How to Get an Illinois Insurance License

By: Kaplan Financial Education
March 22, 2019

You live in Illinois, and you’ve been researching a career in insurance. You’ve reviewed the basics and have decided to become an insurance agent. Here are the 5 steps for earning your license in your home state.

Step 1: Familiarize Yourself with the Licensing Candidate Handbook

What does a career in insurance in Illinois require? What education do you need? Do you have to be a college graduate? Are you an insurance agent in another state and would also like to be licensed in Illinois? Can other coursework count toward your education? Are there licenses that don’t require education? The Illinois Insurance Licensing Candidate Handbook offers a wealth of information on the specifics of insurance licensure in Illinois, including all the education requirements, the costs, and the procedures for taking the exam.

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Step 2: Complete all Prelicensing Education Requirements

You’ll need to complete prelicensing education before taking the exam for your license. This education helps you prepare for the exam and your future career. You’ll need to take 20 hours each for the following types of insurance: life, accident/health, fire (property), casualty, and personal lines. Of the 20 hours for each type, you’ll need 7.5 hours of classroom training.

After you complete your education, you will receive a certificate of completion from your education provider. Hang onto it, because you must present it to the Illinois Department of Insurance before they issue your license. These certificates are good for up to one year after you complete your courses. This means you’ll have to take the exam and pass during this period.

Step 3: Schedule Your Exam, Pay the Fee, and Prepare Yourself

You can’t take the exam without a reservation. Pearson Vue is the exam provider, and you can make an online reservation at Simply create an account and follow the step-by-step instructions to make your exam reservation.

The fees are $102 for an individual exam, and it includes the states administration fee of $50. However, you can schedule two exams back-to-back and still pay just $102. You’ll need to pay the fees when you register. In preparation for the exam, you should study and practice. The Illinois Insurance Licensing Candidate Handbook has information about how to pay for the exams and how you can obtain practice tests for the different types of insurance.

Step 4: Take the Exam and Pass

On the day of the exam, report to the exam center 30 minutes before the scheduled start time. Be sure to have two forms of current ID with a signature, such as a driver’s license, passport, military ID, state-issued ID card, and so on. You should also bring your certificate or certificates of completion for your prelicensing education. You’ll also be asked to sign a Candidate Rules Agreement form. Also, if you’re nervous, you have the opportunity to take a tutorial that will not cut into your exam time.

After you complete your exam, you’ll be given a Pass or Fail score. If you pass, your score report will include an application for your license. You’ll need to wait 5 days before applying. If you fail, you can take the exam again, but you’ll have to wait 7 days before you can reschedule.

Step 5: Apply for Your License

To apply, go to the National Insurance Producer Registry (NIPR) website. The cost of the license for an Illinois resident is $90 for two years. More information is available at

As You Pursue Your New Career

As you follow these 5 steps for successfully earning your Illinois insurance license, keep in mind that you will also have continuing education requirements. You’ll need to renew your license every two years, so be sure to keep up with the latest information at

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