virginia 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.
While Virginia doesn’t have any formal pre-license education requirements, most insurance professionals opt to take a pre-license education course online. Others purchase books or self-study materials to prepare themselves for the exam.
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.” Prelicense 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.
Step 2: Take the Virginia Life Insurance Licensing Exam
After you complete a prep course and your own independent studying, it’s time to take the Virginia life insurance exam.
Virginia uses Prometric as its official testing service for delivering licensure exams.
The Virginia life insurance exam outline contains a total of 90 scored questions that cover eight sections:
- Insurance Regulation
- General Insurance
- Life Insurance Basics
- Life Insurance Policies
- Life Insurance Policy Provisions, Options, and Riders
- Federal Tax Considerations for Life Insurance and Annuities
- Qualified Plans
You’ll have 120 minutes to complete the exam. The Virginia life insurance exam fee is $35, 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 Virginia life insurance exam, you can schedule a time to retake it as soon as 24 hours after your first attempt. There’s no limit to the number of attempts you can make on the same exam.
Tip:Check out our in-depth insurance exam guide for tips to help you pass on the first attempt.
Step 3: Get a Virginia Fingerprint Based Background Check
After you take the Virginia life insurance exam, you must get a fingerprint-based background check from Fieldprint. The fee for a criminal history record report is $35.72 to cover the cost of comparing your prints against criminal history records.
To set up a fingerprinting appointment, go to the Fieldprint website or call 877-614-4364. Use code FPVABOICHRR to create a secure user account when making your appointment via Fieldprint.
At your fingerprinting appointment, you’ll receive a receipt. Don’t throw it away! Keep the original receipt for your records.
After completing your fingerprint-based background check, you must submit your license application within one year of passing the licensing exam. If you fail to do so, you’ll need to retake the exam.
Step 4: Complete a Virginia Life Insurance License Application
Once you pass the life insurance exam and complete the background check, you can apply for your Virginia life insurance license. The application fee is $15, and you must apply online via Sircon.
The Virginia Bureau of Insurance will issue a life insurance license to individuals who are at least 18 years old and have passed the proper licensing exam. You should submit your completed license application within 12 months of passing the exam.
Send any questions or supporting documents to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Step 5: Watch for Your Application Results
After you complete the previous four steps, the Virginia Bureau of Insurance will review your application and background check. It reviews applications in the order it receives them, and this process usually takes 15 to 20 business days from the date you submit your application.
Once the Virginia Bureau of Insurance finishes reviewing your application, it’ll email you with its decision or ask you to provide more information.
You can print your license from the Sircon website. There’s no charge to print a license. If you don’t remember your license number, you can find it by using the Virginia Bureau of Insurance Agent Search tool.
You’re now ready to get started as a life insurance agent in Virginia.
Next Steps After Securing Your Virginia Life Insurance License
Once you complete the above steps and have your Virginia life insurance license, here’s what you should pursue next.
Get Your FINRA Securities Licenses
Individuals planning to market and sell market-based life insurance products also must obtain the proper securities licenses. As a securities license holder, you can offer securities as part of your services. That’ll make you a credible authority in addressing all of your clients’ financial needs.
To obtain these licenses, you’ll first need to take and pass the Securities Industry Essentials (SIE) exam. Professionals in the securities industry are required to take the SIE and a series of examinations administered by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA).
The SIE exam ensures every life insurance professional has a basic understanding of securities. While taking the SIE exam isn’t a requirement for all insurance professionals, those who don’t obtain at least one securities license limit their ability to work with clients. With a securities license, you can give your clients the option to invest in securities-related products as part of their life insurance plans.
Tip:To help you start preparing for the SIE exam, check out our full guide on How to Pass the SIE Exam.
Obtaining a license to sell securities also requires sponsorship from a firm, company, or organization regulated by FINRA. The sponsor will pay the testing fees required for your SIE exams and submit your personal information to FINRA’s Central Registration Depository (CRD). The Series 6 and Series 7 licenses require a FINRA exam sponsorship before you can take the exam. The exam for a Series 63 license doesn’t require any sponsoring entity.
Once you get your securities license(s), FINRA will list you as a “registered representative.” By achieving the securities licensee designation, you’ll become a highly sought-after professional and set yourself up for a successful career in the insurance industry.
Series 6, 7, and 63 Licenses
Some of the most common securities licenses for insurance agents include the Series 6, 7, and 63 licenses because they allow licensees to sell almost every type of individual security.
