In Minnesota, residential contractors need to renew their licenses every 2 years. They also have to complete a course on continuing education (CE) approved by the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry (MN DOLI) to qualify for renewal each time.
The Department of Labor and Industry of Minnesota is responsible for:
- Maintenance of environmentally safe and healthy living and work conditions.
- Various apprenticeship programs of the state
- Licensing and construction codes
- Pipeline for dual training
- Safety and health issues for different occupation
- Setting standards for hours of work and wage
- Compensation of workers
- Skill training program for youth
For the licenses that were due for renewal after 31st March 2020, the deadline was extended by 90 days. The extended deadline was 31st July 2020. Post that fines would be applicable.
Every year the Minnesota Department of Commerce receives and investigates hundreds of complaints. Based on the findings, licenses of contractors get revoked, suspended, fined and misdemeanor charges are imposed.
The CE courses are designed to educate the students about the rules, why complaints are raised, the possible resolutions, and avoidance of errors.
According to the rules for the continuing education course in Minnesota, an applicant cannot attempt the same course more than once in two years. Although the text courses can be printed, while doing the actual course, you need to complete it online.
Who Has to Do the CE Course:
- Licensed builders
- Building officials
There is a 14-hour course on CE that can be attempted online and there is a list of providers or instructors to choose from. There would be a DBPR provider ID and a CILB CE provider license number against the course mentioned on the provider’s website. You should look for these details as it means that the provider’s course is officially approved.
Post completion of the course, you would receive an official certificate stating that you have completed the course. This can be kept for your records, while the providers would inform the state from their end about your course completion.
The certificate of completion is in electronic format and would remain in the student’s account for a minimum period of 5 years, in case additional copies are required. You have to check your license renewal application to see whether you have to submit the Certificate of Completion also.
Details about the course:
While choosing a provider and the course that they are offering, you should check whether the requirements for the Minnesota contractor continuing education are being fulfilled.
- There should be a one-hour session consisting of the Minnesota Energy Code
- One hour credit on Business Management. This is a new requirement for contractors whose license expired on or after 1st April 2020.
There is a 14-hour course offered by certain providers which consist of:
- Safety features of construction – Consists of an overview of safety issues and safety practices for construction projects.
- Lesson on professionalism – What is professionalism and how to handle a project in a professional manner.
- Project management – How to manage a construction project efficiently.
- Contracts of business – What a contract looks like and its usage.
- Techniques of construction – Special types of construction techniques including masonry wall construction and using drywall paneling.
- Estimation and job costing – Process of calculating estimates and costing of jobs.
- Managing risk and liability
- Weatherization – How to weatherize buildings and the relation of the same with the construction of a building’s exterior shell.
- Minnesota Energy Code
- One hour course on Business Management – Learning marketing strategies and promoting a business.
For the convenience of students in terms of learning and recall, the course is broken up and there are several cumulative exams. There is also an exam in the middle of a term and a final exam at the end of the course.
Some providers have introduced a concept called continuing education units (CEUs) for contractors. This is the process of completion of CE through multiple opportunities for license renewal. They are also offering courses on:
- Environmentally Safe and Friendly Construction
- Building Energy
Steps to search for the continuing education credits:
- You have to visit the official webpage of the Department of Labor and Industry
- There is a link where you have to put in your name and license or certification number
- Click on the detail button against the records displayed
- Choose the view details option against the CE status field
- You have to enter your license number and also the last four digits of the Social Security Number or SSN
- Then click on the submit button
- The results displayed would provide you information regarding all the CE courses that were completed by you
CE is required to ensure that license holders have proper knowledge of their respective fields of work and should work in compliance with state and federal laws. If you are attempting to complete the MN contractor continuing education course, choose carefully and check whether the course is approved by the MN DOLI.