Considering California certification instead of national

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Considering California certification instead of national

Postby SoCal_MT on Tue Mar 27, 2012 10:10 am

Hi everyone! :)

I've been doing massage in Southern California for over 10 years and have about 850 hours of massage education. I'm currently licensed in the city I work in, but to renew my license for next year I would first have to get nationally certified. Since the national certification process appears to be very time consuming and expensive, I'm considering not renewing my city license and becoming a California State certified massage therapist (CMT) instead.

I was looking at the California Massage Therapy Council (CMTC) website this morning and it looks like it will take less time and be less expensive for me to get certified by the CMTC than it would for me to get nationally certified.

https://www.camtc.org/FormDownloads/level_b.pdf

Even though I have almost 10 months before my city license expires, to be on the safe side I'd like to get started with either the CMTC certification process or national certification sometime during the next two months. I'd really appreciate any advice or suggestions from other massage therapists who are either nationally certified, California State certified, or even better still, have been through the process to get both certifications. Thanks! :)
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Re: Considering California certification instead of national

Postby MassageMaven on Tue Mar 27, 2012 3:25 pm

I'm pretty sure that even if you got nationally certified you would still need to get a CAMTC state or city license to work in California.

In my opinion CAMTC is the way to go as it allows portability anywhere in CA, but a city is only good in that city. Additionally, the licensing process in many cities is done through the police department. I was very excited when I had the option to go through the CAMTC as the process through the LAPD was SLOW, required I get a medical exam and take a test that made sure I would practice good hygiene in case I really was a prostitute. With CAMTC I renew my license every 2 years instead of every year.
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Re: Considering California certification instead of national

Postby SoCal_MT on Wed Mar 28, 2012 9:22 am

Thanks so much for your reply "MassageMaven"! :)

I'd be interested to know approximately how long it took you to complete the state certification process and how much did it end up costing you?

MassageMaven wrote:I'm pretty sure that even if you got nationally certified you would still need to get a CAMTC state or city license to work in California.
Yes, this is true. National certification wasn't required when I first became licensed in the city I work in, but now it is.

MassageMaven wrote:In my opinion CAMTC is the way to go as it allows portability anywhere in CA, but a city is only good in that city.
Even though I currently do all of my massage work in one city, having the flexibility of being able to work anywhere in the state without needing more than one license is a definite advantage.

MassageMaven wrote:With CAMTC I renew my license every 2 years instead of every year.
What is the cost for renewing your state license and what are the requirements?
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Re: Considering California certification instead of national

Postby MassageMaven on Wed Mar 28, 2012 10:17 am

The cost of obtaining your license is the license fee ($150) + cost your school charges to mail your transcripts +fingerprinting fee + cost of passport photos + postage.

The steps to file an application are outlined here:

https://www.camtc.org/FormDownloads/CAMTCApplicationChecklist.pdf

The process can take 90 days... or more if there are issues with the information submitted.

Renewal is $150 and there are no other requirements at this time.
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Re: Considering California certification instead of national

Postby Rozax on Fri Mar 30, 2012 3:36 am

I admit, I'm kinda dragging my feet on licensing. I'm nationally certified, but since California doesn't require it yet, I'm waiting. I'll be attending a small conference soon, though, so I'll be able to talk to others about licensing and certification. I've got all the facts down pat, but I like hearing other's opinions before diving in, even though this will be required in the near future.
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Re: Considering California certification instead of national

Postby Minxz on Wed Apr 04, 2012 10:27 am

I am in the processing of getting CMTC licensing. I have been approved and am just awaiting my license right now. The city I live in tried to make me get their license as well which after fingerprinting etc would have cost an additional $300.00 and they wanted it updated annually I contacted the CMTC and they contacted the city so that now all I need is the State license and my business license. I think the state licensing is a great idea.
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Re: Considering California certification instead of national

Postby Rozax on Sat Jun 23, 2012 7:34 pm

Minxz wrote:I am in the processing of getting CMTC licensing. I have been approved and am just awaiting my license right now. The city I live in tried to make me get their license as well which after fingerprinting etc would have cost an additional $300.00 and they wanted it updated annually I contacted the CMTC and they contacted the city so that now all I need is the State license and my business license. I think the state licensing is a great idea.

