Updated: Jan 26, 2021
The Utah Private Security Officer Licenses are provided by the Utah State Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing. You must be licensed in the State of Utah to provide unarmed, armed, or armed courier services. The license requirements can be indexed by reading the Utah State Security Personnel Licensing Act Title 58 Chapter 63. An armed private security officer is defined as someone employed by a contract security company or whose primary duties are guarding personal or real property, providing protection or security to the life and well being of humans or animals and who wears, carries, possesses, or has immediate access to a firearm in the performance of their duties. Unarmed is the same requirements minus the firearm.We will not get into the Armored Courier Service in this blog. Just think armored car personnel.
For the purposes of the license a security officer does not include individuals whose duties include taking tickets, checking credentials, ushering, checking bags, or other items going into a facility. Event security comes to mind. Most event security staff at concerts and sports venues are not required to have a security license. Many private properties are also exempt from the security license requirements. Think hotel security. Hotel security staff are not required to have a security license. The one area where there is negligence in the license requirements is executive protection/bodyguard work. You absolutely must be licensed in the State to provide such security services.
The license is a two-year renewal cycle and is always renewed on November 30th of even years. The license will automatically expire unless you renew it. Law Enforcement officers are exempt from the security license requirements. However, there are alot of additional requirements required of both the law enforcement officer's department and the hiring security department. If you are an armed security officer you can function as an unarmed officer as well.
In order to get your security license you must complete 8 hours of basic classroom/online instruction. Online is the easiest way and I used Defencify as the online course for my license. Online courses are easier to find than basic classroom instruction. If you are working for a company they might have their own classroom instruction. You must pass every module to move to the final exam, which you also must pass with an 80%. This course alone will qualify you to apply for an unarmed license.
For an armed license you must take an additional 12 hours of class plus the basic security class. Four hours must be at a shooting range. You must pass the classroom portion and the qualification to be eligible for your license. Numerous places in the state provide training to receive your armed license.
Once you've taken the classes it is now time to apply for the license. Two fingerprint cards are required and a criminal records check will be conducted. An interim license can be issued as well. It can take a couple of weeks for the license to be processed so the Interim License will get you a license to work immediately. It is only good for 90 days or when the license is received. In order to get this license you will need to provide the State a copy of your criminal record which can be obtained from the Bureau of Criminal Identification.
Once the license is received you must maintain the license in good standing. The State does conduct periodic audits of the licenses it has issued. You must have 16 hours of firearms if you have an armed license. That is 4 hours every six months in a renewal cycle. You also must have 16 hours of core classes. Defencify provides these hours as well. A new addition was an extra 16 hours of professional classes. This is where executive protection or driving courses might apply. A total of 32 hours of extra training besides the firearm portion. If you do not complete the training you can get penalty hours if audited. Which means you will need to take more training to catch up.
Lastly, why does it seem so tedious to get as well as maintain a license? Lauren McCluskey was murdered on October 22, 2018 in Salt Lake City, Utah. Her killer was Melvin Rowland. Rowland was a parolee and registered sex offender. He worked for an unlicensed security company and worked under a false name also with no security license. It is important to gain the respect of the people who we are protecting. In order to keep credibility and respect in the profession we must abide by the laws set forth by the jurisdiction in which we work.
Semper Tutum Semper Vigilanti