Ten Jobs You Didn’t Know Needed Licenses

Blonde woman at hair saloon

You already know you need a license drive a tractor-trailer, but did you know that nearly one in three occupations in the United States now need a license?

That's the finding of a group called the Institute for Justice (IJ), a not-for-profit "Libertarian public interest law firm" that works to fight what it deems unnecessary roadblocks to working.

In its new report, called "License to Work," the group details dozens of occupations you may not know need licensing. IJ's Angela C. Erickson highlighted 10 surprising occupations that need licenses.

Makeup Artist– "Makeup artists are licensed in 36 states which consistently require three to nine months of education and experience, two exams and an average of $116 in fees to get a license," Erickson said.  "In several states, an exception is made for make-up artists working in theaters, while those in salons, spas or making house calls are required to be licensed."

Security Guard– "Security guards are currently licensed in 37 states.  Michigan's barriers are the most onerous, requiring an applicant to be at least 25 years old, have three years of training and pay $200 in fees, but those requirements may soon be removed in regulatory reforms sweeping through the state," she said.

Auctioneers– "Auctioneers are licensed in 33 states, with requirements varying from just a $15 fee in Hawaii to $650 in fees, two exams and over two years lost to education and an apprenticeship in Tennessee.  Auctioneers are another occupation Michigan is considering deregulating," said Erickson.

Residential Painting Contractor– "In 10 states, an individual who paints home or apartment walls must have a government-issued license.  In three of those states, painters are expected to have a year or more of experience while the other states require zero to 12 days," according to Erickson.

Funeral Attendant– "Funeral attendants place caskets in the parlor, arrange the flowers around it and direct mourners, among other simple duties.  They are only licensed in nine states, which on average require two days of training and $167 in fees," she said.

Interior Designer– "The four states that license interior designers require six years of education and apprenticeship," she said.

Travel Agent– "Despite the ease of booking travel over the Internet, eight states license travel agents who are charged fees ranging from $15 to $375 in order to obtain a license," said Erickson.

Shampooer– "Five states license shampooers who only shampoo and rinse customers’ hair in salons," Erickson said.  "Tennessee has the most onerous requirements at 70 days of training, two exams and $140 in fees."

Home Entertainment Installer– "Someone who goes into homes to set up stereo systems and audio or television receivers is required to have a government-issued license in three states," she said. "Louisiana has the most onerous requirements, where applicants must have two years of training and pass two exams."

Florist– "Florists are only licensed in Louisiana, which requires them to pay $225 and pass an exam."

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