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Private Applicators

You are required to obtain Private Pesticide Applicator license if either of the following statements is true (note that you must meet the REQUIREMENT that you will be producing an agricultural, horticultural, or forestry commodity!):

  • I want to purchase and use a Restricted-Use Pesticide (RUP) on my property or the property of my employer to produce an agricultural, horticultural, or forestry commodity.
  • I want to supervise the use of a Restricted-Use Pesticide (RUP) on my property or the property of my employer to produce an agricultural, horticultural, or forestry commodity.

See the answer to the question "How do I obtain a Private Applicator License" below to get the link and instructions for getting access to the Private Applicator training program.  Once you pass the private applicator training course and apply for your private applicator license, you are required by the Georgia Department of Agriculture to keep a record of your pesticide applications.  The UGA Pesticide Safety Education Program in cooperation with the Georgia Department of Agriculture has developed a Georgia Recordkeeping Manual: For Private Pesticide Applicators. Copies are available from the UGA Extension Publications Store for Pesticide Applicator's Safety Guides at nominal cost.  Besides meeting the requirements of USDA AMS and the Georgia Department of Agriculture, the manual allows you to meet all requirements for the 2015 revision to EPA's Worker Protection Standard.

If you are interested in a Commercial Pesticide Applicator license, visit our Commercial Applicators web page for more information on commercial licensing.

If you are interested in a Structural Pest Control license, visit Georgia Department of Agriculture's Structural Pest Control web page

If you do not meet the requirements for obtaining either a Private Applicator license or a Commercial Applicator license but wish to know more about properly, safely, and effectively applying pesticides, you may wish to obtain a Georgia Competent Applicators of Pesticides Program (GCAPP) certificate by completing GCAPP training. Instructions on how to sign up for GCAPP training are outlined on our Homeowner & Public Service Safety Training page.


What is a Private Pesticide Applicator license and when is it required?

  • A Private Pesticide Applicator license authorizes or certifies you to purchase and use or supervise the use of Restricted-Use Pesticides (RUP) to produce an agricultural, horticultural, or forestry commodity.
  • Currently, there is no fee charged for the Private Applicator license.
  • All applications on property not owned, leased, or rented by you or your employer must be done as a personal favor or as an exchange of personal services.
  • No fee can be charged with a Private Applicator license!
  • To state it another way, a Private Pesticide Applicator license does not cover commercial pesticide applications.

How do I obtain a Private Pesticide Applicator license?

  • Step 1: Purchase course access (cost is $25.00) for the interactive Private Applicator training program though the Georgia Professional Certifications storefront on the UGA Marketplace. Follow these instructions to order the course. Dr. Mickey Taylor (email: or cell phone: 706-540-4108) will enroll students twice per day, midmorning and late afternoon, and send you an enrollment notice by email with your username and a temporary password (you will be required to reset your password when you log in to for the first time).  What follows are the steps that occur automatically once you submit your order.  Dr. Mickey Taylor will receive a notification of your order, including the name you entered on the Payment Methods page and your email address.  Dr. Taylor will enroll you in the courses that you have purchased sometime during each workday, typically around 10:00 AM or 5:00 PM.  He will send you an email with your username and a temporary password.  You will be required to change this temporary password when you log onto the site for the first time.  You can no longer self-register on the website.
  • Step 2: Complete the new Private Applicator Training course on the Georgia Professional Certifications website, using the username and temporary password sent to you by Dr. Taylor. Follow the instructions carefully! You must pass the final test (a grade of 70 or higher) for each module in sequence (Module 1, then Module 2, followed by Module 3, and so on) before you will be allowed to proceed to the next module. If you complete a module and there is no check mark in the box for that Module, click on the Module again to open the enter screen. Click the box beside “Start a new attempt” and then click the “Enter” button.  Quickly click through the slides and quizzes to get to the final exam. Passing the exam again will put the check mark in the box and allow you to proceed to the next module. The time to complete the course will be approximately 4-5 hours for novice farmers.
  • Step 3: When you have completed the training course, print the Certificate of Completion and take it with you to your county Extension agent. (Find your County Office). You can request Dr. Taylor email you the forms you will need to complete the application process if you want to have the forms filled out before going to your county Extension office. The form needed for Step 6 below will be included in the package Dr. Taylor sends to you.
  • Step 4: Certify to your county Extension agent that you are engaged in the production of an agricultural, horticultural, or forestry commodity by completing the Private Pesticide Applicator License Application and complete the Verification of Lawful Presence if needed for forwarding by your county agent to the Georgia Department of Agriculture Pesticide's office.
  • Step 5: The GDA Pesticides office will review your application and, when approved, send it to the Licensing Division, who will print and issue your license (usually in 3-4 weeks).
  • OPTIONAL Step 6 (if you need to purchase an RUP immediately): complete the form requesting a temporary license number and ask your county Agent to call the Georgia Department of Agriculture Pesticide office (404-656-4958) to obtain a temporary license number to allow you to purchase and use RUPs.

