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How to Get a Guard Card in Los Angeles

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To become a security guard in Los Angeles, you need a guard card issued by the California Bureau of Security and Investigative Services. A guard card can open the door to a new career and opportunities for advancement.

Take the eight-hour "Powers to Arrest" course. This course could be given by your prospective employer. The course can also be taken at a security guard training facility. Passing this course is mandatory before obtaining a guard card.

Submit the guard card application online to the Bureau of Security and Investigative Services (www.bsis.ca.gov). The 2010 application fee is $51.

Submit your fingerprint card electronically with Live Scan. Download the Live Scan fingerprint forms from the Bureau of Security and Investigative Services website and then go to a Live Scan location. Find the locations at ag.ca.gov/fingerprints/publications/contact.php. The fee for submitting your fingerprint card is $51.

Mail your application. You may submit your guard card application, fee and fingerprint Live Scan form to:

Bureau of Security and Investigative Services PO Box 989002 West Sacramento, CA 95798-9002

Verify your license. Go to www.bsis.ca.gov to verify you have been issued a guard card. You will receive a paper copy in the mail within 10 to 15 days after being approved.


After receiving your guard card, you must take an additional 16 hours of training within 30 days and an additional 16 hours of training within six months to keep your card valid.

About the Author

Based in Buffalo, N.Y., Jackie Whalen has been writing since 2007. She has a Bachelor of Arts degree in religious studies from the University of California, Santa Barbara. She is currently a third-year law student.

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