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Physical Therapy Compact and Compact Privileges

About the Physical Therapy Compact

The Physical Therapy Compact is an agreement between states to improve access to physical therapy services for the public by increasing the ability of eligible physical therapists and physical therapist assistants to work in multiple states.  To join the Compact, each state legislature must pass legislation establishing a foundation of regulation and consistent oversight. Once a state is an active member, licensees of that state can purchase a Compact Privilege to practice in any other active member state.  

In 2016, Oregon became the first state to enact Compact legislation, and as additional states joined, the Compact began issuing compact privileges in the summer of 2018.  As of October 2022, 34 states have joined the Compact, and 27 are issuing compact privileges.  For a map of member states and status of pending legislation in others, 
please see the interactive map published by the Physical Therapy Compact Commission.

The Physical Therapy Compact Commission (PTCC) is the governing body comprised of the member states established to implement the provisions of the PT Compact. The PTCC is considered the primary source for privilege verification. 

PTCC Governing Documents, including the most recent bylaws, rules, policies and model compact legislation

2024 Proposed Rulemaking
The Physical Therapy Compact Commission (PTCC) is requesting public comment on proposed amendments to its Rules. Written comments must be received by the PTCC by 5:00 PM, ET, on June 13, 2024. Please see the linked document for the proposed changes and details on how to submit public comment.

Information for the Public

Compact Privilege holders are Physical Therapists and Physical Therapist Assistants who are fully licensed in another state and have purchased the ability to work in Oregon.

Compact Privilege holders can see patients just like any other Oregon licensee- the privilege does not affect what they can do, and it does not impact whether insurance will cover care provided by them or not.

If a patient has a complaint about a Compact Privilege holder, they may file a complaint with the Board just like they can with any licensee. 

Information for PTs and PTAs

If you currently hold a license in a PT Compact Member State, your license allows you to purchase Compact Privileges in 26 other states, including Oregon! 

Why would I purchase a Compact Privilege instead of a License?
  • Time! Compact Privileges are issued the same day- meaning that you can accept a job and start working just a few hours later. 
  • Streamlined Continuing Competency Requirements. You don't need to keep track of different requirements for different states, you only need to worry about the requirements for your home state.
  • Efficiency. In some cases, a compact privilege purchase will allow you to work in a state longer than the state's license would, based on the variances in state licensing expiration dates. 

Important: Each state sets their own Jurisprudence Requirements and pricing for Compact Privileges. To purchase an Oregon Compact Privilege, you must take and pass the OR-JAM. The OR-JAM is a computer-based, open-book exam on Oregon Statutes and Rules governing Physical Therapy practice. It can be taken at any time from your home computer. The exam must be taken before purchase of an initial Oregon Compact Privilege and must have been taken within the 6 months prior to the purchase. 

Additionally, before purchasing a privilege, you must email with your name, mailing address, email address, phone number and the name and address of where you will be working in Oregon, if known. You do not need to wait for a response to this email before purchasing the privilege.

It is important that all Compact Privilege Holders understand how their home state impacts their privilege.

  • Your privilege is issued based on your license in your home state. For the purposes of the Compact, this is determined based on your driver's license AND the home address on file with the Compact.
  • You cannot be issued a Compact Privilege for your home state- you must hold a license in your home state. 
  • If your home state is not a member of the PT compact, you are not eligible to purchase a Compact Privilege, even if you hold a license in a Compact State. If you move to a home state that is not a member of the Compact, any existing Compact Privileges will be terminated. 
  • Changing your home address with the Compact will automatically adjust your eligibility. You are required to keep your address current with the Compact, and you must update it within 30 days of any changes. There is no grace period after you update your home address with the Compact, so make sure that you are licensed in your new home state before you update your information with the Compact to avoid any interruptions in your ability to practice.
  • Your compact privilege expires with your home state license. You must renew both in order to continue working under your compact privilege. 
  • A compact privilege must be obtained for each state an individual wants to practice in. Physical therapy compact privileges are not a multi-state license.

How do these rules regarding home state work in practice? Let's look at some examples:
Example A: A PT is licensed in Oregon, but lives in Idaho. They are not eligible to purchase a Washington Privilege because their home state is not a PT Compact Member. 

Example B: A PT holds a Washington License and an Oregon Compact Privilege. They move from Washington to Oregon. Their Oregon Compact Privilege is terminated because they do not hold a license in their Home State. They cannot practice in Oregon until they apply for an Oregon license and the license is issued. They may continue to practice in Washington under their existing Washington License.

Example C: A PT holds licenses in their home state of Colorado as well as Utah. They also hold a Compact Privilege in Oregon. They move from their Home State of Colorado to Utah. Because they were already licensed in their new home state, there is no interruption or termination to their Oregon Privilege. Their compact privilege expiration date changes from their Colorado License expiration date to their Utah license expiration date.

Example D: A PT lives in Washington and holds a Washington license, but has been exclusively working in Oregon under a compact privilege for the past six months. The PT's Washington license expires June 30. They renew their license prior to June 30, but forget to renew their Compact Privilege until July 15. The PT was engaging in unlicensed practice in Oregon from July 1 to July 15.

It is the responsibility of every Compact Privilege holder to understand what their compact privilege allows them to do and what it doesn't allow them to do. Compact Privilege holders must follow all laws of the state in which they are practicing.