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Frequently Asked Questions

Law Enforcement FAQs

What are the Basic Police Academy enrollment requirements?

The Michigan Commission on Law Enforcement Standards (MCOLES) requires that a law enforcement officer candidate:

  1. Be a citizen of the United States.
  2. Have attained the minimum age as established by the hiring agency, which shall not be less than 18 years of age or as otherwise provided by law.
  3. Have no prior felony convictions (including expunged convictions).
  4. Possess good moral character as determined by a favorable comprehensive background investigation covering school and employment records, home environment and personal traits and integrity. Consideration will be given to all law violations, including traffic and conservation law convictions, as possibly indicating lack of good moral character.
  5. Possess normal hearing, normal color vision and normal visual functions and acuity in each eye correctable to 20/20. Be free from any of the impediments of the senses, physically sound, in possession of all extremities and well developed physically, with height and weight in relation to each other as indicated by accepted medical standards.
  6. Be free from physical defects, chronic diseases, organic diseases, organic functional conditions, or mental or emotional instabilities which may tend to impair the efficient performance of a law enforcement officer's duties or which might endanger the lives of others or the law enforcement officers.
  7. Possess a valid Michigan vehicle operator's license.

Pre-Service Candidates - Those who meet the MCOLES requirements listed above, have passed the pre-employment tests and have acquired a minimum of an associate degree, are eligible to make application to the Macomb Police Academy as a pre-service (self-sponsored) candidate.

Pre-service candidates are required to provide uniforms.

Upon completion of the academy, the pre-service candidate can be hired by a Michigan law enforcement agency and certified as a police officer in Michigan.

Pre-service candidates are becoming increasingly more attractive to law enforcement agencies, because they can hire trained and certifiable people at minimal cost. The Macomb Police Academy continues to have one of the highest pre-service hiring rates of any academy in Michigan.

What is the MCOLES Pre-Employment Test?

Those interested in gaining employment as a police officer in the state of Michigan must successfully complete mandated pre-employment testing and a sanctioned Basic Police Academy program. MCOLES establishes the minimum standards for pre-employment testing, the Basic Police Academy, certification eligibility and employment standards for Michigan police officers. The Macomb Police Academy is an MCOLES-certified Pre-Employment Test site.

What is the process to be licensed to carry a firearm out of state if I’m a retired police officer or military personnel?

The Michigan Retired Law Enforcement Officer's Firearm Carry Act became effective in Michigan on March 31, 2009. In January 2013, the U.S. Congress amended the Law Enforcement Officer's Safety Act (LEOSA) to include military police and Department of Defense officers.

Information and forms are currently available for viewing, downloading and printing. Visit the MCOLES website ( and click on “News and Current Issues” in the upper left corner.

This is a three step process:

  1. Apply to MCOLES and get approval to take the program.
  2. After receiving approval from MCOLES, contact MCJTC and register with payment.
  3. Attend and pass the program.

After attending a Michigan police academy, how do I maintain being certifiable to be licensed?


I am an out of state police officer. How do I become certified to be licensed in Michigan?

Recognition of Prior Training and Experience, aka RPTE or Recertification

A waiver of mandatory basic police training may be granted to a person who was previously a police officer in Michigan, another state, or to a Michigan pre-service candidate who is seeking additional years of eligibility.

Out-of-state candidate applications for the Recognition of Prior Training and Experience Program will not be accepted unless the candidate has completed at least one year of full-time, fully empowered, paid police service following his/her police training. For more information, go to

To apply, please print out the Application, Live Scan Fingerprint Request Form & Instruction Packet. The Application can be filled out on-line and then printed. The MCOLES Mandatory Basic Training Firearms Assessment can also be viewed and printed.