Michigan plumbers license and insurance requirements

Michigan plumbers license and insurance requirements

Ashley Henshaw
By Ashley Henshaw
Jan 17, 2024
7 min read

To get a Michigan plumbers license, you’ll need to know all about testing, license renewal and reciprocity. To help you decide if it’s the right career path for you, we’ve put together this guide to how to get a plumbers license in Michigan.

Read on to learn:

How to get a Michigan plumbers license

In Michigan, you must have a license issued by the Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA). The available license classifications include journey plumber and master plumber.

Before pursuing your license, you’ll need to have experience as a plumbing apprentice. You must submit a registration form and a $15 registration fee to LARA within 30 days of employment as an apprentice.

The same instructions apply for how to get a journey plumber license and how to get a master plumber license. You must submit a Michigan plumber license application by mail or online. 

Include all requested documentation with your application, as well as the appropriate license fee:

  • Journey plumber license fee: $40
  • Master plumber license fee: $300

Michigan plumbers license exam

Upon approval of your application, you’ll receive instructions on how to schedule your exam from PSI, the third-party testing agency used by the state of Michigan. You must pay the required $100 examination fee when scheduling your exam.

Plumber license exams are conducted via computer at testing centers in the following Michigan cities: Dearborn, Gaylord, Grand Rapids, Holt, Marquette and Southfield. Applicants can choose the location and date of the exam according to their preferences. 

The open-book exam takes 180 minutes to complete and covers the following topics:

  • Plumbing theory
  • Plumber practice
  • Michigan plumbing code, rules and regulations

You must achieve a score of 70% or higher on your exam in order to pass. PSI will provide your score immediately after you complete the test.

Michigan plumbers license requirements

Plumber license applicants must be at least 18 years of age. In addition, you must meet the following work experience requirements when you apply for a Michigan plumber license.

Journey plumber experience requirements 

You must have at least 6,000 hours of experience as a registered apprentice plumber earned over a period of three years while under the supervision of a master plumber.

Master plumber experience requirements 

You must hold a journey plumber license and have at least 4,000 hours of experience working as a journey plumber earned over a period of at least two years immediately before applying for your master license.

All applicants must submit notarized letters from current and former employers to document their work experience.

Requirements for Michigan plumbers license renewal

Michigan journey plumbers must renew their license every year by April 30. If you have a master plumber license, renewal is only required every three years by April 30. The plumbing division will send a notification approximately three months before your license is set to expire.

To renew your license, you must submit a signed renewal form and pay the appropriate fee:

  • Journey plumber renewal fee: $40 every year
  • Master plumber renewal fee: $300 every three years

In order to maintain your journey or master plumber license, you must take an approved five-hour code update course within one year whenever a new edition of the Michigan Plumbing Code goes into effect. The plumbing division will notify you when you need to complete this requirement.

Insurance for Michigan plumbers

Once you become a licensed plumber, you may want to obtain self-employed plumber insurance or small business insurance. The following types of insurance are available for professionals in the plumbing industry.

General liability insurance

General liability insurance can help provide coverage in the event of a work-related accident or property damage.

Workers’ compensation insurance

Most employers in the state of Michigan must have workers’ compensation insurance. This insurance can help cover lost wages and medical care costs if you or one of your employees gets hurt on the job.

Tools and equipment insurance

Tools and equipment insurance can help cover repairs and replacements if your work gear is damaged or stolen.

Commercial auto insurance

Plumbers who drive to different job sites may need commercial auto insurance, which can help cover accident-related costs like property damage and medical expenses. 

Commercial property insurance

If theft or property damage occurs, commercial property insurance can help cover buildings you rent or own for work and your plumbing inventory and gear.

Michigan plumbers license reciprocity

Michigan does not have reciprocity agreements with any other state. You must submit a completed application and pass the exam in order to obtain a Michigan plumber license.

How NEXT helps support Michigan plumbers

NEXT is 100% dedicated to small businesses. We’ve helped thousands of plumbers and other contractors get the right insurance to help protect and grow their business.

Apply for plumber insurance online, get a quote, secure your coverage and obtain a certificate of insurance in under 10 minutes. Access your policy via desktop or app 24/7 to adjust your coverage or share additional certificates of insurance with clients.

Get a free quote with NEXT today.

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Ashley Henshaw
About the author

Ashley Henshaw was a contributing writer at NEXT. She specializes in small business topics, covering everything from insurance and branding to web hosting and cryptocurrency.

Her work has appeared in The Huffington Post, AOL City's Best, Citysearch, USA Today, The San Francisco Chronicle and Livestrong.

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