Act and Rules
Rule Change/Rule Review Information: See the Proposed/Adopted tab below.
OT Rules - December 2019 PDF: Current, Compiled version of the OT Rules
The OT Rules may also be accessed from the Texas Administrative Code, which reflects any rule changes once they are effective.
OT Practice Act - September 2019 PDF: Current, Compiled version of the OT Practice Act
Please visit the FAQs for answers to frequently asked questions regarding the OT Practice Act and Rules.
Occupational Therapy Act and Rules
As mandated by the Texas Occupational Therapy Practice Act, the OT Board adopts rules to govern the practice of occupational therapy in the state. New rules, amendments to existing rules, and repeal of rules are adopted in response to developments and trends in occupational therapy practice or when mandated by legislative action. The rules establish a minimum standard, ensuring that the public is adequately protected from poor practice and unethical practitioners.
The rulemaking process requires the Board to propose and vote on any rules changes and to send them on to the Executive Council of Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy Examiners for review. If approved by the Executive Council, they are printed in the Texas Register. Comments on the proposed amendments may be submitted no later than 30 days from the date that the proposals are published in the Texas Register.
At the next board meeting, the board members will again review the proposed changes as well as any comments from the public. A final vote is taken on adoption of the proposed rule changes, in full or in part, based on consideration of the comments from the public. Notice of the adopted rules is printed in the Texas Register, along with a response to any comments received. The rules automatically go into effect 20 days after notice of the amendments is filed, unless otherwise stated. In general, the whole process takes approximately four to six months, depending on public comment or meeting schedules.
OT Practice Act
In 1983, the 68th Texas Legislature passed Senate Bill 1213 enacting the Texas Occupational Therapy Title Act (Vernon's Texas Civil Statutes, Article 8851). The legislation established the Texas Advisory Board of Occupational Therapy (TABOT) and attached it as an advisory board to the Texas Rehabilitation Commission. Effective September 1, 1983, the board was charged with grandfathering by March 1, 1984, all qualified occupational therapists and occupational therapy assistants who were working in the state of Texas.
Senate Bill 690 was passed by the 73rd Texas Legislature in 1993, creating the Executive Council of Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy Examiners. The OT Board was renamed the Texas Board of Occupational Therapy Examiners (TBOTE), and the OT Title Act was changed to the Texas Occupational Therapy Practice Act. Personnel for the OT Board and the PT Board are located in the same offices, while additional staff addresses administrative responsibilities for the Executive Council and both boards.
The 1999 Texas Legislature codified the OT Practice Act and incorporated it into the Occupations Code, Chapter 454. The Occupations Code contains the enabling statutes for other licensed professions as well. The codification was intended to make the Act conform to current legal citations, terminology, and definitions and to eliminate obsolete provisions and a number of grammatical errors.
In 2001 the Texas Legislature adopted a change to the OT Practice Act through SB 692 and HB 1919. The Act was amended again in 2009 by the 81st legislature to make changes to several sections, primarily to allow the board to determine late and restoration fees, and to allow restoration of an expired Texas license by various methods. In 2011, the Act was amended by the 82nd legislature to revise the date in the section Application of Sunset Act from 2013 to 2017.
In 2017, the 85th Legislature passed a Sunset Bill during the regular session. This bill, SB 317, continued ECPTOTE and the OT and PT Boards until their next scheduled Sunset Review in 2029. Further changes were made to the OT Practice Act including to remove language specifying the level of degree an individual must hold in order to be eligible for licensure to instead refer to entry-level degree requirements, update references to NBCOT and the initial certification examination, and add requirements regarding policies and procedures. Additional changes from SB 317 became effective in 2019, including the discontinuation of the Board's occupational therapy facility registration program.
The Board has proposed amendments to §364.1, Requirements for Licensure; §364.2, Initial License by Examination; §364.3, Temporary License; §364.4, Licensure by Endorsement; §367.1, Continuing Education; §370.2, Late Renewal, §370.3, Restoration of a Texas License; §371.1, Inactive Status; and §371.2, Retired Status. The proposed amendments include changes to initial licensure and renewal requirements, including the addition of training on the prevention of human trafficking, pursuant to HB 2059 of the 86th Regular Legislative Session, as a requirement for all renewals.
Comments:Comments on the proposed amendments may be submitted in writing to Lea Weiss, Occupational Therapy Coordinator, Texas Board of Occupational Therapy Examiners, 333 Guadalupe Street, Suite 2-510, Austin, Texas 78701-3942 or to firstname.lastname@example.org within 30 days following the publication of this notice in the Texas Register.
It is requested when sending a comment that individuals include the rule section to which the comment refers and that comments sent by email include "Public Comment" in the email's subject line.
The Board finds the reasons for adopting the rules continue to exist and readopts the rules in accordance with the requirements of Texas Government Code §2001.039.
Board rule §367.4, Process for Selecting a Peer Organization to Evaluate and Approve Continuing Education Courses, has been identified by the Regulatory Compliance Division of the Office of the Governor as possibly having an anticompetitive market effect and may not be readopted until the Board obtains the approval of the Regulatory Compliance Division after the completion of the division's review of the section. Though under review, the current §367.4 is in effect. If the Board obtains this approval to readopt the rule, notice of the proposed readoption of the review of §367.4 will be submitted to the Texas Register for publication in a future issue. Further information, including concerning submitting public comment regarding the Regulatory Compliance Division's current review, may be accessed from this link: https://gov.texas.gov/organization/regulatory-compliance.
The Executive Council has assessed whether the reasons for adopting the rules in Chapter 651 continue to exist. As a result of the review, the Executive Council finds the reasons for adopting the rules in Chapter 651 continue to exist and readopts those sections in accordance with the requirements of Texas Government Code §2001.039.