Applicant FAQs


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How do I give up (voluntarily relinquish) my license?

To voluntarily relinquish your license, submit a request in writing which provides the following information:

For massage therapists:

  • Your name as it appears on your license.
  • Your license number (MA).
  • The last four digits of your social security number.
    Do not provide your full social security number in emailed correspondence.
  • Your mailing address.
  • A statement that you want to voluntarily relinquish the license.

For massage establishments:

  • The establishment name as it appears on the license.
  • The establishment license number (MM).
  • The tax ID associated with the establishment.
    For sole proprietor (individual) licenses, provide only the last four digits of the associated tax ID.
  • The name of the owner requesting the voluntary relinquishment.
  • The physical address of the establishment.
  • A statement that you want to voluntarily relinquish the license.

Your request may be submitted by email to mqa.massagetherapy@flhealth.gov or by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
4052 Bald Cypress Way, Bin C-06
Tallahassee, FL 32399

The board will notify you in writing once your request has been processed.

Once your license has been voluntarily relinquished, it cannot be used or reinstated. Should you decide to return to practicing massage therapy or operating a massage establishment in Florida, you will need to reapply and be issued a new license.

 

How do I change my application method from endorsement to examination, or from examination to endorsement?

If you wish to change your application method from endorsement to examination or from examination to endorsement, submit a written request for the change, including your name and file number, to the board office, either by mail or by email.

If you wish to amend your application, you can do so by sending us a request to do so in writing which includes the amendment you need to make.

Requests be sent by email to mqa.massagetherapy@flhealth.gov, or by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
4052 Bald Cypress Way, Bin C-06
Tallahassee, FL 32399

If I reapply for licensure after my application expires, will all of the fees apply to my new application?

Only the initial license fee and the unlicensed activity fee will be applied to the new application.

How long will it take to receive my refund?

Once your request is received, it can take up to four weeks to receive your refund.

I overpaid on my fees. Can I receive a refund?

There is a three year statute of limitation for refunds so if the overpayment was made less than three years ago you are eligible for a refund.

How do I request a refund?

To request a refund of a fee payment, submit a request in writing which provides the following information:

To withdraw an application, submit a request in writing which provides the following information:

For massage therapist applications:

  • Your name, as it appears on your application.
  • Your file number.
  • The last four digits of your social security number.
    Do not provide your full social security number in emailed correspondence.
  • A statement that you are requesting a refund.

For massage establishments:

  • The establishment name as it appears on your application.
  • Your name, as the owner or authorized person to make changes to the application.
  • Your file number.
  • The tax ID associated with the establishment.
    For sole proprietor (individual) licenses, provide only the last four digits of the associated tax ID.
  • A statement that you are requesting a refund.

Your request may be submitted by email to mqa.massagetherapy@flhealth.gov or by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
4052 Bald Cypress Way, Bin C-06
Tallahassee, FL 32399

If you are requesting a refund for an open application, you must also include that you would like to withdraw your application for your refund to be processed.

The board office will send you a refund request form once it has been prepared. You will need to return your signed refund request form by mail or email.

Once your refund request has been processed, your fees cannot be assigned to a new application.

Will I get a refund if I am not approved for licensure?

The Board Office will refund your initial license fee and unlicensed activity fee. Your application fee is non-refundable and will not be refunded to you.

How do I reinstate my license from delinquent status?

You can reinstate your delinquent license through the MQA Online Services Portal.

Before you submit, be sure you have completed the CE requirements for the renewal cycle you are delinquent. Your license cannot be reinstated if the CE requirement is not completed.

You may not practice if your license is delinquent. Practicing while your license is in delinquent status constitutes unlicensed activity, which may result in citation, fines, disciplinary action against licensees working in the unlicensed location, and criminal penalties.

How do I change my mailing address?

You can change your mailing address using the MQA Online Services Portal.

You can also update your mailing address by providing your license number, a request to update your mailing address, and your mailing address by email to mqa.massagetherapy@flhealth.gov or by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
4052 Bald Cypress Way Bin C-06
Tallahassee, FL 32399

How do I change the practice location of my massage establishment?

To change the practice location of your massage establishment, you must submit a change of name and/or location application. More information can be found in the Licensing section under Application for Massage Establishment Change of Name/Location.

Which link allows me to change my mailing address on file with the department?

Once you are logged into Online Services, select Update Address link from the side navigational menu.

Why is continuing education being verified at renewal?

Continuing Education is a requirement to renew a professional license. Section 456.025(7), F.S. requires the Department to implement an electronic continuing education tracking system for each biennial renewal cycle and to integrate such system into the licensure and renewal system.

What would deem an applicant ineligible for licensure?

  1.  If applicant has been convicted of or pled nolo contendere to, regardless of adjudication, any felony or misdemeanor related to the practice of a health care profession.
  2. If applicant has had a health care provider license revoked or suspended from another state, the District of Colombia, or a United States Territory.
  3. If applicant has been reported to the National Practitioner Data Bank, unless the applicant has successfully appealed to have his or her name removed from the data bank.
  4. If applicant has previously failed the Florida examination required to receive a license to practice the profession for which the applicant is seeking a license.
  5. The board or department if there is no board may revoke a temporary license upon finding that the individual violated the profession’s governing practice act.

What needs to be provided with the application?

  1. Fees
  2. Proof of marriage to an active duty member of the Armed Forces of the United States and that the applicant’s spouse is assigned to a duty station in this state based upon the member’s official active duty military orders.
  3. Proof of a valid license in another state, the District of Columbia, a possession or territory of the United States, or a foreign jurisdiction and eligibility to take the Florida licensure examination.

When does the temporary license expire?

The temporary license is valid for 12 months after the date of issuance and is not renewable.

Why must the applicant provide the normal application for licensure?

The applicant must provide proof that he or she would otherwise be entitled to full licensure under the appropriate practice act, and is eligible to take the respective licensure examination as required in Florida.

How would an applicant apply for licensure?

The applicant can download the regular application to include the supplemental page from the board’s webpage.

What are the provisions of this bill?

This bill amends section 456.024, Florida Statutes, (F.S.), creating a temporary license for health care practitioners who are spouses of active duty members of the Armed Forces.

How do I complete the Physician Workforce Survey?

  1. Login to Online Services by selecting your profession from the drop down menu and entering your User ID and Password. The survey must be completed by allopathic and osteopathic physicians only.
    a. Your User ID and Password were mailed with your initial license. Please look at the center section and refer to the Online Services Instructions, item #5.
    b. If you do not have your User ID and Password, click on “Get Login Help“.
  2. Select “Physician Workforce Survey” on the left side of the page 3. Complete Physician Workforce Survey

How do I view and update my Practitioner Profile ?

You can view, confirm, or make changes to the information that will be published in your practitioner profile by logging in to the Practitioner Login page. In carrying our legislative mandate to publish practitioner profiles, we want to ensure the information that we publish is accurate. Accordingly, we ask that you please review your profile for any changes, corrections, and/or omissions. If you see the statement “The practitioner did not provide this mandatory information”, please provide that information. We will not accept curriculum vitae or resumes in place of you providing specific information. Changes, excluding education and training, year began practicing, and liability claims, can be made to your profile electronically by following the instructions below.

You may also submit changes by mail to:

Department of Health
Licensure Support Services
4052 Bald Cypress Way, Bin C-10
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-3260

Please note that Section 456.042, Florida Statutes, requires practitioners to update profile information within 15 days after a change of an occurrence in each section of your profile. Attention Newly Licensed Practitioners Chapter 456.041(7), Florida Statutes, requires you to submit changes to the department within thirty (30) days from receipt of notice. If you do not make changes within thirty (30) days, your profile will be automatically published. Once you have completed your review and made any necessary corrections, click on “Confirm Changes”. The Practitioner Confirmation Page will display the information that will be published online, at which time you must “Confirm” the profile again before the changes will be implemented.

Note: Under Florida law, e-mail addresses are public records. If you do not want your e-mail address released in response to a public records request, do not send electronic mail to this entity. Instead, contact this office by phone or in writing.

How can I fiind a profile?

Profiles can be accessed by on our License Verification screen. If the health professional is licensed in one of profiled professions, a “Practitioner Profile” tab will be available.

Are profiles available for other professions?

No; however, Licensure Verification is available for all health care professionals currently or previously licensed in Florida.

What information is included in the profile?

