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Before you can sell insurance in Wisconsin, you must first obtain a license for the line of insurance you want to sell from the Wisconsin Office of the Commissioner of Insurance. The insurance commissioner’s office offers eight different licenses, all with a separate examination you must first pass. Once licensed, you must complete 24 hours of continuing education every two years to keep your license in good standing.
Complete a pre-license education course for the line of insurance you want to sell. You can find a list of approved education courses and providers on the Wisconsin Office of the Commissioner of Insurance website.
Register for the licensing examination with the insurance commissioner’s testing vendor, Pearson VUE. You can register online from the Pearson VUE website or through calling (800) 274-8979. Pay the examination fee by credit/debit card or electronic check — $75 — as of January 2011.
Make a reservation to have your fingerprints taken with Wisconsin’s fingerprinting vendor, L-1 Solutions. You can do this online from the L-1 Solutions website or through calling (866) 416-4896. Pay the fingerprinting fee — $52.50 — as of January 2011.
Pass your selected licensing examination with a score of at least 70 percent. You will receive a score report immediately upon completing the exam.
Have your fingerprints taken. An L-1 Solutions technician will do it at the Pearson VUE test site or at one of L-1 Solutions’ other sites in Wisconsin.
Submit your application online through the website of Sircon, Wisconsin’s licensing vendor. Sircon will forward your application the commissioner’s office for approval and to issue your license.
Obtain appointments from insurance companies for which you want to sell insurance. As an independent insurance agent, an insurance company must appoint you before you can sell its insurance products. Each company has its own criteria and process for obtaining appointments.
Study materials and practice tests are available on the Pearson VUE website.
You can receive a waiver of the pre-license education if you have a two- or four-year degree with a major in insurance.
Tom Johnson graduated from the University of South Carolina in 1995 with a Bachelor of Science in finance. He has worked in the insurance industry for over 15 years and is currently employed by a government agency that regulates insurance companies and brokers. Johnson began freelance writing in 2009, focusing his efforts on insurance and finance-related articles.