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New Jersey Electrician License: How to Get Certified as an Electrician in NJ

November 2, 2023 10 min. read
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If you’re looking to work in a field with growing demand, getting your electrician license in New Jersey is a wise choice. As green power sources such as solar and wind become more widely adopted, licensed technicians will be needed to both install and maintain these systems—not to mention that practically every building has new electrical needs or existing wiring that needs to be maintained. 

The Garden State had 15,580 electricians in 2020, and that number is projected to increase to 17,930 by 2030—a respectable 15% growth. This momentum translates to about 1,950 new and replacement job openings each year. The average annual salary for an electrician in New Jersey is $52,322, and as you gain experience, that number can jump to more than $63,000.

Now is the perfect time to get your foot in the door of this growing industry.

In this licensing guide, we’ve broken down everything you’ll need to know to get licensed as an electrician in New Jersey

Do you need an electrician license in New Jersey?

Yes, you must have an electrician license in New Jersey to perform electrical work. Licensed electricians typically install, repair, and maintain electrical systems for power, light, and heat, including communications in buildings and infrastructure on streets and highways.

Electrician licenses are governed by the Board of Examiners of Electrical Contractors. The Board certifies and oversees Electrical Contractors, registers qualified Journeyman Electricians, and provides licensure exemptions for those involved in telecommunications wiring in New Jersey.

Types of electrician licenses in New Jersey

There are four different types of licenses that are issued and overseen by the Board:

License TypeDescription
Electrical ContractorLicense holder has been employed/engaged in electrical construction and installation for no less than five years and can contract to install, erect, repair, or modify electrical equipment.
Class A Journeyman ElectricianLicense holder has acquired practical experience with tools in wiring installation, alteration, or repair for electric light, heat, or power and has completed the requisite classroom hours.
Class A Electrical ApprenticeLicense holder has enrolled in a U.S. Department of Labor–accredited electrical contractor’s apprenticeship program and works under the supervision of an Electrical Contractor or Class A Journeyman Electrician.
Class B WiremanLicense holder works under the supervision of an Electrical Contractor or Class A Journeyman Electrician.

New Jersey electrician license requirements

Some types of electrician licenses in New Jersey have educational and/or work experience requirements. Before you apply for any of the different license types, be sure you meet the following requirements: 

License TypeRequirements
Electrical ContractorApplicant must have:
• Been involved in electrical work for at least five years before applying: either one of those five years spent as a Class A Journeyman Electrician OR four of those five years spent in an apprenticeship program recognized by the U.S. Department of Labor
• Proof of successful completion of an apprenticeship program while working as a Class A Electrical Apprentice 
• Passed the exam, proving competence in electrical contracting work
• Secured a business permit to engage in, advertise, and perform work as an electrician
Class A Journeyman ElectricianApplicants must have completed one of the following:
• Obtained a license to practice electrical contracting by the Board
• Submitted work experience certifications of 8,000 hours of hands-on wiring experience and 576 hours of classroom instruction related to training (excluding managerial tasks). Note: 4,000 of those 8,000 hours of experience must be completed within five years of the application date 
• Showed the Board a satisfactory alternative way of gaining the required experience
Class A Electrical ApprenticeApplicants must have:
• Proof of enrolment in an accredited electrical apprenticeship program. 
• Proof of working under the supervision of an Electrical Contractor or Class A Journeyman.
Class B WiremanApplicants must have proof of working under the supervision of an Electrical Contractor or Class A Journeyman.

How do I get an electrician license in New Jersey?

Let’s look at the process to get licensed as an Electrical Contractor and a Class A Journeyman Electrician in New Jersey. Note that the process for becoming an Apprentice is to apply for an apprenticeship program. To become a Wireman, you should apply for jobs where you will be working under a licensed electrician.

If you’re just starting out, it will take a minimum of four years to get the necessary education and electrical work experience to apply for a Class A Journeyman Electrician’s license. 

Education must come from an accredited apprenticeship, trade school, or other program approved by the U.S. Department of Labor. 

To apply for a Class A Journeyman Electrician license, follow these steps:

  1. Fill out the application
  2. Attach a passport-style photograph taken within the past six months
  3. Complete and attach all relevant work-experience certifications
  4. Fill out and notarize the affidavit of certification
  5. Mail the application and required documentation to:

New Jersey Office of the Attorney General 
Division of Consumer Affairs
Board of Examiners of Electrical Contractors 
124 Halsey Street, 6th Floor, P.O. Box 45006 
Newark, New Jersey 07101

When your application has been approved, you’ll receive an invoice for your initial license fee.

Later, once you’ve completed a minimum of one year of work experience as a Class A Journeyman Electrician, you can apply for an Electrical Contractor license by following these steps:

  1. Complete the online application 
  2. Once approved, fill out an application for the exam
  3. Secure a bond in the sum of $1,000
  4. Obtain a business permit and pocket pressure seal for electrical work
    1. Provide a bank letter of credit for a minimum of $300,000, covering property damage and potential injuries or fatalities


  1. Secure general liability insurance for a minimum of $300,000, covering property damage and any potential injuries or fatalities in any single occurrence
  2. Pay the relevant application and licensing fees

New Jersey electrician license exam

The only license type that requires an exam is the Electrical Contractor. These exams are held at PSI examination sites throughout New Jersey. 

