A Commercial Applicators License

Commercial Applicators apply or supervise the application of any pesticide for any purpose on someone else’s property for compensation.

In order to qualify for a Commercial Applicator license an individual must document 2 years’ experience applying pesticides. They may instead document 20 hours of college credits in biological and/or agricultural sciences. In this case, they also need 1 year experience. Examples of acceptable documentation include the following.

  • A pesticide applicator’s license from another US state;
  • Another type of NM applicator license (operator/technician, private applicator, public applicator, or noncommercial applicator) for at least 2 years;
  • A letter from an employer describing your duties with regards to pesticide use in the course of employment.

This experience requirement can also be met by successfully completing one of several specific distance education courses. These are offered by Colorado State, University of Florida, or Purdue. These are formal college courses that require tuition payment and may take several months to complete. Click here for more information on documenting experience and the distance education opportunities.

Commercial Applicators become certified by passing an exam covering core pesticide information and NM laws and rules. The also need to pass at least one specific pest control category exam. License holders in other US states may apply to have some of their certifications recognized by NMDA. They may only need to pass the NM laws test.

Commercial Applicators must also provide proof of financial responsibility. This may be in the form of a liability insurance policy or a surety bond. The minimum coverage required is $25,000 each aggregate bodily injury and property damage for ground applications. There’s also $50,000 each aggregate bodily injury and property damage for aerial applications. See 21.17.50.22 NMAC for details.

The basic steps to a Commercial Applicator License are:

  1. Complete the Commercial Applicator application form
  2. Document acceptable pesticide application education/experience
  3. Pass the National Core Exam and at least one Pest Control Category exam
  4. Provide proof of financial responsibility
  5. Submit license fee of $75.

If an individual qualifies for a Commercial Applicator license based on his application form and education/experience. He will then be notified that he can sign up to take the certification exams. Exams are administered regularly around the state. A list of recommended study materials and study guides are available from NMDA.

After the applicant has passed all the required exams he must provide proof of financial responsibility. He must then pay the license fee of $75. Applicants have 60 days to complete all the requirements, or they must re-apply and take all tests again.

Additional Requirements for Wood-Destroying Pest Control (Category 7D)

Any Commercial Applicator wishing to apply pesticides for control of wood destroying organisms (primarily termites) must document experience. They must show one year of specific WDO experience and attend four hours of approved training.  With this, they are eligible to take the Wood Destroying Pest Control Category exam (Category 7D).

Operator/Technicians must also attend approved training. They also must pass a Wood Destroying Pest Control exam before they can perform any WDO pest control. Once an Operator/Technician passes the Category 7D exam, he is known as a Termite Technician.

In addition, any person who wishes to conduct inspections for wood destroying organisms must be licensed. Licensing must be for a Commercial Applicator, Termite Technician, or Pest Management Consultant. They must also be certified in Category 7D.