The profile contains required and optional information from the practitioner. Required information includes:

  • The practitioner’s education and training, including other health-related degrees, professional and post graduate training specialty.
  • The practitioner’s current practice and mailing addresses.
  • The practitioner’s staff privileges and faculty appointments.
  • The practitioner’s reported financial responsibility.
  • Legal action taken against the practitioner.
  • Board final disciplinary action taken against the practitioner.
  • Any liability claims filed against Podiatric Physicians which exceed $5000.
  • Any liability claims filed against M.D.s and osteopathic physicians which exceed $100,000 Optional information may include committees/memberships, professional or community service awards, and publications the practitioner has authored.

What are the requirements for posting a picture on my license?

Effective September 1, 2013, licensed massage therapists must attach to the displayed license a 2 by 2 inch photograph of the individual whose name appears on the certificate. The photograph must have been taken within the previous two years.

How do I change the practice location address for my massage therapist license?

You can change your practice location address through your account on the MQA Online Services Portal.

You can also update your practice location address by providing your license number, a written request to update your mailing address, and the address of your new practice location by email to mqa.massagetherapy@flhealth.gov or by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
4052 Bald Cypress Way Bin C-06
Tallahassee, FL 32399

How do I pay for an application I submitted without fees?

If you applied without fee payment online, you can submit your fee payment using a credit card:

  • Log in to your account using the MQA Online Services Portal.
  • Go to Make Payment under Additional Activities.
  • Select the application that is pending payment of required fees.
  • Follow the prompts to submit payment by credit card.

Credit card payments cannot be accepted by phone.

If you applied by mail without submitting a fee payment, applied online but do not wish to submit a fee payment by credit card, or submitted a partial payment by mail, you may submit fee payment in the form of a cashier’s check or money order. To do so:

  • Print a copy of your application summary.
  • Mail your application summary and required fee payment to:

Division of Medical Quality Assurance
P.O. Box 6320
Tallahassee, FL 32314-6320

How do I change my massage therapist license status to inactive?

If you want to place your massage therapist license in inactive status, you may submit your request for inactive status online.

To request inactive status, complete the following steps:

  • Once you are logged in, open the Choose an Activity menu and select Request Inactive Status.

This dropdown menu is located to the right of your license number below Manage My Licenses.

If your license is near expiration, this may be listed as Request Inactive Status at Renewal.

  • Follow the prompts to complete the inactive status request.

A fee payment of $105.00 is required to set your license to inactive status.

You will also be required to renew your license if the license is due for renewal. If you fail to renew your license after changing it to inactive, the license will become delinquent following the renewal deadline.

Complete the following steps to renew your license, once your request for inactive status is processed:

  • Log in to your account through the MQA Online Services Portal.
  • Once you are logged in, click the select button next to Renew My License.
  • Follow the prompts to complete your license renewal.

If you need further assistance with changing your license to inactive or renewing your inactive license, contact our Customer Contact Center at (850) 488-0595 or email at mqaonlineservice@flhealth.gov.

Licenses in inactive status must be renewed each biennium to remain clear and inactive. Massage establishment licenses cannot be set to inactive status.

How do I change my massage therapist license status to retired?

If you want to place your massage therapist license in retired status, you may submit your request retired status online.

  • Log in to your account through the MQA Online Services Portal.
  • Once you are logged in, open the Choose an Activity menu and select Request Retired Status.

This dropdown menu is located to the right of your license number below Manage My Licenses.

If your license is near expiration, this may be listed as “Request Retired Status at Renewal.”

If you need further assistance with changing your license to retired status, contact our Customer Contact Center at (850) 488-0595 or email at mqaonlineservice@flhealth.gov.

Massage establishment licenses cannot be set to retired status.

How do I verify a license?

You can search for and verify a license using the Department of Health’s license verification portal.

The license verification portal is a secure, primary source for license verification provided by the Florida Department of Health, Division of Medical Quality Assurance. This website is maintained by Division staff and is updated immediately upon a change to our licensing and enforcement database.

For instructions on how to request a license certification of your Florida license to be sent to another state from the Florida Department of Health online, visit the License Certifications page.

How do I change my Designated Establishment Manager (DEM)?

You can change your DEM online through the MQA Online Services Portal, or by submitting a Massage Establishment Change of Corporate Officer/Designated Establishment Manager/Interested Party (DH-MQA 5040) by email to mqa.massagetherapy@flhealth.gov, or by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
4052 Bald Cypress Way, Bin C-06
Tallahassee, FL 32399

How do I remove myself as the Designated Establishment Manager (DEM)?

You can remove yourself as the DEM of a massage establishment using the MQA Online Services Portal.

You can also remove yourself as the DEM of a massage establishment by providing your license number, the license number of the establishment where you will no longer serve as DEM, and a statement that you wish to remove yourself as the DEM by email to mqa.massagetherapy@flhealth.gov or by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
4052 Bald Cypress Way Bin C-06
Tallahassee, FL 32399

How do I submit graduate lists?

For instructions on graduate list submission, contact the board office.

How do I withdraw my application?

To withdraw an application, submit a request in writing which provides the following information:

For massage therapist applications:

  • Your name, as it appears on your application.
  • Your file number.
  • The last four digits of your social security number.
    Do not provide your full social security number in emailed correspondence.
  • A statement that you want to withdraw your application.

For massage establishments:

  • The establishment name as it appears on your application.
  • Your name, as the owner or authorized person to make changes to the application.
  • Your file number.
  • The tax ID associated with the establishment.
    For sole proprietor (individual) licenses, provide only the last four digits of the associated tax ID.
  • A statement that you want to withdraw your application.

Your request may be submitted by email to mqa.massagetherapy@flhealth.gov or by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
4052 Bald Cypress Way, Bin C-06
Tallahassee, FL 32399

The board office will notify you once your application has been withdrawn. Once an application has been withdrawn, it cannot be resumed.

You may request a refund of any refundable fees when making a request to withdraw an application in process.

How do I reactivate my massage therapist license from retired status?

To reactivate a RETIRED license, complete the following steps:

  • Complete all continuing education requirements for each biennium the license was retired.

A list of continuing education requirements for each biennium is available here.

  • Confirm your continuing education is reported through CEBroker.
  • Submit a request to reactivate (including name, license number, and a written statement) and fee payment to the board office by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
4052 Bald Cypress Way C-06
Tallahassee, FL 32399

Fees must be submitted to the department by check or money order.

  • During renewal, the total fee to reactivate is $105.00.
  • Outside renewal, the total fee to reactivate is $155.00 (reactivation fee; change of status fee).

If your license was retired for more than two consecutive biennial renewal cycles, you may be required to demonstrate competency before your license can be reactivated.

How do I reactivate my massage therapist license from inactive status?

To reactivate an INACTIVE status license, complete the following steps:

  • Complete all continuing education requirements for each biennium the license was inactive.

A list of continuing education requirements for each biennium is available here.

  • Confirm your continuing education is reported through CEBroker.
  • Submit a request to reactivate (including name, license number, and a written statement) and fee payment to the board office by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
4052 Bald Cypress Way C-06
Tallahassee, FL 32399

Fees must be submitted to the department by check or money order.

  • During renewal, the total fee to reactivate is $105.00.
  • Outside renewal, the total fee to reactivate is $155.00 (reactivation fee; change of status fee).

If your license was inactive for more than two consecutive biennial renewal cycles, you may be required to demonstrate competency before your license can be reactivated.

How do I get my license out of conditions status?

If your license is in conditions status, you must comply with all stipulations imposed by the board listed in your Notice of Intent to Approve with Conditions. Your Notice of Intent is viewable using Department of Health’s License Verification portal.

For additional questions about conditions status, contact the board office by email to mqa.massagetherapy@flhealth.gov or by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
4052 Bald Cypress Way Bin C-06
Tallahassee, FL 32399

How do I get my license out of obligations status?

If your license is in obligations status, you must comply with all penalties imposed when your license was disciplined by the board. The Final Order issued in your case will list those penalties and provide instructions and is viewable using the Department of Health’s License Verification portal.

For additional questions about conditions status, contact the board office by email to MQA.ComplianceManagement@FLHealth.gov or by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Compliance Management Unit
Attn: Massage Therapy Compliance Officer
4052 Bald Cypress Way Bin C-76
Tallahassee, FL 32399

How do I submit supporting documentation for my application?

You can submit supporting documents for your application online through the MQA Online Services Portal, via email, or by mail.

