A locksmith means any individual that performs locksmith services, or advertises or represents to the general public that the individual is a locksmith even if the specific term locksmith is substituted with any other term by which a reasonable person could construe that the individual possesses special skills relating to locks or locking devices, including use of the words lock technician, lockman, safe technician, safeman, boxman, unlocking technician, lock installer, lock opener, physical security technician or similar descriptions.
What is the purpose of this law? The purpose of this law is to help secure the public safety and welfare against incompetent, unqualified, unscrupulous, or unfit persons engaging in the activities of Locksmith Services. A copy of the applicable Code of Virginia as amended can be found at www.dcjs.virginia.gov/pss/code.cfm.
Who is affected by this law? This law is applicable to any business entity that meets the definition of “Private Security Services Business” and “Locksmith Services” as defined in Section 9-183.1 of the Code of Virginia unless specifically exempted by the Code or Department Policy. This law is also applicable to all persons employed by a locksmith business entity as defined in Section 9-183.1 of the Code.
How will this program be implemented? Locksmith businesses and personnel will be incorporated into the existing DCJS Private Security Services program. DCJS promulgated an emergency amendment of the regulations, policies, procedures, and guidelines that govern the industry with assistance from representatives from the locksmith industry. We want to ensure that input is received from all geographical areas of the Commonwealth and from affected businesses, large and small. A copy of the emergency regulations which include the implementation of locksmiths into the Regulations Relating to the Private Security can be found at: Emergency Regulation Relating to Locksmiths
When does this legislation take effect? The registration and licensing requirements of this act shall become effective on October 1, 2008. Applications may be submitted on or after July 1, 2008. Licensing and registration information has been posted on the locksmith page of the Departments website.
What credentials will be required? Licensing of businesses, registration of individuals, and certification of compliance agents engaged in the locksmith industry will be required.
What is a “locksmith”? “Locksmith” means any individual that performs locksmith services, or advertises or represents to the general public that the individual is a locksmith even if the specific term locksmith is substituted with any other term by which a reasonable person could construe that the individual possesses special skills relating to locks or locking devices, including use of the words lock technician, lockman, safe technician, safeman, boxman, unlocking technician, lock installer, lock opener, physical security technician or similar descriptions.
What are the requirements to obtain and individual registration? **IMPORTANT NOTE: Each registrant is required to provide an approved picture to the Department for their photo ID registration card. To meet this requirement you may either visit one of the Private Security Services Training Schools or the Department of Criminal Justice Services. A list of schools that provide this service is listed at: Photo ID Schools
Registrations are issued for 24 months. The current requirements can be found in 6 VAC 20-171-120 of the Regulations. An application for registration, fingerprint processing application, fingerprint card, and each required fee in addition to required training are necessary to be registered. Applications will be available by July 1, 2008
Be a minimum of 18 years of age.
2. Successful completion of all initial training requirements for each registration category, including firearms endorsement if applicable, requested pursuant to the compulsory minimum training standards in Part V (6 VAC 20-171-350 et seq.) of this chapter. (unless exempted according to § 9.1-140.1)
3. Be a United States citizen or legal resident alien of the United States.
4. A Criminal History background screening will be performed according to the Regulations Relating to Private Security 6 VAC 20-171-30. According to the Code of Virginia § 9.1-139. Licensing, certification, and registration required; qualifications; temporary licenses.
K. No person with a criminal conviction for a misdemeanor involving (i) moral turpitude, (ii) assault and battery, (iii) damage to real or personal property, (iv) controlled substances or imitation controlled substances as defined in Article 1 (§ 18.2-247 et seq.) of Chapter 7 of Title 18.2, (v) prohibited sexual behavior as described in Article 7 (§ 18.2-61 et seq.) of Chapter 4 of Title 18.2, or (vi) firearms, or any felony shall be (a) employed as a registered or certified employee by a private security services business or training school, or (b) issued a private security services registration, certification as an unarmed security officer, electronic security employee or technician's assistant, a private security services training school or instructor certification, compliance agent certification, or a private security services business license, except that, upon written request, the Director of the Department may waive such prohibition.
Do I have to have a registration before I can work? No. A locksmith can work for 90 consecutive days while completing the compulsory minimum training requirements, provided their fingerprints were submitted on or before their “date of hire” (first day of work providing regulated services) and they are employed by a Private Security Services company licensed by DCJS to provide locksmith services.
Do I have to be trained before I can work? No. A locksmith may work for up to 90 consecutive days while completing the compulsory minimum training requirements, provided their fingerprints were submitted on or before their date of hire and they are employed by a Private Security Services company licensed by DCJS to provide locksmith services.
What are the entry-level training requirements? 18 hours -- 25E Locksmith entry level training (18 hours)
Where will the certified training be taught?
Schools certified to provide this training will be posted on the website once approved. At this time, there are several schools that will be offering this course within the next 30 to 45 days. Locations throughout Virginia will be made available as needed. The regulation allows for Locksmiths to work for up to 90 days while getting training provided that they have submitted fingerprints on or before their date of hire (Date of hire will be October 1, 2008 for existing Locksmiths). This allows you some time to continue to work while you arrange to take training.
