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Home > Licensing, Inspections, Certifications & Testing > Licensing > Pesticide Applicator Licensing > Pesticide Applicator Initial License & Renewal Requirements

Pesticide Applicator Initial License and Renewal Requirements

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) issues licenses to Commercial and Noncommercial Pesticide Applicators and Structural Pest Control Applicators. The MDA administers closed-book and monitored exams as part of the certification and license process. The initial certification exam measures competency in specific use categories and determines if the person is eligible for a pesticide applicators license.

A pesticide license may be required to apply pesticide products that include herbicides, insecticides, fungicides, rodenticides and other products intended to kill, repel or control pests. Weed and feed products are both a pesticide and a fertilizer. See Pesticide Applicator License Types

New (Initial) Applicator License Requirements - How to Apply for a Pesticide Applicator License

  1. Complete a NEW Pesticide Applicator License application form online OR download and print a form to complete and mail in to the MDA (PDF: 85 KB / 1 page).
  2. Submit license fee and Agricultural Chemical Response and Reimbursement Account (ACRRA) surcharge if applicable, with application form. Fees and surcharges are non-transferable and nonrefundable. Payment for license must be made before taking the certification exams.
  3. Take and pass required certification exam(s). The exams are closed book and 70% or better is passing. At least two use category exams are required to become licensed. Exams are given at the MDA Office at 625 Robert Street North in St. Paul by appointment only. Call 651-201-6633 to schedule an exam. Exams are also given in Greater Minnesota by County Ag Inspectors (CAI) and MDA staff by appointment. See Testing Locations in Greater Minnesota, MDA Staff and County Ag Inspector information
  4. Meet Financial Responsibility requirements for the license. All Commercial Applicators and Structural Pest Control Applicators must meet Financial Responsibility requirements. Financial Responsibility may be one of the following: commercial liability insurance, net assets statement, or surety bond. See Financial Responsibility Requirements

Reciprocal License

MDA accepts certification (reciprocity) in certain states for residents of those states in lieu of testing to obtain a Minnesota pesticide applicator license. See Pesticide Applicator License Requirements, Reciprocal

Other Requirements

A pesticide license identification card will be issued when the required exams have been passed and all other licensing requirements are met. The license and identification card are not transferable to other individuals. Applicators must notify MDA immediately when changing employers as the license becomes invalid when an applicator leaves an employer.

Pesticide applicators may not commercially apply any pesticide UNTIL they receive the license identification card. Noncommercial applicators may not apply restricted use pesticides as part of their job UNTIL they receive the license identification card. Minnesota law requires pesticide applicators to carry a valid license identification card whenever applying general or restricted use pesticides. A license identification card is issued and mailed along with the applicator license.

Company (Business) License Structural Pest Control Applicators must be employed by a company and the company must be licensed. See Pesticide Applicator License Requirements-Structural Pest Control.

Change in license

Licensed applicators must notify the MDA of any change in address, name, change of employer or change of license type (i.e. noncommercial to commercial). NOTE : An applicator may not perform pesticide application work for a new company without first obtaining a license under that company's name. To make any of these changes, contact MDA at 651-201-6021. See Pesticide Application License Changes and Fees.

License Fees & Agricultural Chemical Response Reimbursement Account (ACRRA ) Surcharge

License Type License Fee ACCRA Surcharge Total
Commercial Applicator $50.00 $8.25 $58.25
Noncommercial Applicator $50.00 $8.25 $58.25
Noncommercial--Government $10.00 N/A $10.00
Structural Pest Control Applicator $50.00 N/A $50.00
Structural Pest Control Company $200.00 $33.00 $233.00

Renewal Requirements

All pesticide applicator licenses expire on December 31st. Renewal application forms are mailed to the employer in November. The license fee and ACRRA surcharge are due at the time of renewal. Licenses can be renewed online, by mail or in person at the MDA. Online renewal or in person renewal can be paid with a Mastercard or Visa credit card. Applicators must meet recertification requirements. See Pesticide Applicator Recertification Requirements.

Contact MDA

Questions regarding a pesticide applicator license call 651-201-6615