Physical Therapy: Licensing, Registration, and Renewal
The New Mexico Regulation and Licensing Department has implemented an online licensing system for all Physical Therapy applications and license renewals. This investment will simplify the licensing process, making it easier for applicants and licensees to apply for and renew licenses in New Mexico.
Effective immediately, applications for initial licensure and renewal must be submitted through the online portal.
Please note, you may be required to upload additional documents which will be determined by the pathway in which you submit your application or renewal application.
Click here to apply or renew.
Visit the NM-PLUS link above and click on the “Self Register” link.
- Fill out the presented form and click “Register.”
- Once you successfully complete your registration form, you will receive an email (at the email address you entered) from email@example.com that will allow you to set your password (if you do not see the email, please check your inbox or spam/junk folder to ensure you received this important email).
- After setting your password, you can then enter the portal and renew your license. Once renewed, please print the electronic copy of your license which you may use until your official license is received from the board office.
** Please note, if you have completed the steps above, and upon entering the portal, if you do not see your license information, you will need to email the RLD IT Support Team with the following information:
Email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject Line: Renewal Registration Complete
Within the body of the email, please also include your name and license number.
Thank you for your patience as we modernize our licensing platforms to better serve you!
Look up or verify a license
Click HERE to look up or verify a license.
See “Search License” for a basic license search.
For official license verification, see “License Verification Request.” Licensee name and license type are required information on this form, and having the license number will help expedite the verification process. The Search License feature can help you locate a specific license number.
Forms and Applications
Licensure qualifications, licensure from foreign schools, temporary licenses, and reinstatement
A. An applicant for licensure as a physical therapist shall submit a completed application and have the following minimum qualifications:
(1) be a graduate of an accredited physical therapy program approved by the board;
(2) have successfully passed the national physical therapy examination approved by the board; and
(3) have successfully passed the state jurisprudence examination.
B. An applicant for licensure as a physical therapist who has been educated outside the United States shall submit a completed application and meet the following minimum qualifications in addition to those required in Subsection A of this section:
(1) provide satisfactory evidence that the applicant’s education is substantially equivalent to the requirements of physical therapists educated in accredited educational programs in the United States, as determined by the board. If the board determines that a foreign-educated applicant’s education is not substantially equivalent, it may require completion of additional coursework before proceeding with the application process;
(2) provide evidence that the applicant is a graduate of a school of training that is recognized by the foreign country’s own ministry of education or similar institution;
(3) provide written proof of authorization to practice as a physical therapist without limitations in the legal jurisdiction where the postsecondary institution from which the applicant has graduated is located;
(4) have the applicant’s educational credentials evaluated by a board-approved credential evaluation agency; and
(5) participate in an interim supervised clinical practice period as may be prescribed by the board.
C. The board may issue an interim permit to a foreign-trained applicant who satisfies the board’s requirements. An interim permit shall be issued for the purpose of participating in a supervised clinical practice period.
D. If the foreign-educated physical therapist applicant is a graduate of a college accredited by the commission on accreditation in physical therapy education, the board shall waive requirements of paragraphs (1), (2), (4), and (5) of Subsection B of this section.
E. An applicant for licensure as a physical therapist assistant shall submit a completed application and meet the following minimum requirements:
(1) be a graduate of an accredited physical therapist assistant program approved by the board; and
(2) have successfully passed the national physical therapy examination approved by the board.
F. An applicant for licensure as a physical therapist or physical therapist assistant shall file a written application on forms provided by the board. A nonrefundable application fee and the cost of the examination shall accompany the completed written application.
G. Applicants who fail to pass the examinations shall be subject to requirements determined by board regulations prior to being approved by the board for subsequent testing.
H. The board or its designee shall issue an expedited license to a physical therapist or physical therapist assistant who has a valid unrestricted license from another United States licensing jurisdiction.
I. Prior to licensure, if prescribed by the board, the board or its designee may issue a temporary nonrenewable license to a physical therapist or physical therapist assistant who has completed the education and experience requirements of the Physical Therapy Act. The temporary license shall allow the applicant to practice physical therapy under the supervision of a licensed physical therapist until a permanent license is approved that shall include passing the national physical therapy examination.
J. The board or its designee may issue a temporary license to a physical therapist or physical therapist assistant performing physical therapy while teaching an educational seminar who has met the requirements established by regulation of the board.
K. A physical therapist or physical therapist assistant licensed under the provisions of the Physical Therapy Act shall renew the physical therapist’s or physical therapist assistant’s license as specified in board rules. A person who fails to renew their license by the date of expiration shall not practice physical therapy as a physical therapist or physical therapist assistant in New Mexico.
L. Reinstatement of a lapsed license following a renewal deadline requires payment of a renewal fee and late fee.
M. Reinstatement of a physical therapist or physical therapist assistant license that has lapsed for more than 3 years, without evidence of continued practice in another state pursuant to a valid unrestricted license in that state, requires reapplication and payment of fees, as specified in board rules. The board shall promulgate rules establishing the qualifications for reinstatement of a lapsed license.
