Adjuster Licensing

Learn what it takes to get an insurance adjuster license. Find the requirements, costs, exams, and everything else to become an independent adjuster.

How to Get Your Insurance Adjuster License

Select Your State To Get Started

From the outside looking in, getting your insurance adjuster license can seem to be a complex process. 

My state doesn’t offer a license? Do I need a designated home state license? Which lines should I get? Do I have to take a training course? How much is this all going to cost me?

These are common questions for those looking to become an adjuster and get their first license. 

But don’t worry - we’ve got you covered! 

This guide will help you better understand the adjuster licensing landscape and give you step-by-step instructions to get the license you need and begin your new career as a licensed insurance adjuster!

Decide Which Licenses to Get

There are two things you’ll need to consider when choosing which licenses you need: your home state, and which lines you want to adjust.

Your home state will determine which state’s license you get first. This is the state in which you currently reside. Generally, it’s the state where you have your driver’s license (this isn’t a requirement, it’s just a rule of thumb).

This is where adjuster licensing gets just a little bit tricky. Not all states offer an insurance adjuster license.

Here’s a breakdown of which states offer an adjuster license, and which do not.

Adjuster Licensing States and Non-Licensing States

If you live in a state that offers an adjuster license, great! That’s the state you’ll be moving forward with. Move on to the next step (Adjuster Lines of Authority).

Check out our guide: Adjuster License Requirements by State

Adjuster License in a Non-Licensing State

If you happen to reside in a state that does not offer an adjuster license, you have a couple of choices.

Technically, you are not required to have a license to adjuster insurance claims in that state. 

Now, that doesn't mean that getting a license isn’t still a good idea. What you’ll find is that it’s generally much more difficult to find an adjuster firm or insurance company that’s willing to hire you without a license. Is it impossible? Probably not…but if you don’t have a license and you’re reading this guide, chances are that you haven’t had any training as an adjuster.

Let’s assume you’ll still want to get a license.

Luckily, a few states offer what’s called a Designated Home State Adjuster License. This essentially assigns that state as your “home state”, which is probably why it’s called that.

Along with making your job hunt easier, a designated home state license will also come in handy when you’re applying for non-resident licenses (licenses in states that aren’t your home state). Keep this in mind, as it will be important later.

We recommend you choose Florida as your designated home state. There are a few other states like Texas and Indiana that offer a DHS license, but Florida has the most streamlined licensing process of all of them. That and a few other benefits make Florida our recommended DHS license state.

Best States to Get Adjuster Licenses

Adjuster Lines of Authority

Now that you know which state you’re after, let’s talk about lines of authority.

A line of authority - or just “line” - controls which types of claims you can adjust.

Common lines are: property and casualty adjuster (P&C adjuster), workers’ compensation adjuster, and crop adjuster.

Different states separate their license lines differently, so you’ll need to decide which direction to go based on what your state offers.

If your state offers an “all-lines adjuster license” or other multi-line license, we recommend you just go ahead and get that license. They are generally offered under the same fee and exam structure, so you’re essentially only getting benefits by choosing the all-lines adjuster license.

There’s also something called a public adjuster license. That’s a different thing entirely. If you’re interested in becoming an independent insurance adjuster, catastrophe adjuster, field adjuster, desk adjuster, or inside adjuster, just ignore the public adjuster license.

Let’s move on!

How to Get Your Adjuster License

The requirements, process, and fees for getting your adjuster license vary from state to state. Below you’ll find a general set of guidelines and steps necessary to get your license. 

To find a state-specific instruction set, click here to choose your state.

Requirements, Fingerprints, and Background Check

All states require you to be at least 18 in order to get an insurance license. Most also require you provide fingerprints, and go through a background check. Those who have been convicted of a felony in the past may be required to provide further documentation in order to qualify for a license.

The fees for fingerprinting and background checks usually cost between $20 - $60.

Insurance Adjuster Pre-License Education

Most licensing states require you to take an approved pre-license education course prior to applying for your license.

This course covers laws, regulations, ethics, and other rules related to insurance and claims adjusting. 

Depending on your location and the company you choose to take your course through, you can either take these courses in-person or online, and either scheduled or at your own pace. 

Adjuster pre-license courses start at around $180 for basic courses. Note that basic courses aren’t intended to teach the skills required to operate as an adjuster. Rather, they focus specifically on the requirements to pass the licensing exam.

