Request a DemoLog In(844) 692-0626
Request a DemoLog In

Make it easier to manage construction.

See it in Action

—  7 min read

Missouri Contractor Licensing: Guide to Registration & More


Last Updated Nov 16, 2023

Illustration of Missouri contractor license with hardhat and map of America with Missouri highlighted

It’s important to ensure your business is on the up-and-up right away, but launching a new company is a lot of work. This article will cover Missouri contractor license requirements so you can focus on building your business.

Contracting in another state? Check out The Ultimate Guide to Contractors License Requirements in Every State.

Table of contents

Who needs a contractor license in Missouri?

The State of Missouri doesn’t require anyone to carry a state-issued contractor's license. While that might seem like a free-for-all, there are actually many requirements within the state — the state government just isn’t the one creating them.

Missouri doesn’t make contractors carry licenses, but it does make businesses register with the Secretary of State. Sole proprietorships and general partnerships are exempt, but all other businesses (including any business operating under a fictitious name) must register. 

How to get a contractors license in Missouri

Getting a contractor license in the State of Missouri will depend on the type of work you do and the area you work in. The following sections will cover some of the most common areas and their requirements for common contractor types.

Business registration

Missouri makes the registration process as simple as possible. Contractors can head to the Secretary of State’s website and utilize the Business Portal to complete their registration online. The contractor needs to create a login, but the process is straightforward. Fees for registration are between $30 to $205, depending on the business structure and the number of partners registering.

Make it easier to manage construction.

See it in Action
Illustration showing framers assembling a wooden wall

How to get contractors license in Kansas City

Most contractors in Kansas City need to carry a license, and licensing is a function of the City Planning and Development- Development Services department. This agency requires applicants to submit an electronic application through its Compass KC system

Kansas City has some basic requirements that contractors must meet, and they include:

  • Be at least 21 years of age
  • Hold a high school diploma or GED
  • Provide adequate documentation of the required skills, knowledge, and experience
  • Carry liability insurance coverage with a minimum aggregate limit of $1,000,000 per occurrence
    • Must name the City of Kansas City, Missouri as additional insured
    • Must also state the insurance company with notify the city of Kansas City, Missouri at least 30 days before changing or canceling the insurance, or 10 tend in the event of cancellation due to nonpayment
  • Obtain a business license from the Finance Department

Some contractors might also need to post a cash deposit with the city’s Finance Department. Also, each contractor must employ a full-time, qualified supervisor to oversee trade work. They’ll also have to choose one or more of the following license types:

  • Demolition Contractor Class 1 and 2
  • Electrical Contractor Class 1, 2, and 3
  • Elevator contractor class 1, 2, and 3
  • Fire Protection Contractor Class 1, 2, and 3
  • Gas-Fired Appliance Contractor 
  • Mechanical Contractor
  • Pipe Fitting Contractor
  • Plumbing Contractor
  • Residential Building Contractor 
  • Sign Contractor

Once all the requirements are met, contractors will be required to submit the license along with a $55 non-refundable application fee to the City Planning and Development–Development Services department.

How to get a contractors license in St. Louis

While St. Louis requires all contractors and subcontractors performing construction work of any kind within the city to obtain a license, the process is much simpler than other major cities. And while the city might refer to it as a license, it’s really more akin to a registration.

The requirements for application are fairly straightforward:

  • Obtain a State Sales Tax Number from the State of Missouri (you can apply online)
  • Provide a certificate of worker’s compensation coverage or a notarized affidavit developed by the Missouri Department of Labor and Industrial Relations, Division of Worker’s Compensation
  • Pay the applicable fees based on employees:
    • 0 to 2 employees: $200
    • 3 to 5 employees: $325
    • 6 to 10 employees: $675, and so on
  • Obtain a Statement of Clearance from the City’s Collector of Revenue
  • Obtain an Occupancy Permit from the Building Division

Applicants will need to fill out this application and submit it to:

Office of the License Collector
1200 Market Street
City Hall, Room 102-104
St. Louis, MO 63103

How to get a contractors license in Springfield

Springfield is another city that prefers to use registration as a form of licensure. Generally speaking, all businesses working within the city limits need to register with the city’s Finance Department

There are several applications that could apply to contractors working in Springfield, and choosing the appropriate application depends on the circumstances.

More than likely, the city will require applicants to carry both liability insurance and worker’s compensation insurance, but the city determines that on a case-by-case basis. The Finance Department will also determine the application fees.

How to get a contractors license in Columbia

Columbia, Missouri requires all businesses operating within the city to apply for a business license through the city’s Finance Department. Applicants can apply online through the Citizen Self Service portal.

