Ohio Department of Commerce Veterans Resource Guide

The Ohio Department of Commerce is committed to honoring the service of the men and women of the U.S. Armed Forces by assisting veterans. This page contains links and resources for veterans from across all of the divisions of Commerce.

State Fire Marshal

The Ohio Fire Academy accepts V. A. (GI bill) Benefits. Veterans Affairs has approved four classes for reimbursement by the Ohio Fire Academy:
  • 1. Certified Fire Instructor
  • 2. Certified Fire Safety Inspector
  • 3. Emergency Medical Technician-Basic (EMT-B)
  • 4. Firefighter I & II
To register for classes, visit https://ofa.com.ohio.gov/acadisviewer/login.aspx
Questions? Call the Registrar’s office at 614-752-7263/888-726-7731
Visit the Ohio Fire Academy FAQ page: http://www.com.ohio.gov/fire/FAQ.aspx#Academy

Division of Industrial Compliance

The Ohio Board of Buildings Standards remains committed to providing a path to certification for veterans with experience in the building and design trades. We have modified our own requirements to better support qualified veterans, and are working with the providers of our third-party testing and education services to extend this support through all aspects of the certification process.

Applying for Certifications

Applications for all 40 certifications offered by the Ohio Board of Building Standards (OBBS) can be found under the “Certifications” tab on the OBBS website, or can be mailed upon request.

When completing your OBBS application, make sure to note any qualifying military training or experience under sections 4 and 8: ‘Experience.’

Qualifying military experience includes, but is not limited to (listed by Department of Defense Occupation Code):
171. Construction - Specialists in construction trades and construction equipment operation.
172. Utilities - Plumbers, heating and cooling specialists, and electricians.
2401. Construction and Utilities - Civil engineers, architects, and other construction and utilities officers.
2402. Electrical/Electronic - Electrical and electronic engineers and equipment maintenance officers not associated with radar design, installation, and maintenance.


Qualifying veterans can use the GI Bill to cover some, if not all, costs associated with International Code Council (ICC) testing. For more information on testing and training, contact:

The Department of Veterans Affairs

The International Code Council
888-ICC-SAFE (888-422-7233), ext. 5524

Training and Education

The OBBS Code Academy is provided free of charge to all interim certificate holders. Free lodging is also available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Once your interim certification is approved, you will automatically be placed on a contact list for Code Academy Information.

The OBBS has recently adopted rules allowing for the extension of certification periods for individuals called to active military duty equal to the length of time spent on active duty.

Contact OBBS

Our highly-qualified staff is ready to assist you with any questions or concerns you have regarding the certification process.
Office Hours: Monday - Friday 8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
OBBS General Line: 614-644-2613
OBBS Commercial Certification Questions
Evan Dicken: 614-644-3777

OBBS Residential Certification Questions
Debbie Ratliff: 614-728-1242

Phone: 614-644-2613
Fax: 614-644-3147
TTY/TDD: 800-750-0750

Download and print this information by clicking here.

Division of Real Estate and Professional Licensing

  • Military veterans may take advantage of their GI Bill benefits to enroll in pre-licensing education courses at any of the 35 Ohio colleges and universities (see link).
  • The Ohio Real Estate Education & Research Fund makes available student loans for the cost of courses and textbooks up to $2000
  • The Division works one-on-one with military personnel to ensure, as they deploy and/or return home, that placing their license into Exempt Military Status and then eventually reactivating that license is smooth and stress-free.
  • The Division waives the reactivation fee for our returning military personnel

Real Estate student loan application:


ORC 4735.13

G) If a real estate broker or salesperson enters the armed forces, the broker or salesperson may place the broker's or salesperson's license on deposit with the Ohio real estate commission. The licensee shall not be required to renew the license until the renewal date that follows the date of discharge from the armed forces. Any license deposited with the commission shall be subject to this chapter. Any licensee whose license is on deposit under this division and who fails to meet the continuing education requirements of section 4735.141 of the Revised Code because the licensee is in the armed forces shall satisfy the commission that the licensee has complied with the continuing education requirements within twelve months of the licensee's first birthday after discharge. The superintendent shall notify the licensee of the licensee's obligations under section 4735.141 of the Revised Code at the time the licensee applies for reactivation of the licensee's license.


  • Military veterans may take advantage of their GI Bill benefits to enroll in qualifying education courses.
  • The Division works one-on-one with military personnel to ensure, as they deploy and/or return home, that placing their license into Exempt Military Status and then eventually reactivating that license is smooth and stress-free.
  • The Division waives the reactivation fee for our returning military personnel

Real Estate appraiser qualifying education course providers:


Division of Financial Institutions

Kiplinger Personal Finance for Military Families

Mortgage Brokers/Loan Originators and Pawn Brokers:

If you are a veteran and are applying for a Mortgage Brokers/Loan Originators License or a Pawn Brokers License and need assistance, please contact Bob Niemi at (614) 644-7517 or Bob.Niemi@com.state.oh.us.

Division of Unclaimed Funds

The Ohio Department of Commerce, Division of Unclaimed Funds is committed to reuniting Ohioans with their hard-earned money. This commitment not only benefits the rightful owners; it is also money that can be put back to work in Ohio’s economy.

The Division is currently holding over two billion dollars in unclaimed funds under the names of Ohioans and Ohio businesses. The Division encourages Ohio citizens to regularly search the Division’s list of unclaimed funds accounts at www.com.ohio.gov/unfd/TreasureHunt.aspx and to file claim forms for any accounts that are found.

The Division is seeking to return every dollar possible to Ohio businesses and the citizens they serve. To learn more about unclaimed funds, visit www.com.ohio.gov/unfd or call (614) 466-4433.

Division of Liquor Control

The Division of Liquor Control (Division) latest social responsibility program, in partnership with its Contract Liquor Agents, is designed to help promote the safe and responsible consumption of alcohol.

Ohio law provides that a person with a blood alcohol level of .08 percent is legally intoxicated and should never operate a motor vehicle. It is also dangerous and potentially illegal to drive while being impaired. The only safe amount for driving is zero drinks!

This program is called “Know Your Limit,” which is the key to drinking alcohol responsibly and staying safe. Thanks to a grant from the National Alcohol Beverage Control Association (NABCA), the Division designed a blood alcohol estimation chart display, with easy to carry business card-sized charts. The chart is a guide to help estimate the amount of alcohol that can be consumed before becoming impaired or intoxicated. To download one, click here.

Division of Securities

Kiplinger Personal Finance for Military Families

Additional Resources

Ohio Department of Veteran Services

Are you a veteran looking for a job? Or are you an employer looking to hire veterans? Visit Ohio Means Veteran Jobs: http://www.ohiomeansveteranjobs.com/

The Ohio Attorney General’s veteran resource page including information and tip to avoid identify fraud and more. Click here.