Licensed Tree Expert Application Process

​Who must have a license?

All tree care professionals practicing in Maryland must obtain a license. Without a license, they may not practice or advertise tree care services in the state. To obtain a license, the applicant must possess adequate and related college education plus one year of experience under a LTE or have three years experience under a Licensed Tree Expert (LTE), then have passed an exam and carry adequate amounts of liability and property damage insurance. The license is a two year license renewed in December.


Application Process

Anyone seeking to practice or advertise tree care services in the State of Maryland must obtain a license from the Maryland Department of Natural Resources.

Adopted in 1945, the Maryland Tree Expert Law addresses tree care work done for compensation on private or public property in Maryland. The purpose of the law is to provide a layer of consumer protection by licensing qualified and insured tree care companies and individuals.

Study Guide for Tree Expert Exam

Licensed Tree Expert Brochure

  • May 8, 2024
  • July 10, 2024
  • September 11, 2024
  • October 9, 2024
  • November 13, 2024
  • December 11, 2024
  • January 8, 2025
  • February 12, ​2025
  • March 12, 2025
  • April 9, 2025​
  • May 14, 2025
  • July 9, 2025
  • September 10, 2025
  • October 8, 2025
  • November 12, 2025
  • December 10​, 2025

All tests are administered at Department of Natural Resources Headquarters, Annapolis, MD 21401. Click here for Directions and Parking Information.

​NOTE: You will need to sign in at the front desk in the lobby. Driver's license or other valid photo ID is required.​

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To register, please contact​​

Exam Time​

Exams will begin at 9:00 am. The department will begin registration approximately 15 minutes prior to the scheduled exam time. The exam's introduction/ instructions begin promptly and no one will be admitted after the session has started.

Upon completion of the exam, examinees will be provided with a report that advises of whether they passed or failed any domain taken as well as whether they passed or failed the overall exam.

Summary of the Exam Process

The exam has ten weighted sections or domains. The questions are in multiple choice formats. A passing score of 70% is required for each individual domain, as well as for the overall test. There are 140 questions, 14 in each domain. A listing of the domains, their associated study materials, and the pass rates required for each is available in Adobe Acrobat​. The exam will be administered on desktop computers in the computer lab at the Department of Natural Resources, including the Tree Identification portion (there is no longer a field portion to the exam). No reference information may be used during the examination session.

Note regarding exam applicants with reading difficulties

The facilities of the Maryland Department of Natural Resources are available to all without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, age, national origin or physical or mental disability. If you or someone you are associated with has a reading disability or literacy issue, we will provide a reasonable accommodation if given reasonable notice. We ask that you:

Advise us in writing at least two weeks prior to an exam that the examinee in question has a reading disability or literacy issue. We will contact the examinee and schedule a privately proctored examination where the exam will be read to the examinee outside of the regular exam setting. The exam will be read by a Department of Natural Resources employee. Family members, significant others, etc. of examinees are not allowed to read or administer the exam to examinees.

For persons who do not have a reading disability but who have literacy issues, we would encourage you take advantage of the resources available through the Maryland Adult Literacy Resource Center ( The Maryland Adult Literacy Resource Center ( can connect people with no or low cost resources in every county that will assist them in learning to read and/or getting a GED.

Tree Care Industry Resources:

International Society of Arboriculture (ISA)​
​Phone: 217-355-9411

Maryland Arborist Association (MAA)
Phone: Toll-free 1-888-MD-TREES (638-7337)

Mid-Atlantic Chapter, International Society of Arboriculture (MAC-ISA)
Phone: 703-753-0499

Tree Care Industry Association (TCIA)
​Phone: 1-800-733-2622

American Society of Consulting Arborists (ASCA)
Phone: 301-947-0483

Contact Person: Chip Broadwater​

Maryland Department of Natural Resources
Forest Service
580 Taylor Avenue
Tawes State Office Building, E-1
Annapolis, Maryland 21401
(410) 260-8517& Fax: (410) 260-8595