You can also find adjuster courses that teach beyond the exam. These classes are designed to give you the tools and knowledge to work as an adjuster in the field. If you plan on truly making insurance adjusting your career, this is where we recommend you start. These comprehensive courses generally start at about $600, but can go higher depending on the course provider.

Insurance Adjuster Exam

Once you’ve finished your pre-license education, you will be ready to take on the adjuster exam.

This exam is a proctored, time-limited exam, generally facilitated through an exam company like Pearson Vue or Prometric. Since 2020, most of these companies offer at-home proctored exams, but you can also take the exam in person at a testing facility.

The tests generally consist of between 50 and 150 questions and cost in the range of $30 - $120 per attempt.

A common question we hear is: Is the adjuster exam hard? The answer we give is that the difficulty of the exam is directly inverse of the amount of preparation you put in. 

These tests are designed to ensure adjusters have an understanding of the rules and laws that will keep people safe. If you put in the time required to understand the material, you won’t have a problem passing on your first attempt.

Insurance Adjuster License Application

Each state requires you to fill out an application for your adjuster license.

Almost every state provides this application online, but some still offer paper applications if you prefer things the hard way.

The fee for applications runs between $40 - $150. You’ll often hear back on your application between 2 and 7 days.

And that’s it! Once you’ve followed the process for your state, you’ll be holding a shiny new adjuster license.

Remember that this is just a general process. To find the steps required for your needs, select your state.

Adjuster Licensing FAQ

What is an insurance adjuster license?

An insuance adjuster licesne is a state-offered license that allows you to adjust insurance claims for specific lines of authority like property and casualty, workers’ compensation, and crop insurance.

How much does it cost to get an adjuster license?

There are several fees and costs included with adjuster licensing. These include the pre-licensing education courses, application fees, exam fees, and fingerprinting fees. Your cost will depend on the state you’re in and the cost of your education courses, but you should plan for between $400 and $600 to get your license.

How long does it take to get an adjuster license?

The time it takes for you to take a course, pass an exam, and apply for a license will vary depending on your state and your preparation time for the exam. You should plan a minimum of 2 weeks to complete the process.

Which states require adjuster licenses?

The states that require an adjuster license are: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Washington, West Virginia, and Wyoming.

Which states do not require an adjuster license?

The states that do not require an adjuster license are: Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Maryland, Massachusetts, Missouri, Nebraska, New Jersey, North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Virginia, and Wisconsin.

What is the difference between an adjuster license and a producer license?

An adjuster license allows license holders to adjust insurance claims. A producer license allows license holders to market and sell insurance products. Adjuster licenses are held by insurance adjusters and producer licenses are held by insurance agents.

What are the best states to get adjuster licenses in?

This depends heavily on your location, the types of claims you want to adjust, and whether or not you wish to travel for your work. There are a few popular groups of states that certain adjusters like to hold. These are the hail states (Texas to Wisconsin), the gulf states (Texas to Florida), and the Eastern seaboard (Florida to Maine). Read our guide: Best States to get Adjuster Licenses

Do you need a license to become an insurance adjuster?

Most states require an adjuster license in order to adjust insurance claims. Some states do not require a license, but we recommend getting a license even if you are in a non-licensing state.

What can you do with an insurance adjuster license?

An insurance adjuster license allows you to legally adjust insurance claims in the state which the license is issued.

How long is an adjuster license good for?

Adjuster licneses are generally valid for 2 years, but this varies from state-to-state. Licenses can be renewed before they expire and generally require some amount of continuing education in order to renew.

Is the insurance adjuster license exam hard?

Each person will feel the adjuster exam differently, as everyone has differing testing experience. The test difficulty varies from state-to-state as well. Our general advice is that the difficulty of the exam is directly inverse of the amount of preparation you put in.

How much do insurance adjusters make?

Adjuster salaries vary widely. Inexperienced staff adjusters start around $50,000 - $60,000, while more experienced independent adjusters can easily bring in $100,000+, and even more on busy years.

Which claims adjuster certifications do I need?

To legally work as an adjuster, you only need the license of the state in which you will adjust claims. Certifications improve your chances of getting hired or deployed into the field by showing employers that you have specific knowledge or experience in the claims process.