Using the MQA Online Services Portal:

You can submit additional documents for your application to the board office by upload through the MQA Online Services Portal (www.flhealthsource.gov),

By email or mail:

Supporting documentation may be submitted by emailed attachment to mqa.massagetherapy@flhealth.gov, or by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
4052 Bald Cypress Way, Bin C-06
Tallahassee, FL 32399

When submitting supporting documentation, be sure to include your application file number.

Please note that some supporting documents cannot be accepted directly from an applicant.

Information about supporting documentation required for each application type can be found under the Licensing section of this website, by choosing the license you are applying for and clicking requirements.

How do I submit a new application, if my previous application was withdrawn, expired, or was denied?

You can submit a new application by submitting a completed paper application, required fees (check or money order ONLY), and other supporting documents by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
PO Box 6330
Tallahassee, FL 32314-6330

Application PDFs and information about licensing requirements can be found in the Licensing section of the board website. can be found on the Board website.

How do I request an extension to pay fines or costs?

If your license is in CONDITIONS status:

An extension of time for fine payments for licenses in CONDITIONS status resulting from the issuance of your license with conditions can be requested by email to mqa.massagetherapy@flhealth.gov or by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
PO Box 6330
Tallahassee, FL 32314-6330

If your license is in OBLIGATIONS status:

An extension of time for fine or fee payments for licenses in OBLIGATIONS status resulting from disciplinary action can be requested by email to MQA.ComplianceManagement@FLHealth.gov or by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Compliance Management Unit
ATTN: Massage Therapy Compliance Officer
4052 Bald Cypress Way Bin C-76
Tallahassee, FL 32399

Your request should include your license number and the length of the extension you are seeking. Requests for extension of time for fine or fee payment are subject to approval by the Board chair.

How do I update establishment owner information?

You can add or remove a corporate owner or officer online through the MQA Online Services Portal, or by submitting a Massage Establishment Change of Corporate Officer/Designated Establishment Manager/Interested Party (DH-MQA 5040) by email to mqa.massagetherapy@flhealth.gov, or by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
4052 Bald Cypress Way, Bin C-06
Tallahassee, FL 32399

Some changes to establishment owner information may indicate that a change of ownership has occurred; a new license is required pursuant to 480.043(9)(a), Florida Statutes:

A license issued to an individual, a partnership, a limited liability company, or another entity may not be transferred from the licensee to another individual, corporation, limited liability company, or another entity.

Some examples of change of ownership which will require a new license include:

  • A license originally issued to an individual (sole proprietor), where the individual has changed.
  • A license originally issued to an individual (sole proprietor) which now operates under a Limited Liability Company or Corporation.
  • A license originally issued to a partnership where the partners have changed.
  • A license issued to a Limited Liability Company whose members have changed.
  • A license issued to a Corporation which has dissolved and reincorporated.

If a new license is required, additional information about submitting a new application can be found here.

How do I report a criminal pleading or conviction to the board?

To report a criminal pleading or conviction within 30 days as required, you will need to submit a complaint against yourself using the Health Care Provider Complaint Form.

The form, which includes submission instructions, can be found here.

How do I register for a fictitious name?

If you are a licensed massage therapist advertising your practice under any name that is not your legal name, or, if you are an establishment who is advertising under a “doing business as” or D/B/A name, you will need a fictitious name registration for the purposes of that advertisement.

To register for a fictitious name or find more information about fictitious name registration, visit the Division of Corporations website at www.sunbiz.org.

How do I update my licensing records after registering or updating a fictitious name?

If you are a licensed massage therapist advertising your practice under any name that is not your legal name, or, if you are an establishment who is advertising under a “doing business as” or D/B/A name, you will need a fictious name registration for the purposes of that advertisement.

If you have registered a new fictitious name or have updated a prior fictitious name registration associated with your license, updating your licensing record helps reduce compliance issues related to advertising rules.

For massage establishments:

If you have registered a new fictitious name, or have updated your previous registration, submit your updated fictitious name registration by email to mqa.massagetherapy@flhealth.gov, or by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
4052 Bald Cypress Way, Bin C-06
Tallahassee, FL 32399

For massage therapists:

You do not need to submit fictitious name registration updates related to advertising your practice to the board office.

How do I find massage therapists or establishments in my area?

The Department of Health’s license verification portal can be used to search for licensees in your area, and can be searched by license type, city, county and zip code.

How do I verify the Designated Establishment Manager of a Massage Establishment?

You can verify the Designated Establishment Manager (DEM) of a massage establishment using Department of Health’s license verification portal. To do so:

  • Search for the establishment license.
  • Select the license you wish to view the DEM for.
    You will be taken directly to the verification of the license if your search returned only one result.
  • Select the Supervising Practitioner tab.

How do I submit a complaint?

To submit a complaint, visit the Florida Health Care Complaint Portal at www.flhealthcomplaint.gov.

Answer the questions in the portal to determine how the complaint should be submitted. The portal will provide options based on the type of complaint you describe and will give further instructions.

How do I report sexual misconduct?

To report sexual misconduct, visit the Florida Health Care Complaint Portal at www.flhealthcomplaint.gov. You may submit reports of sexual misconduct anonymously.

If you are reporting sexual misconduct as part of your responsibility as the Designated Establishment Manager (DEM) of a massage establishment, make your report using Health Care Provider Complaint Form, found here. Submission instructions are included as a part of the form.

How do I request a copy of inspection results?

A copy of your inspection results is provided by the inspector at the conclusion of your inspection and can be requested at any time following an inspection.

If you are an applicant requesting the results of an initial inspection or the establishment owner or Designated Establishment Manager (DEM) of a licensed massage establishment, you may request inspection results by email to mqa.massagetherapy@flhealth.gov or by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
4052 Bald Cypress Way Bin C-06
Tallahassee, FL 32399

Please include your file number (for applicants) or license number (for licensees) and the approximate timeframe in which the inspection was completed.

Inspection results are public record. If you are not requesting inspection results related to your own application or license, you may submit a public records request. Information about public records requests can be found here.

How do I become a massage therapist?

You can become a massage therapist by meeting all licensing requirements, submitting an application and fees, and receiving a license. Additional information on the application process and requirements can be found under Licensed Massage Therapist in the Board website’s licensing tab.

How do I open a massage establishment?

You can open a massage establishment by meeting all licensing requirements, submitting an application and fees, and receiving a license. Additional information on the application process and requirements can be found under Licensed Massage Establishment (New Business or Change of Ownership) in the Board website’s licensing tab.

How do I apply for a for a license?

Information about licensing requirements and applying can be found in the licensing section of this website.

How do I create a partnership, limited liability company, or corporations update my filing?

Information about forming a business entity or updating filings can be found on the Division of Corporations website at www.sunbiz.org.

How do I renew my license?

See the Renewals section of this website for information on renewing your license.

For continuing education providers, complete your renewal through CEBroker.

Can an application fee be accepted by phone?

No. Application fees cannot be accepted by phone.

Can I change my method of application?

Yes. You can change your application method for an open massage therapist application. Massage establishments do not have multiple methods of application.

If you have submitted your application and need to change from examination to endorsement or from endorsement to examination, submit a request to change your method of application in writing to the board office, either by mail or by email to mqa.massagetherapy@flhealth.gov.

Be sure to include your file number in any correspondence related to your application.

Can I check the status of my application?

Yes. You can check the status of your application online at any time using the MQA Online Services Portal.

Can I make a change to my application?

Yes. In most cases, you can amend your application by sending us a request to do so in writing which includes the amendment you need to make.

Requests be sent by email to mqa.massagetherapy@flhealth.gov, or by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
4052 Bald Cypress Way, Bin C-06
Tallahassee, FL 32399

Can I withdraw my application?

Yes, in most cases. An open application can be withdrawn at any time prior to a decision being reached concerning its approval or denial.

Can I request a refund of my fees?

Yes, in most cases. A refund can be requested for up to three years from the date your fee payment was received, though a portion of fees are non-refundable once your application has been processed.

Can my school pay for my application?

Yes, in most cases. Usually this is done using an Other Payer Code while submitting your application. Your school will be able provide you with this code if they have been issued one for this purpose.

Do I need all supporting documents before submitting my application?

No. Applications submitted with fees will be processed, even if some items are missing.

If additional items are required to complete your application, board staff will provide you with a letter listing what is still needed with instructions on how to request and/or submit the remaining items. If you provided an email address, this letter will be emailed to you. You can also see a list of missing items at any time by checking your application status online using the MQA Online Services Portal.

Incomplete applications will remain open for one year from the date the application is received. Applications which are not completed within one year will be expired.

Can I make a fee payment after my application is submitted?

