How to Become a Health Insurance Agent

Insurance sales is a career choice with one of the highest levels of compensation in comparison to the level of education needed to enter the field, and health insurance is no exception. Because health insurance is directly related to caring for people's health needs, health insurance sales is strictly regulated at the state and federal level. To become a health insurance agent, you must complete education and successfully pass both a state-administered examination and a criminal history check.

How to Become a Health Insurance Agent
Following is 9 Steps to Become a Health Insurance Agent:

Step 1: Contact your state insurance board to learn the exact requirements for an insurance license in your state. In nearly all states, health insurance agent licenses come in a package with life insurance qualifications.
  • In many cases, the state insurance board will provide a list of providers for the education, fingerprinting and testing requirements.
Step 2: Provide your fingerprints and fill out a state background check form.Send it to the state insurance license board.
  • The background check is usually the most time-consuming part of the health insurance licensing process. It's usually best to start this process before you register for your education.
  • A criminal record may disqualify you from getting a health insurance license. Felonies and drug offenses within the past 5 to 10 years are often disqualifying, as is any fraud or other financial crime. Check with your state insurance board if you have any reason to fear your background will be a problem.
Step 3: Register for your course in life and health insurance license training. You can opt for traditional on-site classroom instruction or distance learning via the Internet.

Step 4: Complete your education requirements. In most cases, you will complete approximately 40 hours of instruction.

Step 5: Receive your certificate of completion for education and your clearance notice from the background investigation.

Step 6: Register for your life and health insurance exam. In most states, you will have to present proof of successfully completing your education and background check in order to do this.

Step 7: Take and pass your insurance license exam. Use standard test-taking strategies to maximize your performance. A passing score is usually 70 percent or higher.

Step 8: Receive your temporary license on site when you pass your exam.You will receive a formal certificate from the insurance board in 1 to 2 months, but the temporary paperwork is enough for you to start work.

Step 9: Find employment with an insurance company. You must have a sponsoring relationship with at least 1 insurance company before you can legally sell health insurance.
  • You can choose to be a captive or free insurance agent. Captive agents sign contracts that promise to represent only 1 insurance company. Free agents may represent multiple companies simultaneously.
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