License to Work: A National Study of Burdens from Occupational Licensing

License to Work: A National Study of Burdens from Occupational Licensing

Arkansas



Highlights

52 out of 102 moderate-income occupations licensed
2nd most burdensome licensing laws
5th most extensively and onerously licensed state

(Last updated April 24, 2012)

Summary

Arkansas is the fifth most broadly and onerously licensed state in the country. One needs a license to practice 52 of the 102 low- and moderate-income occupations studied -- more than all but 10 other states. The barriers to entering these occupations are significant -- the second most burdensome of all the states -- and combine with the large number of licensed occupations to place Arkansas in the top tier of most broadly and onerously licensed states.

The high ranking is driven mainly by the five years of education and experience required for many of the construction trades. Workers in other states are required to undergo only between 507 days (sheet metal workers) and 390 days (insulation contractors) of training to get a job in the same occupations, on average. Many states either do not have training requirements or do not require a license at all.

Arkansas licenses a number of occupations that few other states do, such as funeral attendants, psychiatric technicians and residential dry wall installers. Moreover, many occupations are subject to entry restrictions that exceed national averages. Opticians in Arkansas, for instance, must train for more than three years, about a year more than the national average. Fire alarm installers lose 1,095 days to education and experience requirements versus a national average of 486 days.

Thirty occupations take longer to break into in Arkansas than emergency medical technician, most by a considerable margin. The state allows EMTs to work in ambulances after 28 days of training. Massage therapists, on the other hand, are required to complete 117 days of training. Barbers and cosmetologists must obtain 350 days of training.

To improve job prospects for residents, Arkansas could reduce or eliminate many of its licensing requirements.

(Last updated May 1, 2012)

Licensing Requirements

Burden RankOccupationNumber of States that LicenseFeesEducation/Experience (Days)ExamsMinimum GradeMinimum Age
1 Preschool Teacher 49 $100 1,825 3 0 0
2 Painting Contractor (General/Commercial) 28 $175 1,825 1 0 0
2 Paving Equipment Operator Contractor 27 $175 1,825 1 0 0
2 Floor Sander Contractor (General/Commercial) 29 $175 1,825 1 0 0
2 Mason Contractor (General/Commercial) 29 $175 1,825 1 0 0
2 Door Repair Contractor 35 $175 1,825 1 0 0
2 Glazier Contractor (General/Commercial) 30 $175 1,825 1 0 0
2 Insulation Contractor (General/Commercial) 29 $175 1,825 1 0 0
2 Iron/Steel Contractor (General/Commercial) 31 $175 1,825 1 0 0
2 Drywall Installation Contractor (General/Commercial) 30 $175 1,825 1 0 0
2 Cement Finishing Contractor (General/Commercial) 29 $175 1,825 1 0 0
2 Pipelayer Contractor 29 $175 1,825 1 0 0
2 Carpenter/Cabinet Maker Contractor (General/Commercial) 30 $175 1,825 1 0 0
2 Terrazzo Contractor (General/Commercial) 29 $175 1,825 1 0 0
2 Sheet Metal Contractor (General/Commercial) 28 $175 1,825 1 0 0
16 Athletic Trainer 46 $425 1,460 1 0 0
17 Optician 22 $200 1,120 2 12 21
18 Fire Alarm Installer 34 $240 1,095 1 0 0
19 Teacher Assistant 29 $325 730 0 12 0
20 Drywall Installation Contractor (Residential) 9 $833 730 2 0 0
21 HVAC Contractor (General/Commercial) 40 $205 730 1 0 18
22 Veterinary Technologist 37 $175 730 1 0 0
23 Barber 50 $115 350 3 8 16.5
24 Cosmetologist 51 $115 350 2 10 16
25 Earth Driller 47 $150 365 1 0 18
26 Massage Therapist 39 $325 117 2 12 18
27 Makeup Artist 36 $145 140 2 10 16
28 Skin Care Specialist 50 $140 140 2 10 16
29 Psychiatric Technician 4 $116 210 1 12 0
30 Manicurist 50 $60 140 2 10 0
31 Mobile Home Installer 39 $2,750 1 1 0 0
32 Midwife 29 $700 0 2 12 0
33 School Bus Driver 51 $62 4 6 0 18
34 Bus Driver (City/Transit) 51 $92 0 5 0 18
35 Child Care Worker 33 $10 2 0 12 18
36 Truck Driver 51 $92 0 4 0 18
37 Emergency Medical Technician 51 $70 28 2 0 18
38 Pharmacy Technician 12 $76 0 0 12 0
39 Bill Collector Agency 30 $140 0 0 0 21
40 Gaming Supervisor 23 $75 0 0 0 21
40 Slot Key Person 21 $75 0 0 0 21
42 Security Guard 37 $81 1 0 0 18
43 Fisher 41 $25 0 0 0 16
44 Pest Control Applicator 51 $35 0 2 0 0
44 Vegetation Pesticide Handler 51 $35 0 2 0 0
46 Backflow Prevention Assembly Tester 18 $180 9 1 0 0
47 Milk Sampler 34 $10 0 1 0 0
48 Landscape Worker 10 $150 0 0 0 0
49 Funeral Attendant 9 $135 0 0 0 0
50 Security Alarm Installer 34 $81 0 0 0 0
51 Animal Trainer 20 $25 0 0 0 0
52 Nursery Worker 2 $10 0 0 0 0

(Last updated April 24, 2012)

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