If you are required to take the full training course, please visit our website often. The following page will not only list those schools offering the course to the public, but will list available session dates, location, and school contact information. This page will be updated on a daily basis as new schools and/or classes become available: http://www.dcjs.virginia.gov/pss/special/locksmithschool.cfm
Will there be any exemption of training standards for current locksmith personnel?
FULL EXEMPTION. The amended Code allows for a total exemption of entry-level training for those individuals who can document having been actively and continuously providing locksmith services immediately prior to October 1, 2008, for at least two years. The following supplemental form to verify experience must be submitted: http://www.dcjs.virginia.gov/forms/privatesecurity/pss_ltw.pdf
PARTIAL EXEMPTION. The Code already allows partial training exemptions to be granted for required training courses. The partial exemption is for individuals who have already had training within the past 12 months that meets or exceeds the training requirements, or for individuals who have five (5) or more years of experience as a locksmith that has not ended longer than five (5) years prior to application. The application required to receive partial exemption can be found here: http://www.dcjs.virginia.gov/forms/privatesecurity/pss_wa_entryLevel.pdf
What is a temporary license/registration for locksmith business/employee? Will I get one to work with while I am waiting for my actual license or registration?
BUSINESS LICENSE: Yes. A temporary license is issued if all requirements have been met and the only pending requirement is the completion of a criminal history records check on all principals of the company. The temporary license will be issued if there has not been a reported conviction of a crime and the principals have not answered “Yes” to a criminal conviction on the original application.
REGISTRATION: Yes. A temporary registration is issued if the applicant has not been convicted of a crime and has not answered "Yes" to any of the questions on the original applications and has completed the required training. The temporary registration is good for 120 days so that you may work in your job or until you receive your actual registration.
Will current businesses be exempted from licensing requirements? The code requires that all business entities that meet the definition of a private security services as defined by the Code meet the licensing requirements by October 1, 2008.
I am defined as an insurance company or motor club company that will assist members with lockout services as a benefit of membership, do I need a license? Companies who hire locksmith companies to provide services for their members are considered the client and as such do not fall under the legal definition of a private security services business pursuant to §9.1-138 and as such do not fall under the purview of the Department.
Do National Service Providers have to be licensed? If the National Service Provider falls under the definition of a private security services business and the company is engaged in the business of providing or undertakes to provide locksmiths or locksmith services they will require licensure. For verification if the company falls within the definition of a private security services business, or qualifies for an exemption pursuant to §9.1-140, companies may submit a written request to the Department with a description of the scope of work the company provides in regard to locksmith services.
Do I need a license if my company only makes duplicate keys or sells locks? Not if you meet the following exemption:
§ 9.1-140. Exceptions from article; training requirements for out-of-state central station dispatchers.
22. Retail merchants performing locksmith services, selling locks or engaged in key cutting activities conducted at the business location who do not represent themselves to the general public as locksmiths.
If my business does require licensure, do employees who only provide keycutting activities have to obtain a registration? No, individuals who only provide key cutting activities and do not provide any other locksmith services do not fall under the definition of a locksmith and do not require registration.
What are the requirements to obtain a business license?
Business licenses are issued for 24 months. The current requirements can be found in 6 VAC 20-171-50. An application for licensure, fingerprint processing application for all principals/supervisors of the business, fingerprint cards, and applicable fees are necessary to be licensed. Applications will be available on July 1, 2008. Requirements for obtaining a business license:
Initial business license application (PSS_LA) and applicable non-refundable fee.
For each principal and supervisor of the applying business: fingerprint card, fingerprint processing application (PSS_FP) and applicable non-refundable fee. For more information, follow this link to http://www.dcjs.virginia.gov/pss/faq and select fingerprints.
Documentation verifying that the applicant has secured one of the following:
Surety bond in the amount of $100,000 executed by a surety company authorized to do business in Virginia.
Certificate of insurance reflecting DCJS as a certificate holder, showing a policy of comprehensive general liability insurance with a minimum coverage of $100,000 and $300,000 issued by an insurance company authorized to do business in Virginia.
Irrevocable consent for service (PSS_IRC) for each non-resident applicant.
A physical address in Virginia where records required to be maintained by the Code of Virginia and the Virginia Administrative Code are kept and available for inspection by DCJS. A post office box is not considered a physical address.
Designate at least one individual as the compliance agent who is not designated as compliance agent for any other licensee, and who is certified or eligible for certification pursuant to 6 VAC 20-171-70. For more information, view the frequently asked questions section of the website under compliance agent: http://www.dcjs.virginia.gov/pss/faq .
Designate on the license application the type of private security business license you are seeking. The initial business license fee includes one category of service. A separate fee will be charged for each additional category. The other categories in addition to Locksmith are identified as follows: Security Officers/Couriers (Armed and Unarmed); Private Investigators; Electronic Security; Armored Car; Personal Protection Specialists; and Security Canine Handlers. Alarm Respondents crossover into both the Security Officer and Electronic Security categories.