Yes. Your application will not be processed until your fee payment is received.

Fees can be paid online using the MQA Online Services Portal, or by mailing a check or money order. Fee payments should be mailed to:

Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
P.O. Box 6330
Tallahassee, FL 32314-6330

If you have already applied and received a file number, be sure to include that number with any payments you submit.

How long will it take to be licensed?

It depends on how long it takes for all supporting documentation to be received. Our current processing times for new applications can be found in the Licensing section. Additional supporting documents are typically reviewed within 1-3 business days of receipt.

When does my application expire?

Your application expires one year from the date your application was submitted.

Where should I mail my application and fees?

Applications and fees may be submitted by mail to:

Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
P.O. Box 6330
Tallahassee, FL 32314-6330

If you are submitting a fee payment for an application separate from the application, be sure to include the name the application was submitted under and the file number associated with the application.

Do massage therapists and establishment owners need to be background screened?

Yes. Massage therapists must be background screened pursuant to 480.041(3), Florida Statutes. Massage establishment owners must be background screened pursuant to 480.043(2), Florida Statutes.

When will my new establishment be inspected?

New massage establishment inspections generally occur shortly after all supporting documents are received. An inspector in your region will contact you directly at the phone number provided on your application to schedule your inspection.

What is inactive status?

INACTIVE status can be elected by a licensee who is not practicing in the state of Florida who wishes to maintain their license each renewal. Generally, this status is elected by licensees when they intend to return to practice in Florida, but cannot (or do not wish to) complete Continuing Education required for renewal. Facilities cannot elect INACTIVE status.

Licenses in INACTIVE status can be reactivated. A practitioner who has elected INACTIVE status is not authorized to practice in the state of Florida.

Can I put my massage therapist license in inactive status?

Yes. You may request a change to inactive status at any time. See our “How do I…?” for additional information.

Can I put my massage therapist license in retired status?

Yes. You may request a change to inactive status at any time. See our “How do I…?” for additional information.

Can I put my massage establishment license in inactive or retired status?

No. Massage establishment licenses cannot be placed in retired status.

What is delinquent status?

A license in DELINQUENT status indicates that a licensee who held a CLEAR, ACTIVE or CLEAR, INACTIVE license failed to renew their license before it expired. The licensee is not authorized to practice in the state of Florida.

Can I practice while my license is delinquent?

No. You cannot practice on a DELINQUENT license.

Can I give up (voluntarily relinquish) my license?

Yes, in most cases. If there is no pending disciplinary action against the license, it can be voluntarily relinquished at any time. See our “How do I…?” for additional information.

Once a license has been voluntarily relinquished, it cannot be reinstated. A license that has been voluntarily relinquished does not authorize the former licensee to practice.

What is retired status?

RETIRED status is a license status that can be elected by a licensee when they are not practicing in the state of Florida if they want to maintain their license in the event they might return to their profession by coming out of retirement. A licensee who has elected RETIRED is not authorized to practice in the state of Florida.

What is a massage establishment owner?

A massage establishment owner is defined in 480.033(10), Florida Statutes, as

…a person who has ownership interest in a massage establishment. The term includes an individual who holds a massage establishment license, a general partner of a partnership, an owner or officer of a corporation, and a member of a limited liability company and its subsidiaries who holds a massage establishment license.

What is a change of ownership?

Change of ownership refers to a change in the entity operating a massage establishment which requires the issuance of a new license pursuant to 480.043(9)(a), Florida Statutes.

The following are some examples of a change of ownership:

  • A license originally issued to an individual (sole proprietor), where the individual has changed.
  • A license originally issued to an individual (sole proprietor) who has since formed a Limited Liability Company or Corporation for the purposes of operating the massage establishment.
  • A license originally issued to a partnership where the partners have changed.
  • A license issued to a Limited Liability Company whose members have changed.
  • A license issued to a Corporation which has dissolved and reincorporated.

Do I have to update my massage establishment owner(s)?

Yes, massage establishment owners must be updated if your license was issued to a corporation and your corporate owners or officers have changed.

Some ownership updates may constitute a transfer or change of ownership. If a change of ownership has occurred, you will need to apply for a new massage establishment license.

Do I have to update my address?

Yes, you are required to update your address, pursuant to 456.035, Florida Statutes.

Are massage establishment owners background screened?

Yes. Massage establishment owners are background screened pursuant to 456.0135, Florida Statutes.

Are massage establishment owners required to report criminal offenses?

Yes. Massage establishment owners are required to report all criminal convictions even if adjudication was withheld and pleadings of guilty or nolo contendere (no contest) within 30 days of the entry of the conviction or plea, pursuant to 456.072(1)(x), Florida Statutes.

Are massage establishments required to have procedures for reporting human trafficking?

Yes, pursuant to Section 480.043(13), Florida Statutes, massage establishments must implement a procedure for reporting suspected human trafficking to the National Human Trafficking Hotline or to a local law enforcement agency. A sign detailing this reporting procedure must be posted in a conspicuous place in the establishment which is accessible to employees.

Are massage establishments responsible for knowing the license status of their massage therapists?

Yes. Massage establishments are responsible for knowing that massage therapists practicing in the establishment are licensed, and that licenses are in a status which allows them to practice.

Are massage establishments responsible for identification of massage therapists working in the establishment?

Yes. A person operating a massage establishment is responsible for keeping a copy of the valid government identification of each person working in the massage establishment, including massage therapists. They are also responsible for ensuring that each person working in the establishment is able to present their own government identification if requested by a department investigator or a law enforcement officer.

Are there additional city, county, or municipal requirements to operate a massage establishment?

Yes, in some places. Many cities, counties, and municipalities have additional requirements to operate a business, or specifically related to the operation of a massage establishment.

The Board of Massage Therapy is the licensing authority for massage establishments at the state level. For information on additional city, county, or municipal requirements, contact your local government.

Can a massage establishment change locations?

Yes, a massage establishment can change locations by submitting an application for massage establishment change of location.

A massage establishment may not change locations until the change of location application is complete. This includes receiving a passing result on an inspection of the new location.

Are additional certifications available for massage therapists (e.g., medical massage)?

Yes. Massage therapists may add a colonic irrigation certification to a massage therapist license. While there are many other professional certifications, no other certifications are officially recognized under Florida law.

Can a new massage establishment operate under a previous establishment license?

No, pursuant to Section 480.043(9)(a), Florida Statutes, if you are a new owner, you MAY NOT operate the establishment under a previous owner’s license.

Are massage therapists required to display their licenses?

Yes. Massage therapists are required to display their licenses when working in a massage establishment A photocopy of the license may be displayed in lieu of the original license. All displayed licenses must also have a photograph of the licensee affixed to the license.

Are massage therapists required to report criminal offenses?

Yes. Massage therapists are required to report all criminal convictions even if the adjudication was withheld and pleadings of guilty or nolo contendere (no contest) within 30 days of the entry of the conviction or plea.

Can a salon or spa offer massage services?

Yes, if the salon or spa holds a massage establishment license, and the services are performed by a massage therapist.

Information on the requirements for licensure and how to apply for a massage establishment license can be found in the Licensing  section under Licensed Massage Establishment (New Business or Change of Ownership).

Are massage therapists responsible for knowing if an establishment is licensed?

Yes. Massage therapists are responsible for knowing if the massage establishment they are working in is licensed and can be disciplined for working in an unlicensed establishment.

If you are unsure whether a massage establishment is properly licensed, we would encourage you to search for a license by establishment name or address using the Department of Health’s license verification portal.

Do I need a license to operate a massage establishment?

Yes. Operation of a massage establishment requires a license, pursuant to 480.043(1), Florida Statutes.

Does a massage establishment license allow other medical or cosmetic procedures to be performed?

No. A massage establishment license authorizes licensed massage therapists to practice massage in a specific location. Other medical or cosmetic procedures may require additional licensing by other licensing authorities.

Can a body wrapper practice massage therapy?

No. A massage therapist license is required to practice massage therapy in the state of Florida.

Massage is defined in Chapter 480.033(3), Florida Statutes as

…the manipulation of the soft tissues of the human body with the hand, foot, arm, or elbow, whether or not such manipulation is aided by hydrotherapy, including colonic irrigation, or thermal therapy; any electrical or mechanical device; or the application to the human body of a chemical or herbal preparation.

