California Guard Card Requirements:

  • Minimum Age: 18 years
  • Get your Fingerprints scanned to enable a Criminal History Background Check by the California Department of Justice (DOJ) and the FBI. This is needed to make sure you have not committed any felonies.
  • Complete a total of 40 hours of Security Guard Training at a certified california training academy or by any private patrol operator.

How to Get a Guard Card in California

The fastest and easiest way to obtain your California Guard Card and start working for a security guard company is to submit all forms online at the California Department of Consumer Affairs website.

Step 1 – Complete an 8-hour Pre-Assignment Training Course

Prior to submitting the application form, applicants must complete an 8-hour Power to Arrest classroom training and pass the exam at a certified training facility. The training can also be given at your future employer if he offers this service. If you want to prepare yourself you can download the Power to Arrest Training Manual at the end of this page.

Step 2 – Submit your Guard Card Application Online

Go to The California Department of Consumer Affairs website. If you are a first time user, you will have to register an account for which you need a valid social security number. Be sure to remember the login information, as you will need it for renewing your California Guard Card in the future. After registration is completed, you can log in and fill out the Application Form, which is then sent electronically to the bureau. A non-refundable fee of $51 is applied.

Step 3 – Get your Fingerprints Scanned

The traditional ink fingerprint cards are no longer accepted by the state of California. In order to undergo a criminal history background check, applicants must submit their fingerprints electronically at a Live Scan center.

  • Click here for a list of Live Scan operators to make an appointment with one near you.
  • Download and fill out the Request for Live Scan Service Form and make sure to bring this form and a valid Photo ID to your appointment.
  • A non-refundable fee of $79 has to be paid directly at the Live Scan operator.

Step 4 – Wait for your Registration to become Available Online

As soon as the bureau has processed your online application and criminal history documents, your security guard registration will be available on the Bureau’s website and will be accessible by logging in to your account. You can now be assigned as a security officer and you’re allowed to print the registration and use it as a temporary guard card. The official Guard Card will be mailed to you within 2 to 3 weeks.

Step 5 – Complete the Additional Required Training

In order to keep your California Guard Card, additional Training is required once you are employed at a security company. Be sure to read our Security Guard Training California page to learn more about these training courses.

  • 16 Hours within 30 days of initial employment.
  • 16 Hours within 6 months of initial employment.