Welcome to CSG’s Occupational Licensure website. Here you will be able to find all the publications and information we have to offer.


Over the last 60 years, the number of jobs requiring an occupational license, or government approval to practice a profession, has grown from about one in 20 to nearly one in four. When implemented properly, occupational licensing can help protect the health and safety of consumers by requiring practitioners to undergo a designated amount of training and education in their field. However, differences and disparities in occupational licensing laws across states can create barriers for those looking to enter the labor market and make it harder for workers to relocate across state lines. Certain populations—including military spouses and families, immigrants with work authorization, people with criminal records, and unemployed and dislocated workers—are affected especially hard by the requirements and variances of occupational licensing.

To begin looking for solutions to these problems, the National Conference of State Legislatures, or NCSL, National Governors Association Center for Best Practices, NGA Center, and The Council of State Governments, or CSG, are launching a three-year project entitled Occupational Licensing: Assessing State Policy and Practice, with the goal of enhancing the portability of occupational licenses. This work is made possible through a grant from the U. S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration.


U.S. Air Force to Evaluate State Occupational Licensing Policies for Future Basing Decisions

In February, the United States Air Force released new criteria-based framework for its basing decision evaluation process that assesses state occupational licensing policies for supporting military families. The initiative by the Air Force is part of a larger trend by state policy makers and the departments of the military to facilitate interstate migration by military …

Occupational Licensing – State COVID-19 Responses

The COVID-19 crisis has resulted in shortages of qualified, licensed health care and other related professions that are needed to support state and local responses. States have been enacting measures to modify existing licensing regulations that remove barriers that may prevent an individual to assist in response efforts. Many states have been granting temporary licensure …

Wisconsin Considering Sunrise Legislation

Legislation recently introduced in Wisconsin could change the way the state studies proposed occupational licensing regulations. Sponsored by Senator Chris Kapenga and Representative Rob Hutton, Senate Bill 541 calls for the establishment of a sunrise review process that would formally require certain information to be collected and analyzed during the legislative process. Specifically, SB 541 …


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