Code of Virginia

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Code of Virginia
Title 54.1. Professions and Occupations
Subtitle II. Professions and Occupations Regulated by the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation and Boards within the Department
Chapter 2. General Provisions
2/29/2024

Chapter 2. General Provisions.

§ 54.1-200. Composition of regulatory boards.

A regulatory board established to administer a system of certification or licensure as provided in §§ 54.1-310 and 54.1-311, unless otherwise specified by law, shall consist of at least five members. The Board for Professional and Occupational Regulation may recommend to the General Assembly the number of members to be placed on the regulatory board. Two members of each board established hereafter shall be citizen members and the remainder of the members shall be practitioners of the profession or occupation which is being regulated. Citizen members shall participate in all matters except decisions regarding the examination of applicants for licensure or decisions regarding the professional competence of licensees. Terms of the members shall be staggered to ensure a continuing body.

1979, c. 408, § 54-1.27; 1988, c. 765; 1993, c. 499.

§ 54.1-201. Powers and duties of regulatory boards.

A. The powers and duties of regulatory boards shall be as follows:

1. To establish the qualifications of applicants for certification or licensure by any such board, provided that all qualifications shall be necessary to ensure either competence or integrity to engage in such profession or occupation.

2. To examine, or cause to be examined, the qualifications of each applicant for certification or licensure within its particular regulatory system, including when necessary the preparation, administration and grading of examinations.

3. To certify or license qualified applicants as practitioners of the particular profession or occupation regulated by such board.

4. To levy and collect fees for certification or licensure and renewal that are sufficient to cover all expenses for the administration and operation of the regulatory board and a proportionate share of the expenses of the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation and the Board for Professional and Occupational Regulation.

5. To promulgate regulations in accordance with the Administrative Process Act (§ 2.2-4000 et seq.) necessary to assure continued competency, to prevent deceptive or misleading practices by practitioners and to effectively administer the regulatory system administered by the regulatory board. The regulations shall not be in conflict with the purposes and intent of this chapter or of Chapters 1 (§ 54.1-100 et seq.) and 3 (§ 54.1-300 et seq.) of this title.

6. To ensure that inspections are conducted relating to the practice of each practitioner certified or licensed by the regulatory board to ensure that the practitioner is conducting his practice in a competent manner and within the lawful regulations promulgated by the board.

7. To place a regulant on probation or revoke, suspend or fail to renew a certificate or license for just causes as enumerated in regulations of the board. Conditions of probation may include, but not be limited to the successful completion of remedial education or examination.

8. To receive complaints concerning the conduct of any regulant and to take appropriate disciplinary action if warranted.

9. To provide a regulant subject to a disciplinary action with a notice advising the regulant of his right to be heard at an informal fact-finding conference pursuant to § 2.2-4019 of the Administrative Process Act. The notice shall state that if the regulant does not request an informal fact-finding conference within 30 days of receipt of the notice, the board may issue a case decision as defined in § 2.2-4001, with judicial review of the case decision in accordance with § 2.2-4026. If the regulant asserts his right to be heard prior to the board issuing its case decision, the board shall remand the case to an informal fact-finding conference. The notice required by this subdivision shall be sent in a manner that allows for confirmation of delivery or, if agreed to by the parties, through electronic means, provided that the board retains sufficient proof of the electronic delivery, which may be an electronic receipt of delivery, a confirmation that the notice was sent by facsimile, or a certificate of service prepared by the sender confirming the electronic delivery.

10. To promulgate canons of ethics under which the professional activities of regulants shall be conducted.

B. A regulant shall furnish, upon the request of a person to whom the regulant is providing or offering to provide service, satisfactory proof that the regulant (i) is duly licensed, certified, or registered under this subtitle and (ii) has obtained any required bond or insurance to engage in his profession or occupation.

C. As used in this section, "regulant" means any person, firm, corporation, association, partnership, joint venture, or any other legal entity required by this subtitle to be licensed, certified, or registered.

1979, c. 408, § 54-1.28; 1983, c. 569; 1988, c. 765; 1993, c. 499; 2005, c. 383; 2012, c. 769; 2013, cc. 398, 486; 2023, cc. 100, 101.

§ 54.1-201.1. Issuance of temporary licenses and certifications.

A. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the regulatory boards within the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation may issue a temporary license or certification to any applicant who holds a comparable license or certification issued by another state, provided (i) the license or certificate is valid, (ii) the applicant is in good standing with the regulatory entity that issued the license or certification, and (iii) the applicant simultaneously submits a completed application for a Virginia license or certification.

B. Any person who receives a temporary license or certification pursuant to this section shall be subject to the jurisdiction of the issuing regulatory board.

C. Any license or certification issued pursuant to this section shall be valid for a period not to exceed 45 days from the date of issuance and may not be renewed.

2010, cc. 260, 280.

§ 54.1-202. Monetary penalty; delegation to Director of authority enter consent agreements.

A. Any person licensed or certified by a regulatory board who violates any statute or regulation pertaining to that regulatory board who is not criminally prosecuted shall be subject to the monetary penalty provided in this section. If a regulatory board determines that a respondent is guilty of the violation complained of, the board shall determine the amount of the monetary penalty for the violation, which shall not exceed $2,500 for each violation. The penalty may be sued for and recovered in the name of the Commonwealth.

B. Any regulatory board within the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation may adopt a resolution delegating to the Director the authority to enter into consent agreements on behalf of the regulatory board with regulants of the board. Such resolution shall specify the types of violations to which the delegation applies and the maximum monetary penalty that may be imposed in a consent agreement for each regulatory violation. No delegation of authority pursuant to this subsection shall provide for a monetary penalty over $2,500 per regulatory violation.

