Florida Plumbing License Requirements – Overview
Florida plumbing license requirements are set by the localities (the towns or counties).
In Florida, both the contractor and the individual plumber must be licensed. The contractor is licensed by the state. The plumber is licensed by the locality. The plumber must be licensed even if working for a plumbing contractor who holds a state plumbing contractor’s license.
For an overview of how U.S. Plumbing License Requirements work, refer back to the Plumbing License Requirements homepage.
1. Contractor License: In Florida, a Contractor is someone who demolishes, subtracts from, builds or improves any building or structure for compensation. Examples of compensation are cash, goods, services, etc. Essentially, if you pay someone to construct a building or a structure, make structural alterations to load bearing walls, or perform services such as plumbing or air conditioning work, that person has to have a state contractors’ license.
There are two types of contractor licenses available in Florida, a certified license and a registered license. Both are issued by the state.
- Certified licenses allow you to work as a contractor anywhere in Florida.
- Registered licenses are limited to certain local jurisdictions and only allow you to work in the cities or counties where you hold a certificate of competency.
2. Plumber License: In Florida, the Journeyman Plumber and the Master Plumber must also be licensed. This is a different license than that obtained by the contractor. A Florida plumbing license is issued by the locality in which the plumber wants to work.
In Plain English:
If you are going to perform plumbing work for pay in Florida, two licenses are involved: 1) the license held by the contractor, and 2) the license held by the plumber. The contractor is the one with the legal right to perform work for hire. The plumber is the one who is actually performing the plumbing work.
The contractor must get one of the two types of contractor licenses, either the certified license or the registered license. These licenses are issued by the state.
The plumber is either an employee of the contractor or may be the contractor themself. A Journeyman or Master plumber must get a plumbing license from the locality in which they are working. Apprentices do not need a license.
Plumbers with a valid Journeyman or Masters license may work in other jurisdictions in Florida if they request and pay for a Letter of Reciprocity from the jurisdiction that issued the license initially.
Florida Plumbing Apprentice Programs
There are a variety of apprentice training programs in Florida that are offered in conjunction with various technical schools, builder’s associations, community colleges and the Florida Department of Education. A comprehensive list can be found here. In addition, many unions, such as Plumbers local 519, have a 5 year program that provides 2,000 hours of on the job training, as well as 216 hours of classroom instruction per year. After 4 years, an apprentice with this Union would receive a Miami-Dade County Journeyman Plumber license.
These Florida Plumber Apprenticeships provide a mixture of on the job training in the field and classes that are offered during nights and weekends in formal classroom settings. All apprentice programs require a significant amount of independent study outside of the classroom.
In general, applicants to Florida Apprenticeships must be at least 18 years old, possess either a high school diploma or G.E.D., be physically capable of working on a construction site, and be able to legally work in the United States.
Florida Plumbing License Requirements
The individual counties in Florida (not the state) issue Florida plumbing licenses to plumbers. In general, the requirements are quite similar in the different counties, with some minor differences in the requirements for Florida Master Plumber licenses. Licenses are good for two years. Requirements are as follows:
- Apprentice Plumber: No requirement for a license.
- Journey (Journeyman) Plumber:
1. Be at least 18 years old.
2. Pay the required fees for the license, which vary from $65-$200.
3. Have taken and passed a local licensing examination for a Journeyman Plumber, demonstrating sufficient knowledge of the plumbing trade.
4. Demonstrate at least 4 years of experience in the trade or completion of an apprentice program. The candidate for licensing must provide evidence of relevant experience in the form of W-2s from a plumbing contractor or letters of recommendation or a certificate of completion of a qualified apprentice program.
- Master Plumber:
1. Be at least 18 years old.
2. Pay the required fees for the license, which vary per county from $65-$200.
3. Have taken and passed a local licensing examination for a Master Plumber, demonstrating sufficient knowledge of the plumbing trade. In some counties, candidates must also pass a business principles test as well, because the Master’s Plumbing license is required to obtain a registered plumbing contractor’s license in that county.
4. Demonstrate at least 7 years of experience in the trade, with at least 2 years as a Journeyman Plumber. The candidate for licensing must provide evidence of relevant experience.
Florida Plumbing License – Contact Information:
Florida Department of Business & Professional Regulation
Division of Professions
Construction Industry Licensing Board
1940 North Monroe Street
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0783
Phone: (850) 487-1395
CILB website: www.myfloridalicense.com/dbpr/pro/cilb/index.html
Brevard County Licensing Regulations and Enforcement
2725 Judge Fran Jamieson Way, Suite #A-105
Viera, Florida 32940
Environmental Protection and Growth Management Department (Broward County)
Permitting, Licensing and Consumer Protection Division
1 North University Drive
Plantation, Florida 33324
Collier County Contractors’ Licensing Board
2800 North Horseshow Drive
Naples, Florida 34104
Miami – Dade County Building and Neighborhood Compliance Department
11805 S.W. 26 Street, Room 207
Miami, Florida 33175
Hillsborough County Contractor Licensing
601 E. Kennedy Boulevard
P.O. Box 1110
Tampa, Florida 33601
Martin County Contractors Licensing
900 S.E. Ruhnke Street
Stuart, Florida 34994
Construction Industry Board of Palm Beach County
2300 North Jog Road
West Palm Beach, Florida 33411-2741
Lucie County Contractor Certification
2300 Virginia Avenue
Fort Pierce, Florida 34982
Volusia County Contractor Licensing
123 W. Indiana Avenue
DeLand, Florida 32720
- How to choose plumbing courses and a professional plumbing school
- Choosing between a union plumbing apprenticeship and a non-union apprenticeship
- How much is a typical plumber salary
- State specific plumbing license requirements
Good luck in getting your Florida plumbing license!