Step-by-Step Guide to Getting Your Locksmith License in Tennessee

Now is definitely the time to be excited about the future of the locksmithing industry.

Security manufacturer Alex Housten states that since the onset of COVID-19, security has heightened across the board, with health concerns leading the trend. We are now seeing technology that provides touchless solutions, temperature screening upon entering offices and public buildings, and more. The locksmithing industry remains strong, with greater demand for innovation and skilled technicians. 

As a future locksmith, this means that there will be more need for locksmiths who specialize in high-tech security systems. Such a specialization has the potential to bring you more income and bigger-name clients! To make this happen, you need a locksmith license in order to practice in Tennessee. In this article, we’re going to cover the application process, examination, pricing, and more. 

How Do You Get a Locksmith License in Tennessee?

1. Ensure you meet the requirements for a locksmith license.

Locksmith licenses for apprentices, individuals, and companies are administered by the Tennessee Department of Commerce & Insurance (TDCI). 

To obtain a license:

  • Age: You must be 16 years of age or older.
  • Education or training: You must complete at least 30 hours of basic locksmith training and have 2 years of experience before applying. If you’re an apprentice, you must work under a registered locksmith.
  • Criminal background check: Complete a background check, get fingerprinted, and pay a fee.
  • Identification: Submit a valid ID (driver’s license, passport, state ID, etc.).
  • Photograph: Submit a digital color passport-style photo taken within the last 3 months.
  • Pass an exam: All applicants must pass an exam, but if you have proof of at least 4 years of work experience as an apprentice, you may be exempt.

Company documentation: Business owners need to provide proof of general liability insurance, a valid business license, and a signed affidavit attesting to company ownership.

2. Pass a criminal background check.

The TDCI conducts background checks on all applicants; you’ll need to get fingerprinted with IdentoGO or Idemia for a fee of $35.15 and wait for the FBI to process your results. Read their locksmith fingerprinting submission instructions for full details. 

On your application, if you have a criminal background, you will need to submit court documents relating to any charges or convictions. 

What criminal history can get you disqualified?

  • Illegal use, possession, or sale of drugs
  • Felony assault, breaking and entering, larceny, or arson conviction
  • Habitual criminal offenses

Please note: A person with a conviction of theft or fraud is disqualified from applying.

fingerprinting for locksmith license

3. Pass a locksmith licensing exam.

Tennessee requires all applicants to take an examination to obtain a professional license. The exam is administered by PSI exams in Memphis, Chattanooga, Jackson, Johnson City, and Knoxville. You can contact the vendor to schedule your test at: 

3210 E Tropicana Las Vegas, NV 89121 

(855) 746-8173 

Fax (702) 932-2666 

www.psiexams.com 

How to pass your Tennessee locksmith license exam?

The test will cover the following:

  • Vehicle Lock Services 
  • 5-Cylinder Servicing
  • High-Security Cylinders, and Wafer Tumbler Cylinders 
  • Exit Hardware and Door Closers
  • Lock Set Functions and Installations 
  • Lock Opening Techniques 
  • Lock Codes and Code Cutting Equipment 
  • Master Keying 
  • Combination Locks 
  • Access Control 
  • Tennessee Locksmith Laws and Rules 5

Study material

  • The Complete Book of Locks and Locksmithing, by Bill Phillips, Sixth Edition, 2005, McGraw Hills Publishing, ISBN 0-07-144829-2. 
  • Tennessee Code Annotated (TCA), Title 62: Professions, Businesses, and Trades, Chapter 11: Locksmith Licensing Act of 2006.
  • Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance, Locksmith Licensing Program, Chapter 0780-5-13: Locksmith Rules.
locksmith license exam

4. Pay application fee.

The fees for a Tennessee locksmith license are as follows:

  • Company: the application fee is $100 and the license fee is $50.
  • Individuals: the application fee is $75 and the license fee is $25.
  • Apprentice: the application fee is $50 and the license fee is $25.

5. Submit your application.

Whether you are an individual, company, or apprentice, you can create an account with the TDCI and apply online

Tennessee locksmith license cost - Workiz

Find a Locksmith Job in Tennessee

If you’re anxious to get the ball rolling, start by making sure that you have a solid education in locksmithing. Apply to your local trade school, apprentice under a licensed locksmith, and join an organization like Associated Locksmiths of America (ALOA) to get more educational resources before you apply for a license. ALOA also has an exclusive job board that updates opportunities available in your area.  

The future of locksmithing is, like everything else, becoming digitized. Successful companies and technicians are using software like Workiz’s Field Service Dispatch and Management Software to stop you from juggling multiple apps like Google Calendar, Excel, or worse, a notebook, to manage jobs. With this tool, your jobs are scheduled, confirmed, and monitored all in one place, helping you remain professional and efficient.  

Plan your future career and start a free-trial of Workiz when you get the job!

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