Online Pre-licensing Education for Mortgage Loan Officers
What states require PE?
All states require the federal portion which totals 20 hours, with many states requiring education specific to the state. The states that have that requirement are listed on the graphic.
Can I add a state without taking the 20 hour?
Yes, if you took the 20 hour recently. (most states allow for 5ish years, sometimes more)
If I take state PE this year, do I need CE?
YES, unless you also took the 20 hour this year to gain your license.
Do I need to take the 20 hour?
If you are a new MLO that has not taken the 20 hour before, then yes. Otherwise, unless you took an extended break from the industry without renewing, or it has been several years since you took the 20 hour, you should just need to take the states you want to add. If you are unsure, call the NMLS at:
In 2016, the NMLS Policy Committee approved a policy that addresses situations in which an individual either 1) completes the Federal
PE requirement and does not acquire a license within a reasonable amount of time, or 2) acquires a license, but then leaves the industry
and returns after a long period and does required to become current on education. The policy reads as follows:
“An individual who completed 20 hours Pre-Licensure education pursuant to 12 U.S.C. 5104(c) must retake 20 hours of pre-licensure
education in order to be eligible for state mortgage loan originator licensure if he or she:
(3) fails to acquire a valid state license or federal registration as a mortgage loan originator within three years from the date of
federal compliance with 12 U.S.C. 5104(c); or
(4) fails to acquire a valid state license or federal registration as a mortgage loan originator within three years from the last date of
licensure or registration as a mortgage loan originator.”
We are planning on having all state of the PE and the 20 hour available as soon as they are approved by the NMLS.
Yes, effective 6/24/2013 NMLS will track compliance for both Federal and State PE and CE requirements. Education records will
reflect state PE and CE compliance status for past years. Compliance with 2017 continuing education requirements will be tracked using
course completions on or after Jan 1, 2017.
Yes, if the agency has set the license setting to require PE compliance at the time of application, NMLS will validate that the MLO is
compliant with BOTH Federal and State agency requirements prior to submission. NMLS will also require completion of pending CE
requirements for the last year the MLO held the license if the MLO is applying for a previously held license.
Yes, if the agency has set the license setting to require CE compliance at renewal, NMLS will validate that the MLO is compliant with
BOTH Federal and State annual CE requirements.
Per the new uniform CE policy approved last year, CE is required in the same year as licensure unless Federal PE was also completed that year.
If you miss the renewal window ending on December 31st
Yes, if an MLO is already licensed with Federal PE compliance in a a previous year and completes state-specific PE for another license, the MLO is still required to complete CE for that agency for that year.
If an MLO is licensed between November 1 and December 31 of any year, they will not be required to complete CE for that year. On
Jan 1, YYYY, NMLS will automatically set the CE requirement for the next year. However, if the license status date is entered with a date
prior to November 1 during the renewal period, the MLO will be required to complete CE for that year.
(more states + 20 hour coming soon)
Education and Temporary Authority to Operate
On March 15, 2018, Congress passed the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act (S. 2155), which included a new provision under the SAFE Act of 2008. This new provision, known as Temporary Authority to Operate, streamlines the license application process for federally registered mortgage loan originators (MLOs) seeking state licensure, and state-licensed MLOs seeking licensure in another state. The Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief and Consumer Protection Act was signed into law May 24, 2018 and takes effect November 24, 2019. A qualified MLO does not need to pass the SAFE MLO test or meet pre-licensure education requirements to obtain Temporary Authority. However, MLOs need to complete federal and state education requirements within 120 days of their Temporary Authority start date. During the 120-day Temporary Authority period MLOs are permitted to originate loans. SMART Temporary Authority Deadlines: The following deadlines take into consideration the time required to complete education, for information to be reported, and for the education record to be updated in NMLS.
SMART TA: Requirements and Education Record is Updated within 90 Days of Temporary Authority
TA At Risk: Requirements and Education Record is Not Updated at 100 Days of Temporary Authority
PROBABLY GUARANTEED LOSS OF TA: Requirements and Education Record Not Updated at 100 Days of Temporary Authority
In August 2012, the NMLS Policy Committee (NMLSPC) passed the following CE policy. This policy is intended to promote greater uniformity among all mortgage state-licensing agencies. The education charts reflect this policy.
Annual CE as a Condition of Renewal: As a condition for license renewal, an MLO is required to complete at least eight (8) hours of CE in the same year in which he/she is placed in an approved license status by a state agency, with the following exception:
- An MLO who has completed his/her pre-licensure education (PE) course requirements in the same year in which the license was approved,is not required to complete CE.
In the event an MLO had a requirement to complete CE and failed to do so, and as a condition for renewal or reinstatement, “Late CE” is required to be completed to satisfy CE for the last year in which the MLO was in a renewable status. “Late CE” courses are those courses which have been specifically approved and configured, so that upon completion, course credit will be retroactively applied to the appropriate previous year.
Additionally and in accordance with the Model State Law (MSL), an MLO who subsequently becomes unlicensed must complete the CE requirements for the last year in which a license was held prior to the issuance of a new or renewed license.
Yearly CE Deadlines:
SMART Deadline: Friday, December 13
At-Risk-to-Miss Renewal Deadline: Friday, December 20
Guaranteed to Miss Renewal Deadline: Tuesday, December 31
Anti-Fraud Authentication for Online CE Courses: Online Self-Study NMLS approved courses require a biometric
signature. The biometric signature is in addition to the user ID and password already required. The biometric signature
is used to help prevent against fraud and verify progress through the course. Information about the password
requirement may be found on the Student Authentication Support Page