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Physician License Retirement Options

Physician options for full and partial retirement are listed below.

 

Please see the FAQs at the bottom of the page for more information.

 

If you have any additional questions, please contact the Registration Department at Registrations@tmb.state.tx.us.

  • The retired status exempts physicians from the registration process, registration fee, and CME.

     

    The following restrictions apply to physicians whose licenses are on retired status:

    1. the physician cannot engage in clinical activities or practice medicine in any state,
    2. the physician cannot prescribe or administer drugs to anyone, nor may the physician possess a Drug Enforcement Agency controlled substances registration; and
    3. to be eligible for retired status, a physician's license cannot be under investigation, under a Board order, or be otherwise restricted.

    To return to practice from retired status, a physician must obtain approval of the Board after submitting a written request.  If a physician has been on official retired status for two years or longer, the request must be reviewed by the Licensure Committee of the Board.

     

    To request retired status, complete and return the retirement request form (link below) to the Board for approval before the expiration date of the current registration permit.  Refunds of registration fees already paid cannot be made.

    If a physician is ineligible for retired status, biennial registration, including the fee and CME, are required to keep the license current. 

    Physician Retirement Request Form

     

    The emeritus retirement status is a subgroup of the “official retired status”. Like the standard retired stats, the emeritus retired status exempts physicians from the registration process, registration fee, and CME.

    The following restrictions apply to physicians whose licenses are on the standard or emeritus retired status:

    1. the physician cannot engage in clinical activities or practice medicine in any state,
    2. the physician cannot prescribe or administer drugs to anyone, nor may the physician possess a Drug Enforcement Agency or Texas controlled substances registration; and
    3. to be eligible for retired status, a physician's license cannot be under investigation, under a Board order, or be otherwise restricted.

    The following additional qualifications are required for a physician who requests the emeritus retired status:

    1. the physician has never received a remedial plan or been the subject of disciplinary action by the Texas Medical Board;
    2. the physician has no criminal history, including pending charges, indictment, conviction and/or deferred adjudication in Texas;
    3. the physician has never held a license, registration or certification that has been restricted for cause, canceled for cause, suspended for cause, revoked or subject to another form of discipline in a state, or territory of the United States, a province of Canada, a uniformed service of the United States or other regulatory agency.

     

    See Chapter 166.3 in the Board Rules for additional information.

    To return to practice from emeritus retired status, a physician must obtain approval of the Board after submitting a written request.  If a physician has been on any official retired status for two years or longer, the request must be reviewed by the Licensure Committee of the Board.

    To request emeritus retired status, complete and return the emeritus retirement request form (link below) to the Board for approval before the expiration date of the current registration permit.  Refunds of registration fees already paid cannot be made.

    If a physician is ineligible for any retired status, biennial registration, including the fee and CME, are required to keep the license current. 

     

    Physician Emeritus Retirement Request Form

    The voluntary charity care status exempts retired physicians, whose only practice is the provision of voluntary charity care, from the registration fee and reduces the informal CME requirement.

     

    "Voluntary charity care" is defined as medical care provided for no compensation to indigent populations; in medically underserved areas; or for a disaster relief organization.  “Compensation" is defined as direct or indirect payment of anything of monetary value, except payment or reimbursement of reasonable, necessary, and actual travel and related expenses.

     

    The following restrictions apply to physicians practicing under voluntary charity care permits:

    1. the physician's practice of medicine cannot include the provision of medical services for either direct or indirect compensation which has monetary value of any kind;
    2. the physician's practice of medicine is limited to voluntary charity care for which the physician receives no direct or indirect compensation of any kind for medical services rendered;
    3. the physician's practice of medicine cannot include the provision of medical services to members of the physician's family; and
    4. the physician's practice of medicine cannot include the self-prescribing of controlled substances or dangerous drugs

               

    A physician on voluntary charity care status must still obtain and report continuing medical education, except that the number of credits of informal CME is reduced from 24 credits to 20 credits per biennium.

     

    To request voluntary charity care status, complete and return the voluntary charity care request form (link below) to Board for approval before the expiration date of the current registration permit.  Refunds of registration fees already paid cannot be made.

     

    If the physician does not qualify for this status, notification will be sent and the biennial registration fee must be paid to keep the medical license current.

     

    Physician Voluntary Charity Care Request Form

  • My physician license is currently in a retired status.  How to I return it to an active status so I can practice?

    To return to practice from retired status, a physician must obtain approval of the Board after submitting a written request.  If a physician has been on official retired status for two years or longer, the request must be reviewed by the Licensure Committee of the Board.  Please contact the Registration department for information on the approval procedure.

    Are there any additional requirements that I need to complete before I request to return my retired physician license to an active status?

    To return to practice from retired status, a physician must obtain approval of the Board after submitting a written request.  Please contact the Registration department for information on the approval procedure.

    If the request is granted, it may be granted without conditions or subject to such conditions which the board determines are necessary to adequately protect the public.  Requests are reviewed on a case by case basis.

    Below are some examples of conditions that may be required (alone or in combination) to return a retired license to an active status:

    • limitation of the practice of the requestor to specified activities of medicine and/or exclusion of specified activities of medicine;
    • passage of the Special Purpose Examination (SPEX);
    • remedial education, including but not limited to a mini-residency, fellowship or other structured program;
    • passage of the Medical Jurisprudence Examination; and/or
    • such other remedial or restrictive conditions or requirements which, in the discretion of the board, are necessary to ensure protection of the public and minimal competency of the applicant to safely practice medicine.

    Is there an exemption for retired physicians providing voluntary charity care?

    Yes. A retired physician whose only clinical practice is the provision of voluntary charity care to indigent populations shall be exempt from the registration fee but must register the license as well as report CME. The physician's practice of medicine must not include the provision of medical services for either direct or indirect compensation which has monetary value of any kind and the physician's practice is limited to voluntary charity care to indigent populations and receives no direct or indirect compensation of any kind for medical services rendered. Also, the physician's practice cannot include the provision of medical services to family members or the self-prescribing of controlled substances or dangerous drugs. A physician who violates the provisions of this exemption may be subject to disciplinary action. Action may be based on unprofessional or dishonorable conduct likely to deceive, defraud, or injure the public if the physician engages in the compensated practice of medicine, provides medical services to members of the physician's family, or self-prescribes controlled substances or dangerous drugs. Additionally, a physician who attempts to obtain this exemption by submitting false or misleading statements shall be subject to disciplinary action pursuant to the Medical Practice Act, in addition to any civil or criminal actions provided for by the state or federal law.

    Is there an inactive status for physicians in Texas?

    Not at this time.

    Is there a retired status for physicians in Texas?

    Yes. A physician on an official retired status is exempt from the registration fee. To be eligible for retired status, a physician's license cannot be under investigation, under a Board order, or be otherwise restricted. Physicians on a retired status must not engage in clinical activities or practice in any state, must not prescribe or administer drugs to anyone, nor may the physician possess a DEA or Texas controlled substance number. Additionally, the physician's license may not be endorsed to any state. A physician whose license has been placed on official retired status must obtain the approval of the board before returning to active status. The physician should contact the board for information on the approval procedure.