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Licensing Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) - Plumbing

  1. How do I apply for an apprentice plumber/gas fitter’s license?
  2. How to apply for a journey plumber/gas fitter’s license?
  3. How to apply for a master plumber/gas fitter’s license?
  4. How do I apply for an apprentice natural gas fitter’s license?
  5. How to apply for a journey natural gas fitter’s license?
  6. How to apply for a master natural gas fitter’s license?
  7. How to apply for a propane gas fitter certification?
  8. How do I apply to become a master, journey, or non-master inspector card?
  9. What documentation is required to be eligible for the master, journey or non-master inspector card?
  10. What state or local jurisdiction does the Board reciprocate?
  11. How do I apply for a reciprocal license?
  12. What documentation is required for my reciprocal license?
  13. How do I obtain a Letter of Good Standing?
  14. How do I obtain my backflow certification?
  15. How do I obtain a duplicate copy of my license?
  16. What are the continuing education requirements?
  17. How long can my license be expired before I have to retest?
  18. How do I change/update my information (name, nickname, address, etc.)?
  19. I want to put myself on as “not insured” or “insured to contract” work?
  20. What is the certificate of insurance requirements?
  21. How do I see if a plumber is licensed?
  22. How much does it cost to get a license, certificate, etc.?
  23. Can I obtain a plumber license if I have been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor?
  24. Once I pass the Maryland exam, how long can I wait to apply for a Maryland license?
  25. After applying for my original license, how long can I wait to receive my license?

1. How do I apply for an apprentice plumber/gas fitter’s license?
You may apply for an apprentice plumber/gas fitter’s license at a minimum of 16 years of age. Complete the application for an apprentice plumber/gas fitter’s license online on the Plumbing Board’s website. Under “Features,” select “Licensing Applications,” then choose “Apply for Original License” from the options and then click on the “Original Apprentice Licenses” link from the options on the page.

2. How to apply for a journey plumber/gas fitter’s license?
To be eligible for a journey plumber/gas fitter license, an individual must have held an apprentice plumber/gas fitter license for at least four years; and have completed 7,500 hours of training under the control and direction of a licensed master plumber/gas fitter; and have completed 32 hours of training in backflow prevention device testing; and pass a comprehensive written examination. Complete the application for a journey plumber/gas fitter’s license online on the Plumbing Board’s website. Under “Features,” select “Licensing Applications,” then choose “Apply for Original License” and then click on the “Original License” link from the options on the page.

3. How to apply for a master plumber/gas fitter’s license?
To be eligible for a master plumber/gas fitter license, an individual must have held a journey plumber/gas fitter license for at least two years; and completed 3,750 hours of training under the direction and control of a licensed master plumber/gas fitter; and pass a comprehensive written examination. Complete the application for a master plumber/gas fitter’s license online on the Plumbing Board’s website. Under “Features,” select “Licensing Applications,” then choose “Apply for Original License” and then click on the “Original License” link from the options on the page.

4. How do I apply for an apprentice natural gas fitter’s license?
You may apply for an apprentice plumber/gas fitter’s license at a minimum of 16 years of age. Complete the application for an apprentice natural gas fitter’s license online on the Plumbing Board’s website. Under “Features,” select “Licensing Applications,” then choose “Apply for Original License” from the options and then click on the “Original Apprentice Licenses” link from the options on the page.

5. How to apply for a journey natural gas fitter’s license?
To be eligible for a journey natural gas fitter license, an individual must have acquired 3,750 working hours as an apprentice natural gas fitter over a period of at least two years under the direction and supervision of a licensed master gas fitter or master plumber. Also, you will be required to complete an approved training course and pass an examination. Complete the application for a journey natural gas fitter’s license online on the Plumbing Board’s website. Under “Features,” select “Licensing Applications,” then choose “Apply for Original License” and then click on the “Original License” link from the options on the page.

