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RULE §273.6Licenses for a Limited Period

(a) Provisional License.

  (1) Requirements for Provisional License. On application for examination, a candidate may apply for a provisional license under the following circumstances:

    (A) The applicant must be licensed in good standing as a therapeutic optometrist in another state, the District of Columbia, or a territory of the United States that has licensing requirements that are substantially equivalent to the requirements of the Texas Optometry Act, and must furnish proof of such licensure on board forms provided.

    (B) The applicant must have passed the National Board of Examiners in Optometry (NBEO) Examination Parts I and II, after January 1, 1984, and Part III after June of 1994, as well as the Treatment and Management of Ocular Disease (TMOD) Examination after January of 1985 and must submit a true and correct copy of the applicant's score report.

    (C) The applicant must have satisfied the educational requirement of §280.2 of this title (relating to Required Education).

    (D) The applicant must not have failed an examination for a license conducted by the board.

    (E) The applicant's license to practice optometry must not have been revoked or suspended by any jurisdiction.

  (2) Sponsorship. A candidate for provisional licensure must be sponsored by a therapeutic optometrist who is currently licensed by the board with the following conditions applicable.

    (A) Prior to practice in Texas, on forms provided by the board, the sponsor licensee will certify to the board the following:

      (i) that such candidate will be working within the same office as the licensee, under direct supervision of the sponsor licensee; and

      (ii) that such sponsor licensee is aware of the Act and rules governing provisional licensure and that the sponsorship will cease upon the invalidity of the provisional license.

    (B) Sponsor licensee will be held responsible for the unauthorized practice of optometry should such provisional license expire.

  (3) Hardship. An applicant for a provisional license may be excused from the requirements of sponsorship if the board determines that compliance constitutes a hardship to the applicant.

  (4) Application and fee.

    (A) The candidate for provisional licensure will be subject to all application requirements required by Chapter 271 of this title (relating to Examinations) and subject to the applicable examination fees established under §273.4 of this title (relating to Optometry Fees). In addition, the candidate will be subject to a fee for issuance of a provisional license, as established under §273.4 of this title.

    (B) No provisional license can be issued until all application forms and fees are received in the board office and the application is approved.

    (C) A provisional license expires upon the earlier to occur of the passage of 180 days or notice by the board of the candidate's successful passage or failure of all examinations required by Chapter 271 of this title. It shall be the responsibility of the candidate and sponsor to return the provisional license to the board office upon expiration.

    (D) The candidate's failure to sit for the first scheduled board examination following application for examination invalidates the provisional license unless in the discretion of the board sufficient and reasonable evidence regarding nonappearance exists.

    (E) Each candidate for provisional license shall receive only one nonrenewable license prior to the issuance of a therapeutic optometry license.

  (5) If at any time during the provisional licensure period it is determined that the holder of such provisional license has violated the Optometry Act or board rules, such provisional license will be subject to termination.

(b) Military Limited Volunteer License.

  (1) Pursuant to §351.266 of the Texas Optometry Act, the Board may issue a military limited volunteer license to practice optometry or therapeutic optometry to an applicant who:

    (A) is licensed and in good standing, or was licensed and retired in good standing, as a optometrist or therapeutic optometrist in another state;

    (B) is or was authorized as an optometrist or therapeutic optometrist to treat personnel enlisted in a branch of the United States armed forces or veterans; and

    (C) meets all other requirements prescribed by Board Rule.

  (2) The board may not issue a license under this section to an applicant who:

    (A) holds an optometry or therapeutic optometry license that:

      (i) is currently under investigation by a state or territory of the United States, or a uniformed service of the United States;

      (ii) is or was restricted, cancelled, suspended, revoked, or subject to other discipline or denial of licensure by a state or territory of the United States, or a uniformed service of the United States;

    (B) holds a license issued by the Drug Enforcement Agency or a state public safety agency to prescribe, dispense, administer, supply, or sell a controlled substance that:

      (i) is currently under investigation by a state or territory of the United States, or a uniformed service of the United States;

      (ii) is or was restricted, cancelled, suspended, revoked, or subject to other discipline or denial by a state or territory of the United States, or a uniformed service of the United States; or

    (C) is currently under investigation or has been convicted of, or placed on deferred adjudication, community supervision, or deferred disposition for a felony or a misdemeanor involving moral turpitude.

  (3) An optometrist or therapeutic optometrist who practices optometry or therapeutic optometry under a license issued under this section may:

    (A) only practice at a clinic that primarily treats indigent populations; and

    (B) not receive direct or indirect compensation or payment of anything of monetary value in exchange for the optometric services rendered by the optometrist or therapeutic optometrist to the indigent patients at the clinic.

  (4) A military limited volunteer license holder is subject to board rules, including rules regarding disciplinary action, license registration and renewal.

  (5) A military limited volunteer license shall be issued for a period of one year and may be renewed and maintained according to registration requirements as prescribed by Board Rules.

Source Note: The provisions of this §273.6 adopted to be effective September 10, 1993, 18 TexReg 5745; amended to be effective February 18, 1994, 19 TexReg 789; amended to be effective August 2, 1998, 23 TexReg 7563; amended to be effective March 21, 2012, 37 TexReg 1904; amended to be effective March 23, 2014, 39 TexReg 2079; amended to be effective March 1, 2018, 43 TexReg 1101

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