License to Work: A National Study of Burdens from Occupational Licensing
46 out of 102 moderate-income occupations licensed
13th most burdensome licensing laws
12th most extensively and onerously licensed state
(Last updated April 24, 2012)
Utah is the 12th most broadly and onerously licensed state and has the 13th most burdensome licensing laws. Its average barriers for the 46 occupations it licenses are $269 in fees, 417 days lost to education and experience and two exams. This high ranking is the result of high barriers to entry for 15 construction occupations. Utah requires most of its licensed construction contractors to take two exams, have two or four years of experience and pay fees between $477 and $549. These requirements exceed those of most of the other licensed states. Only about 30 states even license these occupations, and about 19 of them do not require any experience; most states require only one exam, and average fees are generally under $300.
The state has other above-average licensing requirements. Utah is one of only eight states to require that city/transit bus drivers and truck drivers possess a driver's license for one year (or longer) prior to working. Most states and the District of Columbia require only tests, fees and a minimum age. Utah is among only seven states to license social and human service assistants, dental assistants and upholsterers. The state charges $1,000 to become a licensed fisher, but the average fees across the licensed states are only $403.
While emergency medical technicians need only about one month of training, other occupations with less impact on public safety require much more, such as manicurist (70 days), massage therapist (140), skin care specialist (140), barber (233) and cosmetologist (467).
Utah's low- to moderate-income workers could enjoy better employment prospects if the state reduced onerous or needless barriers or removed them completely.