What Happens If You Fail An Insurance Exam

One of the most important steps in starting a career as a licensed insurance agent is passing the insurance exam. This exam tests your knowledge of the insurance industry to ensure you are able to serve your clients. However, you can fail this exam, and its important to understand what this means.

What Happens If You Fail Insurance Exam

As an insurance agent, I know that the insurance exam can be difficult. It is not uncommon for people to fail this exam, so its important to know the options available to you.

In this article, we will discuss the consequences of failing the exam, why you might have failed it, retaking the exam, and alternative options. Let’s get started!

Consequences Of Failing The Exam

When you fail the insurance exam, the immediate consequence is that you are not able to work as an insurance agent or apply for positions that require a license. This can be a major setback, especially if you have already quit your previous job in anticipation of starting your new career.

Another long-term consequence of failing the insurance exam is that it can delay your ability to obtain a license. Depending on the state you are in, you may have to wait a certain period of time before being able to retake the exam. 

You may also have to pay additional fees to retake the exam. These costs can add up and may be a financial burden.

Failing the insurance exam can also have a psychological impact. It can be discouraging and may make you doubt your abilities. It’s important to remember that the insurance exam is challenging, and many people fail on their first attempt. Don’t let one failure discourage you from pursuing your career goals.

In some cases, if you are unable to pass the insurance exam, it may be a sign that the insurance industry is not the best fit for you. The burn-out rate for insurance agents is very high and if the set back of failing the exam is taking a burden on you then this industry might not be a good fit.

When I started, I failed my P&C exam once before passing it! There’s no shame in failing the exam. Just wait to take the exam again, study harder, and you’ll do fine!

It can be frustrating, but it’s important to understand that it’s not the end of the road and there are options available to you. You can retake the exam and explore alternative paths to obtaining a license. With proper preparation and determination, you can still achieve your goal of becoming a licensed insurance agent.

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Reasons For Failing The Exam

Based on my experience, the most common reason is a lack of preparation. Because the exam covers such a wide range of topics, insufficient studying makes the exam more difficult. 

It’s important to fully understand the material and have a good understanding of the concepts covered on the exam. Another reason for failing the exam could be poor time management during the test. 

What I did that worked the best was take practice exams over and over again until I passed them with a consistent score of 90% and above!

The insurance exam is timed, and it’s important to manage your time effectively. Some test-takers may spend too much time on one question and run out of time to complete the rest of the exam.

Another reason for failing the exam could be test anxiety. The insurance exam can be stressful, and it’s natural to feel a little nervous. If test anxiety becomes overwhelming, it can negatively impact your performance on the exam.

Some test-takers may be familiar with the material, but may not be familiar with the format of the exam, such as the types of questions or how the exam is scored.Lack of understanding of the state regulations and laws can also be a reason for failing the exam. The insurance exam is state-specific and it’s important to be familiar with the laws and regulations of your state.

By understanding the potential reasons for failure, you can take steps to address them and increase your chances of success on the next exam. 

Retaking The Exam

If you’re reading this, chances are you’re considering retaking the exam for your insurance license. It’s understandable to feel discouraged after not passing the first time, but it’s important to remember that many successful professionals have faced the same challenge. Retaking the exam is an opportunity to learn from your previous experience and improve your knowledge and skills in the field.

Its important to note that some states may have restrictions on how many times you can test, and that there could be a waiting period before you can retake it so check with your state’s insurance department for specific rules and regulations.

Before you retake the exam, it’s important to identify the reasons why you failed the first time. Review your study materials and practice tests to see where you struggled. 

This can help you focus your study efforts and make sure you’re better prepared for the next exam. Another important step before retaking the exam is to seek additional resources to help you prepare. 

Consider taking a review course, or working with a tutor who specializes in insurance exams. These resources can provide additional guidance and support to help you pass the exam.

Manage your time effectively and be well-rested. Make sure you are well-rested and arrive at the exam center on time. It is also important to take regular breaks and avoid cramming.

With the right preparation and mindset, you can increase your chances of passing the exam on your next attempt.

Alternative Paths To Obtaining A License

There are alternative paths to obtaining a license, such as taking pre-licensing education courses or working as an apprentice under a licensed agent. One option is to take pre-licensing education courses. These worked great for me! These are classes that cover the material on the exam and provide additional resources to help you study.

 Here’s a list of pre-licensing courses that are available. I enjoyed using Kaplan and ExamFX!

Course NameCourse DescriptionCourse LengthCourse Delivery MethodProvider
Property And Casualty InsuranceCovers basic principles of property and casualty insurance, including underwriting, risk management, and claims handling40-60 hoursOnline or in-personKaplan, ExamFX, PreLicense.com
Life And Health InsuranceCovers life and health insurance products, sales practices, and regulations40-60 hoursOnline or in-personKaplan, ExamFX, PreLicense.com
Ethics And ProfessionalismCovers ethical and legal principles that apply to the insurance industry, as well as professional conduct and best practices2-4 hoursOnline or in-personKaplan, ExamFX, PreLicense.com, WebCE
AdjusterCovers the roles and responsibilities of an insurance adjuster, including investigation, evaluation, and settlement of claims40-60 hoursOnline or in-personKaplan, ExamFX, PreLicense.com, AB Training Center
Limited Lines InsuranceCovers specialized insurance products, such as travel, pet, or wedding insurance, that require a limited lines license10-20 hoursOnline or in-personKaplan, ExamFX, PreLicense.com

These classes can be taken online or in-person, and are often offered by insurance schools or trade organizations. Another alternative is to work as an apprentice under a licensed agent. 

This allows you to learn the ropes of the insurance industry, and gain valuable experience, while working towards your license. Some states have specific apprenticeship programs, while others may require you to work with a licensed agent for a certain amount of time before taking the exam. Another way to obtain a license is to take the exam in another state which has less stringent requirements. 

Some states have more lenient licensing requirements, which may make it easier for you to pass the exam. Before pursuing this option, it’s important to research the specific requirements of the state you’re considering and see if they align with your qualifications.

You can take an online certification program which is a quick and efficient way to obtain a license. These programs are usually sponsored by insurance companies and are designed to help you prepare for the exam and obtain your license in a shorter amount of time.

It’s important to research the different options and select the one that best aligns with your qualifications and career goals.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which insurance exam is the most difficult?

The insurance exam that’s the most difficult depends on who you ask. Different people might find different exams harder based on their strengths and weaknesses. On average the hardest is the P&C exam.


 As an insurance agent, I know that failing an insurance exam can be disappointing, but it’s not the end of your insurance career. The consequences and options for retaking the exam vary by state and license type, and its important to understand why you failed, preparing better and exploring alternative paths like apprenticeships can help increase the chances of passing. Don’t give up, reflect on what went wrong, and with hard work and determination you can achieve your goal of becoming a licensed insurance agent.

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