Now that I know more about the regulations in California, state certification definitely sounds like a good idea. I still can't fathom why my National Certification isn't acceptable, though. Oh, well. Now I've got NCTM, AMTA, and CAMTC to fit on my business card.
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Re: Considering California certification instead of national

Postby JaeMarie on Sun Jun 24, 2012 10:59 am

I still can't fathom why my National Certification isn't acceptable, though.


The national certification offered by the NCBTMB is not a national certification in the sense that it's offered by a nationally governing body that governs massage therapy for the entire country (there is NO governing body that does that - each state has their own regulations.) It is however a certification offered to anyone across the country that meets the criteria and passes the exam. What's confused the two over the years is that some states have opted to use the NCETMB for licensing purposes, instead of crafting their own exams.
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Re: Considering California certification instead of national

Postby Rozax on Sun Jun 24, 2012 8:07 pm

JaeMarie wrote:
I still can't fathom why my National Certification isn't acceptable, though.


The national certification offered by the NCBTMB is not a national certification in the sense that it's offered by a nationally governing body that governs massage therapy for the entire country (there is NO governing body that does that - each state has their own regulations.) It is however a certification offered to anyone across the country that meets the criteria and passes the exam. What's confused the two over the years is that some states have opted to use the NCETMB for licensing purposes, instead of crafting their own exams.

Oh, I get all that. It's just too much bureaucracy for my taste. Especially since this will define a certification one way, while it's a license, according to another state, and then that test wants to make it perfectly clear that this is what defines a practitioner. Fun stuff.
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Re: Considering California certification instead of national

Postby RelaxandRejuvenate on Mon Jun 25, 2012 6:19 am

I don't understand why anyone in CA would not get the CAMTC instead of their local license.
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Re: Considering California certification instead of national

Postby kathryn on Mon Jun 25, 2012 9:54 pm

San Diego is the only city in CA that has a designation for 1,000hr license and that is a holistic health practitioner (HHP). The only reason I choose to get my HHP renewed every year rather than sign up for the CAMTC is that the general public perception here in the city is that a HHP designates a better massage therapist. I don't believe that to be true, but I can't even tell you how many new clients I get who tell me they will only go to HHP's. I keep it strictly for marketing purposes.

Since only the city of San Diego has that designation, if I didn't have my practice there, I would get the CMT instead.

If you're not planning on moving out of the state then don't worry about having a national certification. If you are planning on one day moving out of state, you may need it eventually as many states require it. If you are planning on getting the CMT (which is the smarter choice in your situation), you may want to go ahead and start the application process so you know you'll have it when your ten months are up.
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Re: Considering California certification instead of national

Postby pueppi on Thu Nov 19, 2015 10:26 am

This is an older post from another forum, dated 2011. But, it looks like it might be useful here, even though our BWOL thread was started in 2012.

Reply by Erin Romanin on October 11, 2011 at 10:00am

<snip>
In regard to local registration /licensure in California - I want to make sure you know about the CAMTC option. CA is one of just a few states that still allows local (city or county) license regulation. This was problematic because it allowed schools to offer bare-bones training programs, that didn't prepare their students to work in many of the cities with higher hour requirements....not to mention the disservice it does to the industry to graduate under-prepared massage therapists. As a solution, cities got together and with ABMP's help, created the California Massage Therapy Council (CAMTC). The first thing to know about the CAMTC cert is that it is optional. Therapists who choose to comply with local regulation only have the right to do so in city's that allow it. However, the CAMTC certification provides a statewide registration that allows therapists to work anywhere in California. It overrides local city regulations. Because schools in CA have historically varied in their hourly requirements, the CAMTC is a tiered system, offering different pathways to certification or licensure, depending on the the level of training and practice the applicant has. You probably knew about this - but just wanted to make mention in the even anyone out there doesn't. To apply with the CAMTC, start online at www.CAMTC.org.
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