The Complete Illinois Contractor License Guide (2024)

Published: Jan 05, 2022

illinois contractor license


Are you planning to start a construction business in Illinois? As in other states, you will first have to undergo various administrative procedures. Most importantly, you will have to get an Illinois contractor license. 

The only types of contractors that need a state-level license are roofing and plumbing specialists. General contractors, as well as other types of specialty contractors, have to get licensed with their local authorities instead. Thus, if you need an Illinois general contractor license, you have to enquire about the process with your city or county. 

To start your roofing or plumbing business in Illinois, read on for the full details about the licensing process. 

The Illinois Contractor License Requirements

Whichever type of license you want to obtain, you have to meet a list of requirements set by the licensing authorities. 

If you want to get an Illinois plumbing license, the criteria are set by the state Department of Public Health. The Department of Financial and Professional Regulation, on the other hand, defines the requirements for obtaining an Illinois roofing license

Business Entity Registration 

All applicants for an Illinois contractor license first have to register a business entity with the Illinois Secretary of State. The typical structures include corporation, partnership, limited partnership, LLP, and LLC. 

Tax Requirements

You have to register with the Illinois Department of Revenue to make sure you comply with the state’s tax requirements.

Proof of Experience

If you want to get a plumber license, you have to prove that you have been a licensed apprentice for at least 4 years. 

State Examination

You have to pass an Illinois contractor license exam to prove you have sufficient knowledge and skills in your field. Applicants for a plumber’s license have to successfully complete a state examination. Roofing applicants have to appoint a qualifying individual who needs to pass a state exam as well. 

Complete the Illinois contractor license application

illinois contractor licenseIf you want to get licensed as a plumber, you need to complete the application form of the Department of Public Health. Mail it together with your full document set to:

Illinois Department of Public Health

Plumbing Program

525 W. Jefferson St., 3rd Floor

Springfield, IL 62761

Roofing contractor applicants have to fill in another application form. When you complete it, you have to mail it along with your paperwork to:

Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation

Attn: Division of Professional Regulation

P.O. Box 7007

Springfield, Illinois 62791 

License and Registration Fees

There are relevant fees that you have to cover to get licensed. They are as follows:

  • Roofing specialists - $125
  • Plumbers - $150

Provide a Surety Bond and Insurance

You need to get appropriate insurance and bonding to fulfill the requirements for your Illinois contractor license. 

Worker’s Compensation Insurance

In case you will hire employees for your contracting business, you will need to get worker’s compensation insurance. You can learn more from the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission

Liability and Property Damage Insurance

You have to obtain liability and property damage insurance with the following minimums:

  • Plumbers - minimum $100,000 general liability, $300,000 bodily injury, and $50,000 property damage insurance coverage
  • Roofing specialists - minimum $250,000 for a single occurrence of property damage, and at least $500,000 for a single occurrence of personal injury or bodily harm

Surety Bond 

Both roofing and plumbing specialists in Illinois need to get a surety bond. It constitutes a protection mechanism that guarantees the interests of your customers will be upheld. 

The Illinois contractor license bond amounts are the following:

  • Roofing specialists - $10,000 for a limited license and $25,000 for an unlimited license
  • Plumbers - $20,000

Getting bonded doesn’t entail covering the whole bond amount. You only need to pay a small percentage of it, which is your premium. It is formulated after a careful analysis of your personal and business finances. You can expect rates between 0.75% and 5% if your finances are in good shape. 

Want to know your exact contractor license bond cost? Fill out the short form below! 


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How to verify your Illinois contractor license

In order to conduct an Illinois general contractor license lookup, you have to consult your city or local authority’s resources. For roofing contractors, you can use the license lookup of the Department of Financial and Professional Regulation. 

License Renewal and Expiration

Your Illinois contractor license is valid for a fixed period of time. You have to renew it before the expiration date. This is how you can prolong your legal operations. 

The date of expiration varies for the different licenses. The plumbing license is valid for one year from the date of issuance. The roofing license expires on December 31st of each year


Do you need further information about obtaining your Illinois contractor license and bonding? You can reach us by calling 877.514.5146.

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