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One type of health license a contractor needs to work with older buildings is an asbestos license. If you plan to renovate or demolish older buildings that may have asbestos in them, you first need to be trained in the safe handling of this toxic substance and get approved for your asbestos contractor’s license.

What is Asbestos?

A naturally occurring mineral, asbestos became a popular material to use in homes in the late 19th century. It absorbed sound well and was resistant to heat. It wasn’t until much later that we discovered it also caused lung cancer and other terminal illnesses.

There are still many older homes with asbestos used as insulation. In renovating, contractors often come into contact with the material, and so it’s important to know how to properly dispose of it without risking your health.

Getting an Asbestos License

Having an asbestos license authorizes you to work with the material, but it’s also for your own protection. Knowing how to handle the hazardous material can keep you safe and prevent the risk of cancer and other deadly diseases that it causes.

Before you can be approved for your asbestos contractor’s license, you’ll need to pass an exam covering both the technical and the business side to working with asbestos. Whether you want to be a contractor or an asbestos consultant, you have to pass this exam. It covers topics like:

  • Identifying asbestos
  • Surveying and analyzing asbestos
  • Handling and cleaning up materials
  • Bidding on asbestos work
  • Working with contractors and managing personnel

There are training manuals available to help you study for this exam. But you must pass this exam before being issued your health license to work with asbestos, as well as get any other business licenses, permits & tax forms approved that your state requires.

Once you are issued your asbestos license, you may be required to take continuing education courses to stay on top of your knowledge and keep you informed of new information that comes out.

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