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  • Writer's pictureMike Brandly, Auctioneer

Auctioneer licensing in the United States


Those acting as auctioneers, or otherwise engaged in the auction business, are required to be licensed in some states in the United States.

Generally speaking, states in the eastern-half of the United States require licensing, where the states in the western-half of the United States do not.

However, each state has their own licensing requirements (or lack thereof) and across the United States, this requirement varies substantially.

Some states require schooling, testing, apprenticeship, a bond, continuing education and associated fees; other states require nothing of the kind.

We’ve previously written numerous articles about auctioneer licensing and one such article regarded if auctioneer licensing was good or bad:http://mikebrandlyauctioneer.wordpress.com/2009/12/25/auctioneer-licensing-good-or-bad/

As well, we wrote about when an auctioneer license may not be needed, even in a state where such licensing is otherwise required:http://mikebrandlyauctioneer.wordpress.com/2012/08/15/i-dont-need-an-auctioneers-license/

Our list below (as of September 2, 2017) gives a summary of each state’s (and the District of Columbia’s) requirements, as well as a link to each state’s related website.

  1. Alabama http://www.auctioneer.state.al.us Statewide (live only) licensing, Auction school, Apprenticeship, Test, Bond & CE

  2. Alaska http://www.law.state.ak.us/ Some local licensing/permits

  3. Arizona http://www.revenue.state.az.us Some local licensing/permits

  4. Arkansas http://www.aralb.com/index.html Statewide (live only) licensing, Bond/Recovery fund & CE

  5. California http://www.ss.ca.gov Some local licensing/permits, Bond

  6. Colorado http://www.dora.state.co.us/real-estate Some local licensing/permits

  7. Connecticut http://www.ct.gov/dcp Some local and/or property specific licensing/permits

  8. Delaware http://www.state.de.us/revenue State business license and some local licensing/permits

  9. District of Columbia https://dcra.dc.gov/service/get-auction-sales-license State Auction Sales license

  10. Florida http://www.myflorida.com/dbpr/pro/auct/auc_index.shtml Statewide (live and online) licensing, Auction school or Apprenticeship, Test & Bond/Recovery fund

  11. Georgia http://www.sos.state.ga.us/plb/auctioneer/ Statewide (live and online) licensing, Auction school, Test, Bond/Recovery fund & CE

  12. Hawaii http://hawaii.gov/dcca Some local and/or property specific licensing/permits

  13. Idaho http://www.sos.idaho.gov Some local licensing/permits

  14. Illinois http://www.idfpr.com/dpr/re/auctioneers.asp Statewide (live and some online) licensing, Test, CE

  15. Indiana http://www.in.gov/pla/auction.htm Statewide (live only) licensing, Auction school, Test, CE

  16. Iowa https://www.iowaattorneygeneral.gov/for-consumers Some local and/or property specific licensing/permits

  17. Kansas http://ag.ks.gov/in-your-corner-kansas Some local and/or property specific licensing/permits

  18. Kentucky http://auctioneers.ky.gov Statewide (live and online) licensing, Auction school, Apprenticeship, Test, Recovery fund & CE

  19. Louisiana http://www.lalb.org/licensing.php Statewide (live and some online) licensing, Auction school or Apprenticeship, Test & Bond

  20. Maine http://www.maine.gov/pfr/professionallicensing/professions/auctioneers/index.htm Statewide (live only) licensing, Test & Bond

  21. Maryland http://www.dat.state.md.us/ Some local licensing/permits

  22. Massachusetts http://www.mass.gov/ocabr/government/oca-agencies/dos-lp/dos-licensing/dos-auctioneers/ Statewide (live and most online) licensing, Auction school, Test & Bond

  23. Michigan http://www.michigan.gov/ag Some local licensing/permits

  24. Minnesota http://www.sos.state.mn.us Local licensing/permits & Bond

  25. Mississippi http://www.auctioneers.ms.gov Statewide (live only) licensing, Auction school, Apprenticeship, Test & Bond