How long does a Private Pesticide Applicator license last and how do I renew it?

  • The initial Private Applicator license is good for five years.
  • Currently three hours of recertification credits must be earned no later than 90 days before your license expires.
  • If you fail to earn sufficient recertification credits before your license expires, you must repeat the Private Applicator Training Program.
  • To renew a Private Applicator license, you must earn three (3) hours of recertification credits every five years.  No more than 1 hour may be from webinar attendance.
  • Recertification credits can be earned by attending certain growers' meetings given by county Extension offices or by attending short courses and other meetings or viewing video recordings of those meetings that have been approved by the Georgia Department of Agriculture's Pesticides office.

A searchable database available through the Georgia Department of Agriculture where you can search by applicator last name, license number, or commercial license category. Approved online classes are listed on this web page as well. In addition, there is a searchable database for recertification courses by course title, course date, or commercial category.

What materials are available for training my agricultural workers to meet the requirements of the 2015 Revised Worker Protection Standard? 

UGA’s Pesticide Safety Program has obtained copies of the How to Comply With the 2015 Revised Worker Protection Standard for Agricultural Pesticides - What Owners and Employers Need To Know that are available at a nominal cost from the UGA Extension Publication Store. Additional materials for training agricultural workers are available from the Pesticide Educational Resources Collaborative (PERC) website (downloadable documents, videos, and other electronic materials) and from the National Pesticide Safety Education Center (NPSEC) store (including DVDs of training videos, the required safety posters, and many other hard goods required by the WPS).  Please note that a portion of your purchases from NPSEC is returned to the Pesticide Safety Education Program in Georgia to support pesticide safety training and recertification classes around the state and development and updating of online training resources for Georgia's pesticide applicators, both private and commercial.

Among the currently available resources are updated WPS videos in both English and Spanish. There are new WPS handouts and an inventory of training materials that has downloadable training videos, sample forms, modifiable presentations, and more. Additional materials are added as approved so check the PERC website often for any new training materials.  Note: Anyone can sign up to be notified of new releases from PERC by signing up on their email updates page.

I want to take the training to become a paraquat applicator or I want to be able to train others who want to become a paraquat applicator.  What resources are available to allow me to accomplish either goal?

Effective December 31, 2020, new regulations mandate that any paraquat products under 120 gallons distributed or sold by paraquat registrants require a closed system and do not allow jar testing. However, dealers and distributors are permitted to continue to sell paraquat products that do not meet the closed-system requirement until their stocks run out, and pesticide applicators may continue to use existing stocks according to the directions on the label of the product in their possession.

The paraquat training has been updated to meet the new paraquat label changes requiring closed-system transfer for quantities less than 120 gallons.  The online training is available at, and trainers can register to provide in-person training and download the materials at  Also, both versions of the Spanish training will be updated soon.

If you have already registered to conduct the in-person training, you need to log in and download the new PowerPoint and assessment.  If this is the first time you have accessed this information, you will need to register as a trainer and read the terms and conditions of the Trainer Agreement.  By submitting this registration form you signify that you agree to the terms and conditions in the Trainer Agreement.  You will then be able to download the materials.

NOTE:  This does NOT mean you need to retake the training.  Your current certification is still valid until 3 years after the date of your training, which is printed on your certificate.

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