Working as an electrician is not just a job; it’s a solid career path. Electrical contractors enjoy a wide range of employment opportunities and earn a respectable income. There’s also job security—customers will always need skilled trade professionals to install and service electrical systems in their homes and businesses. This guide will provide a comprehensive overview of the steps and requirements for electricians to apply for their license and renew their license in Alaska.

Licensing Requirements for Electricians in Alaska

In Alaska, a license is required to be an electrician. However, it’s referred to as certification, not a journeyman license or residential electrician license as in most states. To perform electrical work in the state of Alaska, journeyman and residential electricians must obtain a certificate from the Department of Labor and Workforce Development. If you want to become an independent electrical contractor to run your own business, you must take an extra step and obtain professional licensing from the Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development. Before you can begin the certification and licensing process, you must register as an apprentice with the Department of Labor and Workforce Development.

Steps to Get an Electrician’s Certificate or License in Alaska

  1. Meet Basic Requirements: You must be at least 18 years of age, have a valid driver’s license, a high school diploma or GED, and pass an online Algebra 1 class or a Work Keys placement test.
  2. Enroll in an Electrical Apprenticeship: Enroll in an electrical apprenticeship with the Alaska Joint Electrical Apprenticeship and Training Trust (AJEATT).
  3. Register as an Apprentice: Register as an apprentice with the Department of Labor and Workforce Development and pay the $50 apprentice licensing fee. The apprenticeship license must be renewed each year until you complete your apprenticeship.
  4. Complete Training: Complete 4,000 hours of hands-on experience and 1,400 hours of classroom training.
  5. Take the Exam: Take the exam required to obtain certification as a journeyman or residential electrician.
  6. Apply for a Certificate of Fitness: Apply for a Certificate of Fitness through the Alaska Department of Labor.
  7. Consider Becoming an Independent Electrical Contractor: If you’re interested in owning your own electrical contractor business or providing electrician services as an independent electrical contractor, consider becoming licensed as an independent electrical contractor.

How to Become an Electrician in Alaska

AJEATT Requirements

Alaska’s primary union apprenticeship training program is the Alaska Joint Electrical Apprenticeship and Training Trust (AJEATT). Those who wish to become an electrical apprentice must first submit an application to the AJEATT. Potential applicants must be at least 18 years old, have a high school diploma or GED, a valid Alaska driver’s license and a copy of their driving record, an official copy of their high school transcript, and pass an Algebra 1 class or a Work Keys placement test with the State of Alaska Job Center. Once these requirements are met, an application should be filled out and submitted to the AJEATT.

Complete Necessary Training

In Alaska, apprentice electricians are required to complete 4,000 hours of hands-on experience and 1,400 hours of classroom training. Classroom instruction covers a variety of topics including: electrical theory, algebraic equation manipulation for electric circuits, AC/DC currents, welding, motors and transformers, blueprint reading, first aid/safety/OSHA regulations, and electric code standards.

Apply for Journeyman or Residential Electrician Certification

Once you have completed the apprenticeship requirements, you can apply for either a journeyman electrician or residential electrician certificate. A journeyman certificate

allows you to work on both commercial and residential properties. A residential certificate means you can perform only residential electrical work.

To apply for residential certification, you must have 4,000 hours of work experience, and 500 hours of classroom training time can count toward that total. Next, submit a residential application. Once you are approved, you can take the residential certification exam.

To apply for a journeyman certification, you must have 8,000 hours of work experience. Of those 8,000 hours, 6,000 hours must be in commercial or industrial properties. No more than 2,000 hours can be in residential settings. You can use 1,000 hours of classroom work toward the 8,000 hours required. Once those requirements are met, you can apply for journeyman certification. Once approved, you can take the journeyman certification exam.

Complete Certification of Fitness Form

Those applying for residential and journeyman certifications are also required to obtain a Certification of Fitness from the Alaska Department of Labor. This application covers many components, including experience verification. It is a necessary step when applying for either residential or journeyman certification.

Take the Professional Licensing Certification Exam

The certification exam costs $50. There is a four-hour exam time limit for both residential and journeyman certification. The exams are open book, and cover subjects such as circuits, conductors, grounding, lighting, safety, electricity categories, conduit supports and fittings, and electrical installation for residential, commercial, and industrial properties. A passing score is 70% or higher.