6. How to apply for a master natural gas fitter’s license?
To be eligible for a master natural gas fitter license, an individual must have at least four years of experience, and completed an approved training program; or possess an HVACR master or master restricted license, have at least two years of gas fitting experience as a journey gas fitter under a master gas fitter, master plumber, or HVACR master, who is found to be approved; and the applicant must also pass an examination. Complete the application for a master natural gas fitter’s license online on the Plumbing Board’s website. Under “Features,” select “Licensing Applications,” then choose “Apply for Original License” from the options on the page.

7. How to apply for a propane gas fitter certification?
To be eligible for a propane gas fitter certificate, an individual must hold a current certification of completion of the National Propane Gas Association certified training program for Distribution Systems Operations; a gas fitters license from a county or municipal corporation authorizing the person to provide gas services under a licensing program in existence prior to July 1, 1995; or must demonstrate to the Board that the person's qualifications are at least equivalent to the qualifications required by the National Propane Gas Association training program for distribution systems operations. Complete the application for a propane gas fitter’s certification online on the Plumbing Board’s website. Under “Features,” select “Licensing Applications,” then choose “Propane Gas Fitters Original Certification, Initial Application” from the options on the page.

8. How do I apply to become a master, journey, or non-master inspector card?
To be eligible for an inspector identification card, an individual must be licensed as a journey or master plumber/gas fitter and be employed or appointed by a local jurisdiction as an inspector, Upon appointment, the individual must surrender his/her current license to the Board. An individual may obtain an inspector identification card as non-master plumber if the individual has at least four years’ of experience as an inspector or craftsman in a building and construction trade and pass a written examination. Complete the application for an inspector card online on the Plumbing Board’s website. Under “Features,” select “Licensing Applications,” then choose “Apply for Original License” from the options on the page.

9. What documentation is required to be eligible for the master, journey or non-master inspector card?
To apply for the plumbing inspectors card, you must provide the Board with the following documentation:

  • Employment at a local government or by a company that has an inspector contract to perform plumbing inspections or a local government agency, and
  • An original letter of employment for a local government agency on their letterhead and signed by a chief of inspections or someone of higher rank.

You must submit documentation with your original application and thereafter with each renewal cycle. If you apply online, you may submit documentation by e-mail to DLOPLplumbing-LABOR@maryland.gov or fax 410-244-0977.

10. What state or local jurisdiction does the Board reciprocate?
The Board ONLY reciprocates with the state of Delaware, the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (“WSSC” with jurisdiction over Prince George’s and portions of Montgomery Counties), and Baltimore County. You must contact the WSSC and Baltimore County licensing authority directly to inquire about their licensing requirements. Contact WSSC at 301-206-8588 and Baltimore County at 410-887-3620.

11. How do I apply for a reciprocal license?
Complete the application for an “Original Reciprocal License” available online on the Plumbing Board’s website. Under “Features,” select “Licensing Information & Applications,” then choose “Apply for a Reciprocal License” from the options on the page. The Board may issue a reciprocal master or journey license to plumbers who are currently licensed in Baltimore County or Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (“WSSC”).

To qualify for reciprocal licensing from WSSC or Baltimore County, you must hold BOTH the plumbing and gas portion of the license. The State Plumbing Board reciprocates with the state of Delaware for the Master Plumber/Gasfitter license ONLY; you can apply online on the Plumbing Board’s website or call the State Board of Plumbing for an application. Individuals who hold a current journey or master natural gas fitter license from Baltimore County or WSSC may obtain a like state natural gas fitter's license.

12. What documentation is required for my reciprocal license?
You must provide the following supporting documentation to complete a reciprocal license application:

  • Verification letter from Baltimore County, the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (WSSC) or the state of Delaware
  • Natural Gas Fitter verification form
  • Certificate of Insurance (your name must appear on the certificate and the Maryland State Board of Plumbing must be named as the certificate holder)
  • Copy of current license
  • Copy of current master HVACR or master restricted (applicable to master natural gas fitter reciprocal licensing only)
  • Copy of photo ID or driver’s license
  • Backflow Certification (applicable to master and journey plumbing/gas fitter only)
  • E-mail your supporting documentation to DLOPLplumbing-LABOR@maryland.gov

13. How do I obtain a Letter of Good Standing?
You may request a Letter of Good Standing online on the Plumbing Board’s website. Under “Features,” choose “Licensing Applications,” and then select “Request a Letter of Good Standing” from the options on the page.

