What if my State doesn't have a certification program?
If your State doesn't have a certification or licensing program yet, and you need to locate a lead professional, here are some suggestions:
Hire a contractor who has been certified or licensed in a State that does have a program. If you can't find a contractor who's been certified or licensed by another State, hire a contractor who has been trained to conduct lead-based paint inspections or risk assessments. Look for workers whose training was based on course work developed by EPA or approved by your State. Keep in mind that in addition to States, some cities and counties may require you to use certified or licensed contractors to conduct lead work. If you are required to use a certified or licensed professional and your State doesn't have a program, you will need to work with your county or local officials to locate a professional that meets their requirements.
Yes, there is a difference. To obtain a certification or license, most states require applicants to meet three standards. One standard requires an applicant to possess certain experience and/or skills. Second, an applicant is required to be trained to conduct specific lead-related tasks. The training an applicant receives typically must be approved by the State or an organization recognized by the State. The third and final means to ensure the competency of an applicant is a certification exam.
Individuals who have been trained, but who are uncertified might not possess work experience relevant to conducting lead-based paint activities. Nor have they passed an examination to test their proficiency. For that reason, it is especially important to check the references and credentials of uncertified contractors.