Body wrapping is regulated by the Department of Business and Professional Regulation, and is defined in Chapter 477.013(12), Florida Statutes as

…a treatment program that uses herbal wraps for the purposes of cleansing and beautifying the skin of the body, but does not include:
(a) The application of oils, lotions, or other fluids to the body, except fluids contained in presoaked materials used in the wraps; or
(b) Manipulation of the body’s superficial tissue, other than that arising from compression emanating from the wrap materials.

The practice of massage without a massage therapist license is a violation of Florida Statutes, and may carry penalties including citation and fines, administrative action, or criminal prosecution.

If you believe a person is practicing massage without a license or a massage therapist is practicing beyond the definition above, we encourage you to file a complaint with the Department of Health.

Can I find a list of massage establishments in my area?

Yes. The Department of Health license verification portal can be used to search for licensees by city, county, or zip code.

Has my massage establishment changed ownership?

A change of ownership has occurred when the entity holding the license changes. Pursuant to 480.043(9)(a), Florida Statutes:

A license issued to an individual, a partnership, a limited liability company, or another entity may not be transferred from the licensee to another individual, corporation, limited liability company, or another entity.

Some examples of change of ownership include:

  • A license originally issued to an individual (sole proprietor), where the individual has changed.
  • A license originally issued to an individual (sole proprietor) which now operates under a Limited Liability Company or Corporation.
  • A license originally issued to a partnership where the partners have changed.
  • A license issued to a Limited Liability Company whose members have changed.
  • A license issued to a Corporation which has dissolved and reincorporated.

Can I find out who is serving as Designated Establishment Manager (DEM) for a massage establishment?

Yes. The Designated Establishment Manager (DEM) of a massage establishment can be found using the Department of Health’s  license verification portal to search for the establishment license. The name and license number of the DEM will appear under the Supervising Practitioners tab.

Can I find out if a therapist is serving as the Designated Establishment Manager (DEM) for a massage establishment?

Yes. The establishment or establishments where a massage therapist serves as the DEM can be found using the Department of Health’s license verification portal to search for the massage therapist’s license. The name and license number of establishments where the therapist serves as DEM can be found under the Supervising Practitioners tab.

Are massage establishments inspected?

Yes. Licensed massage establishments are inspected annually at a minimum to ensure they are compliant with laws and rules.

I added or removed a corporate owner or officer. Do I need to update my massage establishment license?

Yes, corporations who have changed massage establishment owners by adding or removing corporate owners or officers are required to update their corporate officers.

Information about changing corporate owners and officers can be found in the Licensing section.

Some ownership changes may constitute a transfer or change of ownership. If a transfer of ownership has occurred, you will need to apply for a new massage establishment license.

I changed my business name with the Division of Corporations. Do I need to update my massage establishment license?

Yes. If you filed a change of name with the Division of Corporations for your partnership, corporation or limited liability company, you would need to update your establishment license by submitting a Massage Establishment Change of Name/Location application.

I changed my fictitious name registration with the Division of Corporations. Do I need to update my massage establishment license?

Yes. If you changed your fictitious name, registered a new fictitious name which you intend to use in advertisement, or cancelled your fictitious name registration with the Division of Corporations, you will need to update your establishment license by providing the fictitious name and registration number to the board in writing.

Your update can be made by email to MQA.MassageTherapy@flhealth.gov, or by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
4052 Bald Cypress Way, Bin C-06
Tallahassee, FL 32399

I purchased a business that holds a massage establishment license. Do I need a new one?

Yes, if you are a new owner, you MAY NOT operate the establishment under a previous owner’s establishment license. If a transfer of ownership has occurred, you will need to apply for a new massage establishment license.

Can a cosmetologist, barber or full specialist practice massage therapy?

No. A massage therapist license is required to practice massage therapy in the state of Florida, though cosmetologists, full specialists, and barbers can perform massage related to the hands, feet, and scalp in accordance with their practice acts.

Massage is defined in Chapter 480.033(3), Florida Statutes as

…the manipulation of the soft tissues of the human body with the hand, foot, arm, or elbow, whether or not such manipulation is aided by hydrotherapy, including colonic irrigation, or thermal therapy; any electrical or mechanical device; or the application to the human body of a chemical or herbal preparation.

Cosmetology and specialties thereunder are regulated by the Department of Business and Professional Regulation, and are defined in Chapter 477.013, Florida Statutes. Barbering is also regulated by the Department of Business and Professional Regulation, and is defined in Chapter 476.034, Florida Statutes.

The practice of massage without a massage therapist license is a violation of Florida Statutes, and may carry penalties including citation and fines, administrative action, or criminal prosecution.

If you believe a person is practicing massage without a license or a massage therapist is practicing beyond the definition above, we encourage you to file a complaint with the Department of Health.

Is a Designated Establishment Manager (DEM) required to operate a massage establishment?

Yes, under Section 480.043(12), Florida Statutes, as a condition of licensure, a massage establishment must have a designated establishment manager (DEM). There is no exemption from the requirement to designate an establishment manager.

My massage establishment is closing. What do I need to do?

If you massage establishment is closing and you no longer wish to hold the massage establishment license, you can submit a request to voluntarily relinquish your license.

What do inspectors look for during a massage establishment inspection?

A sample inspection form is available on the board website.

What is a massage establishment owner?

A massage establishment owner is defined in Section 480.033, Florida Statutes as

…means a person who has ownership interest in a massage establishment. The term includes an individual who holds a massage establishment license, a general partner of a partnership, an owner or officer of a corporation, and a member of a limited liability company and its subsidiaries who holds a massage establishment license.

Can a massage therapist display a copy of their license?

Yes. A photocopy of a massage therapist license may be displayed. A photograph of the licensee must be affixed to the photograph.

Are certain signs required in a massage establishment?

Yes. Signage required by 456.0341(3), Florida Statutes must be conspicuously displayed in a place accessible to employees, which substantially states:

If you or someone you know is being forced to engage in an activity and cannot leave, whether it is prostitution, housework, farm work, factory work, retail work, restaurant work, or any other activity, call the National Human Trafficking Resource Center at 888-373-7888 or text INFO or HELP to 233-733 to access help and services. Victims of slavery and human trafficking are protected under United States and Florida law.”

For massage establishments, this signage must also provide the relevant parts of the establishment’s reporting procedure for human trafficking, pursuant to 480.043(13), Florida Statutes.

Can a massage therapist practice colonic irrigation?

Yes, if they are certified to do so. This certification is shown as “COLONIC” on the face of the license of a certified massage therapist, and can be verified using the Department of Health’s license verification portal.

Are massage therapists required to have identification while working in a massage establishment?

Yes. Massage therapists and persons employed by a massage establishment must be able to present valid government identification at the request of a department investigator or law enforcement officer when working in an establishment.

Valid government identification includes any of the following:

  • A valid, unexpired driver’s license issued by any state, territory, or district of the United States
  • A valid, unexpired identification card issued by any state, territory, or district of the United States
  • A valid, unexpired United States passport
  • A naturalization certificate issued by the United States Department of Homeland Security
  • A valid, unexpired alien registration receipt card (green card)
  • A valid, unexpired employment authorization card issued by the United States Department of Homeland Security

Can a massage therapist practice in an establishment if the establishment license is delinquent?

No. A massage therapist may not practice in a massage establishment whose license is delinquent.

What is a massage establishment?

Massage establishment is defined in Chapter 480.033, Florida Statutes as

…a site or premises, or portion thereof, wherein a massage therapist practices massage.

Can a massage therapist work in a physician’s office that does not hold an establishment license?

Yes, in some circumstances. 480.043(14), Florida Statutes provides exemption from the requirement of massage establishment licensing when working in a physician’s (MD, DO, or DC) place of practice if the massage therapist is practicing on the physician’s patients:

Except for the requirements of subsection (13), this section does not apply to a physician licensed under chapter 457, chapter 458, chapter 459, or chapter 460 who employs a licensed massage therapist to perform massage on the physician’s patients at the physician’s place of practice. This subsection does not restrict investigations by the department for violations of chapter 456 or this chapter.

What is an interested party?

An interested party is defined in Rule 64B7-26.001(3), Florida Administrative Code, as

…an individual directly involved in the management of a massage establishment whose ownership entity is a corporation having more than $250,000 in business assets in this state.

What happens if a massage establishment license is not renewed?

If a massage establishment license is not renewed prior to its expiration date (August 31st of every odd year), the license becomes delinquent for a period of six months or until it is reinstated by the licensee. Massage therapy cannot be practiced in a massage establishment with a delinquent license.

