How to Renew a Montana Plumbing License

Written by Kacie Goff

If you’re licensed by the Montana Board of Plumbers, you’re probably aware that you need to do certain things to renew your license each year. Exactly what you need to do — and the penalties for falling short — might not be quite so clear, though. 

And that’s a problem because the Board can randomly audit up to 50% of all renewed active licensees each year. If you haven’t been properly meeting the renewal requirements in the last few years, you could be subject to administrative suspension.

Ultimately, that’s probably a headache you want to avoid. To properly renew your Montana plumbing license — and maintain the right paperwork to make sure your license stands up in an audit — do these things:

#1: Mark your calendar

Montana plumber license renewals are due on September 1 each year. Renewal opens 60 days before (basically, in early July). 

To make sure you’re able to knock out the necessary to-dos, you might want to put a recurring reminder on your calendar for sometime in July or early August. Why so early? You need to take continuing education (CE) hours before you’re eligible to renew. 

If you don’t get your CE done and your renewal submitted on time, you’re subject to late fees and you’ll need to show documentary proof of your CE hours. It’s an added hassle and cost worth avoiding, so get a jump on things before the end of August. 

#2: Complete the required Montana plumber continuing education

In Montana, both master and journeyman plumber licensees need four hours of CE each year. These can’t be just random hours, either. Per the Administrative Rules of Montana, they need to be code-related (think: state plumbing code, Uniform Plumbing Code) and they need to come from a course that the Board has already approved.

Fortunately for you, the state has greenlit certain plumbing CE providers to offer their 4-hour courses online and on-demand such as this training. That way, you can knock out your hours whenever you have time. And you can take them from any location you want, provided you have a computer, tablet, or phone with an internet connection. 

Once you finish your four hours, you’ll get a certificate of completion. Hang onto it.

#3: Send in your renewal application and fee

After you finish your four hours of Montana plumbing CE each year, you’re eligible to submit your license renewal application. You can do this online through the state’s Citizen Portal

If you haven’t made your profile in the eLicensing system before, you need to do two things:

  1. Register your account.
  2. Email to ask them to link your account with your license. When you send the email, make sure you include the username you just set up, your name, and your license number.

Once you’re set up, renewing your Montana plumbing license online should be a pretty straightforward process. Just make sure you have a payment method handy so you can pay the renewal fee. 

#4: Be ready for an audit

Once you submit your renewal online, you should be good to go. But there’s always a chance you’ll be randomly picked for a Board audit. 

If that happens, you’ll need to be able to show documentation proving that you’ve met the CE requirement in the last few renewal cycles. The Board advises licenses to keep CE course certificates of completion for at least three years so they have the right paperwork to stand up to an audit. 

Knock out your four hours of Montana plumber CE and submit your renewal application online before September 1 each year. Do that — and hang onto your CE certificates of completion — and you shouldn’t have any trouble keeping your plumbing license active.