Requirements are minimal. For electrical, plumbing, or mechanical contractors, the city mandates that applicants provide the name of a trade-licensed supervisor. Also, all construction industry businesses with one or more employees (not counting the business owner) must provide proof of worker’s compensation insurance. There are a few trade-specific requirements, as well:

  • Plumbing contractors must carry a $10,000 surety bond
  • Electricians must file a certificate of liability insurance
  • Mechanical contractors must contact the Building and Site Development Division for up-to-date trade license requirements

Fees for application vary, but the general rundown includes:

  • $30 application fee
  • $17 background investigation fee
  • The license fee is based on annual gross receipts:
    • Less than $25,000: $15 fee
    • Between $25,000 and $100,000:  $25 fee
    • Over $100,000: $0.25 per thousand

You can submit the application online or mail it to this address:

City of Columbia
Business License Division
PO Box 6015
Columbia, MO 65205

How to get a contractors license in Independence

Independence, Missouri takes its contractor licensing very seriously. The city mandates that contractors apply, take the appropriate exams, and meet specific criteria. Licensing falls under the control of Community Development.

The licenses that Independence issues include:

  • Class A General Contractor
  • Class B Building Contractor
  • Class C Residential General Contractor
  • Class D Journeyman Electrical Contractor
  • Class D Journeyman Mechanical Contractor
  • Class D Journeyman Plumbing Contractor
  • Class D Master Electrical Contractor
  • Class D Master Mechanical Contractor
  • Class D Master Plumbing Contractor

Among these licenses, Independence has some license-specific requirements to meet:

  • Class A, B, and C:
    •  Must provide a Certificate of Competency from within the last five years, with a score of 70% or higher, or
    • Current Contractor License with Johnson County, KS, or another city with the same requirements (to be vetted by Building Official), or
    • Bachelor's degree in engineering, architecture, or construction science from an accredited college or university
  • Class D Master:
    • Certificate of Competency from within the last five years, or
    • Current Contractor License with Johnson County, KS, or another city with the same requirements (to be vetted by Building Official)
  • Class D Journeyman:
    • Certificate of Competency from within the last five years, or
    • Current Contractor License with Johnson County, KS, or another city with the same requirements (to be vetted by Building Official), or
    • Documented proof of three years of related work activity as an apprentice or journeyman

Would-be contractors can start the application process online by using this application.

Quality & Safety

Stay Ahead & Leave Risk Behind

Manage, baseline, and improve your quality and safety program from your desktop and mobile devices.

Learn More
Illustration of construction professional surrounded by circle of charts on screens

Penalties for unlicensed contracting in Missouri

Most of the rules and regulations around Missouri contractor requirements are determined by the individual municipalities throughout the state. 

Along those same lines, those individual municipalities will also set their own fines, fees, and legal charges for contractors found contracting work without a license. Expect fines to accumulate for each day spent working without a license, and up to one year in jail for a first offense.


Business Management



Written by

Tom Scalisi

57 articles

Tom Scalisi is a writer with over 15 years of experience in the trades. He is passionate about educating contractors and specialty contractors about the best practices in the industry. He has seen first-hand how education, communication, and preparation help construction professionals overcome challenges to build a strong career and thriving business in the industry.

View profile
Win More Work

Get discovered for relevant work on the Procore Construction Network.

Get a Free Account
Construction professionals

Explore more helpful resources


Contractor License Bonds: Everything You Need to Know

In order to perform construction work, many states require contractors to be “licensed and bonded.” What does that mean? Well, every state sets its own rules for contractor licensing, and...


Contractor’s Guide to License Reciprocity: Working Across State Lines

For many contractors, growing a construction business means taking on jobs in different states. Whether it’s to take a one-off project or to establish a new business location, working in...


Vermont Contractor License: Guide to Rules & Requirements

If you’re starting a construction business in Vermont or looking to expand your business from another state, being properly licensed to work is one of the first key steps. There...


The Maine Contractor License: Guide to Rules & Requirements

If you’re considering starting a contracting business in Maine, it’s important to know the rules and requirements for proper licensing. Maine takes a different approach to contractor licensing than most...

Procore is committed to advancing the construction industry by improving the lives of people working in construction, driving technology innovation, and building a global community of groundbreakers. Our connected global construction platform unites all stakeholders on a project with unlimited access to support and a business model designed for the construction industry.

LinkedIn Icon
Facebook icon
Twitter icon
Instagram Icon
YouTube icon

Call us at (844) 692-0626 to speak with a product expert.

Apple LogoApple App StoreGoogle Play logoGoogle Play


Apple LogoApple App StoreGoogle Play logoGoogle Play
  • Privacy Notice
  • Terms of Service
  • Do Not Sell Personal Information

© 2024 Procore Technologies, Inc.