Step 2: Applying for a Waiver of the Examination

This step helps you understand how to apply for a waiver of the examination.

Are there any circumstances under which a waiver of the examination may be requested?

Yes, at the Registrar's discretion, if the qualifying individual meets the following criteria:

  • The qualifying individual is a member of the immediate family of a licensee whose individual license was active and in good standing for five of the seven years immediately preceding the application;
  • The qualifying individual must have been actively engaged in the licensee's business for five of the previous seven years and must be applying in the same classification(s); and
  • The license must be required in order to continue the operations of an existing family business in the event of the absence or death of the licensee.

Reminder symbol REMEMBER Requesting an exam waiver does not mean you will be automatically granted the waiver. The Registrar has complete discretion regarding the waiver of an exam.

If I think I am eligible for a waiver, must I complete the experience section of the application?

  • Yes, even if you are eligible for a waiver of the examination, you must complete the experience section of the application to document a minimum of five years of journey-level experience. The experience shown must be for the time you worked for the family owned business.
  • All experience claims must be verified by a qualified and responsible person, such as an employer, fellow employee, other journeyman, contractor, union representative, building inspector, architect, or engineer. The person verifying your claim must have firsthand knowledge of your experience; that is, he or she must have observed the work that you have done. (See step 3 in the Examination section for more information regarding how to document your work experience.)

Original Waiver Application

Take time to read and follow carefully the instructions attached to the application. If you qualify for a waiver of the examination complete the following steps:

  • Complete the Application for Original Contractor's License - Examination Waiver;
  • The Certification of Work Experience form 13A-11 must be used to report and confirm the journey level work experience;
  • You may apply for more than one license classification at a time if you qualify for a waiver of the examination, but you must show specific work experience for each classification being requested. You must also pay a $150 additional classification fee for each additional class you apply for;
  • Complete the application and all accompanying forms in ink or with a typewriter. Forms completed in pencil will be returned to you;
  • Make sure you sign and date the application;
  • Proofread your application for any omissions. If the Board has to return the application to you for any missing information, your license will be delayed;
  • Submit the application, the application processing fee ($450), if applying for any additional classification(s) submit a $150 processing fee for each and all required documents to:

    CSLB Headquarters
    Contractors State License Board
    P.O. Box 26000
    Sacramento, CA 95826-0026

  • Be certain to include your return address on the envelope; and
  • Do not submit any bonds or the initial license fee with your application.

CSLB will acknowledge receipt of your application.

The CSLB will send you a letter of acknowledgment. This letter will contain two important numbers: an Application Fee Number and a four-digit Personal Identification (PIN) Number, together with instructions on how to use these numbers to check on the progress of your application.

Your Application Fee Number, also known as your "receipt number", will also appear on the front of your canceled check. Please retain a record of this number, and use it in all inquiries regarding your pending application.

How long does it take to complete the license application process?

Because there are many factors that affect the time it takes to process an application (type of application, workload, vacancies, etc.), processing times continually change. By using your Application Fee Number and your PIN (Personal Identification Number) to do an Application Status Check, you can get information on what date the Board is currently working on in regard to your specific type of application. This information is updated weekly and will give you a good idea of when your application will be pulled for processing.

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