Reinstatement or Restoration of License

BOARD POLICY ON REINSTATEMENT OR RESTORATION OF LICENSE

Reinstatement of “Inactive License,” “License Voluntarily Relinquished,” or “License Not Renewed”:

  • Reinstatement of “Inactive License”: an optometrist who wishes to reactivate his Inactive License may do so by submitting to the Board a written request that his license be reinstated to “Active” status. This optometrist must (i) demonstrate he has met the continuing education requirements for the years his license was classified as “Inactive,” or (ii) petition the Board to waive some of the continuing education requirements for the years his license was inactive. The Board will form a committee to recommend to the Board any other conditions that must be met in order for the optometrist’s license to be reinstated. As a part of such conditions, the Board may require that the optometrist exhibit current competence by completing the NBEO CPDO Assessment.
  • Reinstatement of “License Voluntarily Relinquished” or “License Not Renewed”: an optometrist who wishes to reinstate or restore a license which has been Voluntarily Relinquished or which has been Not Renewed may do so by submitting a request, in writing, to the Board at the Board’s mailing address. Such written request must include:
    • The optometrist’s full name and any names under which the optometrist previously was licensed by this Board.
    • The optometrist’s former license number as issued by the Board.
    • A description of the circumstances under which the optometrist chose to voluntarily relinquish or not renew her license.
    • A description of any personal, family, or professional issues that led to or contributed to the relinquishment/nonrenewal.
    • An indication whether the optometrist has practiced optometry in any other jurisdiction subsequent to the relinquishment or non-renewal of her license, and if so, the name of such practice and the city and state in which such practice occurred.
    • Whether the optometrist has worked in any other healthcare profession subsequent to the relinquishment or non-renewal of her license, and if so, an identification of her employer and place of work (address, city, and state) and a description of her activities in such profession.
    • If the optometrist has worked in a profession other than healthcare subsequent to the relinquishment or non-renewal of her license, an identification of her employer and place of work (address, city, and state) and a description of her activities in such profession.
    • Where physical or mental health conditions or limitations contributed to such license relinquishment or nonrenewal, the Board may require the optometrist to provide a release so that the Board may obtain relevant medical records documenting the optometrist’s past and current physical /mental status.
    • A statement of the reasons why the optometrist desires to return to practice.
    • Any other documents or information the Board deems to be relevant in a particular situation.

The Board will form a committee to recommend to the Board the conditions upon which this optometrist’s license will be reinstated or restored to “Active” status. The committee may meet with the optometrist before making its recommendations to the Board. Some of the criteria the Board may require are listed below under Restoration of a Revoked License.

Restoration of Revoked License:

North Carolina General Statutes section 90-121.4 (“Restoration of revoked license”) provides the authority for the Board to restore a revoked license or a license of which an optometrist has otherwise been deprived (hereafter, this Policy uses the term “revoked” to refer to either a revoked license or a “deprived” license, as appropriate, and the term also includes licenses surrendered to the Board in connection with a consent order, in lieu of an investigation, or in lieu of a disciplinary hearing).

N.C.G.S.A. § 90-121.4 Restoration of revoked license

Whenever any optometrist has been deprived of his license, the North Carolina State Board of Examiners in Optometry in its discretion may restore said license upon due notice being given and hearing had, and satisfactory evidence produced or proper reformation of the licentiate, before restoration.

To request restoration of a revoked license, the optometrist must submit a request, in writing, to the Board at the Board’s mailing address. Such written request must include:

  • The optometrist’s full name, and any names under which the optometrist previously was licensed by this Board;
  • The optometrist’s former license number as issued by the Board.
  • The date upon which any order of the Board revoking such license was entered, and a description of the circumstances under which the optometrist’s license was revoked, including a description of any personal, family, or professional issues that led to or contributed to the revocation of such license.
  • An indication whether the optometrist has practiced optometry in any other jurisdiction subsequent to the revocation of her license, and if so, the name and address of such practice and a description of those activities.
  • Whether the optometrist has worked in any other healthcare profession subsequent to the revocation of her license, and if so, an identification of her employer and of place of work (address, city, and state) and a description of her activities in such profession.
  • If the optometrist has worked in a profession other than healthcare subsequent to the revocation of her license, an identification of her employer and place of work (address, city, and state) and a description of her activities in such profession.
  • Where physical or mental health conditions or limitations contributed to such license revocation, the Board may require the optometrist to provide a release so that the Board may obtain relevant medical records documenting the optometrist’s past and current physical /mental status.
  • A statement of the reasons why the optometrist desires to return to practice.
  • To the extent not already provided, a description of the efforts made by the optometrist to reform any behavior that led to his license being revoked, and any evidence of the objective results of those efforts.
  • Any other documents or information the Board deems to be relevant in a particular situation.

Once the Board has received all documents and information requested, the Board (or a committee thereof) will decide whether to conduct a formal or informal hearing for the purpose of determining whether the optometrist’s license will be restored.

A formal hearing is governed by the relevant provisions of the North Carolina Administrative Procedures Act and the Board’s rules. An informal hearing may include such procedures as the Board deems appropriate under the circumstances. Should the applicant not agree with the results of an informal hearing, she may request a full formal hearing before the Board.

Following this hearing the Board will determine whether in its discretion satisfactory evidence has been presented to allow restoration of the revoked license. A decision to restore a revoked license may be subject to review or monitoring by the Board for a given period.

If the Board does not restore the optometrist’s license, the Board may offer the optometrist additional opportunities to demonstrate that she is entitled to restoration of her license, including an additional hearing should she meet certain terms and conditions imposed by the Board.

The Board may impose such terms and conditions upon an applicant for restoration of her license as the Board in its discretion deems appropriate, in order to assure that the optometrist is qualified to practice in North Carolina by education, training, and experience, and is mentally and physically capable of safely practicing optometry. Such terms and conditions may include, but are not limited to:

  • Requiring that the applicant obtain continuing education credits equivalent to or some portion of the number of credits required by the Board for the years her license was revoked.
  • Requiring that the applicant complete the NBEO CPDO Self-Assessment Evaluation (National Board of Examiners in Optometry – Continued Professional Development in Optometry Self Assessment Evaluation)
  • The Board also may determine that the optometrist has not demonstrated current educational and clinical experience, and may require that she instead take the Board’s clinical examination.

Adopted 2/20/2018