How to Get a Security Guard License in Tennessee

How to Get a Security Guard License in Tennessee

A career in security guard services in Tennessee can be both rewarding and lucrative. It's a great way to make a difference in people's lives while doing something that you are passionate about and interested in doing. However, licensing is necessary if you look to work as a security guard in Tennessee.

Even if you have an extensive security and law enforcement background, you need a security guard license to work as an armed or unarmed security guard in Tennessee.

Why Get Trained, Certified, and Registered as a Security Guard in Tennessee?

Whether armed or unarmed, security guards or officers in Tennessee must be registered. To be registered, you must complete the necessary security guard license training.

Security guard jobs are in high demand. You can start working almost immediately and earn good pay with the proper training and certification. So, if you're looking for a job that offers stability and security, look for appropriate training and be registered as a security guard in Tennessee.

Security guard license training prepares you for a career in this field by providing the necessary education and skills. It covers legal authority and limitations of security guards, duties of a security guard, emergency response procedures, etc.

How to Become a Security Guard in Tennessee

There are a few steps you must follow to become a security guard in Tennessee: 

  • The first step is to find an approved training program in your area and complete the required course. 
  • Upon completing your training, you must pass the state security guard exam.
  • After you have passed the exam, you must apply and pay the application fee.
  • Also required is proof of training and electronic fingerprints.
  • Once you have passed the required checks, you'll be approved for your license
With a security guard license, you'll be able to start working as a security guard in Tennessee.

How to Get a Security Guard License in Tennessee 

Step-by-Step Guide


1. Verify Eligibility for Registration

To be registered as a security guard in Tennessee, you must meet the following requirements:

  • Be at least 18 years old for an unarmed license or 21 years old for an armed license.
  • Be either a U.S. citizen or have proof of legal alien residency.
  • Pass a criminal background check.
  • Not be declared incompetent by a mental disorder or disease.
  • Complete state-required training.
  • Submit electronic fingerprints for a TBI and FBI criminal history check.
  • Maintain high moral standards.
  • Be free from disabilities which, in the commissioner's opinion, would compromise your ability to perform your duties as a security guard officer.
  • Not be addicted to or dependent upon narcotics or alcohol.

2. Get Trained

If you check all the boxes for the above requirements, your next step should be signing up for a security guard license training class. At Alliance Training and Testing, we offer armed and unarmed security guard license training classes.
The armed guard course includes safe weapon handling and manipulation skills training. It covers legal issues such as the use of force and how to respond to different types of threats. It only costs $160 for an armed security officer class and $120 for the unarmed to armed security officer upgrade class.
Our unarmed security guard certification course is perfect for those who want to work in the security industry but don't want to handle weapons. The unarmed guard course typically focuses more on security procedures and how to deal with difficult situations. Our unarmed security officer license class costs $65. The 100% online on-demand unarmed security officer license course costs $60. 

3. Collect Information

Now it's time to gather the necessary information. Applicants must provide:
  • Statement of criminal records
  • A statement of all felony and misdemeanor convictions and charges 
  • Final dispositions of any charges or arrests
  • Documentation of the final dispositions, including dismissals, suspensions, or deferrals
  • A description of the events surrounding the charges to support the documents above
If the court does not have these records on file, you must get a note from the judge or clerk confirming this.
In addition, you must:
  • Disclose misdemeanor citations and charges for offenses you were not fingerprinted and booked but required to pay fines.
  • Report charges or arrests not expunged from your record 
  • Provide your DD214 copy and an explanation if you were not honorably discharged from the military
Please note: You must provide all the above information if you check 'yes' for the section about charges and arrests. If you check 'no,' you must be free of any criminal records, or your application will be denied.

4. Attend Class 

You can now attend your armed or unarmed security guard card training with all the documents ready. When you schedule a class with Alliance Training & Testing, you'll get a confirmation message indicating what to expect. For our online courses, unarmed students will get instant access. Approximately 4.5 - 5 hours are needed to complete the course, but students have access to it for 30 days after purchase. You can finish the course at your own pace and revisit sections. 

5. Complete Electronic Fingerprinting

Electronic fingerprinting involves capturing a digital image of your fingerprints. The captured image is then converted to a unique numerical code stored in a database. All Tennessee security guard licensing and registration applicants are requested to utilize electronic fingerprint submission.
Visit this site to view the electronic fingerprinting scheduling website. A list of acceptable identification documents you need to bring to your appointment will be available. You should schedule an appointment with the provider for fingerprint processing and pay them directly.
The provider will send the applicant's fingerprints to the FBI and TBI for processing. Tennessee Private Protective Services will receive the final results.

