To work for a private security guard company or in security for a non-security company in Arkansas, your employer needs to register you as Private Security Officer with the Arkansas State Police Regulatory Services Division. You are a Private Security Officer (PSO) if you are employed by a security services contractor or the security department of a private business to perform the duties of a security guard, security watchman or security patrolman.
If you want to carry a firearm on duty, you must be a Commissioned Security Officer (CSO).
Type of Security Guard License Required & Issuing Authority
- Security Guard License Type: Private Security Officer (PSO)
- Security Guard License Length: 1 year
- Security Guard Licensing Authority and Website: Arkansas State Police Regulatory Services Division. Downloadable application forms are available on this site.
- Security Guard Licensing Phone Number: 501-618-8600
- Security Guard Licensing Address:
Arkansas State Police Headquarters
1 State Police Plaza Drive
Little Rock, AR 72209
- Security Guard License Laws: The Arkansas Private Investigators and Private Security Agencies Act (17-40-101 – 107) designates the Arkansas State Police as an administering agency to regulate private security agencies and individuals or businesses offering security services.
Private Security Officer Training Requirements & Fees
You must complete 5 hours of training to become a Private Security Officer in AR. Your training instructor must sign and provide the date that you completed each of the 3 courses. You will be required to take an exam on these topics.
- 2 hours – Legal Authority
- 2 hours – Act 429 Rules (the Arkansas rules regarding Private Security Officers)
- 1 hour – Field Notes and Reports
To pass the exam you must have a minimum score of 70%. If you fail to successfully complete the required examination, you will not be allowed to retake the required examination until a period of 5 working days have elapsed and pay the re-examination fee, which is $50.00. Failure to pass after 2 examinations have been administered shall result in the denial of your Private Security Officer application in accordance with Arkansas Code Annotated 17-40-350 (A-5).
You need to take these courses over every year when you renew your Private Security Officer license.
Private Security Officer Background Check & Fingerprinting Fees
- Fingerprint Fee: Unknown. You must submit 2 fingerprint cards with your Private Security Officer application.
- Background Check Fee: $38.50 ($22 for state background check and $16.50 for Federal background check)
Private Security Officer Application & License Fees
The company that employs you as a security officer must submit an license application for you if you’re not currently licensed within 14 days of hiring you.
- Security Guard Registration Application Fee: $40
- Payment Types Accepted: Money order, cashier’s check or check.
- Payable To: Arkansas State Police
Private Security Officer Other Requirements
To register as an unarmed guard in Arkansas, you must:
- Be 18 years of age or older
- Be US citizen or resident alien. If born outside the US, you have to submit one of the following with your application, work permit, permanent resident card or naturalization papers.
- You must list all your convictions of a felony, class “A” misdemeanor, crime involving an act of violence or crime involving moral turpitude. If you have been convicted you must attach documentation certified by the court as to the disposition of the charge. You must also list any criminal charges now pending or on appeal. You don’t have to list traffic violations, except failure to appear.
- Your application must be notarized.
- you must provide two recent photos of you with your application.
- You must wear in plain sight your Arkansas Private Security Officer identification card while on duty.
- If your company requires, you should shall wear an Arkansas State Police Regulatory Services Division approved metallic badge or approved cloth insignia. You should wear this badge attached to the left breast of your uniform. If you wear a cap or hat, it must have an approved metallic badge or cloth insignia attached to the front of such cap or hat. An approved metallic badge or approved cloth insignia shall consist of one that has been submitted to and approved by the Arkansas Board of Private Investigators and Private Security Agencies. The badge and insignia cannot resemble a badge worn by police agencies in the State of Arkansas.
Termination of Private Security Officer Employment
Your employer must notify in writing the Arkansas State Police Regulatory Services Department within 14 days if you are terminated as a Private Security Officer. The termination form must include a reason for your termination.
Transfer of Private Security Officer Employers
If you change employers as a Private Security Officer, your company must file the Employee Transfer form within 14 days of the transfer and pay a $20 fee to the Arkansas State Police.
Exemption for Law Enforcement Personnel
You don’t have to apply for a Private Security Officer license if:
- You work part-time or full-time employment as a law enforcement officer and are certified by the Arkansas Commission on Law Enforcement Standards and Training as a law enforcement officer and receive compensation for private employment on an individual or an independent contractor basis as a patrolman, guard, or watchman and you are:
- Employed in an employee-employer relationship; or
- Employed on an individual contractual basis; and
- Not in the employ of another law enforcement officer.