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Alarms & Fire Safety

The state of Iowa requires licensing for the installation, inspection, maintenance, or testing of all fire alarm, nurse call, and security alarm systems that "annunciate" a call. Systems, hard wired or wireless, that send a signal, text, phone call, or the like to local first responders, a monitoring service, security station, or individual require an alarm system license, as defined in Iowa Code chapter 100C and Iowa Administrative Rules chapter 661-277.  A company installing and/or testing such systems and their employees must be licensed before working in Iowa.

Licensing is not required for:

  • A company that is providing monitoring services only.
  • CCTV and video recording systems or card reader/door access systems if no notifications are sent.
  • Licensed electricians only when installing wiring and components of an alarm system as a licensed electrician working for a licensed electrical contractor. Final termination at, and all work done with, the alarm panel requires an alarm system license.
  • All contractors who intend to work in Iowa are required to obtain a contractor license.  
  • Contractors must list at least one responsible managing employee (RME) and provide a copy of their current qualifying certification.
  • Contractors will obtain and maintain current registration (or a written exemption) as a "construction contractor" with the DIAL Division of Labor in compliance with Iowa Code chapter 91C and Iowa Administrative Code chapter 875-150.  Visit the contractor registration page for more information. 
  • Contractors must provide a copy of the most current certificate of liability insurance on the ACORD form. The ACORD form must show coverage amounts of $1 million per occurrence, $1 million property damage, and $500,000 per person.
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Responsible Managing Employee (RME) Endorsement Qualification Options

A company that does installation and maintenance inspection must select the both endorsements for installation and maintenance inspection on the application.

All technicians who intend to work in Iowa are required to obtain a technician license under a licensed contractor.  They must provide a copy of their current qualifying certification.

  • All trainees who intend to work in Iowa are required to obtain a technician trainee license under a licensed contractor and be supervised 100% of the time on the job site by a licensed responsible managing employee or licensed technician licensed under the scope of work authorized by the license. 
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Technician Endorsement Qualification Options

A technician who does installation and maintenance inspection must select the both endorsements for installation and maintenance inspection on the application.

All responsible managing employees and technicians are required to submit a fingerprint card by mail, or through the Fieldprint Livescan Network, at the time of application for a new or renewal license.

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Fieldprint Livescan Network

Fieldprint Livescan Network

Use Fieldprint's largest Livescan network in Iowa to schedule secure, electronic submission of your fingerprints for criminal history background checks required by Commercial Explosives licensing.

Refer to the Fieldprint Program Scheduling Aid for step-by-step instructions to schedule your Livescan appointment at a Fieldprint location nearest you.  

  • Be sure to use the Fieldprint Code for Alarm licensing - FPIASFMAlarm.

For information on fingerprint locations outside the Livescan network, please visit National Background Information-Fingerprinting Locations.

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Criminal Conviction Eligibility

Applicants with criminal histories are not immediately denied a license in Iowa.  

Applicable Licensing Programs:

  • Alarm System Licensing Programs
  • Commercial Explosives Licensing Programs
  • Fire Protection System Licensing Programs

A prior offense may be disqualifying if one of the following conditions apply:

  • the actions of the offense are within the specialty of the license program.
  • circumstances of the offense are specific to the licensing program.  

You may submit proof to the Department of Inspections, Appeals and Licensing (DIAL) to show your current fitness to get a license.

Applicants must share their conviction information on their application for licensure, and include all of the following:

  • the criminal complaint and judgment of conviction for each separate offense.
  • a personal statement about the conditions that led to the convictions.
  • all evidence of rehabilitation they wish the DIAL to consider.

The DIAL reserves the right to request additional information and make a disqualification determination on other criminal offenses not listed herein.  

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License Fees

Fee Structure for Contractor License

  • $200 license fee
  • $50 for each endorsement
  • $50 for each responsible managing employee (RME)
  • $35 criminal history background check for each RME

Fee Structure for Technician License

  • $125 license fee
  • $25 for each endorsement
  • $35 criminal history background check

Fee Structure for Technician Trainee License

  • $50 license fee
  • $35 criminal history background check (new application and third application for renewal)

Payments can be made online by debit/credit card or eCheck/ACH or by mailing a check or money order payable to the Department of Inspections, Appeals, and Licensing or State of Iowa and mailed to the Department of Inspections, Appeals, and Licensing, Attention: Alarm Licensing Administration, 6200 Park Ave, Ste 100, Des Moines, IA 50321.

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Laws & Rules

The Iowa Legislature - Iowa Laws & Rules

Iowa Code encompasses all permanent laws passed by the Iowa legislature and signed by the governor.  Iowa Administrative Code (IAC) contains all administrative rules adopted by State agencies.  When a new law is passed, administrative rules often need to be updated to implement or administer that law.  

Iowa Code chapter 100C

Iowa Administrative Rules chapter 661-277


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