If the establishment license has not renewed within six months after expiration of the establishment license will be set to null and void. Once the license is set to null and void, should the owner decide to regain a Florida license in the future, they will need to reapply and complete the full application process.

Who can apply for a massage establishment license?

A person who wants to operate a massage establishment may apply for a license, either as an individual (sole proprietor), or as a part of a partnership, corporation, limited liability company, or other entity.

Who is responsible for renewing and updating a massage establishment license?

Renewing and keeping a massage establishment license updated is the responsibility of the massage establishment owner(s) or a person specifically authorized by the owner(s).

Can a massage therapist work outside a massage establishment?

Yes, in specific locations listed in statute.

Chapter 480.046(1)(o), Florida Statutes provides places where a massage therapist may work outside a massage establishment:

(1) The following acts constitute grounds for denial of a license or disciplinary action, as specified in s. 456.072(2):
(o) Practicing massage at a site, location, or place which is not duly licensed as a massage establishment, except that a massage therapist, as provided by rules adopted by the board, may provide massage services, excluding colonic irrigation, at the residence of a client, at the office of the client, at a sports event, at a convention, or at a trade show.

Chapter 480.043(14), Florida Statutes provides additional exemption when working in a physician’s (MD, DO, or DC) place of practice when practicing on the physician’s patients:

Except for the requirements of subsection (13), this section does not apply to a physician licensed under chapter 457, chapter 458, chapter 459, or chapter 460 who employs a licensed massage therapist to perform massage on the physician’s patients at the physician’s place of practice. This subsection does not restrict investigations by the department for violations of chapter 456 or this chapter.

Are massage establishments notified when a DEM ends their designation?

Yes. Board staff will notify the establishment if a DEM ends their designation. If there is an email address of record for the establishment, notification will be sent to that address.

Are massage therapists notified when named as the DEM of an establishment?

Yes. Board staff will notify the establishment and the therapist named as the DEM of the establishment when the DEM has been added. If email addresses of record are available, notification will be sent to those addresses.

Can health care practitioners other than massage therapists serve as the DEM?

No, the Designated Establishment manage is required under statute to be a licensed massage therapist as defined in Section 480.033(11), Florida Statutes.

Can a massage establishment owner be a DEM?

Yes, if the massage establishment owner meets the requirements to be a DEM, they may serve as the DEM of their establishment.

Designated Establishment Manager (DEM) is a massage therapist licensed in Florida with an active license without restrictions, who is named by the establishment to be responsible for the operation of the establishment in compliance with Chapters 456 and 480, Florida Statutes and Rule 64B7, Florida Administrative Code.

Can a massage therapist working as an independent contractor serve as a DEM?

Yes. A massage therapist working as an independent contractor may serve as a DEM, so long as they are qualified to serve as a DEM.

Can a massage therapist be the DEM of more than one establishment?

Yes. A massage therapist may serve as the DEM for more than one establishment.

Can a massage therapist who is licensed in another state practice with that license in Florida?

No. Holding a license in another state does not authorize a massage therapist to practice massage in Florida.

Can a massage establishment have multiple DEMs?

No, an establishment can only have one DEM.

Can the address be hidden on a massage therapist’s license verification?

No. Practitioner addresses are public record, and cannot be hidden unless the massage therapist is exempt from public records disclosure pursuant to Chapter 119.071, Florida Statutes.

Can a DEM practice in other establishments?

Yes, there is nothing in statute or rule prohibiting a DEM from practicing in any massage establishment.

Can a DEM renew an establishment license?

No, unless the DEM is also an establishment owner. However, the DEM should ensure that the establishment is operating in compliance with the laws and rules which govern the license and may work with the establishment owner to ensure renewal is completed timely.

Do massage therapists need to register a fictitious name to advertise?

Yes, massage therapists are required to register a fictitious name if advertising their practice under a name that is not their legal name.

More information about fictitious name registration can be found on the Division of Corporations website at www.sunbiz.org.

Can I change my DEM?

Yes, if you are an establishment owner, you can change your DEM at any time.

How long does a massage establishment have to name a new DEM?

A massage establishment must name a new DEM within 10 days after the termination of a previous DEM, pursuant to 480.043(12), Florida Statutes.

Is there a way to find massage therapists in my area?

Yes. The Department of Health license verification portal can be used to search for licensees by city, county, or zip code.

How long does a massage therapist have to report that they are no longer serving as the DEM for an establishment?

A massage therapist must report that they are no longer serving as the DEM within three days, pursuant to Rule 64B7-26.0035(3), Florida Administrative Code.

I no longer wish to serve as the DEM for an establishment. Can I remove this designation?

Yes. A massage therapist may report that they are no longer serving as the DEM for the establishment.

I wish to serve as the DEM for an establishment. Can I designate myself?

No. The DEM of an establishment is named by the establishment owner.

Can a massage therapist work in multiple establishments?

Yes. Massage therapists are health care practitioners who are licensed under the Massage Practice Act (Chapter 480, Florida Statutes).

Health care practitioner is defined in 456.001(4), Florida Statutes, as

…any person licensed under chapter 457; chapter 458; chapter 459; chapter 460; chapter 461; chapter 462; chapter 463; chapter 464; chapter 465; chapter 466; chapter 467; part I, part II, part III, part V, part X, part XIII, or part XIV of chapter 468; chapter 478; chapter 480; part I or part II of chapter 483; chapter 484; chapter 486; chapter 490; or chapter 491.

I serve as the DEM for a massage establishment which is not compliant with laws and rules. What should I do?

As a DEM, you should address the issue with the massage establishment.  You may also consider reporting the issue by submitting a complaint (www.flhealthcomplaint.gov).

If the establishment refuses to comply and you no longer wish to serve as the DEM of an establishment, you can also remove your designation.

I received a report of possible sexual misconduct in the establishment where I serve as DEM. What should I do?

If you receive a report of a possible violation related to sexual misconduct, you are required to report the possible violation within three days. Your report should be made in the form of a complaint (www.flhealthcomplaint.gov).

Is the DEM provided with inspection results?

No. However, inspection results may be requested at any time and are provided to the massage establishment at the conclusion of the inspection.

Is the DEM required to be present during the inspection of the massage establishment?

No. The DEM is not required to be present during the inspection of a massage establishment.

Is a massage therapist license required to practice reiki?

Yes. The practice of reiki falls under the definition of massage.

Florida law does not provide for the licensing of reiki practitioners apart from a massage therapist license, nor exempt reiki practitioners from the requirement to hold a massage therapist license to receive compensation for their practice.

My establishment already has a business manager or compliance officer. Is a DEM still required?

Yes. Designated Establishment Manager is defined in section 480.033(11), Florida Statutes as

…a massage therapist who holds a clear and active license without restriction, who is responsible for the operation of a massage establishment in accordance with the provisions of this chapter, and who is designated the manager by the rules or practices at the establishment.

A business manager or compliance officer may serve as the DEM of an establishment if they are qualified under this definition.

Is a massage therapist license required to practice reflexology?

Yes. The modality of reflexology falls under the definition of massage.

Florida law does not provide for independent licensing of the modality of reflexology and does not exempt reflexologists from massage therapist licensing requirements.

Can I be my own DEM?

Yes, if you are a massage therapist who is qualified to be a DEM, you may serve as the DEM for your own establishment.

What is a DEM?

Designated Establishment Manager is defined in section 480.033(11), Florida Statutes as

…a massage therapist who holds a clear and active license without restriction, who is responsible for the operation of a massage establishment in accordance with the provisions of this chapter, and who is designated the manager by the rules or practices at the establishment.

Do massage therapists need to include their license number when advertising?

Yes. Massage therapists are required to include their license number when advertising.

Do massage therapists need identification when working in a massage establishment?

Valid government identification includes any of the following:

  • A valid, unexpired driver’s license issued by any state, territory, or district of the United States
  • A valid, unexpired identification card issued by any state, territory, or district of the United States
  • A valid, unexpired United States passport
  • A naturalization certificate issued by the United States Department of Homeland Security
  • A valid, unexpired alien registration receipt card (green card)
  • A valid, unexpired employment authorization card issued by the United States Department of Homeland Security

What are the qualifications of a DEM?

To be a DEM, a massage therapist must:

  • hold a clear and active license without restriction.
  • be responsible for the operation of a massage establishment in accordance with Chapter 456, Florida Statutes, 480, Florida Statutes, and 64B7, Florida Administrative Code.
  • be designated by the rules or practices at the establishment.

