A license is required to work as a security guard in West Virginia if you want to work as a sole proprietor, providing security guard services under your own name. Your are exempt from licensing if you are;
- employed exclusively and regularly by only one employer in connection with that employer’s affairs
- employed by one or more licensed security guard firms
Licensing is handled by the West Virginia Secretary of State. Before you can get licensed you must meet the following requirements.
- Be at least 18 years of age.
- United States citizen or resident alien.
- Good moral character.
- Mentally and emotionally stable.
- No drug or alcohol dependencies.
- No disqualifying felonies or criminal convictions.
- Complete 18 hours of basic training.
Training may include:
- Role of Private Security
- Legal Aspects
- Patrol and Observation
- Incident Response
- Surveillance operation and documentation
- Working with and addressing the public
- First Aid
The license must be renewed annually.
Working as an employee for a licensed private security guard company requires you to gain employment with said company.
Applying for a license as a sole proprietor requires that you complete an application form. In addition you should make sure you have the following on hand:
- An official West Virginia fingerprint card.
- 2 recent passport style color photographs.
- Completed surety bond form.
- 5 character references from citizens who have known you for at least 5 years.
- Copies of documents proving adequate training
The application must be submitted to the Secretary of State Licensing Division.
There is a $150 licensing fee for West Virginia residents and a $550 licensing fee for non-West Virginia residents. $50 of this fee is non-refundable in case your application is denied.