14. How do I obtain my backflow certification?
You can contact any of the approved providers listed on the Plumbing Board’s website. Under “Features,” choose “Education” and then select “Approved Backflow/Cross Connection Courses” from the options on the page.

15. How do I obtain a duplicate copy of my license?
The Board does not mail hard copies of licenses. If you are an active licensee, you may request a duplicate copy of your license online on the Plumbing Board’s website. Under “Features,” choose “Licensing Applications” and then select “Request Duplicate License – Individuals” from the options on the page.

16. What are the continuing education requirements?
There are no continuing education requirements to maintain a Maryland license. However, eight hours of continuing education are required each calendar year to maintain a plumbing inspector identification card.

17. How long can my license be expired before I have to retest?
A license can be expired for a maximum of four years before an individual is required to retest. A licensed plumber cannot be expired for more than four years.

18. How do I change/update my information (name, nickname, address, etc.)?
You may change your information online on the Plumbing Board’s website. Under “Features,” select “Change Your Information or Status”. Select “Name/Address changes Online – Electronic Licensing,” and make the changes inside of the application or e-mail to DLOPLplumbing-LABOR@maryland.gov. You will need to log in with your registration number and password online. You must submit documentation to the Board via e-mail or fax to 410-244-0977.

19. I want to put myself on as “not insured” or “insured to contract” work?
You may change your status by e-mail. You may submit your request in writing to DLOPLplumbing-LABOR@maryland.gov. You may request to place your license from “not insured” to “insured to contract work” or from “Insured” to “not insured to contract work.” You may submit a copy of your current license and an updated certificate of insurance to change your license from “not insured” to “insured to contract work” via e-mail or fax to 410-244-0977.

20. What is the certificate of insurance requirements?
The minimum amount of insurance required per occurrence is at least $400,000 and consists of: General Liability Insurance in the amount of at least $300,000 AND Property Damage Insurance in the amount of at least $100,000. Any umbrella policy coverage is not acceptable for compliance with this requirement. The Certificate Holder shall be the Maryland State Board of Plumbing, 500 N. Calvert Street, 4th Floor, Baltimore, MD 21202. The certificate of insurance must reflect the name and permanent registration/certificate number of the licensed person as being insured as a part of the policy and the policy must be written through a company approved by the Maryland State Insurance Administration to issue such policies in Maryland. You may send a copy of your insurance by e-mail to DLOPLplumbing-LABOR@maryland.gov or by mail or fax to 410-244-0977.

21. How do I see if a plumber is licensed?
You may use the license search feature on the Plumbing Board’s website. You will be able to search for a plumber by name or registration number, or location.

22. How much does it cost to get a license, certificate, etc.?
A list of fees is available on the Plumbing Board’s website under “Features” at “Forms & Fees.”

23. Can I obtain a plumber license if I have been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor?
A felony or misdemeanor conviction does not automatically disqualify an individual from licensure. The Board encourages everyone to apply for a license. Each conviction is evaluated on a case-by-case basis, and the Board is required to consider certain factors, including, but not limited to the nature of the crime, length of time since the conviction, and what the applicant has done since the conviction. An applicant may request a formal hearing before the Board after a license application denial. When applying, you will need to submit True Test Copies of the Court Docket of the proceedings surrounding each conviction with your application and a letter written in your own words explaining the circumstances of each offense.

Please be aware that the Board may consider an attempt to conceal a criminal conviction more severely than the disclosure of the offense itself.

24. Once I pass the Maryland exam, how long can I wait to apply for a Maryland license?
If you have passed the Maryland exam, you have one year from the date you took the exam to apply for a license for a passing score to be valid.

25. After applying for my original license, how long can I wait to receive my license?
Once you’ve applied for an original license, you will receive it in the mail within two weeks from the date in which you had applied for your license either online or by mail. You may apply online at DLOPLplumbing-LABOR@maryland.gov or request an application by mail or by contacting 1-888-218-5925 (toll-free) or 410-230-6321 (Baltimore Area).