Illinois Pesticide Act Licensing Requirements
Minimum age requirement - 18 years old
A pesticide use license is required for:
- Anyone using Restricted Use pesticides
- Anyone applying a pesticide (Restricted Use or General Use) in the course of employment
The Illinois Department of Agriculture certifies and licenses those using pesticides in outdoor environments and in the production of agricultural commodities.
The Illinois Department of Public Health certifies and licenses individuals using pesticides in and on manmade structures. This includes nuisance bird control, rodent control, wood treatment, and insect control.
What Type of License Do I Need?
You need a Commercial Applicator/Operator license if you apply any pesticide (General Use and/or Restricted Use) and any of the following apply:
- You are an employee of a governmental agency or unit who applies any pesticides in the normal course of your duties, such as park districts, highway departments, nature preserves, school districts, and municipal/village/township/county employees.
- You apply any pesticides (General Use and/or Restricted Use) to property of your employer only (e.g., utilities, railroads, groundskeepers, golf courses, greenhouse worker, etc.)
- You apply any pesticides (General Use and/or Restricted Use) for hire. (Lawn Care companies, agronomic custom spray operators, tree care industry)
You need a Private Applicator license if you spray restricted-use pesticides on lands you own or control in the production of an agricultural commodity.
- You do NOT need a private applicators license if you are only applying General Use pesticides on land you own or control in the production of an agricultural commodity.
- You do NOT need a private applicators license as long as you are not applying, taking possession of, and/or storing the restricted-use product on your property.
There are also some Special Licensing types. These include:
- Herbicide applications to control invasive plants on Public Lands
- Applications made with uncrewed aircraft systems (UAS, UAV, Drone)
All private and commercial applicators/operators must keep records of their use of restricted use pesticides (RUP's) for two years. These records must include the following information:
- Brand of product name
- US-EPA registration number
- Total amount applied
- Date of application
- Location of application
- Crop commodity, stored product, or site
- Size of area treated
- Name of applicator
- Certification number