N. The board may establish, by rule, activities to periodically assess continuing competence to practice physical therapy.
O. A physical therapist shall refer a patient to the patient’s licensed health care provider if:
(1) after 30 days of initiating physical therapy intervention, the patient has not made measurable or functional improvement with respect to the primary complaints of the patient; provided that the 30-day limit shall not apply to:
(a) treatment provided for a condition related to a chronic, neuromuscular or developmental condition for a patient previously diagnosed by a licensed health care provider as having a chronic, neuromuscular or developmental condition;
(b) services provided for health promotion, wellness, fitness or maintenance purposes; or
(c) services provided to a patient who is participating in a program pursuant to an individual education plan or individual family service plan under federal law; or
(2) at any time, the physical therapist has reason to believe the patient has symptoms or conditions requiring treatment that is beyond the scope of practice of the physical therapist.
P. As used in this section, “licensed health care provider” means:
(1) a medical doctor or an osteopathic physician licensed pursuant to the Medical Practice Act [Chapter 61, Article 6 NMSA 1978];
(2) a chiropractic physician licensed pursuant to the Chiropractic Physician Practice Act [Chapter 61, Article 4 NMSA 1978];
(3) a podiatrist licensed pursuant to the Podiatry Act [Chapter 61, Article 8 NMSA 1978];
(4) a dentist licensed pursuant to the Dental Health Care Act [Chapter 61, Article 5A NMSA 1978];
(5) a doctor of oriental medicine licensed pursuant to the Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine Practice Act [Chapter 61, Article 14A NMSA 1978];
(6) a certified nurse practitioner licensed pursuant to the Nursing Practice Act [Chapter 61, Article 3 NMSA 1978];
(7) a certified nurse-midwife licensed pursuant to the Nursing Practice Act and registered with the public health division of the Department of Health as a certified nurse-midwife;
(8) a certified nurse specialist licensed pursuant to the Nursing Practice Act; or
(9) a physician assistant licensed pursuant to the Medical Practice Act [Chapter 61, Article 6 NMSA 1978].
Foreign-trained applicants must submit an FCCPT report or CGFNS report with a visa verification to be considered for application. Applicants would still need to provide a notarized form for a background check through the Department of Public Safety, as well as official transcripts and an official verification or existing state licenses.
1.) Submitted application with jurisprudence exam. Jurisprudence exam is based on the New Mexico Administrative Code as well as governing statutes, found here: https://www.rld.nm.gov/boards-and-commissions/individual-boards-and-commissions/physical-therapy/statutes-rules-and-rule-hearings/
2.) Department of Public Safety Authorization for Information form – mailed to DPS on the top line address of the form, with a $15 check or money order and the form being notarized.
3.) Official transcripts sent by school registrars office or similar administrative entity.
4.) Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy (FSBPT) Score Report sent to us through their website.
5.) If applying for Assistant license, a Supervisory Form is also required.
Transcripts and other supporting documentation can be either sent electronically to the board email: email@example.com, or mailed to PO Box 25101, Santa Fe, NM 87504.
Timeline for application process to completion is dependent upon all required documentation being received by our office. Background check approvals are received from DPS once a week depending on their backlog.
Renewals occur on February 1. Per regulation, licensees cannot be licensed for more than a 2-year term, and dependent upon when the initial licensure occurred, would determine the renewal cycle a licensee is on.
A. Renewal of license.
(1) A licensed physical therapist and a physical therapist assistant shall apply for license renewal and pay the renewal fee as set forth in 16.20.5 NMAC, Schedule of Fees.
(2) Licenses will be renewed biennially. Licenses will expire on February 1 following no more than two years of licensure.
B. The board office will mail a renewal notice to each licensee no later than December 15 at the address on record. Timely renewal of license is the full and complete responsibility of the licensee. If the licensee does not receive the renewal notification within a reasonable time after December 15, it is the responsibility of the licensee to contact the board office. Non-receipt of the renewal form by the licensee will not exempt licensure expiration or late penalty fees.
C. Each licensee is responsible for submitting the required renewal fee by the expiration date whether or not a renewal notice is received by the licensee and licensee shall not practice if license is expired.
D. All license renewals postmarked after February 1 will be subject to a late fee of $250 for a physical therapist and $200 for a physical therapist assistant. (Refer to 16.20 5 NMAC, Schedule of Fees.)
[184.108.40.206 NMAC – Rp, 220.127.116.11 NMAC, 2/24/2022]
Renewals occur on February 1. Per regulation, licensees can not be licensed for more than a 2-year term, and dependent upon when the initial licensure occurred, would determine the renewal cycle a licensee is on.
Licenses that have been expired for longer than a year must provide evidence of 15 continuing education hours per year expired to be considered. Please keep in mind before submitting applications that application fees are nonrefundable, and applications without continuing education hours to correspond with every year expired will be held until those hours are provided.