How Can I Start My Own Security Company in Georgia?

Security is always a concern and issue for businesses. They must protect their assets, employees and customers, as well as their reputation. In order to do so, many businesses hire security companies. If you are thinking about starting your own security company, there are limitless opportunities as long as you are persistent and reliable. If you are located in the state of Georgia, you must also be licensed, so be sure to follow the requirements set by the state of Georgia in order to start your security company.

Meet with an attorney and accountant to determine the type of business entity for your security company. The different business entities include sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability company and corporation. Your attorney and accountant will be able to advise you of the legal and tax implications for each entity and help you to form it.

Contact the Georgia city or county government to find out how to apply for a business license in the city or county in which you will operate.

Designate a holder of the private security license for the company and verify that the designated applicant meets all qualifications set forth by the Georgia State Board of Private Detective & Security Agencies. The applicant must be the owner, partner, an LLC member or a corporate officer. She must be 18 years of age or older, a United States citizen or registered resident alien and of good moral character with no felony convictions or convictions involving the illegal use or possession of a dangerous weapon. Experience has to include either two years in law enforcement or as a registered private detective with a licensed private security company or in-house security, or a four year degree in criminal justice degree or a related field from an accredited college or university.

Complete the private security license application, following directions exactly, and submit it to the Georgia State Board of Private Detective and Security Agencies along with the $100 application fee (as of 2010). Provide original, detailed and notarized employment letters signed by authorized personnel or sealed original certified transcripts or letters from the applicant's college or university. In-state companies must provide certified documentation proving that the applicant is a corporate officer, while out-of-state companies--regardless of business entity--need to submit an original notarized certification letter from the state where the company holds its license.

Register for Livescan electronic fingerprinting through Georgia Applicant Processing Services and have fingerprints taken at a GAPS-approved site. The fingerprinting fee of $52.90 (as of 2010) is due at the time of registration or can be paid by money order at the site.

Complete the employee registration application which is required if the applicant or any employees will be armed. The employees referenced on the employee registration application have to register for electronic fingerprinting through Georgia Applicant Processing Services and have fingerprints taken at a GAPS approved site. Employees must register for your company even if they are actively registered with another company. The Georgia Board of Private Detective and Security Agencies states that "No employee may use an existing registration to work for a company, other than the company that is indicated on the registration." If there is a criminal history or disciplinary action has been taken against the employee they must submit certified court documentation to resolve questions on the application. Concealed weapon and shot gun permits are approved by the board after fingerprint results are received. (

Schedule the exam with the third-party exam vendor by visiting the PSI web site. Once the application is approved, the applicant will be notified to take the private security exam. If the application is denied a new application has to be submitted with the $100 application fee (as of 2010).

Obtain an original $25,000 surety bond, $1,000,000 original certificate of liability insurance or a certified audited financial statement of $50,000 or more for submission to the board after the exam has been passed. Again be sure to follow the directions as stated by the application. The license is issued once the license fee of $500 is received and the bond or insurance certificate and financial statement have been reviewed and approved by the Georgia State Board of Private Detective and Security Agencies.

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About the Author

Michelle Jones has been writing professionally since 2009. She writes for the eHow and Answerbag. Specializing in real estate, mortgage and small business topics, Jones has almost a decade of experience in the industries. Jones studied political science at Duke University.