The Series 6 (Investment Company and Variable Contracts Products Representative) Securities License is the primary license sought by insurance sales professionals and financial advisors, allowing them to sell grouped securities related to insurance products.
Series 6 works together with Series 63 because they are the two partner licenses required to sell insurance policies tied to investments. The North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) oversees regulation of the Series 63 (Uniform Securities Agent State Law) license.
The Series 7 license allows you to buy and sell securities (e.g., stocks, bonds, and mutual funds) as part of an investment plan for your clients. To get a Series 7 license, you will first need to register as a new candidate with FINRA and pass the Series 7 exam. The Series 7 exam is commonly known as the General Securities Representative Qualification Exam, but is sometimes referred to as the “Series 7 Top-Off Exam.”
Get a Job in the Insurance Field
Once you earn your license, you can start applying for jobs in the insurance field. With a life insurance license, you can provide advice and recommend insurance products to clients, sell life insurance policies that pay a beneficiary upon an insured person’s death, and sell annuities that pay a set income at retirement.
Find life insurance job postings on our Insurance Jobs Board.
When applying for an insurance-related job, potential employers will request your license number and National Producer Number (NPN). You can request a letter of certification, which proves you have a life insurance license in Virginia, by visiting the Sircon website.
Complete Continuing Education and Renew Your License
In Virginia, you must complete 16 hours of continuing education (CE) every two years to maintain your license in good standing. You must complete three hours in ethics which may include Virginia Insurance Law and Regulations. To find these courses, visit the Sircon website and click on the “Approved Courses Inquiry” option.
If you have a non-resident license with good standing in your home state, you don’t need to take CE courses in Virginia. To find out if you need to take Virginia courses, visit the Sircon website and click on the “Continuing Education Transcript Inquiry” option.
You can’t renew your license until you complete your CE hours and pay any outstanding fines.
In Virginia, you must also renew and manage your life insurance license every two years. To avoid delays in renewing your license, you must complete continuing education hours at least 90 days before your license expires. Your CE provider will report your successful completion of the coursework to the Virginia Bureau of Insurance. There will no longer be a continuance fee; however, there will be a $10 fee per line of authority to renew your license.
Virginia Bureau of Insurance Contact Information
State Corporation Commission
Bureau of Insurance
P.O. Box 1157
Richmond, VA 23218
License Search: Virginia Insurance License Lookup
Virginia Life Insurance License FAQ
How much does it cost to get a life insurance license in Virginia?
Obtaining a life insurance license in Virginia requires these fees:
- Insurance Prelicense Education Course Fee: $189+ via ExamFX
- Exam Fee: $35 via Prometric
- Fingerprint-Based Background Check Fee: $35.72 via Fieldprint
- Application Fee: $15 via Sircon
How long does it take to process a life insurance license application in Virginia?
This process typically takes 15 to 20 business days. You’ll receive an email once the Virginia Bureau of Insurance reviews your application.
Can I get a temporary life insurance agent license in Virginia?
Yes. The Virginia Bureau of Insurance will issue a temporary life insurance license for a period of 180 calendar days in the following circumstances:
- Upon the death of an agent to his personal representative, surviving spouse, employee, child, or next of kin.
- Upon the inability of an agent to act because of sickness, injury, or mental incapacity to his spouse, child, next of kin, employee, or legal representative.
- Upon the sale of the agent’s business to any person employed in the business. In the event no person is available and suitable for licensing and appointment, the Virginia Bureau of Insurance may license and appoint any other suitable person.
- To an applicant who’ll serve as an appointed agent of a home service insurer with an assigned debit amount who’ll actually collect the premiums on insurance contracts during the period of their temporary license.
No exam is required. A non-refundable $15 per qualification per application processing fee is required. Prior to applying for the Temporary license, please contact the Agent Licensing Section either by phone (804) 371-9631 or by email at AgentLicensing@scc.virginia.gov.
Can I get an emergency life insurance agent license in Virginia?
No. An emergency license isn’t available for life insurance agents in Virginia.
Do I need to get my securities license on top of a life insurance license in Virginia?
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 Virginia?
With a Virginia 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 Virginia?
According to ZipRecruiter, life insurance agents earn an average of $79,730 per year.
What are the limitations of a Virginia 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 Virginia 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 Virginia?
Yes. To cancel your license, email a completed Virginia Individual License Cancellation Request Form to AgentLicensing@scc.virginia.gov.
How hard is it to get a life insurance license in Virginia?
The process is quite simple! Follow the steps above and get started today!
Information on this page has been gathered by a multitude of sources and was most recently updated in October 2021.
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