Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions
Last Updated July 24th, 2014
This section provides responses to a number of frequently asked questions (FAQ’s) regarding the Minimum Hiring Standards, Local Corrections Officer Academies and general inquiries. Please review other sections of our web site for more detailed information.
Minimum Standards for Local Corrections Officers
Local Corrections Officer Academy
General Information

Are there minimum standards for becoming a Corrections Officer? Yes, there are Minimum Hiring Standards required in order to become a Local Corrections Officer. See Minimum Standards.
I do not have a high school diploma or a GED; can I become a Local Corrections Officer? No, the Minimum Hiring Standards clearly state that a candidate must have a high school diploma or the GED equivalent.
I have a felony conviction; can I become a Local Corrections Officer? No, the Minimum Hiring Standards clearly state that a candidate shall not have any felony convictions.
Do all Michigan Sheriff’s Offices have the same hiring standards? The Council’s duty is to establish Minimum Hiring Standards for Local Corrections Officers. Each Sheriff’s Office must meet the Minimum Hiring Standards, but may establish standards that exceed the minimum standards.
When am I required to take the Council’s Written Test for Corrections Officers and the Local Corrections Officer Physical Abilities Test (LCOPAT)?A candidate is required to successfully pass both the Council’s Written Test and the Local Corrections Officer Physical Abilities Test (LCOPAT) before being hired as a Corrections Officer. It is the candidate’s responsibility to pay for the tests.
Who administers the Council’s Written Test for Local Corrections Officers and the LCOPAT?The Council’s Written Test for Corrections Officers is administered by EMPCO and is offered at various sites throughout the state. The passing score is 70%. Scores of 69.99% and lower are considered failing.

The LCOPAT is also offered at various sites throughout the state. The pass/fail cutoff score for the LCOPAT is 5 minutes and 35 seconds (5.35).

How do I find where the tests are held and/or any information regarding the tests? Test information for the Council’s Written Test can be found at: www.empco.net.

Test information for the LCOPAT can be found by clicking on this link: LCOPAT Test Information.

Once I successfully pass the tests, how long are the tests valid?The Council’s Written Test is valid for three years from the date of successful completion. The LCOPAT is valid for one year from the date of successful completion.
If I don’t successfully complete the Council’s Written Test and/or the LCOPAT, can I re-take the tests?A candidate can take the Written Test two (2) times within a twelve (12) month period. A candidate can take the LCOPAT three (3) times within a twelve (12) month period, but must wait at least 30 days after failing the LCOPAT to retest.
How do I verify to a hiring agency that I have successfully completed the tests?Once you successfully complete the Council’s Written Test, your name will appear in a data base within seventy-two hours (72) that can be accessed by Sheriff’s Offices throughout the state. Once you successfully complete the LCOPAT, you will be given a certificate at the test site.
Will I have to submit to a mental evaluation?Yes, once a conditional offer of employment is made to a candidate by a Sheriff’s Office, the candidate will be required to submit to a mental evaluation by a licensed health care professional which demonstrates that the candidate is free from mental or emotional instabilities which may impair the performance of the essential job functions of a local corrections officer. The cost of the evaluation is the responsibility of the candidate.

Who Offers the Local Corrections Officer Academy? The Academies are conducted by specific institutions of higher education, approved by the Council, located throughout the state. A list of educational partners can be found by clicking on this link: Educational Partners.
What is the length of the Local Corrections Officer Academy?The Local Corrections Officer Academy is a 160 hour course and normally lasts four weeks. However, some Academies are held on different timetables in order to accommodate an attendee’s work schedule. Please check with the individual institution of higher education for specific information.
Is the Local Corrections Officer Academy also valid for positions with the Michigan Department of Corrections or local police lock-ups?No, the Academy is specifically designed for employment as a Local Corrections Officer in a county jail. The Certification process is not intended for employees of the Michigan Department of Corrections or local police lock-ups.
Do I receive verification upon completion of the Local Corrections Officer Academy?Once you successfully complete the Academy, the names of the Academy participants will be submitted to the Council, along with the complete Academy documentation. The Council reviews the information and will take action on the Academy at a subsequent Council meeting. Participants who satisfy all Academy requirements will receive a Certificate of Completion from the Council.
Once I complete the Academy, how long is my Academy Certificate of Completion valid? Once you successfully complete an Academy, your Academy Certificate of Completion is valid for one year from the date of Academy approval by the Council. After that, you can maintain your validation by demonstrating to the Council your completion of at least 20 hours of annual training based on the list of In-Service Training Topics posted on this site. See In Service Training.
How long do I have to complete the Local Corrections Officer Academy?Once a candidate is hired by a Sheriff’s Office, the person has no later than twelve (12) months to complete the Local Corrections Officer Academy. The Academy is required for both full and part time Corrections Officers.

However, some Sheriff’s Offices may require Academy completion before being hired, which means you would need to check with the specific Sheriff’s Office, and be able to verify your Academy completion.

I am currently MCOLES certified, what requirements do I have to meet to become a Local Corrections Officer? You will find the requirements listed under “Recognition of Prior Training and Experience”, “Licensed Michigan Police Officers” on this site. See Prior Training & Experience.

How do I find out which Sheriff’s Offices are hiring Corrections Officers? You may contact the individual Sheriff’s Office or view the “Employment Opportunities” page on this site at: Employment Opportunities. In addition, you may want to watch for employment listings in your area, or if you recently completed an Academy, talk with your Academy Director/Facilitator.
Once certified as a Local Corrections Officer, how do I maintain my certification?By remaining in Good Standing and by completing a minimum of 20 hours of annual In-Service training during a calendar year.
Can my certification be revoked?Yes. Certification granted to a person under this act is valid until one or more of the following occurs:

  1. Conviction by a judge or jury of a felony.
  2. Conviction by a plea of guilty to a felony.
  3. Conviction by a plea of no contest to a felony.
  4. Making a materially false statement or committing fraud during the application for certification.
  5. The certification becomes invalid because the person is no longer employed as a Local Corrections Officer
  6. The Local Corrections Officer has not met the annual 20 hour in-service training requirement.
  7. The certification is revoked.


*Please view the information at De-certification & Re-certification Procedures that addresses the Corrections Officer de-certification/re-certification procedure.
I am currently employed as a local Corrections Officer with a Michigan County Sheriff’s Office and I decide to seek employment as a local Corrections Officer at another Michigan County Sheriff’s Office. Am I required to successfully pass the Written Exam for Corrections Officers and the Local Corrections Officer Physical Abilities Test (LCOPAT) before making the transfer?

You would not have to complete the written exam for Corrections Officers and the Local Corrections Officer Physical Abilities Test (LCOPAT) if you are a certified local corrections officer transferring from one Michigan County Sheriff's Office to another Michigan County Sheriff's Office, as long as the following requirements are met:

  1. You maintain and can verify your certification requirements, and
  2. You can verify meeting the Minimum Hiring Standards that were in effect at the time of your original hire date.

*Please view the information at Recognition of Prior Training & Experience, and Minimum Standards for further details.

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