Things to Know about Starting a Security Company in California, Process, Strategies and Resources
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Security is incredibly important these days. Most people list it at the top of their list of priorities. Therefore, owning a security company can be a really good business.
Apart from having the chance to actually make a difference in people’s lives, you can also have a profitable company. So this might sound like a really good idea. But how to start a security company in California? Is this hassle-free or a tough thing to do?
Don’t worry, this article will tell you what you should do in order to provide security services in California and to comply with all the regulations. Contrary to popular belief, it’s not that difficult to have your own as soon as possible. Then you’ll be able to offer security guards or bodyguards to any business or private person.
There are several important things that you should know about this. As with anything else related to security, there are very strict requirements that you could comply with. First and foremost you have to keep in mind at any given time to pay attention to the papers and instructions.
The authority that licenses and regulates security firms here is The California Department of Consumer Affairs, Bureau of Security and Investigative Services. A license is absolutely mandatory for private patrol operators so you will have to apply to get one for your company. There are several steps you need to perform.
Also, keep in mind the fact that every single person who owns a security company, works for one or is a business partner for such a company will be checked by the state. This involves checking the criminal background and requiring photos.
The website of California Department of Consumer Affairs allows you to verify licenses for your future employees. In this way, you’ll see whether they are right for the job or not.
An important pillar is to find a highly trained and qualified manager who can prove that he/she has at least 2,000 hours of hours worked as a watchman, guard or patrolman. This is at least one year of experience.
It is possible to be your own company’s manager. If you wish and you have the experience required, it is up to you. In this case, you will need a private patrol license and you won’t have to hire someone else. All the rules for security company managers will apply to you.
The Department’s website provides all the documents you might need for this. Thanks to the impressive advance of the digital age, you won’t have to spend time going from one office to another like they did in the old days. Once you have applied and have your temporary license number, you will need California Security Guard Insurance to get your permanent license number.
You can apply for a company license by filling in the special application. Make sure you fill in all the blanks and you provide all the information required there.
Among the details that you’ll need to write, there will be the company’s name and address, as well as the names of the qualified manager, corporate officers, owners, or business partners. Also, all of these individuals have to sign the document as well before it will be sent to the California Department of Consumer Affairs.
Apart from this, you will have to fill in a form with personal identification information for each of these persons. This form requires two clear passport photos of them too. When you’re finished, add the date.
Though completing these forms won’t take much time, make sure you have all the photos and documents before starting the application process. In this way, everything will go on smoothly and you won’t have to interrupt the application because you have to get photos for someone.
It is best to announce all of the parties involved that you will need their signature, photos and details beforehand. Then schedule a meeting with all of them where you can gather all the information and complete the application when everyone is around.
You’ll also find a Live Scan form on the California Department of Consumer Affairs website. Download it as you’ll need one for each person that will contribute to your business, like you needed the Personal Identification form (owners, qualified manager, business partners or corporate officers). Page 2 of this form will be added to the Personal Identification form.
Check out the list of Live Scan locations. There are some fees that you’ll have to pay for the criminal history verification’s.
They will have to be paid to the Department of Justice and Federal Bureau of Investigation. This step of the application process also includes fingerprint imaging.
Each business name needs to be authorized by the California Department of Consumer Affairs. This means you need to ask for authorization and you can’t be 100% sure that the name you want most will be authorized.
The form allows you to write nine names. Brainstorm really well before writing the list as the name will be taken into consideration according to its ranking on your list. Place the ones you want most at the top.
As with any other document that you deal with, it is strongly advised to have copies of all the records for this purpose. It’s always recommended to have at least one copy of important documents. Here you will need to send one to the authorities in the field as well.
After you’ve completed all the forms, gathered the photos and the copies of the Live Scan forms and send them to the Bureau of Security and Investigative Services. The address is P.O. Box 989002, West Sacramento, CA 95798-9002.
Keep in mind that there is a licensing fee. At the moment, you have to pay $700 and submit it along with the photos and forms. If you apply as a corporation, don’t forget to add a copy of the endorsed Articles of Incorporation or the Statement by a Foreign Corporation.
The state of California doesn’t allow any security company to function without insurance. So the next step is to get the right one for your new business. It has to offer at least half a million dollars for losses related to property destruction, injury, or death.
When you’ve finished with all the forms, patience is the key as it will take a while for the department to process the application and to let you know the results. Usually you’ll hear back between two and four months after you applied.
If you filled all the forms correctly, sent all the documents required and the department decided to issue the license for your company, it is time to hire staff. All the private patrol officers and security guards need to be licensed. It’s best to go for candidates with a lot of experience, who show interest in your company and also share your ideas concerning the future of the business.
The entire process of starting a security company in California can last from a couple of months to nearly a half a year, depending on your speed gathering all the papers and the time needed for the department to reply to your application.