A massage therapist cannot serve as a DEM if they:

  • obtained a massage establishment license by fraud or misrepresentation.
  • are found guilty of fraud or deceit or of gross negligence, incompetency, or misconduct in the operation of a massage establishment.
  • Have had a final order entered against them or other disciplinary action taken against their license for sexual misconduct involving prostitution.
  • Have had a final order entered against them, or other disciplinary action taken for crimes related to the practice of massage therapy involving prostitution.
  • Have been convicted of or entered a plea of guilty or nolo contendere to any misdemeanor or felony crime, regardless of adjudication, related to prostitution or related acts as described in s. 796.07, Florida Statutes.

What are the responsibilities of a DEM?

A DEM is responsible for the ensuring the massage establishment operates in compliance with the laws and rules governing massage therapy.

Specific responsibilities of the DEM can be found in Rule 64B7-26.0035, Florida Administrative Code.

What is massage therapy?

Massage is defined in Chapter 480.033(3), Florida Statutes, as

…the manipulation of the soft tissues of the human body with the hand, foot, arm, or elbow, whether or not such manipulation is aided by hydrotherapy, including colonic irrigation, or thermal therapy; any electrical or mechanical device; or the application to the human body of a chemical or herbal preparation.

What is a massage therapist?

Massage therapist is defined in Chapter 480.033(4), Florida Statutes, as

…a person licensed as required by this act, who administers massage for compensation.

What is colonic irrigation?

Colonic irrigation is defined in Chapter 480.033(6), Florida Statutes, as

…a method of hydrotherapy used to cleanse the colon with the aid of a mechanical device and water.

Can massage therapists work anywhere?

No. Massage therapists may work in massage establishments, and in specific places outside a massage establishment as provided in statute.

Chapter 480.046(1)(o), Florida Statutes provides places where a massage therapist may work outside a massage establishment:

(1) The following acts constitute grounds for denial of a license or disciplinary action, as specified in s. 456.072(2):

(o) Practicing massage at a site, location, or place which is not duly licensed as a massage establishment, except that a massage therapist, as provided by rules adopted by the board, may provide massage services, excluding colonic irrigation, at the residence of a client, at the office of the client, at a sports event, at a convention, or at a trade show.

Additionally, a massage therapist employed by a physician to practice on the physician’s patients may practice at that physician’s place of practice. In this circumstance, an establishment license is not required. This exemption can be found in Chapter 480.043(14), Florida Statutes:

Except for the requirements of subsection (13), this section does not apply to a physician licensed under chapter 457, chapter 458, chapter 459, or chapter 460 who employs a licensed massage therapist to perform massage on the physician’s patients at the physician’s place of practice. This subsection does not restrict investigations by the department for violations of chapter 456 or this chapter.

Where can a massage therapist practice colonic irrigation?

Where can a massage therapist practice colonic irrigation?

A massage therapist can practice colonic irrigation in a massage establishment that is operating in compliance with 64B7-26.003, Florida Administrative Code, which includes that the establishment maintain colonic irrigation equipment in a safe and sanitary condition and maintain sterilization equipment if non-disposable colonic attachments are used.

Who can be a massage therapist?

A person can be a massage therapist in Florida by meeting the licensing requirements, submitting an application and fees, and receiving their license.

Where do I submit additional documents?

Generally, additional documents can be submitted to the board office by upload through the online application portal, by email to mqa.massagetherapy@flhealth.gov, or by mail to:

Florida Department of Health
Board of Massage Therapy
4052 Bald Cypress Way, Bin C-06
Tallahassee, FL 32399

Please note that some supporting documents must be received directly from the source, like transcripts and examination scores. Information about all required documents can be found under the Licensing section of this website by choosing the license you are applying for from the list and clicking Requirements.

What are the guidelines for admitting students with criminal history?

Each massage education program makes independent decisions about admissions into the program and may require a criminal background screening as part of that process.

How can I find declaratory statements?

For a complete list please visit our Declaratory Statements page.

How do I change my name?

Name changes require legal documentation showing the name change. To change your name, please submit supporting documents, which must be one of the following:

  1. A copy of a state issued marriage license that includes the original signature and seal from the clerk of the court.
  2. A divorce decree restoring your maiden name.
  3. A court order showing the name change (adoption, legal name change, federal identity change).
  4. A copy of a certificate of naturalization or H1B Employment Visa (Note: Foreign applicants and/or licensees may not have state issued documents)

Any one of these will be accepted unless the department has a question about the authenticity of the document.

If you wish to receive a new license that reflects the name change, you must request a duplicate license. Mail your $25.00 payment request to:

Division of Medical Quality Assurance
Licensure Support Services
P.O. Box 6320
Tallahassee, Florida 32314-6320

For requests by mail, please include your full name as it appears on your license, profession, license number, your new name, your date of birth, the last four digits of your social security number, and your signature. Please submit your name change along with supporting document(s) 5-7 business days to allow processing if you need to renew online.

If you do not require a new license to reflect your new name, you may submit your request online or by mail along with legible supporting document(s) to one of the following:

  •  Log onto your MQA Online Services Portal account , select “Request Name Change” from the “Manage My License” dropdown menu
  • Mailing address – DOH, Division of Medical Quality Assurance, Post Office Box 6320, Tallahassee, Florida 32314-6320

When will this change become effective?

Beginning with licenses expiring August 31, 2013, practitioners will be prompted to report continuing education credits during the renewal process.

Where can I find the minutes from the latest meeting?

The minutes from our board meetings can be found on our Meetings page and click on Past Meetings.

Do I have to wait until license renewal to report my continuing education credits to the electronic tracking system?

No, you can report your hours free of charge anytime during the biennium. For more information please visit www.CEatRenewal.com

Please Note: if you take a course from a Florida Board approved Provider they are required to report on your behalf. If you take a course from a National organization it is your responsibility to report completion. There may be other ways for you to obtain credit towards continuing education required for license renewal. For specific approved methods of obtaining continuing education for your profession please review the Board rules by visiting the Continuing Education Page on FLHealthSource.gov

What are the deadlines to have an item placed on the board agenda?

Agenda items must be submitted to the board office 30 days prior to any particular board meeting date. Staff must have sufficient time to review documentation prior to it being placed on the agenda. If, upon review, the application for licensure is found to be complete and requires review by the board members, it will be placed on the next available board meeting. The application must be complete at least 30 days prior to the board meeting date.

How do I report unlicensed activity?

Visit our Enforcement Website to download and complete our Unlicensed Activity Complaint Form. Before completing your complaint form, please be sure to review all instructions provided on the first page.

What will happen if I do not have the required continuing education for renewal?

Beginning in 2015 you will not be able to renew a license without having your continuing education reported into the continuing education tracking system. If you do not have the hours to report, your license will move to a delinquent status at expiration. In order to renew a delinquent license you will be required to complete the continuing education requirements. Additional fees may apply.

What is an Other Payer Code?

An ‘Other Payer Code’ is an option given to massage programs to pay for their student’s licensure fee.

I’m not receiving a response to my email inquiries?

Verify that you are using the email address info@floridasmassagetherapy.gov. Also, if you have SPAM blocker on your computer, you will not be able to receive emails from the Florida Board of Massage Therapy without updating your SPAM blocker to allow emails from the Department. Please update your SPAM blocker to receive emails from @floridasmassagetherapy.gov or contact our Licensure Support Services at (850)-488-0595, for Account ID and Password renewal information.

How do I file a complaint?

Information about filing a complaint can be found at www.flhealthcomplaint.gov.

Do I have to subscribe to the electronic tracking system?

No, subscriptions remain optional. There are a number of services you can receive by subscribing, however, it is optional. You can always search for courses, report your hours, and view your course history free of charge by creating a Basic Account.

How can I pay for my student’s application fee?

Instead of the student providing their own credit card for payment when completing the online registration application, they will have the option to enter the ‘€˜Other Payer Code‘ to complete the application process. The application will be uploaded for processing and will stay in pending status until the massage program makes the payment. Interested massage programs will need to register with the Florida Board of Massage Therapy as an Other Payer and receive an ‘Other Payer Code’.

Why do I receive an error when trying to print my temporary license?

If a PDF file fails to download, shows up blank, or freezes your internet browser, the file was most likely corrupted during the download process. To correct the problem, you will need to first clear your browser’s cache, then close and restart the browser, which entails logging back into MQA Services to continue downloading the document. If the cache is not cleared the cached version of the document, which is likely damaged, will still appear.

How will I know what has been reported?

You will be able to view your course history free of charge. Your course history will show all the courses that have been reported.

