Carpenters and carpentry businesses in Utah are required to be licensed by the state in order to legally operate. Licensure demonstrates that carpenters and carpentry contractors meet certain standards and helps ensure public safety. This guide covers everything you need to know about getting licensed as a carpenter or carpentry business in Utah, including eligibility requirements, steps for applying for a new license, renewing a license, reciprocity with other states, bond requirements, and insurance requirements.

Introduction to Carpenter and Carpentry Business Licensing in Utah

In Utah, carpenters and carpentry contractors are licensed under the S220 Carpentry Contractor classification by the Utah Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing (DOPL).

To legally work as a carpenter or operate a carpentry business in Utah, you must hold an active S220 Carpentry Contractor license issued by DOPL. Licensed carpenters and carpentry contractors are referred to as “specialty contractors” in Utah.

There are some exemptions to the licensing requirement in Utah. You do not need a license if:

  • You are doing carpentry work valued at less than $3,000
  • You are an employee of a licensed contractor
  • You are working on projects owned by you or your immediate family

However, if you regularly do carpentry work over $3,000 or for the general public, you must be licensed. Unlicensed activity is a class A misdemeanor in Utah.

The S220 Carpentry Contractor license allows licensees to perform the following types of work:

  • Rough and finish carpentry
  • Hardware installation
  • Interior and exterior trim
  • Cabinetry
  • Door and window installation
  • Wood floor installation
  • Stair, railing, and guardrail installation
  • Installation of manufactured buildings

Specialty contractor licenses like the S220 must be renewed every 2 years in Utah. Licensees must also complete continuing education to renew their license.

Requirements for Carpenter and Carpentry Business Licensure in Utah

The requirements to become a licensed carpenter or carpentry contractor in Utah include:

Experience: You must document at least 2 years (4,000 hours) of paid carpentry work experience. This can include W-2 employee work, 1099 contract work, or work as a business owner. Military carpentry experience also counts.

Pre-License Education: You must complete a 25-hour pre-licensure course from an approved provider. Approved courses are offered by Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC), Utah Home Builders Association (UHBA), and Associated General Contractors of Utah (AGC).

Exams: You must pass the Utah Contractor Business and Law Exam, which covers Utah laws and rules, lien laws, business practices, and more.

Business Registration: Your business entity such as an LLC or corporation must be registered with the Utah Division of Corporations. As a sole proprietor, you can use just your name or register a DBA.

EIN: You’ll need a federal Employer Identification Number (EIN) even if you don’t have employees.

Insurance/Bond: You must have a $100k/$300k general liability insurance policy. If you have employees, you’ll also need workers’ comp insurance. If you are self-employed with no employees, you need a workers’ comp waiver. A license bond is not required for the S220 license.

Qualifier: You or another officer of your company must be designated as the qualifier, meaning the person who satisfies the experience and exam requirements.

Meeting all these requirements makes you eligible for licensure as a carpenter or carpentry business in Utah.

Applying for a New Carpenter or Carpentry Business License in Utah

Here are the step-by-step instructions for getting your new S220 Carpentry Contractor license from DOPL:

  1. Complete pre-licensure education: Sign up for and complete a 25-hour pre-licensure course from ABC, UHBA, or AGC.
  2. Pass the licensing exam: Register and pass the Utah Contractor Business and Law Exam through Prov.
  3. Document experience: Gather records such as tax documents, W-2s, 1099s, or statements from employers to prove your 2 years of carpentry experience.
  4. Register your business entity: File formation documents for your LLC, corporation, etc. with the Utah Division of Corporations.
  5. Get an EIN: Apply for your federal Employer Identification Number (EIN) from the IRS, even if you are a sole proprietor.
  6. Obtain insurance: Purchase a general liability insurance policy for at least $100k/$300k as required. Also get workers’ comp insurance or waiver.
  7. Submit your application: Complete the online contractor license application from DOPL and upload supporting documents. Pay the $330 application fee.
  8. Get approved: DOPL will review your application and notify you if any other documents are needed. Once approved, you will be issued your S220 license.

New S220 Carpentry Contractor licenses in Utah are valid for 2 years initially. Make sure to familiarize yourself with the steps and fees for renewal.

Renewing a Carpenter or Carpentry Business License in Utah

Utah carpenter and carpentry contractor licenses expire on November 30 every odd-numbered year. To renew your license and continue operating legally, you must:

  • Complete 8 hours of continuing education prior to expiration, focusing on technical codes and rules. Classes are offered by various providers.
  • Maintain general liability insurance and workers’ comp insurance or waiver. Update policy documents with DOPL as needed.
  • Pay the $330 renewal fee either online or by mail before the expiration date.
  • Renew business entity registration with the Utah Division of Corporations if needed.
  • Respond to any DOPL requests or audits. You may be asked to provide proof of continuing education or insurance.

As long as you satisfy these renewal requirements, your S220 Carpentry Contractor license will be renewed for another 2-year period. Licenses that are not properly renewed will be deactivated.

Reciprocity for Carpenters and Carpentry Businesses Licensed in Other States

Utah does offer license reciprocity or endorsement for carpenters and carpentry contractors licensed in other states. To qualify for Utah licensure by endorsement, you must:

  • Hold a current, active carpenter or carpentry contractor license in another U.S. state or territory
  • Document at least 1 year of licensed experience in that state
  • Pass the Utah Contractor Business and Law Exam
  • Meet all other Utah licensing requirements

If you meet these criteria, you can submit an endorsement application to DOPL to have your out-of-state license recognized in Utah. Some states do not qualify for endorsement, so verify that your home state meets Utah’s standards first.

License Bonds for Carpenters and Carpentry Businesses in Utah

Utah does not require licensed carpenters or carpentry contractors to obtain a license bond. The S220 classification is exempt from the bond requirement.

However, you may need to provide bonds on a per-project basis to secure permits or satisfy contract requirements in some cases. Most carpenters and carpentry businesses in Utah do not routinely need license bonds though.

Insurance Requirements for Licensed Carpenters and Carpentry Contractors in Utah

Carpenters and carpentry contractors licensed in Utah must carry the following minimum insurance coverage:

  • General liability insurance: $100,000 per occurrence/$300,000 aggregate
  • Workers’ compensation insurance: As required by law for any employees


  • Workers’ compensation waiver: If you are self-employed with no employees

You must have a current certificate of general liability insurance on file with DOPL listing them as a certificate holder. Workers’ comp insurance or waiver must also be current.

Maintaining continuous, uninterrupted insurance coverage is crucial. If your insurance lapses, your license can be suspended. Make sure to renew policies on time and submit updated certificates to DOPL.


In summary, carpenters and carpentry businesses must be licensed in the state of Utah in order to legally and safely serve customers, with some exceptions for minor work. Licensure requires documenting carpentry experience, completing pre-license education, passing an exam, registering your business, obtaining an EIN, and carrying proper insurance. Both new licenses and renewals involve applications, fees, and providing proof of compliance to DOPL. Reciprocity is also available for qualified out-of-state carpenters and contractors. Ensuring you meet Utah’s licensing and insurance rules will allow you to operate a compliant and successful carpentry company.