  26. Missouri http://sos.mo.gov/ Local licensing/permits & Bond

  27. Montana http://www.doj.mt.gov/ Local licensing/permits & Bond

  28. Nebraska http://www.sos.ne.gov Some local and property specific licensing/permits

  29. Nevada http://www.nvsos.gov Some local licensing/permits

  30. New Hampshire http://www.sos.nh.gov/auctioneers.aspx Statewide (live and online) licensing, Auction school or apprenticeship, Test & Bond

  31. New Jersey http://www.njconsumeraffairs.gov/ Some local licensing/permits

  32. New Mexico http://www.sos.state.nm.us Some local licensing/permits

  33. New York http://www.dos.ny.gov Some local and/or property specific licensing/permits

  34. North Carolina http://www.ncalb.org Statewide (live and online) licensing, Auction school, Apprenticeship, Test, Recovery fund & CE

  35. North Dakota http://www.psc.nd.gov/jurisdiction/auctions/index.php Statewide (live only) licensing, Auction school, Apprenticeship & Bond

  36. Ohio http://www.agri.ohio.gov/auction/ Statewide licensing, Auction school, Apprenticeship, Test & Bond/Recovery fund

  37. Oklahoma http://www.sos.ok.gov Some local licensing/permits

  38. Oregon http://www.sos.state.or.us Some local and/or property specific licensing/permits

  39. Pennsylvania http://www.dos.pa.gov/ProfessionalLicensing/BoardsCommissions/AuctioneerExaminers/Pages/default.aspx Statewide (live and online) licensing, Auction school and/or Apprenticeship, Test & Bond

  40. Rhode Island http://www.riag.ri.gov/ Some local licensing/permits

  41. South Carolina http://www.llr.state.sc.us/POL/Auctioneers Statewide (live and online) licensing, Auction school, Apprenticeship, Test, Bond & CE

  42. South Dakota http://www.sdsos.gov Some local licensing/permits

  43. Tennessee http://www.tn.gov/commerce/section/auctioneers Statewide (live and online) licensing, Auction school, Apprenticeship, Test, Recovery fund & CE

  44. Texas https://www.tdlr.texas.gov/auc/auction.htm Statewide (live only) licensing, Auction school, Test, Recovery fund & CE

  45. Utah http://www.utah.gov/ Some local licensing/permits

  46. Vermont https://www.sec.state.vt.us/professional-regulation/list-of-professions/auctioneers.aspx Statewide (live only) licensing, Auction school, Apprenticeship & Test

  47. Virginia http://www.dpor.virginia.gov/Boards/Auctioneers/ Statewide (live only) licensing, Auction school, Test, Bond & CE

  48. Washington http://www.dol.wa.gov/business/auctioneers/ Statewide (live only) licensing & Bond

  49. West Virginia http://www.agriculture.wv.gov/divisions/executive/Pages/Auctioneers.aspx Statewide (live only) licensing, Auction school and/or Apprenticeship, Test, Bond & CE

  50. Wisconsin http://dsps.wi.gov//licenses-permits/auctioneer Statewide (live and online) licensing & CE

  51. Wyoming http://www.wyo.gov/ Some local licensing/permits

It is important to note that auctioneer licensing laws change periodically. As well, links to such state agencies change as well.

If auctioneer licensing interests you, please use this guide, but was well talk with others already in the auction business in the state or area of interest; they often know the most current status of licensing laws.

Mike Brandly, Auctioneer, CAI, AARE has been an auctioneer and certified appraiser for over 30 years. His company’s auctions are located at: Mike Brandly, Auctioneer, RES Auction Services and Goodwill Columbus Car Auction. He serves as Distinguished Faculty at Hondros College of Business, Executive Director of The Ohio Auction School, an Instructor at the National Auctioneers Association’s Designation Academy and Faculty at the Certified Auctioneers Institute held at Indiana University.

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