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The Complete Guide to Getting Your C60 Welding Contractors License in CA


Becoming a licensed welding contractor in California is crucial for a successful career in the construction industry. This guide aims to simplify the process of obtaining the C60 Welding Contractor License by providing a detailed, step-by-step approach along with comprehensive insights into the associated responsibilities and requirements.

Licensed C60 contractor welding two pieces of steel.

Understanding the C60 Welding Contractor License

The C60 Welding Contractor License, overseen by the California Contractors State License Board (CSLB), signifies proficiency and competence in welding operations within the state. Acquiring this license is vital for establishing credibility and legality in contracting pursuits, whether in structural welding, fabrication, or other specialized welding fields.

Welders are responsible for joining metal parts according to specifications and blueprints, utilizing various welding techniques. Their duties include interpreting drawings, selecting appropriate materials and equipment, and preparing workpieces through cleaning and correct positioning. Ensuring weld integrity involves meticulous quality control, including visual inspections and occasional non-destructive testing. Safety protocols are paramount, requiring strict adherence and the use of appropriate protective gear.

In addition to technical duties, welders must maintain and troubleshoot welding equipment, effectively communicate with team members, supervisors, and clients, and foster collaboration to ensure efficient task completion.

Welding subcontractor using a face shield during welding.

Distinguishing Between Welding Contractors and Subcontractors

Understanding the difference between welding contractors and subcontractors is essential for effective project management and meeting contractual obligations. Contractors oversee the entire project, while subcontractors focus on specific welding tasks under the contractor's supervision. In larger projects managed by engineers or builders, welding contractors often function as subcontractors.

To clarify these distinctions further, it's crucial to consider the contractual perspective—specifically, who holds the contract with whom. If a client directly hires a welder, that welder becomes the prime contractor. However, if a licensed engineer or builder hires a welder, the welder takes on the role of a subcontractor. Regardless of the position, California law mandates that all contractors and subcontractors working on projects valued at $500 or more must be licensed.

Step-by-Step Guide to Obtaining Your C60 Welding Contractor License

Step 1: Familiarize Yourself with Requirements

Before starting the application process, acquaint yourself with the prerequisites outlined by the CSLB. For the C60 classification, you must:

  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Have a valid Social Security number or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number
  • Possess four years of journey-level experience in welding

Step 2: Accumulate Journey-Level Experience

Practical welding experience is essential for meeting the criteria to obtain a C60 license. Aspiring welding contractors need to accumulate four years of journey-level experience through on-the-job training, apprenticeship, or formal education. It's important to note that experience must involve hands-on work, with documentation or references often required for verification.

Step 3: Navigate the Application Process

To apply for the C60 license successfully, complete the state application accurately. If needed, seek assistance from Contractors Intelligence School. After filling out the application, submit it to the CSLB along with the necessary fee.

Step 4: Prepare for Examinations

Preparation is crucial for success in the Law and Business Examination and the C60 Welding Trade Examination. Utilize study guides, practice tests, and educational resources from Contractors Intelligence School to enhance readiness.

Step 5: Await Approval

After submitting your application, patiently await CSLB's thorough review. Address inquiries promptly to expedite the approval process.

Step 6: Schedule and Pass Required Examinations

Upon approval from CSLB, you will receive instructions for scheduling the required examinations. Scheduling is facilitated through a company called PSI Exams. It's imperative to pass all required examinations with a minimum score to qualify for the license.

Step 7: Complete the Final Steps Outlined by the CSLB

After passing all required examinations, follow CSLB's instructions to complete final steps within 90 days:

  • Pay the initial license fee.
  • Complete livescan fingerprinting.
  • Obtain a Contractor's Bond and any additional bonding (if applicable).
  • Obtain Workers' Compensation Insurance (if applicable).
  • Obtain General Liability Insurance (if applicable).
  • Complete the Asbestos Open Book Examination.


Obtaining your C60 Welding Contractor License in California is a significant milestone. By following the outlined steps, fulfilling licensure requirements, and upholding the responsibilities of a licensed contractor, you set yourself up for success in the dynamic field of welding contracting within the state. Take the first step by contacting Contractors Intelligence School at 800-425-7570. With dedication and determination, you can achieve your goal of becoming a licensed contractor.

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