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How to Become an Insurance Agent in Pennsylvania

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The Pennsylvania Insurance Department administers licensing programs for insurance agents. Insurance producers (agents) in Pennsylvania can obtain a license to sell life insurance, health insurance and various other lines of insurance. The department has requirements for each line. Requirements include the completion of educational courses, an insurance exam for most lines and a criminal background check. Successful applicants can contract with insurance companies to sell policies in Pennsylvania.

Use the "Licensing and Examination Information Booklet" to review the types of Pennsylvania insurance licenses. Click on the link in the References section below to open the booklet. Pennsylvania insurance agents must have different licenses for separate lines of insurance. Most licenses require an examination. Decide which insurance license you wish to obtain and the exam requirements for that license.

Click on the "Look up education courses/credits" link on the Sircon Pennsylvania page at www.sircon.com/Pennsylvania. Sircon is a private company that maintains a database of approved insurance education providers for Pennsylvania insurance licenses. You must complete 24 hours of insurance courses before taking your insurance exam. Click on "Approved Courses Inquiry" and select Pennsylvania as the state. You can then find approved insurance courses and providers. Contact the providers for further information on enrolling in courses. Keep your completion certificate and take it with you to your insurance exam.

Use the information booklet to find reference books that you can use to prepare for your exam. Prometric also supplies exam content outlines for the Pennsylvania insurance exams. Use the outline to learn which topics appear on your particular exam. Use the reference books and any materials and notes from your approved course to prepare for the insurance exam.

Use the "Exam Registration Form" to schedule your exam. You will need to also schedule your fingerprinting session at the same time. Prometric administers the exam and also takes electronic fingerprints at the exam site. As of 2010, the fees for the exam range from $44 to $89. The fingerprinting fee is $20. You may pay by a company check, money order, cashier's check or credit card (Visa or MasterCard only). Prometric accepts registrations on line, through the mail, by phone or by fax. Use the following contact information to register:

Prometric ATTN: PA Insurance Exam Registration 1260 Energy Lane St. Paul, MN 55108 Phone: 800-715-2418 Fax: 800-347-9242 prometric.com/Pennsylvania

Take your fingerprints and apply for your license. Pennsylvania recommends that you take the fingerprints and apply for your license at the exam site immediately after taking the exam. However, you may still download and use a paper application. Click on the application link in the References section below and click on the "Application" link on the web page to get to the paper application. As of 2010, you must pay Prometric an additional $39 to process the fingerprints and $55 for the insurance license application (credit card only). If you choose to use the paper form, you must pay Pennsylvania the fingerprint and processing fees and schedule a fingerprinting session with Prometric. You may pay the "Commonwealth of PA" by check or money order if using the paper form. Send the application to the following address:

Pennsylvania Insurance Department Bureau of Producer Services 1209 Strawberry Square Harrisburg, PA 17120 717-787-3840 www.insurance.pa.gov

Tip

Most nonresident applicants who have an existing license in the same line of insurance can apply without attending courses or taking an exam. They may apply at the Sircon Pennsylvania page.

You may retake an exam if you fail. You must schedule and pay the exam fee for each retake examination.

About the Author

Jimmy Boyd has a law degree from Thomas M. Cooley Law School. He has been writing articles on law and a variety of other topics since 2004. His work appears at Lead-Generation-Tips.com, eHow and Hubpages.com.

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