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Massachusetts plumber license and insurance requirements

Massachusetts plumber license and insurance requirements

By Ashley Henshaw
Dec 14, 2021
8 min read

Did you know that Massachusetts holds a special place in plumbing history? The Tremont Hotel in Boston was actually the country’s first hotel to feature indoor plumbing, an amenity previously only available to the very wealthy.1

If you’re looking to get paid well for your work as a plumber, Massachusetts is one of the best spots to set up shop. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Massachusetts ranks third in the nation among the top-paying states for plumbers with an average annual salary of $80,860.2 That’s significantly more than the national average for plumber’s annual wages, which is $56,330.3

If you’re interested in working as a plumber in Massachusetts, you’ll need a license from the Board of State Examiners of Plumbers and Gas Fitters.4 The process to become licensed involves a number of steps, including passing an exam and obtaining a surety bond. Follow this guide to learn more about how to get a plumber license in Massachusetts, including:

Do you need a license to be a plumber?

To work as a plumber in Massachusetts, you must have a license from the Board of State Examiners of Plumbers and Gas Fitters. There are three license classifications available: apprentice, journeyman and master plumber. 

Most professionals in this field start out as an apprentice. As you acquire more work experience and training, you can move up to journeyman or master plumber status by applying for a different license classification.

How to get a plumber license in Massachusetts

The process for getting your plumber license depends on which type of license classification you’re applying for.

How to get an apprentice plumber license

Submit your Massachusetts plumber license application online. You must also pay a license fee of $14.

How to get a journeyman plumber license

Submit your Massachusetts plumber license application online also with the application fee of $31. Upon approval of your application, you may register for the licensing exam.

You may take the exam online or in person. If you pass the exam with a score of 70% or better, you will receive your license once you’ve paid the license fee of $52.

How to get a master plumber license

Submit your Massachusetts plumber license application online also with the application fee of $31. Upon approval of your application, you may register for the licensing exam.

You may take the exam online or in person. If you pass the exam with a score of 70% or better, you will receive your license once you’ve paid the master plumber license fee of $78.

Massachusetts plumber license requirements

Make sure you fulfill the following requirements when you apply for your Massachusetts plumber license.

Apprentice plumber license requirements

To become a plumbing apprentice, you must show proof of employment under the supervision of a master plumber.

Include the following materials with your application:

  • Proof of employment by a licensed Massachusetts master plumber
  • Notarized Criminal Offender Record Information Acknowledgement (CORI) authorization form
  • A 2” x 2” color passport photo

Journeyman plumber license requirements

To become a journeyman plumber, you must complete 550 hours of plumbing theory education over a period of at least four years and 6,800 hours of work experience as a licensed apprentice plumber. 

You must accrue these work hours while under the supervision of a licensed master plumber or under the supervision of a licensed journeyman plumber who is employed by a master plumber.

Include the following materials with your application:

  • Education Verification form signed by a school official
  • Statement of Experience form signed by a supervising master plumber
  • Notarized Criminal Offender Record Information Acknowledgement (CORI) authorization form
  • A 2” x 2” color passport photo

Master plumber license requirements

To become a master plumber, you must complete 110 hours of advanced plumbing theory education and 1,700 hours of work experience as a licensed journeyman plumber. You must accrue these work hours over the course of at least one year.

Include the following materials with your application:

Massachusetts plumber license renewal requirements

You must renew journeyman and master plumber licenses every two years. You will receive a renewal notice by mail, or you can use the Board’s online plumber license lookup to check your license status.

Journeyman and master plumbers must complete at least 12 hours of approved continuing education courses during each two-year renewal period.

Massachusetts plumber license reciprocity

Applicants with out-of-state licenses must submit a written request to the Board for licensure by reciprocity. You must demonstrate that your education and experience are equivalent to the requirements set for Massachusetts plumber. 

The Board also requires an official statement from the licensing jurisdiction that your license is in good standing and that you are under no pending disciplinary action.

What kind of insurance does a plumber need in Massachusetts?

In addition to getting your plumber license, you’ll also need business insurance in Massachusetts if you plan to start your own business or work independently. While insurance is not needed to get licensed, it’s required for getting a plumbing permit to complete work as a plumber, unless a homeowner presents an insurance waiver.

Whether you need small business insurance or self-employed plumber insurance, be sure to consider the following types of policies.

General Liability insurance

Most plumbing business owners consider general liability insurance to be essential. This type of insurance helps to cover the costs of work-related accidents and property damage.

Commercial Property insurance

Commercial property insurance offers the help you need if damage or theft affects the property, equipment or inventory you need to do business.

Tools and Equipment insurance

You can’t work without your gear, so consider adding tools and equipment insurance to your general liability policy to get coverage for damaged or stolen work equipment.

Other types of business insurance a plumber needs in Massachusetts

Workers’ Compensation insurance

In Massachusetts, all employers must have workers’ compensation insurance.5 If you or one of your employees gets hurt on the job, this insurance can help cover costs related to medical expenses, lost wages and more.

Commercial Auto insurance

Since most plumbers drive to different job sites, commercial auto insurance is highly recommended. This insurance provides coverage for medical costs, towing, repairs and more if you get into an accident. 

How NEXT Insurance supports Massachusetts plumbers

At NEXT Insurance, we specialize in small business insurance. You can count on us to put together a custom insurance package that addresses all your needs as a licensed plumber.

Our services are conveniently available online, which means you can apply for plumber insurance coverage in minutes. Once you select your insurance package, you’ll also get access to unlimited certificates of insurance at no additional charge.

Thousands of plumbers use NEXT for their insurance needs thanks to our helpful licensed U.S.-based advisors, affordable prices and reliable coverage. Take the next step in your plumbing career by getting an instant quote online today.

Do you have projects in another U.S. state? Learn what states require plumber licenses in our summary of plumber license requirements.

Sources

1. Innovation & Technology Magazine

2. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics

3. U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook

4. Board of State Examiners of Plumbers and Gas Fitters

5 Massachusetts Workers’ Compensation Insurance Requirements


Massachusetts plumber license and insurance requirements

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About the author
Ashley Henshaw is a contributing writer at NEXT Insurance and a writer and editor at BrainBoost Media. She specializes in small business topics, covering everything from insurance and branding to web hosting and cryptocurrency. Her work is focused on helping independent business owners and entrepreneurs access the tools they need to succeed.
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