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Background Checks

The Board conducts a background check on all individuals applying for licensure. There are two components to the background check: the applicant must respond to several questions on the application and they must submit to a fingerprint-based criminal history check.

Background checks are also conducted at renewal, but fingerprinting is not required unless the license has been lapsed for more than one year.

You are required to report to the Board criminal and disciplinary matters in accordance with the application questions at your initial application and when renewing your license. However, reporting requirements regarding criminal or disciplinary matters is an ongoing requirement. Pursuant to OAR 848-045-0020, licensees are required to report a conviction of a misdemeanor, an arrest or conviction of a felony, or initiation of an investigation by any health licensing authority within ten working days of the event or the licensee’s notification of the investigation.

Answering Questions About your Background

During your initial application for licensure or during your biannual renewal, you will be asked the five questions regarding your background. Those questions are listed below. 

If you answer yes to any of these questions, you will be prompted to provide a detailed explanation and provide documentation. Documentation may include arrest reports, court documents, final orders or agreements from other licensing agencies, etc. If you have questions about what documentation you must provide, reach out to Board staff who can help determine what needs to be provided in order to process your application.

Answering yes to any of these questions does not mean that your license will automatically be denied. Board staff will review your individual responses to determine if the circumstances impact your eligibility for licensure. 

If you answer no to these questions, but you should have answered yes, it is likely that your application processing time will be delayed-- sometimes significantly if your omission needs to be presented at a Board meeting. Failing to disclose requested information or providing false information throughout the licensing process can be grounds for the Board to discipline the applicant or refuse to issue a license.

Please note that if you have previously disclosed something, you do not need to disclose it again at renewal. 

  1. Have you ever had a professional license or certificate revoked, voluntarily surrendered, suspended or otherwise disciplined by any regulatory Board in any state, jurisdiction or foreign country, for violation of state or federal law, rule, or practice standard? This also includes stipulated agreement for withdrawal or denial of license or a citation. Allowing a license to lapse or expire is not considered a surrender. 

  2. Have you ever been cited for, arrested for, or charged with violation of any law, or pled guilty, no contest, or nolo contendere to any violation of any law in any court? Violations must be reported, whether or not a sentence has been imposed, suspended, or pardoned, other than a case that was resolved in juvenile court. Traffic violations involving parking or a moving violation, such as a speeding ticket, do not need to be reported. DUI related offense or driving with a suspended license must be reported, even if you entered or completed a diversion program. 

  3. Do you currently have a physical, mental, or emotional condition, including alcohol or substance abuse, that impacts or may impact your ability to practice physical therapy or perform physical therapist assistant duties with reasonable skill and safety? If you are currently not practicing due to this condition (i.e medical leave, disability) or if your condition is currently stabilized through medical intervention you may answer “no”.

  4. Do you have any unresolved or pending complaints, investigations or disciplinary actions filed against you with ANY professional licensing authority?  

  5. Have you ever had a case substantiated or founded against you for fraud, abuse, neglect, or mistreatment, by any federal, state or jurisdictional authority? If yes, please include in your explanation whether your ability to practice in a federally qualified insurance program (such as Medicare or Medicaid) has been withdrawn through placement on an Abuse Registry, the National Practitioner Databank, or the Inspector General Exclusion List. You must disclose even if you have been reinstated. 


The Board is authorized under ORS 676.303(3) to require a fingerprint-based background check for all new applications and for individuals applying for reinstatement of a license lapsed more than one year.

Who needs to be fingerprinted?
  • New Applicants for PT or PTA licenses or temporary permits
  • Licensees who have allowed their licenses to lapse for more than one year
  • Licensees who have had their license expire (i.e. been lapsed more than 5 years)
A background check is not required to purchase an Oregon Compact Privilege or to obtain a Military Spouse Temporary Permit. 
How do I complete fingerprinting?
  • The board has contracted with Fieldprint, Inc. to conduct fingerprinting. Fieldprint is the only approved state resource for this service.  Applicants may not use any other fingerprinting methods- they will not be accepted. 
  • Applicants do not need to be physically in Oregon to be fingerprinted- Fieldprint locations are in all 50 states. If you are outside of the United States, contact the Board to discuss options for being fingerprinted.
  • To schedule your appointment to be fingerprinted, you will need a code provided by the Board. This code will be provided to you as you complete the application for licensure. Please ensure that you write down the code while you are completing your application.
How long does the background check process take?

After your appointment with Fieldprint, the fingerprints are electronically sent to the Oregon State Police, who process the prints and send the results to the Board. Processing times vary widely depending on Oregon State Police's current workload. Fingerprinting results may take up to a month to be returned to the Board- or they may be returned within 48 hours! Because of this variance in processing times, the Board strongly encourages applicants to submit their completed application and schedule their fingerprinting several weeks before a license is needed. 


Authority:  The FBI’s acquisition, preservation, and exchange of fingerprints and associated information is generally authorized under 28 U.S.C. 534.  Depending on the nature of your application, supplemental authorities include Federal statutes, State statutes pursuant to Pub. L. 92-544, Presidential Executive Orders, and federal regulations.  Providing your fingerprints and associated information is voluntary; however, failure to do so may affect completion or approval of your application.

Principal Purpose:  Certain determinations, such as employment, licensing, and security clearances, may be predicated on fingerprint-based background checks.  Your fingerprints and associated information/biometrics may be provided to the employing, investigating, or otherwise responsible agency, and/or the FBI for the purpose of comparing your fingerprints to other fingerprints in the FBI’s Next Generation Identification (NGI) system or its successor systems (including civil, criminal, and latent fingerprint repositories) or other available records of the employing, investigating, or otherwise responsible agency.  The FBI may retain your fingerprints and associated information/biometrics in NGI after the completion of this application and, while retained, your fingerprints may continue to be compared against other fingerprints submitted to or retained by NGI.

Routine Uses:  During the processing of this application and for as long thereafter as your fingerprints and associated information/biometrics are retained in NGI, your information may be disclosed pursuant to your consent, and may be disclosed without your consent as permitted by the Privacy Act of 1974 and all applicable Routine Uses as may be published at any time in the Federal Register, including the Routine Uses for the NGI system and the FBI’s Blanket Routine Uses.  Routine uses include, but are not limited to, disclosures to: employing, governmental or authorized non-governmental agencies responsible for employment, contracting, licensing, security clearances, and other suitability determinations; local, state, tribal, or federal law enforcement agencies; criminal justice agencies; and agencies responsible for national security or public safety.

Applicant Notification and FBI Record Access and Amendment
Your fingerprints will be used to check the criminal history records of the FBI.  You have the opportunity to complete or challenge the accuracy of the information contained in the FBI identification record.  The procedure for obtaining a change, correction, or updating an FBI identification record are set forth in Title 28, CFR, 16.34.  You can find additional information on the FBI website at