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Arkansas

72 out of 102 moderate-income occupations licensed

6th most burdensome licensing laws for moderate-income occupations

3rd most extensively and onerously licensed state for moderate-income occupations

Summary

License to Work

The data and information here come from IJ’s License to Work report, released in November 2017.

Arkansas is one of the worst states in the nation when it comes to licensing lower-income occupations. It licenses 72 of the 102 occupations studied here, and its licensing laws rank as the sixth most burdensome, due to high average education and experience burdens. On average, Arkansas requires $246 in fees, 642 days of education and experience, and about one exam. Because it licenses so many occupations so onerously, the state ranks as the third most broadly and onerously licensed.

Arkansas licenses several occupations that are rarely licensed elsewhere. For example, nursery workers are licensed by just one other state, psychiatric technicians by four and title examiners by six. Among these, title examiners face particularly steep burdens. They need at least one year of experience to become licensed in Arkansas, which is more than three times the average required in other licensed states (about 104 days).

The most onerously licensed occupation in Arkansas is fire alarm installer. Licensees must have 1,825 days—five years—of experience, pay $1,443 in fees and pass four exams before they can open for business. By comparison, the average across licensed states is about half that: $557 in fees, 915 days lost to education and experience, and two exams. To open up more employment opportunities in the state, Arkansas should reduce, if not repeal, these and other particularly onerous licensing burdens, or—if government regulation is necessary—replace them with less restrictive regulatory alternatives.

State Licensing Requirements for Lower-Income Occupations

Select a chart to view:
Burden Rank Occupation Number of States that License Fees Education/Experience (Days) Education Experience Exams Minimum Grade Minimum Age
1 Fire Alarm Installer 39 $1443 1,825 5 years 4 0 18
2 Earth Driller, Water Well 51 $750 1,825 5 years 2 0 18
3 HVAC Contractor (Commercial) 37 $485 1,825 5 years 2 0 18
4 Sheet Metal Contractor, HVAC (Commercial) 37 $380 1,825 5 years 2 0 18
5 Landscape Contractor (Commercial) 47 $330 1,825 5 years 1 0 0
6 Carpenter/Cabinet Maker Contractor (Commercial) 25 $180 1,825 5 years 1 0 0
6 Cement Finishing Contractor (Commercial) 24 $180 1,825 5 years 1 0 0
6 Door Repair Contractor (Commercial) 24 $180 1,825 5 years 1 0 0
6 Drywall Installation Contractor (Commercial) 25 $180 1,825 5 years 1 0 0
6 Floor Sander Contractor (Commercial) 22 $180 1,825 5 years 1 0 0
6 Glazier Contractor (Commercial) 26 $180 1,825 5 years 1 0 0
6 Insulation Contractor (Commercial) 25 $180 1,825 5 years 1 0 0
6 Iron/Steel Contractor (Commercial) 26 $180 1,825 5 years 1 0 0
6 Mason Contractor (Commercial) 26 $180 1,825 5 years 1 0 0
6 Painting Contractor (Commercial) 22 $180 1,825 5 years 1 0 0
6 Paving Contractor (Commercial) 24 $180 1,825 5 years 1 0 0
6 Pipelayer Contractor 27 $180 1,825 5 years 1 0 0
6 Sheet Metal Contractor, Other (Commercial) 26 $180 1,825 5 years 1 0 0
6 Terrazzo Contractor (Commercial) 23 $180 1,825 5 years 1 0 0
20 Preschool Teacher, Public School 50 $421 1,460 4 years 2 0 0
21 Coach, Head (High School Sports) 48 $395 1,462 4 years and 9 clock hours 2 0 0
22 Athletic Trainer 49 $425 1,460 4 years 1 0 0
23 Optician 22 $260 1,095 3 years 2 12 21
24 Midwife, Direct Entry 28 $900 800 40 births 2 12 0
25 Security Alarm Installer 37 $1118 730 2 years 2 0 18
26 HVAC Contractor (Residential) 35 $255 730 2 years 1 0 18
26 Sheet Metal Contractor, HVAC (Residential) 36 $255 730 2 years 1 0 18
28 Veterinary Technician 36 $350 730 2 years 1 0 0
29 Barber 51 $115 350 1500 clock hours 3 8 17
30 Cosmetologist 51 $125 350 1500 clock hours 2 10 16
31 Pest Control Applicator 51 $350 365 1 years 2 0 18
32 Title Examiner 7 $50 365 1 years 1 0 18
33 Massage Therapist 44 $375 117 500 clock hours 2 12 18
34 Manicurist 50 $125 140 600 clock hours 2 10 16
34 Skin Care Specialist 50 $125 140 600 clock hours 2 10 16
36 Psychiatric Technician 5 $38 210 900 clock hours 1 12 0
37 Mobile Home Installer 39 $2790 92 1 days 3 jobs, mobile home installers 1 0 0
38 Makeup Artist 41 $125 140 600 clock hours 1 10 16
39 School Bus Driver 51 $92 4 24 clock hours 6 0 19
40 Vegetation Pesticide Applicator 51 $700 0 4 0 18
41 Child Care Home, Family 44 $50 0 0 12 21
42 Bus Driver, City/Transit 51 $92 0 5 0 18
42 Truck Driver, Tractor-Trailer 51 $92 0 5 0 18
44 Shampooer 37 $35 31 20 days 20 clock hours 1 12 0
45 Truck Driver, Other 51 $92 0 4 0 18
46 Pharmacy Technician 44 $73 0 0 12 0
47 Emergency Medical Technician 51 $80 28 120 clock hours 2 0 18
48 Auctioneer 30 $338 0 2 0 18
49 Security Guard, Unarmed 34 $75 1 6 clock hours 1 0 18
50 Bill Collection Agency 31 $140 0 0 0 21
51 Gaming Cage Worker 29 $75 0 0 0 21
51 Gaming Supervisor 30 $75 0 0 0 21
51 Slot Supervisor 28 $75 0 0 0 21
54 Interpreter, Sign Language 22 $170 0 2 0 0
55 Milk Sampler 42 $10 0 1 0 0
56 Landscape Contractor (Residential) 48 $200 0 0 0 0
57 Carpenter/Cabinet Maker Contractor (Residential) 30 $50 0 0 0 0
57 Cement Finishing Contractor (Residential) 30 $50 0 0 0 0
57 Door Repair Contractor (Residential) 29 $50 0 0 0 0
57 Drywall Installation Contractor (Residential) 30 $50 0 0 0 0
57 Floor Sander Contractor (Residential) 27 $50 0 0 0 0
57 Glazier Contractor (Residential) 30 $50 0 0 0 0
57 Insulation Contractor (Residential) 30 $50 0 0 0 0
57 Iron/Steel Contractor (Residential) 30 $50 0 0 0 0
57 Mason Contractor (Residential) 31 $50 0 0 0 0
57 Painting Contractor (Residential) 28 $50 0 0 0 0
57 Paving Contractor (Residential) 28 $50 0 0 0 0
57 Sheet Metal Contractor, Other (Residential) 31 $50 0 0 0 0
57 Terrazzo Contractor (Residential) 28 $50 0 0 0 0
70 Fisher, Commercial 43 $25 0 0 0 0
70 Travel Guide 37 $25 0 0 0 0
72 Nursery Worker 2 $10 0 0 0 0