How to Get a North Carolina Adjuster License

Author: Ethan Peyton
Updated:

To get your North Carolina Adjuster license, you’ll need to follow a few steps. These steps include taking a North Carolina adjuster course, passing the state adjuster exam, filing your application and paying licensing fees, and submitting your fingerprints.

We’ve put together this step-by-step guide to ensure your licensing journey is as simple and inexpensive as possible. This guide also covers adjuster requirements and prerequisites along with steps to take after getting your license. 

Be sure to bookmark this page so you can reference the steps as you need them.

Quick Tip

We recommend AdjusterPro adjuster courses to prepare for your exam. Alabama courses start at $179.

North Carolina Adjuster License Requirements

Before you begin the steps to getting your North Carolina adjuster license there’s a few requirements you’ll need to ensure you qualify.

  • You must be 18 years of age or older
  • You must be a resident of North Carolina (non-residents will need to apply for a different license)
  • You must be able to pass a background check (more info in step 3)
  • You must NOT hold an agent (producer) license for property, casualty, or personal lines in North Carolina

Along with these requirements, you’ll also need to choose which lines of insurance you’d like to work within.

  • Adjuster
  • Hail Adjuster

North Carolina doesn’t offer an “all-lines” license, rather, it splits the Hail Adjuster line off from the main Adjuster license. 

We recommend going for both lines at the same time. You’ll take two exams, but the hail exam is only 19 questions. Applying for both lines simultaneously on a single application will save you $49 in fees rather than filing two applications separately.

North Carolina Adjuster License Course

Before you apply for the license or take the exam, you’ll need to take a North Carolina Adjuster License course.

These courses are designed to prepare you to pass your exam. The exams don’t contain any “common sense” questions – rather, the information tested is dense insurance law and ethics. Taking a training course is the only way to prepare for and pass the test.

Some courses offer not only test prep, but instruction on the day-to-day operations and duties of an adjuster. If you don’t have any experience handling claims, it would be wise to consider these higher-level courses.

Recommended

We recommend AdjusterPro as our adjuster course of choice. Courses start at $179.

How to Get a North Carolina Adjuster License

To get a North Carolina Adjuster license, you’ll complete your adjuster course, file your application and fees, submit your fingerprints, then take the exams.

A common question we receive is: How much is the North Carolina adjuster license? Prices will vary depending on the type of license, but the most common license will cost as little as $550.

Another common question is: How long does it take to get the North Carolina adjuster license? If you take the proper time to study and pass the exam on your first attempt, the process should take around 3-4 weeks.

Step 1: North Carolina Adjuster License Course

The first step to getting your adjuster license is taking your test-prep course.

As mentioned above, we recommend AdjusterPro’s courses.

The prices of these courses range depending on the provider and level of coursework, but generally start around $179.

Be sure that you’re comfortable with the material in the coursework before moving on to your state exam. AdjusterPro recommends that you consistently score 90% or better on the course quizzes before taking the real test.

Step 2: North Carolina Adjuster Application – NC DOI

Once you’ve completed your adjuster course, the next step is to apply for your license.

The application fee for adjuster licenses is structured in a slightly confusing way, so we’ve created this table to simplify the fees.

License Type(s)Fee BreakdownTotal Application Fee
Adjuster$50 registration fee
$75 license fee
$44 application processing fee
$5 NIPR fee
$174
Adjuster Hail$50 registration fee
$20 license fee
$44 application processing fee
$5 NIPR fee
$119
Adjuster + Adjuster Hail$100 registration fee
$95 license fee
$44 application processing fee
$5 NIPR fee
$244

Apply for your license using the NIPR North Carolina Insurance Application page.

During the application, ensure you pay close attention to the Exam Ticket section. It’s a common mistake in NC to select for an agent/producer exam instead of the adjuster exam.

Some time after you submit your application with NIPR, you will receive an email authorization from Pearson Vue that you are eligible to schedule your exam.

Note

  • Once you submit your application, you have 6 months to complete exams for ALL lines applied for.
  • You may not schedule your exam with Pearson Vue until you receive the authorization email.
  • Military veterans may be eligible for waived licensing fees. Check this page for more info and to apply.

Step 3: Submit Fingerprints

Once you’ve submitted your license application, the next step is to submit your fingerprints.

Completing your NIPR application will trigger an email from NC DOI containing the fingerprint process instructions.

The fingerprint fee is $38.

You’ll work with a local sheriff’s office to take your prints. Be sure that your location offers Live Scan before you schedule an appointment. Use this PDF to find Live Scan locations.

Note

Submitting your fingerprints will initiate a background check. If you have any past offenses on your record and are curious of your eligibility for an insurance license, reach out to the NC DOI licensing department for clarification.