There are three components to the exam, all of which must be passed to qualify to be licensed:

Exam ComponentDescription
Electrical Contractor• 100 questions
• 255 minutes to write
• 70% to pass
• Open book

Topics covered include:
• General Electrical Knowledge 
• Raceways and Enclosures 
• Services, Feeders, and Branch Circuits 
• Overcurrent Protection
• Conductors and Cables 
• Grounding and Bonding 
• Equipment for General Use 
• Special Occupancies 
• Special Equipment and Conditions 
• Motors and Controls 
• Low Voltage and Communications Circuits 
• Safety
Business and Law• 50 questions
• 130 minutes to write
• 70% to pass
• Open book

Topics covered include:
• Business Organization 
• Licensing 
• Estimating and Bidding
• Contract Management
• Project Management 
• Risk Management 
• Safety 
• Labor Law 
• Financial Management 
• Tax law 
• Lien law
Alarm Systems Contractor• 50 questions
• 165 minutes to write
• 70% to pass
• Open book

Topics covered include: 
• General Electrical Knowledge 
• Application of Fire Alarm Systems 
• Application of Intrusion and Security Systems 
• Installation Requirements 
• Wiring Methods and Materials 
• Special Occupancies and Conditions

See the candidate information bulletin for more information about each exam.

Does New Jersey reciprocate electrician licenses?

Reciprocal license agreements let professionals from out of state apply directly for an electrician license. Currently, New Jersey does not offer reciprocity with any specific states.

However, the Board of Examiners of Electrical Contractors may grant licenses without an exam to those already licensed in another U.S. state, territory, or the District of Columbia, provided that the other location offers the same licensing privileges to Electrical Contractors, Class A Journeyman Electricians, Class A Electrical Apprentices, and Class B wiremen as offered by the Board.

If you have an electrician license from another state, you can petition the Board for approval of exam exemption with a license verification letter sent by the licensing board from the issuing state. 

As an out-of-state licensed electrician, it’s also possible to get a temporary courtesy license in New Jersey to perform work as a Class A Journeyman Electrician, Class A Electrical Apprentice, or Class B Wireman if you plan to work in the state for 30 or fewer days. Note that with a temporary license, you must be supervised by a New Jersey state-licensed electrician, and you won’t be able to supervise any electrical work yourself.

How much does an electrician license cost in New Jersey?

The cost to get your Electrical Contractor license is greater than that for a Journeyman Electrician as you will need to complete additional steps such as taking the exam and obtaining a business permit. 

Here are some of the important fees associated with each license type:

Electrical Contractor:

Licensing StepFee
Exam Application Filing$100
Exam (PSI)$180, including:
• Electrical Contracting: $84
• Business and Law: $47
• Alarm Systems: $49
Initial License$225 (may be prorated depending on the date within the renewal period)
License Renewal$225 every three years
License Renewal (late)+$50
License ReinstatementYear license lapsed:
• Current cycle: $325
• Previous cycle: $550
Initial Business Permit$150 (may be prorated depending on the date within the renewal period)
Pressure Seal$25
Business Permit Renewal$150 every three years
Business Permit Renewal (late)+$25
Temporary Courtesy License$75
Continuing EducationCosts vary

Class A Journeyman Electrician

Licensing StepFee
Initial License$90 (may be prorated depending on the date within the renewal period)
License Renewal$90 every three years
Temporary Courtesy License$30
Continuing EducationCosts vary

When estimating the total amount you will spend to get licensed, also remember to budget for the cost of an apprenticeship program, trade school, or other educational courses, including books and study materials.

New Jersey electrician license renewal 

You’ll need to renew your Electrical Contractor or Class A Journeyman Electrician license every three years (2024, 2027, 2030, and so on) by March 31st. Renewals are handled online via the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs’ online portal, MyLicense.

Before you can renew your license, however, you’ll need to meet some continuing education requirements within the three-year registration period:

License TypeRequirements
Electrical Contractor34 credit hours of continuing education, including:
• 10 hours for a course relating to the latest edition of the National Electrical Code. 9 of the 10 hours must relate to the Code and 1 of the 10 hours must relate to applicable State statutes and regulations
• 24 hours for courses relating to other subjects relevant to electrical contracting and construction

Note: The Board will allow up to 8 credit hours of additional continuing education (beyond the 34 required) to count for the next three-year license period.
Class A Journeyman Electrician15 credit hours for a course relating to the latest edition of the National Electrical Code

If it’s your first time renewing your license, you won’t be required to submit continuing education credits. But when renewing, you should still answer “Yes” to the question about completing the required credits in the last three years.

What happens if my electrician license expires? 

Be sure to stop all work if your electrical contractor license or business permit has expired to avoid any penalties or fees. In New Jersey, if you knowingly engage in electrical contracting without a valid business permit, you can be found guilty of a crime in the fourth degree

The Board sends renewal notices at least 60 days prior to your license expiration. You can renew your license up to 30 days past the expiration date for an additional fee. But if you still haven’t renewed your license 30 days after its expiration, you will be charged additional fees to reinstate your license. See the reinstatement form for more details.

How to start an electrician business in New Jersey

Once you have your license and have built up some experience, you’re ready to take the next step: starting your own electrician business. New Jersey offers a one-stop guide to starting a business on the site. This site will help you take the necessary steps to get your business operating correctly, including:

  • Creating a business plan
  • Choosing a business structure
  • Selecting a location
  • Learning about building permits and ADA compliance
  • Leasing an office space
  • Financing your business

There are also some practical considerations for starting an electrician business, including:

See our free electrical contractor resources to get all the information and tools you need to start and run a successful business.

Does an electrical license in New Jersey increase your earning potential? 

Yes, having an electrician’s license will increase your earning potential over time and legitimize your credentials to future employers and clients.

When you first get into the industry in New York, you can expect to earn about $41,000 annually. But as you gain more experience, that amount can increase to nearly $70,000. And if you decide to start your own business, you can earn beyond these averages.

If you’re interested in learning more about this lucrative field, continue reading How to run a successful electrical business.

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