Commercial Applicator

????COVID-19: Pesticide Certification Extension 

On March 18, 2?020, the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) suspended pesticide certification testing. Exams scheduled on and after March 18, 2020,? are canceled. If you have scheduled a certification exam do not go to the testing location.

More information about the extension, temporary registration, new online exam, and frequently asked questions is available at

Commercial pesticide applicators are:?

  • For-hire applicators who are owners or employees who apply pesticides for pesticide application businesses 

  • Not-for-hire owners or employees who apply non-agricultural pesticides to their own land or buildings

Steps to licensing:

  • Buy training materials and complete training from University of Wisconsin-Extension
  • Get certified by passing a closed-book exam administered by the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection   Schedule an exam here
  • Apply for a license either online or by paper application (downloadable forms at right)

Certification is valid for 5 years. Licenses are valid for one year. Employees may get a 30-day license during their training period while they complete the certification process.

There are 20 categories for certification. You may need more than one depending on the work you do.

Certification categories

Online licensing

You can apply online or you can download a paper application. Links for both options are available at top right. Note that if you are applying online, you need to choose the correct link for your situation -- whether you are working commercially for hire or not for hire, for a government agency, or for an educational institution.

Applying pesticides in Indian country:

In addition to state certification and licensing, you need federal certification from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to apply restricted-use pesticides in "Indian country," defined as reservations and property owned by tribes.  After receiving certification in a Wisconsin category, you must apply to the EPA for certification, which will be based on the Wisconsin category.  

EPA information and application form for Indian country certification

Back to main certification and licensing page