Step 4: North Carolina Adjuster Exam

Once you’ve completed your adjuster pre-license education course, the next step is to pass the North Carolina Adjuster Exam.

To register to take the exam, use the North Carolina Pearson VUE website.

The price for each attempt of the exam is $45

Depending on the type of license you’re working toward, the number of questions and time allotted for the exam differ. See the table below for details.

Adjuster License TypeCostQuestionsTime AllottedExam Outline
Adjuster$451002 hours and 15 minutesExam Outline
Hail Adjuster$451930 minutesExam Outline

Once you pass the exam(s), Pearson VUE will send the results to NIPR. This process takes between 2-3 business days.

Is the North Carolina Adjuster Exam Hard?

A common question we receive is: Is the adjuster exam hard?

Difficulty is a subjective matter, but we answer this question with: Yes. The exam is intentionally tough.

Don’t let this discourage you. Keep in mind that most folks who take this exam haven’t taken any formal tests since high school or college. The state intentionally makes these tests difficult in the hopes of protecting the average citizen from working with adjusters who don’t understand the laws and guidelines surrounding insurance.

The key to passing the exam is to take your exam-prep course seriously and allow yourself time for in-depth study. 

Check out our Adjuster Exam Study Guide for tips and strategies to pass your exam on the first attempt.

Application and Background Check Processing

Once you’ve completed all of the steps above you’ll just need to wait for the background check to come back and the licensing department to process all the paperwork. NC DOI will contact you if they need any supporting documentation or have any questions. Be sure to respond promptly to any requests.

If everything goes smoothly, you’ll receive a message from the licensing department within a week or so containing your license number and any other pertinent information. You can check the status of your license online using the NAIC North Carolina Insurance License Search tool.

Congratulations! You are now a licensed insurance adjuster in North Carolina!

After Getting Your License

Now that you’re licensed, you can get to work! Most folks take one of two paths at this point. They choose to become an independent adjuster or a staff adjuster.

The main difference is that staff adjusters are employed by one firm, usually an insurance company, whereas independent adjusters operate as contractors, normally being “rostered” to multiple Independent Adjusting (IA) firms.

If you’re interested in becoming a staff adjuster, check out the current job openings on StateRequirement Jobs

If the independent adjuster role is more alluring (we think it is), check out AdjusterPro’s IA Directory

Adjuster Certifications

To be considered a great candidate for IA firms or insurance companies, you’ll need to prove that you know how to actually work an insurance claim. Certifications show that you know your stuff and will give you a strong advantage over other candidates. 

While there are several adjuster certifications available, focus on Xactimate and Insurance Company certs first.

Xactimate Certifications

Xactimate is the industry standard software used by adjusters and insurance companies. There are three levels of certification offered by Xactimate

You should strongly consider levels one and two now, and look into level three after you’ve spent some time in the field.

Insurance Company Adjuster Certifications

Large insurance companies like State Farm, Allstate, Liberty Mutual, and others require that adjusters (staff or independent) get their specific certifications. 

To get these certs, you’ll need to be on the roster of an IA firm that works with that company. They offer courses to their adjusters throughout the year. Staff adjusters that work for the insurance company will be provided training and certification through their employer.

It’s widely accepted that State Farm’s adjuster certification is the most valuable insurance company cert. They are the largest insurer in the US, and therefore have more claims than other insurers.

Out-of-State and Reciprocal Licensing

Most claims, especially catastrophe (CAT) claims come from weather events. And since you can’t control the weather, you should get licenses in states outside your home state. These are called Non-Resident Adjuster Licenses.

IA firms are much more likely to both roster you and select you for work if you are licensed in states where they operate. If you’re already on a roster or two, talk with your contact there to see if they recommend a state to get licensed in.

The best states to start with are generally those that neighbor your home state. For North Carolina, this includes:

  • Virginia (no license required)
  • Georgia
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee (no license required)

These states offer what’s called reciprocation with North Carolina. This means that you don’t need to take a pre-licensing course or pass an exam in order to get their license. All you need to do is apply, pay the fee, and you’ll be licensed quickly.

License Renewal and Continuing Education

The North Carolina Adjuster License expires every two years. To keep your license active, you must:

  • Complete 24 hours of continuing education (CE) coursework
  • Pay the renewal fee of $114 for Adjuster, $59 for Hail Adjuster, or $134 for both

Any additional non-resident licenses you hold will also expire. Most state licenses expire every two years and require a renewal fee. Note that unless the state specifically requires it, you will not be required to take CE courses for each state – just your home state.

For detailed instructions, see our North Carolina Adjuster License Renewal guide.

References and Links

North Carolina Department of Insurance

Agent Services
1204 Mail Service Center
(919) 807-6800
ASD@ncdoi.gov