1979, c. 408, § 54-1.22; 1988, c. 765; 1999, cc. 37, 950; 2001, c. 832; 2005, c. 383.

§ 54.1-203. Recovery of cost after grant of formal fact-finding.

After a formal fact-finding pursuant to § 2.2-4020 wherein a sanction is imposed to fine, or to suspend, revoke or deny renewal of any license, certificate or registration, the regulatory board or the Department may assess the holder thereof the cost of conducting such fact-finding when the board or Department has final authority to grant such license, certificate or registration, unless the board or Department determines that the offense was inadvertent or done in a good faith belief that such act did not violate a statute or regulation. The cost shall be limited to (i) the reasonable hourly rate for the hearing officer and (ii) the actual cost of recording the proceedings.

1983, c. 401, § 54-1.22:1; 1988, c. 765.

§ 54.1-204. Prior convictions not to abridge rights.

A. A person shall not be refused a license, certificate or registration to practice, pursue, or engage in any regulated occupation or profession solely because of a prior criminal conviction, unless the criminal conviction directly relates to the occupation or profession for which the license, certificate or registration is sought. However, the regulatory board shall have the authority to refuse a license, certificate or registration if, based upon all the information available, including the applicant's record of prior convictions, it finds that the applicant is unfit or unsuited to engage in such occupation or profession.

B. In determining whether a criminal conviction directly relates to an occupation or profession, the regulatory board shall consider the following criteria:

1. The nature and seriousness of the crime;

2. The relationship of the crime to the purpose for requiring a license to engage in the occupation;

3. The extent to which the occupation or profession might offer an opportunity to engage in further criminal activity of the same type as that in which the person had been involved;

4. The relationship of the crime to the ability, capacity or fitness required to perform the duties and discharge the responsibilities of the occupation or profession;

5. The extent and nature of the person's past criminal activity;

6. The age of the person at the time of the commission of the crime;

7. The amount of time that has elapsed since the person's last involvement in the commission of a crime;

8. The conduct and work activity of the person prior to and following the criminal activity; and

9. Evidence of the person's rehabilitation or rehabilitative effort while incarcerated or following release.

C. A regulatory board or department may require any applicant for registration, licensure or certification to submit to fingerprinting and to provide personal descriptive information to be forwarded along with the applicant's fingerprints through the Central Criminal Records Exchange to the Federal Bureau of Investigation for the purpose of obtaining criminal history record information regarding such applicant. Such applicant shall pay the cost of the fingerprinting or a criminal records check or both.

The regulatory board or department may enter into a contract to obtain the fingerprints and descriptive information as required for submission to the Central Criminal Records Exchange in a manner and format approved by the Central Criminal Records Exchange.

The Central Criminal Records Exchange, upon receipt of an applicant's record or notification that no record exists, shall make a report to the regulatory board or department or their designee, who must belong to a governmental entity. If an applicant is denied a registration, license or certificate because of the information appearing in his criminal history record, the regulatory board or department shall notify the applicant that information obtained from the Central Criminal Records Exchange contributed to such denial. The information shall not be disseminated except as provided for in this section.

D. A regulatory board or department shall consider the criminal information as contained in the applicant's state or national criminal history in lieu of the applicant providing certified copies of such court records in determining whether a criminal conviction directly relates to an occupation or profession or if an applicant is unfit or unsuited to engage in an occupation or profession. The regulatory board or department may request additional information from the applicant in making such determination.

1979, c. 408, § 54-1.21; 1988, c. 765; 2003, c. 582; 2009, c. 667.

§ 54.1-205. Universal license recognition.

A. The regulatory boards within the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation shall, upon application by an individual, recognize licenses or certificates issued by another state as fulfillment of qualifications for licensure or government certification in the Commonwealth if the following conditions are met:

1. The individual holds a current and valid professional or occupational license or government certification in another state in a profession or occupation with a similar scope of practice, as determined by the board in the Commonwealth;

2. The individual has held the professional or occupational license or government certification in the other state for at least three years;

3. The board in the other state or state of original licensure required the individual to pass an examination and to meet certain standards related to education, training, or experience;

4. There are no pending investigations or unresolved complaints against the individual, and the board in the other state holds the individual in good standing;

5. The individual does not have a disqualifying criminal record as determined by the board in the Commonwealth in accordance with § 54.1-204;

6. No board in another state has imposed discipline on the licensee, except for discipline involving only a financial penalty and no harm to the health or economic well-being of the public; and

7. The individual pays all applicable fees.

B. The regulatory boards within the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation shall, upon application by an individual, recognize work experience in another state as fulfillment of qualifications for licensure or government certification in the Commonwealth if the following conditions are met:

1. The individual worked in another state that does not use a professional or occupational license or government certification to regulate a profession or occupation, but the Commonwealth uses a professional or occupational license or government certification to regulate a profession or occupation with a similar scope of practice, as determined by the board;

2. The individual has worked in the profession or occupation for at least three years;

3. The individual passes any examination required by the board of applicants for licensure or certification; and

4. The individual satisfies the conditions outlined in subdivisions A 5, 6, and 7.

C. The regulatory boards within the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation may require an individual seeking a professional or occupational licensure or government certification pursuant to this section to pass a jurisprudential examination specific to relevant state laws and administrative rules that regulate such profession or occupation if such an examination is required of other applicants for the same license or certification.

D. For purposes of this section, "other state" or "another state" means any state, territory, possession, or jurisdiction of the United States.

E. This section shall not apply to any professional services, as defined in § 2.2-4301.

2023, cc. 2, 3.