6. Scan Documents  

Scan the following documents and submit them in pdf format:
  • Trainer's Certificate
  • Passport style picture
  • Photo ID / Driver's License
  • Electronic Fingerprinting Receipt
  • Criminal Records and DD-214 copy as applicable

7. Send Application

Visit this site and select Private Protective Services to access the online licensing services. Sign up for a new account and complete the application.
You're required to submit the following documents electronically:
  • Passport style photo
  • Photo ID / Driver's License
  • Electronic Fingerprinting Receipt
  • Trainer's Certificate
  • Criminal Records and DD-214 copy as applicable

8. Start working

Suppose you applied for a security guard license as an unarmed guard. In that case, you can start working immediately after receiving CORE proof of submission. 
You will receive your license up to 75 business days after the application was received.
As an armed guard card applicant, you may only begin working once you have received your license at your mailing address on record.
Please see our job board and subscribe to receive updates of current security job openings in Nashville and Tennessee.

Why Take an Online Security Guard License Training Class in Tennessee?

Among the options available for becoming a security guard, one of the best is to take an online security guard license training class in Tennessee.

Online training is reliable, consistent, convenient, and affordable. It can be completed at any time that works for your schedule. Online training is less expensive than taking the same course in a classroom environment. 

Sign up today for your Online Security Guard License Training Class in Tennessee @GuardTrainingTN and enjoy these benefits.

Why Choose Alliance Training and Testing for your Security Guard License Training?

At Alliance Training and Testing, we take security seriously. Our students receive training in the latest techniques and technologies to help businesses protect their property and keep their people safe.
Our goal is to provide tangible benefits to our students and clients, such as:
  • Reducing risk
  • Increasing efficiency
  • Improving security 
Success has been a hallmark of our programs. Our students are in high demand by businesses in Nashville and throughout Tennessee. Our graduates can jump right into work and provide value to their new employer from day one. We take pride in our graduates and know they will positively impact the security industry.
Other perks of Alliance Training and Testing include:
  • Professional, knowledgeable, and experienced instructors
  • Highly informative, fun, and enjoyable classes
  • Veteran owned, five-star rated program
  • From as low as $60, you get to learn with a 100% online security officer license course
  • We emphasize a hands-on, modern and practical approach in our programs
Please note: A certification from a reputable training program assures employers that you have the skills to perform the job safely and efficiently.


Who is a security guard/officer according to Tennessee law?

A security guard/officer works for a security company or any other company specializing in protecting people against criminal activity.
Security guards/officers may be called on to respond to emergencies or prevent and investigate crimes. As a security officer in Tennessee, you may work in various places, such as schools, businesses, or hospitals.

What are the training requirements of an armed security guard in Tennessee?

An armed security guard in Tennessee must complete a 4 hour (1 hour per topic) training course and pass an exam covering the following subjects:
  • Orientation
  • Legal authority and limitations of an armed security guard
  • The responsibilities of an armed security guard
  • Emergency response procedures
Additionally, the applicant must complete:
  • 8 hours of learning about the handling of firearms, and the safety and maintenance of firearms
  • 4 hours of marksmanship instruction and score at least 70% on the commissioner-approved silhouette target course

What are the requirements for carrying a less-than-lethal device in Tennessee?

Security guards who will carry a less-than-lethal device (baton, chemical spray, electronic control device) must receive training from a certified instructor.
Furthermore, security officers/guards must possess certification cards allowing them to use such devices and shall be able to produce them at the request of a commissioner, duly authorized representative of the commissioner, or a law enforcement officer.

What crimes can disqualify you from applying to be a Tennessee security guard?

Any felony or misdemeanor involving:
  • Firearms and other shooting weapons 
  • Violence against persons or property, including assault and battery
  • Shoplifting
  • Selling, manufacturing, or distributing controlled substances, controlled substances analogs, drugs or narcotics, and 
  • Theft of services or property
To be eligible for applications when convicted of the above crime, you must have served your probation sentence at least five (5) years before applying.

How much is a security license in Tennessee?

Presently, unarmed guards pay $50 for applications and $20 for registration fees. 
Current fees for armed guards are $75 for application and $30 for registration. 
Electronic fingerprinting fees are currently $35.15.

Can I renew my security license after it expires in Tennessee?

Yes, it's a requirement for armed and unarmed security guards or officers to renew their registration every two years. There is a 90-day renewal period after the license has expired. Still, armed and unarmed security guards may not work on an expired license until renewed.
To renew your registration as an armed security guard in Tennessee, you must complete 4 hours of firearms training. You must also obtain a score of 70% on the silhouette target course sanctioned by the commissioner.
We offer a $70 armed security officer license renewal course and help you complete the registration renewal process.

Can I get a free unarmed security guard license in Tennessee?

You need to pay for training, fingerprinting, and application fees to become licensed as an armed or unarmed security guard in Tennessee. However, if you maintain armed guard registration, you do not register as an unarmed guard.

Wrapping Up

If you wish to work as a security guard in Tennessee, you must be licensed. The licensing process is relatively simple, and we can help you every step of the way. We offer security guard license training in Tennessee to prepare you for the licensing exam. You'll learn the much-needed skills you need to succeed in this field. Sign up and get started with your security career today!

Alliance Training & Testing

(615) 669-3121
315 Deaderick St. #125 
Nashville, TN 37238
Website Store | All Links 


Angel Rodriguez CPP

Article by Angel Rodriguez CPP

Published 07 May 2022