I am not a licensed practitioner in Florida; do I need a permit to provide expert witness testimony in a civil or criminal case?

If you are an allopathic physician, osteopathic physician or dentist, licensed in another state but do not hold a Florida medical license, and you plan to provide expert witness testimony in Florida, you must register for an Expert Witness Certificate. If you are interested in becoming an Expert Witness, please complete this survey.

How do I print a confirmation of License?

You can print a confirmation of license through the Practitioner Login  feature of MQA Services. The confirmation is available up to 30 days after you submit your online renewal request. After logging into the system with your User ID and password, select Print Confirmation of License from the navigation bar located on the left.

What is the difference in viewing my course history for free or subscribing to the continuing education tracking system?

With a free Basic Account you can view your basic course history, which will list the course name, educational provider name, date of completion and hours reported. It would then be up to you to determine whether all of the courses that have been reported will complete all of your specific continuing education requirements. You can also self-report any continuing education that may be missing. A Professional Account (paid subscription) provides you with all of the tracking tools that CE Broker offers. Your transcript will display what your specific CE requirements are and will calculate what requirements have been met and what may still be outstanding. A Professional Account is a subscription service and is not a requirement but it can be a useful tool in managing your Florida continuing education requirements should you chose to subscribe.

What is the process for placing programs on probation?

Beginning in 2013, if an approved program’€™s graduate passage rates do not equal or exceed the required passage rates for two consecutive calendar years, the board may place the program on probationary status pursuant to Chapter 120, F.S., and may require the program director to appear before the board to present a plan for remediation. If the program is placed on probationary status the program shall remain on probationary status until it achieves a graduate passage rate that equals or exceeds the required passage rate for any one calendar year. However, if the program, during the two calendar years following its placement on probationary status, does not achieve the required passage rate for any one calendar year, the board shall terminate the program pursuant to Chapter 120, F.S.

Is there an additional fee for using a credit card?

No. There is no additional cost for making a credit card payment online.

How do I request document certification?

If you need a written statement on a public record attesting to the record’s genuineness or that it is a true and correct copy, you may fill out the Online Request Form. Be sure to indicate you need a certified copy of the request form. A $25 fee will be charged, in addition to the public record Fees and Charges. Visit our Public Records page for information on how to request certified documents by mail.

What do I do if I have a complaint about a massage therapy education program in Florida?

Please send your complaint by email or letter, giving the details of your complaint to:

E-mail Address: MQA.ConsumerServices@flhealth.gov

Mailing Address:

Florida Department of Health
Consumer Services Unit
4052 Bald Cypress Way
Bin C75
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-3275

What is the process to become a new massage education program?

Please review the application for massage therapy school approval to access the application forms and the checklist for directions for a new program. For questions pertaining to the application process, you may contact the board office at info@floridasmassagetherapy.gov.

How can I get a list of practitioners by county?

To view a list of actively licensed practitioners, use the License Verification Search and select the county and profession from the drop-down list.

Where can I find a list of all the closed massage education programs in Florida?

A list of all the closed massage education programs in Florida is available below:

Closed Programs →

Closed Programs (Excel)

Advice for AOL users.

Users of later versions of AOL may experience problems accessing links within the Medical Quality Assurance (MQA) Services page when inside AOL and using the AOL browser. This is caused by pop-up security features within newer versions of AOL. Try to avoid accessing MQA Services from within AOL. The way around the problem, once you have started AOL, is to minimize the AOL window and, from your computer’s desktop, open up an Internet Explorer or Netscape Navigator browser. Type the url directly on the address line of the browser and press Enter. You will be able to access all the features within the MQA Services page without experiencing problems.

How do I know if this website is secured?

This website is secured using a thawte Digital Certificate. This ensures that all information you send to us via the World Wide Web will be encrypted. Please click on the thawte Trusted Site Seal which demonstrates our commitment to your security. In addition to the thawte Trusted Site Seal, you will also see the “lock” emblem displayed in the browser. In Internet Explorer 6, the lock emblem can be found in the lower right-hand corner of the status bar. In Internet Explorer 7.0, the lock emblem can be found next to the address (URL) line. In FireFox and Netscape, the emblem can be found in both locations.

How can I get a practitioner’s disciplinary history?

You can request a practitioner’s disciplinary history from our Public Records website under Disciplinary Records.

How do I request a declaratory statement?

Any substantially affected person (i.e. a licensee or applicant) may seek a Declaratory Statement. Declaratory statements regarding an opinion of a board, or the department when there is no board, as to the applicability of a statutory provision, or of any rule or order of the board, or department when there is no board, as it applies to the licensees particular set of circumstances, pursuant to Section 120.565, Florida Statutes. The petition seeking a declaratory statement must state with particularity the licensees set of circumstances and must specify the statutory provision, rule, or order that the licensee believes may apply to the set of circumstances.

How can I file a complaint against a licensee?

Print the Complaint Form with the Authorization for Release of Patient Records from our Enforcement site or call 1-888-419-3456 or (850)414-1976 to request one by phone. Complete the form and mail it to the address given on the form.

Apply for an Expert Witness Certification?

For Dentists, Medical Doctors and Osteopathic Physicians – To provide expert testimony concerning the prevailing professional standard of care, you must either be licensed in Florida OR you must possess an expert witness certificate. To apply for an “Expert Witness Certificate”:

  •  Go to our Online Application Login page.
  • First time users must create an account by clicking on the “Create an Account button” and following the prompts.
  • Once you have created an account, select your profession from the “Board/Council” drop down menu.
  • Under the “Profession” drop down menu, select either “Dental Expert Witness Certificate”, “Medical Doctor Expert Witness Certificate” or “Osteopathic Physician Expert Witness Certificate”.
  • Enter your email address and password and click “Login”.

How can I become a board member?

Board members are appointed by the governor and confirmed by the Senate. You may apply by contacting the Governor’s Appointment Office.

Governor’s Appointment Office
LL10 The Capitol
Tallahassee FL 32399-0001

Or by visiting the Governor’s Appointments Office website or email appointments@eog.myflorida.com.

How can I get a copy of the board’s agenda?

By visiting the board’s meetings page. Scroll to the bottom of the page and click on either past or upcoming meetings. Review the meeting dates to locate the agenda you need, and the board’s agenda should be posted on the right under Materials.

Who can attend board meetings?

All board meetings are open to the public and you are encouraged to attend. You can find a schedule to the upcoming board meetings on the Meetings Page.

What is the difference between License Verification and License Certification?

License Verification – Information regarding the licensure status of a practitioner. This is for use by persons or organizations that do not require a document certifying this information under seal. Licensure Certification – Specific document certifying licensure status and disciplinary history, prepared by a representative of the Division of Medical Quality Assurance and bearing a seal. This document is generally required for applicants seeking licensure in other states and for use in court proceedings. There is a $25 fee for this service in accordance with Rule 64B-4.001, F.A.C.

Does the department have assistance programs for impaired health care professionals?

Yes, Florida health care professionals can seek assistance for impairment through the Department’s Impaired Practitioner Programs – the Intervention Project for Nurses (IPN) or the Professionals Resource Network (PRN). Impairment may be as a result of misuse or abuse of alcohol or drugs, or both, or due to a mental or physical condition which could affect the licensee’s ability to practice with skill and safety.

Intervention Project for Nurses, Inc. (IPN)
Linda L. Smith, ARNP, M.Div, CAP
Chief Executive Officer
P.O. Box 49130
Jacksonville Beach, FL 32240-9130
Toll Free: (800) 840-2720
Telephone Number: (904) 270-1620
FAX: (904) 270-1633
E-Mail: lsmith@ipnfl.org

Professionals Resource Network, Inc. (PRN)
P.O. Box 1020
Fernandina Beach, Florida 32035-1020
Toll Free: (800) 888-8PRN (8776)
Telephone Number: 904-277-8004
Fax: 904-261-3996
E-Mail: admin@flprn.org

Do I have to report any criminal activities after I receive my license?

You are required to report all criminal activities after you receive your license. You may report the criminal offense(s) online via Online Services, by e-mail , or by mail:

Florida Department of Health
Licensure Support Services Unit
Bin #C-10
Tallahassee, FL 32399-3267

If reporting by e-mail or mail, provide the date of the offense, a description of the crime, and the county and state of jurisdiction.

Which professions have profiles that list education, specialty certification and other background information on-line?

All medical doctors, osteopathic physicians, chiropractic physicians, podiatrists, and advanced registered nurse practitioners have profiles that list this information.