Insurance Continuing Education: Alabama
September 7, 2021
Keeping your license in force in your state of residence is key to keeping your license in force in every state you operate in. For Alabama residents, that means staying current on your continuing education (CE) requirements.
Alabama’s state regulations maintain that you must have completed your CE before your license renewal. No CE, no license renewal. Stick with us as we review the other requirements for producers in the state of Alabama.
Of course, keep in mind that while we believe this information to be factual and up to date, it’s important for readers to do their own due diligence. Let’s dive in:
Who is Alabama Insurance CE for?
Alabama agrees nonresident insurance producers don’t have to worry about Alabama’s CE requirements as long as they maintain the CE and license requirements of their own resident state.
The state of Alabama has several exemptions to the CE compliance requirements. Producers are exempt from CE for the first reporting period – if you have been licensed for less than a year, you don’t need to have CE completed.
If you have a limited license – credit insurance, industrial fire (debit fire) insurance, rental vehicle, motor club, dental services, legal services – you are also exempt from the CE requirements. Or, if you are at least 60 years old and have been licensed for at least 15 years continuously, you may also be exempt.
Designations are relevant, as well. Since a number of designations require some degree of ongoing continuing education – often their requirements exceed the state’s – Alabama will not require you to complete additional CE if you actively hold any of the following designations:
- Chartered Life Underwriter
- Charter Property & Casualty Underwriter
- Certified Insurance Counselor
- Chartered Financial Consultant
- Certified Financial Planner
- Registered Health Underwriter
- Registered Employee Benefits Consultant
- Certified Health Consultant
- Associate Risk Manager
For those who are licensed but only work as office employees of insurers or other producers, the CE requirements are not as arduous. As long as you don’t have a nonresident license in any other states, Alabama maintains that you may only have to complete half of the required CE hours.
It is important to note that the exemptions listed here do not apply to anyone selling long-term care insurance.
What is the due date for Alabama Insurance CE Credits?
In Alabama, your license renewal and CE requirements are due on the last day of your birth month and are tied to whether you were born in an odd or even year.
You don’t have to complete your CE if you’ve been licensed for less than a year when the renewal period rolls around. For example, let’s consider these folks who obtained their licenses in May 2021:
- Someone born January 3, 1984, will need to complete CE by January 2024.
- Someone born June 3, 1987, will need to complete their CE by June 2023.
- Someone born July 8, 1988, will need to complete CE by July 2022.
The state of Alabama sends you an electronic notice of your CE requirements 90 days before your birth month at the end of your biennial renewal period.
How many hours of CE are required for Alabama insurance producers?
Insurance producers in Alabama must take 24 hours of continuing education courses within each full biennial renewal cycle, with three of those hours covering the subject of ethics. Pre-licensing classes don’t count toward CE requirements, although you are also not required to take CE hours that are exclusive to your line of authority.
For licensed producers who are merely working in a supporting or service representative role, the CE requirements are halved, meaning you only have to take 12 hours of CE, with two of them being in ethics.
Alabama recognizes a variety of CE methods, including classroom, self-study, online instruction, and seminars as long as hours are “given for successfully completing an approved course given by an approved provider.” Alabama also gives credit to the course instructor, so if you are a producer who teaches an approved CE course with the state, you’ll get the same credit hours as your students.
If you have a life insurance license and plan to sell annuities, the state requires that you must take a one-time four-hour class.
You can’t take the same CE course more than once in any given renewal period, and Alabama doesn’t allow you to carry over “excess” CE credits over to the next renewal period, either.
If you are licensed to sell flood insurance, you of course must have three CE hours of the training requirements established by the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s National Flood Insurance Program, as well.
You can earn dual-credit CE while also pursuing additional professional designations such as those provided by the College for Financial Planning, as long as the courses are certified with the state of Alabama.
If you are licensed in Alabama to sell long-term care insurance (LTCI), your initial certification will require an eight-hour training course and ongoing CE of four hours specific to LTCI every renewal cycle. You can count those four hours toward your total 24 CE hours required by the state.
For more information about state-specific licensing requirements, or to find out how AgentSync can make it easier to operate across multiple states, check out our state pages.
Alabama Insurance CE FAQs
If you miss renewing your license by the end of your birth month, Alabama has a 30-day grace period in which you can reapply and pay a $50 late fee (on top of the typical renewal fee) to keep your license current. Of course, you must also have completed your required CE. If you miss the grace period, your license is expired.
If your license has expired, you can reinstate it without having to retake prelicensing courses or taking a written exam if you 1. complete the required CE and 2. pay double the renewal fee within the year. You will also need to complete the reissue process through NIPR, as well.
It generally takes three to five days after submission for the CE information to be updated in the NIPR database. If you are trying to renew your license and it has been more than five business days since you submitted your CE, contact the Alabama Department of Insurance.