When employing a law enforcement applicant who has previously been certified as a law enforcement officer in another state, the hiring agency may request a conditional waiver of Illinois basic law enforcement training, if the officer meets the conditions outlined below.
Conditions for Reciprocity:
Candidates must have successfully completed a basic law enforcement training course at a POST certified academy with a curriculum deemed equivalent to the Illinois Law Enforcement Basic Training Course, which is currently 560 hours in length.
Candidates must have successfully completed a probationary period of at least 6 months while employed full-time with a law enforcement agency in the state where they were trained.
Candidates must not have had a substantial break in service prior to the reciprocity waiver submission.
Before a waiver of training may be submitted, candidates must first be hired by a bona fide Illinois law enforcement agency. Therefore, candidates must meet all applicable Illinois pre-employment standards.
Waiver applications & supporting documentation must be submitted to ILETSB by the hiring agency.
Upon approval of the waiver application, candidates will be required to attend either a full or abbreviated Mandatory Firearms Training course and an Illinois Law for Police Officers course. Upon completion of these requirements, candidates will be allowed one attempt to pass the 200-question equivalency exam.
Failure of the equivalency exam would necessitate attendance at an Illinois basic law enforcement training academy.
Summary of Conditions:
Responsibility of the Hiring Agency:
The hiring agency must provide the following to ILETSB when hiring an out-of-state trained officer:
The supplemental documentation, Authorization to Obtain and Release Form, FBI criminal history check and a copy of the Basic Training Certificate (if available) must be submitted via PDF, fax or mailed to the ILETSB office to begin the waiver review process. Please forward those documents to Ms. Jill Weber at Jill.Weber@Illinois.gov.
After the Board has verified the Basic Training from the out-of-state POST, a letter will be sent to the hiring agency indicating the requirements needed to fulfill the conditions of the waiver.
Important Things to Know:
Until ILETSB can confirm the officer’s certification status from their home state, the officer is not authorized to carry a firearm. Rather than waiting for the issuance of the conditional waiver letter, the hiring agency may wish to enroll the officer in a 40-hour Mandatory Firearms Training course through their local MTU. Successful completion of this course would allow the officer to carry a firearm in the interim period, and would supersede the firearms training requirement in the conditional waiver.
The officer must meet the conditions of the waiver, within six months from date of hire, to become certified in Illinois. Failure to meet this deadline will result in the denial of the waiver. At that point, the officer will need either to be separated from the law enforcement agency, or enrolled to attend an Illinois basic law enforcement academy.
Military law enforcement training does not meet the conditions for reciprocity in Illinois.
Reciprocity for a former federal officer differs significantly, due to the specialized training and record checks involved. For guidance related to the hiring of former federal officers, please contact Ms. Laura Baker at Laura.Baker@Illinois.gov or (217) 524-6861.
Before you contact our office, please take note: ILETSB cannot give pre-determinations to either agencies or individual officers on whether or not a reciprocity waiver will be granted. An officer must be hired by an Illinois law enforcement agency, meeting all of that agency's and the state's hiring requirements. ILETSB is not involved in setting or overseeing hiring requirements - only training and certification required after an officer has been hired. Once an officer has been appointed, and a training/reciprocity waiver has been submitted by the employing agency with all required supporting documentation, Board staff will then begin the process of making a determination on eligibility for a reciprocity waiver. Each waiver is decided on a case by case basis, taking all of the information provided into account. Once the determination has been made, the employing agency will be notified, and they will then notify the officer. On waiver and reciprocity matters, Board staff will only communicate with the employing agency, not with the individual officer.