Experienced law enforcement officers trained outside of Minnesota interested in obtaining employment as a peace officer in Minnesota may qualify to take the Reciprocity Licensing Examination. Qualification to take this exam is based on training and experience as explained below. Individuals should apply for and take the exam prior to seeking employment. Individuals must be either licensed or eligible to be licensed in order to work as a peace officer in Minnesota. Eligible to be licensed means that the individual has passed the Minnesota POST Board's Reciprocity Licensing Examination and can meet state selection criteria.
Two Ways to Qualify for Reciprocity
Complete basic police training in another state or federal law enforcement, and work in a law enforcement capacity for three years following basic training and possess a post-secondary degree; or five years following basic training if the individual does not possess a post-secondary degree. Candidates for reciprocity must have been working in law enforcement within the past six years.
Qualify through military police service in the U.S. military:
NOTE: For the purposes of determining eligibility, see the link at the bottom of this page for a general definition of terms that relate to reciprocity under Minnesota POST Rules 6700.0501.
Candidates should take care to choose the appropriate reciprocity application: one is for out-of-state/federal government law enforcement; and the other is for military
police experience. Each application contains information that should enable candidates to determine whether they are eligible or not, however they must submit a signed application, fee, and supporting documentation so that Minnesota POST can make a final determination.
Applying for and Taking the Exam
At this time, the applications for the Licensing Reciprocity Exam may NOT be submitted through the online E-Licensing system. An application form must be submitted by US mail along with the exam fee and required documentation.
The only way to find out for sure if an individual is eligible, is to submit the appropriate application for reciprocity along with the required documentation. The applications (Both law enforcement and military) to take the Licensing Reciprocity Exam can be found the Forms page. Alternately, interested individuals may contact the POST board either by phone or e-mail to request that an application be mailed.
A non-refundable examination fee of $105 payable to the POST Board, must be submitted with the Reciprocity Exam application.
A registration fee of $60.00 is paid directly by the applicant to Pearson Vue (see below). This is a separate fee and is not included in the $105.00 examination fee that is paid to the Minnesota POST Board.
All of Minnesota’s peace officer licensing exams are administered by Pearson Vue using computer based testing (CBT). CBT allows exam applicants to choose from a variety of exam dates, times and locations including numerous sites throughout Minnesota and selected sites in other states.
Upon submission of an application to take the exam, applicants will receive confirmation of receipt of the application by the POST Board. Applicants who are approved to take an exam will receive specific information relating to registering and scheduling an exam date at a Pearson Vue site.
After completing the exam, Pearson Vue will notify applicants of their unofficial exam result, either a pass or fail. Applicants will then receive official confirmation of the exam result from the POST Board in a letter that can be used as proof of peace officer license eligibility.
Once they have successfully passed the exam, individuals are eligible to be licensed in Minnesota for a period of three years. Many law enforcement employment opportunities can be viewed on the POST Board’s website under “Job Opportunities.” This information is updated weekly.
Studying for the Exam
The Reciprocity Licensing Examination is a multiple-choice exam containing three sections: Minnesota criminal code, traffic code and juvenile justice laws. The exam is focused on the information Minnesota law enforcement officers need to know for day-to-day operations. To prepare for the exam, the most recent edition of the Minnesota POST Board’s Criminal Code and Selected Statutes for Peace Officers should be studied. This publication may be obtained from Minnesota’s Bookstore located at 660 Olive Street, St. Paul, Minnesota, 55101 or call (651) 297-3000 or 1-800-657-3757.
Alternatively, these statutes are available on the internet at the State of Minnesota statutes website.
Additional information that may be helpful to reciprocity candidates is included below:
Definition of Terms
How to qualify for Reciprocity
How to apply for Reciprocity
How to study for Reciprocity
Please contact the POST Board’s Testing and Licensing Coordinator at (651) 201-7784 for any questions regarding the exam.