I have helped a lot (hundreds) of massage therapists through this process, as well as gone through it myself. Transferring your license to Florida is a little more complicated than transferring a license to most other states, but by the end of this post you should have all of the links and resources you need to get your Florida massage license.
Don’t wait until you move to begin the process
It is best to plan your professional move ahead of time, or you may find yourself sitting in Florida waiting and waiting for your license to arrive. When things go smoothly (meaning once you have contacted your school, state, and exam administrator and asked them to forward all of your scores, transcripts, and certificates to the Board office without being lost), the entire process takes 4-6 weeks.
So in order to keep your massage income flowing and avoid delays, I suggest you start the process as soon possible. Once you apply, you have an entire year to submit your supporting materials (listed below) to the board office. After the board office receives all of your supporting materials, they will issue your license. If you do not get everything to the board in one year, you will need to reapply.
OK, here we go…
Endorsement or Examination Candidate?
There are primarily two routes to licensure, endorsement and examination.
If you have a current/valid massage license which you obtained by taking a national licensing exam (MBLEx, NCETMB, NCETM, or NESL), you are and Endorsement Candidate. Here is your checklist.
If you are not currently licensed, or have not passed a national licensing exam, you are an Examination Candidate. Here is your checklist.
The routes are very similar. Both endorsement and examination candidates must complete three courses before applying for a license. The courses are 10 hours of Florida Law and Rules, 3 hours of HIV/AIDS, and 2 hours of Prevention of Medical Errors, and must be taken by a Florida Approved Continuing Education Provider.
I offer these courses as a Florida License Package, as well as available separately:
After you complete these required courses, send your completion certificates to the Florida board.
Proof of License
You must show proof of your current state massage license, or any past licenses you have held.
To do this you need to contact the state massage board(s) where you are/were licensed. They will need to forward proof of your license to the Florida Board of Massage. Your current state must also verify you previously completed a board-approved exam (i.e. NCETMB, MBLEx, NESL, NCETM) if you are applying as an endorsement candidate.
Contact the NCBTMB (if you took the NESL, NCETM, or NCETMB) or the FSTMB (if you took the MBLEx) and have them forward your scores to the Florida Board office.
If you have not previously completed the MBLEX or, NCETMB, NCETMB, or NESL, you will need to do so in order to obtain a Florida massage license. Learn which massage licensing exam is right for you.
Massage School Transcript
Provide the Florida Board of Massage with an official transcript (with a seal) from your 500 hour minimum massage training program. Your school must forward this information to the Board.
Now, just patiently wait for the Board to approve your license.
Questions about this process?
Try my Florida License FAQ.
You may also leave a question in the comments below or email me anytime: firstname.lastname@example.org.
2014 News and Updates
Rumor is digital fingerprints will soon be required from new licensees. I will update this post and checklists as these changes are implemented by the Board office.
Photo Credit: Arturo Donate