Alaska Massage Therapy License Applications are Available
As we previously informed our members, Alaska House Bill 328 was signed into law on August 11, 2014. The law requires that all massage therapists practicing in Alaska must have a state-issued massage license. The law went into effect on July 15, 2015; however, because the Alaska State Board of Massage Therapists has not issued the regulations that will govern the licensing process yet, we do not know what rules will apply, and therefore we have not been able to adequately inform members about the process. However, the State is nonetheless accepting applications and issuing licenses at this time. Therefore, you should apply for your license now, if you have not already, even though the final rules are not yet in place.
Requirements for All License Applicants
All license applicants must be at least 18 years of age, must satisfactorily complete a criminal background check, must hold a current CPR certificate, and must pay the required fees. Applicants must also either qualify under the grandfathering provision, or qualify based on their education and exam completion.
The required fees for all applicants are:
- Initial application fee: $200
- Licensing fee: $350
- Fingerprinting/Background check fee: $60
Under the massage law’s grandfathering provision, anyone who applies for a massage license before July 1, 2017 can qualify by grandfathering by showing that they owned, operated, or worked for a massage therapy business and performed the practice of massage therapy before July 1, 2015. “Grandfathering” does not mean you automatically get a massage license without doing anything. You still must fill out and send in an application to the State to receive your license by grandfathering.
You must apply before July 1, 2017 to obtain a license by grandfathering. After that date, all applicants must prove that they completed 500 hours of massage education and passed a national massage exam.
In order to apply by grandfathering, you must prove that you owned, operated, or worked for a massage therapy business and performed the practice of massage therapy before July 1, 2015, by submitting either:
(A) copies of your signed federal income tax returns for one of the five years immediately preceding July 1, 2015, listing your occupation as massage therapy in Alaska;
(B) copies of your signed schedule C federal income tax returns for one of the five years immediately preceding July 1, 2015, demonstrating that you have reported income from the practice of massage therapy in Alaska;
(C) a sworn statement from your employer in Alaska attesting that you have practiced massage therapy within the five years immediately preceding July 1, 2015, a copy of the business license of your employer, and a copy of your Form W-2 or Form 1099-MISC from the same employer;
(D) a copy of a municipal occupational license that was current on June 20, 2015 from a municipality in Alaska, stating your occupation as massage therapist;
(E) documentation that you have, for at least one year immediately preceding July 1, 2015,* been an active member, as a massage therapist, in a national professional massage therapy association, such as ABMP, that was established before 2000, offers professional liability insurance as a benefit of membership, and has an established code of professional ethics; or
(F) other documentation satisfactory to the board.
Please note: If you are applying under (E) above based on your ABMP membership, please email Nancy Potter at email@example.com to request a membership verification letter. We will then email a verification letter to you which you must send in to the State with your application.
Regular (Non-Grandfathering) Applicants
Applicants who do not qualify for grandfathering, or who apply after June 30, 2017, must have completed 500 hours of approved massage education and passed a national massage exam that has been approved by the Board, in addition to completing the criminal background check, holding a current CPR certificate, and paying the required fees.
Numerous practices are exempted from the licensing requirement, including structural integration/Rolfing, energy work, Native American Healing, and massage in the athletic departments of state-funded institutions and schools approved by the Board. Please see section 08.61.080 on pages 6-8 of the law for the full list of exemptions.
Titles and Marketing Materials
After you receive your license, you will be required to include the title “Licensed Massage Therapist” or “LMT” after your name on all signs, business cards, and other marketing materials.
Click here for the grandfathering application form.
Click here for the regular (non-grandfathering) application form.
Click here for the Alaska Board of Massage Therapists website.
Specific questions about the application should be directed to the State. Please direct your inquiries to:
Randy Brown, Occupational Licensing Examiner
Phone: (907) 465-3811
Fax: (907) 465-2974
P.O. Box 110806
Juneau, AK 99811-0806
For general questions, feel free to contact ABMP’s Government Relations Coordinator, Nancy Potter, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
*The license application form states that the applicable membership period is one year immediately preceding the date of application, but the massage law states that the applicable period is one year immediately preceding July 1, 2015. We are currently seeking clarification from the state on this. If you have questions please contact email@example.com.