What is a compliance agent? This is an individual designated by the business and certified by DCJS whose responsibilities are to ensure that the licensee and all employees conform to all application requirements, administrative requirements and standards of conduct pursuant to the Code of Virginia and the state regulations. Compliance agents also maintain documentation for all employees, or persons, that verify compliance with requirements pursuant to the Code of Virginia and the state regulations.
What are the duties of the compliance agent? Compliance agents ensure that the licensee and all employees conform to all application requirements, administrative requirements and standards of conduct pursuant to the Code of Virginia and the state regulations. In addition, the agent ensures that all regulated employees carry a state issued photo identification. Compliance agents also maintain documentation for all employees, or persons otherwise utilized, that verifies compliance with requirements pursuant to the Code of Virginia and the state regulations.
What are the qualifications for becoming a compliance agent? Compliance agents must have (i) three years of managerial or supervisory experience in a private security services business, a federal, state, or local law-enforcement agency, or in a related field; or (ii) five years experience in a private security services business, with a federal, state or local law-enforcement agency, or in a related field.
When can I apply for licensing, certification, or registration? Compliance agents may apply for certification at any time. Applications for licensing of businesses and registration of individuals may be submitted after July 1, 2008. Credentials will be issued October 1, 2008.
If my business is already licensed as a Private Security Services Business with DCJS, must I obtain a separate business license for my Locksmith Business? If you already possess a valid Private Security Services Business license issued by DCJS, you will not have to obtain an additional license. The category of locksmith services may be added to your current license with the applicable category fee.
I am currently licensed to provide electronic security services with DCJS, must I add the category of locksmith services to my license and must my registered employees add the category of locksmith to their registrations? If an electronic security services business contracts to provide services to install, service, maintain, design or consult in the design of any electronic security equipment which is defined as electronic or mechanical alarm signaling devices including burglar alarms or holdup alarms used to safeguard and protect persons and property; or cameras used to detect intrusions, concealment or theft, to safeguard and protect persons and property then they fall under the definition of an electronic security business and would not need to apply for the category of locksmith.
If the electronic security services business contracts to provide services separate and distinct from the definition of an electronic security business and electronic security equipment and the service falls under the definition of a locksmith service then the company would require the additional licensure category of locksmith and the individuals providing the locksmith services would require registration as a locksmith.
What is considered to be subcontracting? If your business cannot provide all security services requested by your client, you may subcontract those services to another licensed private security services business. If you choose to do this, keep in mind that a 1099 cannot be issued to the subcontractor.
Is the Locksmith Industry represented on the Private Security Services Advisory Board? Two representatives from the Locksmith Industry will be appointed to the Private Security Advisory Board (PSSAB). The PSSAB is required to meet quarterly throughout the year. A listing of the entire board is available on the website at www.dcjs.virginia.gov/pss/pssab.
How do I get on the Private Security Services Advisory Board? The Private Security Services Advisory Board shall be appointed by the Criminal Justice Services Board and shall advise the Criminal Justice Services Board on all issues relating to regulation of private security services businesses. Effective October 1, 2008, two representatives from the Locksmith Industry may be appointed to the PSSAB. An application package will be posted on the website as well and regulated individuals notified sometime after October 1, 2008. Members must be licensed and/or registered as a locksmith or locksmith business with DCJS in order to be eligible.
What will be the fees associated with this program? The current schedule of fees assessed to the private security services program is enclosed.
What is the process for complaints filed with DCJS?
Pursuant to § 9.1-141, § 9.1-185.3, § 9.1-186.3, and § 9.1-150.3, the Board has the authority to receive complaints concerning the conduct of any person whose activities are regulated by the Board, to conduct investigations, and to take appropriate disciplinary action if warranted.
The Department of Criminal Justice Services Private Security Section will only process complaints against individuals, businesses, or training schools that are subject to the regulations under its purview. Complaint files are confidential and will not be discussed by telephone.
The Department does not have the authority to make individuals or businesses refund money, correct deficiencies, or provide other personal remedies. In some cases, a legal action may be your only recourse to resolve a matter. The Department cannot provide legal advice.
The department cannot guarantee anonymity. By law, all complaints received by the Department are subject to public disclosure once a case is closed. Therefore, if you wish to file a complaint anonymously, please do not include any personal information on the complaint form or any supplemental documents that reveal your identity. While the Department may accept an anonymous complaint, it will not proceed if it lacks sufficient information to support a regulatory violation. When submitting a complaint anonymously, you will not know the result of the complaint.
The Department considers all complaints important. The processing of the complaint will be conducted in as timely a manner as possible; however, any complaints that present an immediate threat to public safety will be given priority.
How do I contact the Department of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS)?
Private Security Section
202 North Ninth Street
P.O. Box 1300
Richmond, VA 23219
Richmond, VA 23218
The telephone number is: (804) 786-4700 The FAX number is: (804) 786-6344
A. Schedule of fees. The fees listed below reflect the costs of handling, issuance, and production associated with administering and processing applications for licensing, registration, certification and other administrative requests for services relating to private security services.