Federal Trade Commission holds roundtable on license portability

Published on July 28, 2017

Protecting, Promoting and Advancing Veterinary Medicine

On July 27, 2017, the Federal Trade Commission’s Economic Liberty Task Force hosted a panel discussion as they examine ways to mitigate the effects of state-based occupational licensing requirements that make it difficult for license holders to obtain licenses in other states. Because this issue impacts the veterinary profession, representatives from the AVMA attended to assess the conversation and opportunities for veterinary input as the FTC’s work moves forward.

The panel explored options for enhancing the portability of occupational licenses. Members of the panel included an expert on the law of interstate compacts; representatives of organizations that have developed or administer compacts or model laws for specific professions (physicians, nurses, teachers, certified professional accountants); and a representative from the U.S. Department of Defense who has facilitated the adoption of state legislation aimed at improving the portability of licenses for military spouses. The FTC has a particular interest in mitigating negative impacts of licensing on military spouses and believes that efforts to increase license portability will benefit all workers and consumers, yielding positive results.

Following brief presentations by each of the panelists, FTC staff focused questions on why organizations chose compacts over model laws, endorsement and reciprocity, privilege to practice, substantial equivalency standards, and how consumer safety is addressed by the different approaches. Staff also asked panelists to share lessons learned on the approaches they took to increase portability of licenses.

The public comment period remains open; a recording and transcript of the meeting, as well as copies of the presentations, will be posted to the FTC’s website in the coming weeks. AVMA will be submitting comments, noting our interest in this area and sharing our existing policies related to this issue: Licensure, Liability and Workers Compensation Coverage for Veterinarians and Veterinary Technicians Responding to Declared Emergencies Out of State and Section 11 of the MVPA.