Obtain Your Electrician Certification

Electrical licenses are issued by the Alaska Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development. A $200 application fee is required to obtain your electrician license. Residential certifications need to be renewed every two years, and there are no continuing education requirements. Journeyman certifications also need to be renewed every two years. Journeymen are required to complete 16 hours of continuing education, eight of which must be a review of the National Electrical Code (NEC).

Become a Licensed Electrical Administrator

Before you can become a licensed independent electrical contractor in Alaska and operate your own business, you either need an electrical administrator license, or hire someone who already has this status. To become an electrical administrator, you need to fill out an application, selecting a specific category of administration. Available categories include: unlimited commercial wiring, residential wiring, controls and control wiring, inside communications, outside communications, or unlimited line work outside. Your application must also include your resume, three references, and official school transcripts. Once the application is submitted, you must pass the electrical administrator exam and obtain an Alaska business license.

License Bond Requirements in Alaska

In Alaska, electrical contractors are required to post a surety bond to the state. The bond amount is $10,000 for electrical contractors. This bond ensures that the contractor will comply with the provisions of the Alaska Statutes and protects any person damaged due to the contractor’s breach of duty. The bond must continuously remain in effect for 3 years until canceled by the surety, the principal, or the Department. More information about the bond requirements can be found in this document provided by the Alaska Department of Commerce, Community, and Economic Development.

Insurance Needs for Electricians in Alaska

In Alaska, just like in California, electricians and electrical contractors are required to have General Liability Insurance. This insurance protects your business and your customers from any covered claim for injuries or damages to third-party persons or property as a result of your work. It also includes legal fees to defend your business from any covered claim.

The insurance amount required in Alaska is as follows:

  • Property damage = $20,000
  • Injury/death to one person = $50,000
  • Injury/death to more than one person = $100,000

These are the minimum requirements, but it’s recommended to have higher limits, especially if you’re working on larger projects. Having the right insurance coverage can provide financial security and peace of mind, safeguarding against unexpected accidents, property damage, or legal liabilities. Let’s explore the insurance needs specific to electricians in Alaska.

  1. General Liability Insurance: This type of insurance is essential for electricians as it protects against claims of bodily injury or property damage caused by their work. For example, if a client or a third party sustains an injury due to an electrician’s negligence or their equipment damages someone’s property, general liability insurance can help cover the associated medical expenses, legal fees, or repair costs.
  2. Workers’ Compensation Insurance: In Alaska, having Workers’ Compensation Insurance is mandatory if you have employees. This insurance provides coverage for medical expenses, rehabilitation costs, and lost wages in the event of work-related injuries or illnesses. It not only protects your employees but also safeguards your business from potential lawsuits stemming from workplace accidents.
  3. Commercial Auto Insurance: If you use vehicles for your electrical business, such as vans or trucks for transporting tools or traveling to job sites, having Commercial Auto Insurance is essential. It covers your vehicles and provides coverage for medical expenses and property damage in case of accidents. Additionally, it offers protection against theft, vandalism, or damage caused by natural disasters.
  4. Inland Marine Insurance: As an electrician, you likely have valuable tools and equipment that you transport to various job sites. Inland Marine Insurance is designed to protect these movable assets while in transit or temporarily stored away from your primary business location. It covers losses due to theft, damage, or destruction, ensuring that your tools and equipment are protected wherever you take them.
  5. Umbrella Insurance Coverage: Umbrella Insurance serves as an additional layer of protection for electricians. It provides coverage beyond the limits of your primary liability policies, such as General Liability Insurance and Commercial Auto Insurance. In the event of a catastrophic claim that exhausts the limits of your underlying policies, Umbrella Insurance can step in to cover the remaining costs, safeguarding your business from substantial financial losses.

Navigating the world of insurance can be complex, but consulting with an experienced insurance agent can help electricians in Alaska understand their specific needs and find comprehensive coverage that aligns with their business requirements. By investing in adequate insurance, electricians can focus on their work with the confidence that they are protected from potential risks and liabilities.


Becoming a licensed electrician in Alaska requires a significant investment of time and effort, but the rewards are worth it. The process involves gaining hands-on experience through an apprenticeship, completing classroom training, passing an exam, and obtaining certification. For those who wish to run their own business, additional steps are required, including obtaining an electrical administrator license. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can navigate the process and start a rewarding career as a licensed electrician in Alaska.