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Application Directions for Background Check to Maintain Lifetime License

DPI is currently receiving a high volume of contacts for assistance.  The three most commonly asked questions and their answers are below:

Help with WAMS IDs

Before you can submit an application to DPI, you must register for a Web Access Management Systems (WAMS) user ID.

How to set up a WAMS account

Already have one or more WAMS accounts?

How to start your WAMS account recovery:

Perform a WAMS account recovery for all emails you have. Enter your email address but do NOT enter your User ID to start your WAMS account recovery. Once in the account recovery process you will be prompted to change your password. After you change your password you will be told in parentheses what your correct User ID is. Please make note of that before you terminate the account recovery session. Once you have recovered all WAMS accounts you have, login to ELO with each of your accounts individually. If you can see your licenses, you are logging in with the correct WAMS account. If you are taken through the Onboarding process again, you are not using the correct WAMS account and should try another account.

If you encounter errors in the WAMS account recovery process, please contact WAMS directly.  DPI is unable to help with WAMS recovery because the system is used by many state agencies and is run by the Department of Administration:

Revalidating Life or Lifetime License

Educators, whose Life or Lifetime license was invalidated in July, have until December 31 to revalidate their license. Upon approval of the $45 Request Background Check - Lifetime Licensee [5900] application, the Lifetime license will be revalidated just as if the educator completed the application before June 30. Educators will have until December 31 to complete this application for their license to be revalidated.

Background Checks

DPI is required by law to conduct a background check on each applicant for a Wisconsin educator license regardless of whether it is an initial request or a renewal request.

All educators are required to complete a background check to maintain or revalidate a life or lifetime license. There are directions for how to complete the $45 Request Background Check - Lifetime Licensee [5900].

To find the year in which your most recent background check was submitted, search License Lookup using your name or entity number and check see the “Last Background Check Submitted” field.


This application is for educators who hold a current Lifetime license.  Per PI 34.041 (4), educators with a Lifetime license must submit a request to the department to have a new background check conducted once every five years. The request shall be made between January 1 and June 30 of the fifth year since the individual's last background check.

If you have multiple Lifetime licenses, you only need to complete a "5900 - Lifetime Background Update" application for one of those Lifetime licenses.  It does not matter under which Lifetime license you submit the "5900 - Lifetime Background Update" application. If you choose to submit a "5900 - Lifetime Background Update" application for each of your Lifetime licenses, make sure follow the directions for paying for multiple applications to ensure you pay the appropriate fee.

Use the Application Checklist to ensure you have completed all appropriate steps of the application.  If you do not fit into this category, please go back and select a different application.



  • Use the document below to determine if you must submit fingerprints.  If you have determined that you need fingerprints, submit them electronically via our vendor Fieldprint.
  • Preview the Conduct and Competency form.  If applicable, obtain supporting documentation for any “yes” answers to the conduct questions.


  • If you do not already have an active Web Access Management System (WAMS) ID, follow the directions on the Web Access Management System page to do so.
  • If you have not already Onboarded your license record to your WAMS ID, follow the directions on the Onboarding page to do so.
    • If your name has changed, use License Lookup to determine what name is on file with DPI, as you will use that name in the Onboarding.
  • Once you have Onboarded, use the Quick Start Directions to help determine what licenses require application this year.



Use the "My ELO Login" button (which can also be found in the top left-hand corner of any TEPDL webpage) to login to ELO with your WAMS ID and open your application.  Once you have Onboarded your license record to your WAMS ID, you will be brought to the Quick Start Menu.  Find the MANAGE YOUR EXISTING LICENSES section of the Quick Start Menu.  Make the exact same choice in your drop down menu as you see in the application screenshot in these directions and in the application checklist.  Once you’ve made the appropriate choice in the drop down menu click the “GO!” button directly to the right of the drop down menu to open that application.


Read each page of the application, complete the page as instructed, and click “next” to move forward in the application.  Once you reach the end of the application, you will review your Application Summary and may edit information if necessary OR click the “SUBMIT” button to submit your application.  You will receive an auto-generated application confirmation email with a PDF Application Summary attached shortly after submission.  This email also contains directions for completing your application payment.

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Use the "My ELO Login" button (which can also be found in the top left-hand corner of any TEPDL webpage) to login to ELO with your WAMS ID and open your application. 

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  • You will complete the Conduct and Competency questionnaire right before submitting your application payment.
  • Have either a credit card or pre-paid credit card ready for electronic payment.  For fee amounts and additional payment information please see License Application Fees.
    • You cannot pay with any other payment method.
  • You will see the application(s) you’ve submitted in the ELO Cart and Additional Activities section of the Quick Start Menu along with a sentence that says "Submit C&C and Payment to Complete Application." Click the “GO!” button directly to the right of this sentence and you will begin the payment process and Conduct and Competency questionnaire. The first page in the payment process shows you each application you’ve submitted along with each application fee. The second page in the payment process shows you the total fee after bundling any possible application fees. Then you will answer the Conduct and Competency questionnaire (14 questions) before being prompted for your credit card number.


Our processing times vary throughout the year. For current processing times see the Check Application Status page.