Federal Professional License Portability and State Registration
The federal Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) authorizes service members or their spouses who currently hold a valid license in good standing in another state to practice in California within the same profession or vocation, if they are required to relocate to California because of military orders. California recognizes these qualifying out-of-state licenses as valid.
For individuals who desire to practice in California under the terms of the SCRA, the State of California adopted a state registration process to help implement the license portability provisions of the SCRA.*
The requirements to register with the State are compatible with the requirements to practice under the SCRA, but state registration provides important additional benefits to servicemembers or their spouses, namely State verification and recognition that they are lawfully practicing in California.
For licensed professions or vocations regulated by the boards and bureaus within the California Department of Consumer Affairs (Department or DCA), the Department developed a Federal Professional License Portability and State Registration online registration portal to allow for easy submission of the required documentation. Please click here to review the boards and bureaus within the Department.
Eligibility to Practice Under The SCRA and Register with the State of California
Before you register, please note that individuals eligible to practice in California under the SCRA and register with the California Department of Consumers Affairs must meet the following criteria:
- Hold a professional or vocational license in good standing in another state, district, or territory of the United States
- Relocate to California because of military orders for military service
- Use the out-of-state license at some point during the two years immediately preceding relocation to California (e.g., perform at least one activity within the scope and under the authority of the out-of-state license)
- Maintain in good standing all other valid and active out-of-state licenses in the same profession or vocation
- For spouses/domestic partners, maintain marriage or other legal union with a servicemember subject to military orders for military service
How To Register
Be prepared to provide the following information during the registration process:
- A copy of the military orders requiring relocation to California
- Written or online verification that all active and valid out-of-state licenses within the same profession or vocation are in good standing
- For spouses or domestic partners, evidence of current marital or other legal status with a servicemember subject to military orders described above
- California address of record
- Attest that you meet registration requirements and the information provided is accurate.
SCRA State Registration Database
The following information will be made publicly available for individuals registered with the State of California as practicing under the terms of the SCRA:
- Individual name
- California address of record
- State registration status
- State name and out-of-state license number
* Special note for the Accountancy profession: An individual whose principal place of business is not in California and who has a valid and current license, certificate, or permit to practice public accountancy from another state may, subject to conditions and limitations, engage in the practice of public accountancy in California under a practice privilege without obtaining a certificate or license in California. Please contact the California Board of Accountancy for further information about this option.