Code Section Group

Business and Professions Code - BPC

DIVISION 2. HEALING ARTS [500 - 4999.129]

  ( Division 2 enacted by Stats. 1937, Ch. 399. )

CHAPTER 10.5. Massage Therapy Act [4600 - 4621]
  ( Chapter 10.5 added by Stats. 2014, Ch. 406, Sec. 2. )

4600.
  

This chapter shall be known and may be cited as the Massage Therapy Act. Whenever a reference is made to the Massage Therapy Act by any statute, it shall be construed to refer to this chapter.

(Added by Stats. 2014, Ch. 406, Sec. 2. (AB 1147) Effective January 1, 2015. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4600.5.
  

(a) It is the intent of the Legislature that this act enable consumers and local governments to more easily identify certified massage professionals, provide for consistent statewide certification and oversight of massage professionals, ensure that schools approved by the council that are teaching massage provide a high level of training, assist local governments and law enforcement in meeting their duty to maintain the highest standards of conduct in massage establishments by vetting and disciplining certificate holders, provide for a self-funded nonprofit oversight body to certify massage professionals, and ensure full compliance with, and execution of, the requirements of this act.

(b) It is the intent of the Legislature that broad control over land use in regulating massage establishments be vested in local governments so that they may manage those establishments in the best interests of the individual community, and that the requirements and practice of the profession of massage therapy remain a matter of statewide concern, regulation, and oversight. Local governments should give strong consideration to establishing a registration program that grants local governments the ability to either suspend or revoke a registration of massage business for specific violations.

(c) It is the intent of the Legislature that local governments, law enforcement, nonprofit stakeholders, the massage industry, and massage professionals work together going forward to improve communication and share information to further increase the value of statewide certification, to collaborate in the implementation of this act, and to develop a model ordinance reflecting best practices in massage regulation for cities and counties to adopt that will respect local control, patient privacy, and the dignity of the profession of massage therapy.

(Amended by Stats. 2016, Ch. 411, Sec. 1. (AB 2194) Effective January 1, 2017. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4601.
  

As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the following meanings:

(a) “Approved school” or “approved massage school” means a school approved by the council that meets minimum standards for training and curriculum in massage and related subjects, that meets any of the following requirements, and that has not been otherwise unapproved by the council:

(1) Is approved by the Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education.

(2) Is approved by the Department of Consumer Affairs.

(3) Is an institution accredited by the Accrediting Commission for Senior Colleges and Universities or the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges and that is one of the following:

(A) A public institution.

(B) An institution incorporated and lawfully operating as a nonprofit public benefit corporation pursuant to Part 2 (commencing with Section 5110) of Division 2 of Title 1 of the Corporations Code, and that is not managed by any entity for profit.

(C) A for-profit institution.

(D) An institution that does not meet all of the criteria in subparagraph (B) that is incorporated and lawfully operating as a nonprofit public benefit corporation pursuant to Part 2 (commencing with Section 5110) of Division 2 of Title 1 of the Corporations Code, that has been in continuous operation since April 15, 1997, and that is not managed by any entity for profit.

(4) Is a college or university of the state higher education system, as defined in Section 100850 of the Education Code.

(5) Is a school requiring equal or greater training than what is required pursuant to this chapter and is recognized by the corresponding agency in another state or accredited by an agency recognized by the United States Department of Education.

(b) “Certificate” means a valid certificate issued by the council pursuant to this chapter.

(c) “Compensation” means a payment, loan, advance, donation, contribution, deposit, or gift of money, or anything of value.

(d) “Council” means the California Massage Therapy Council created pursuant to this chapter, which shall be a nonprofit organization exempt from taxation under Section 501(c)(3) of Title 26 of the United States Code.

(e) “Massage” means the scientific manipulation of the soft tissues. For purposes of this chapter, the terms “massage” and “bodywork” shall have the same meaning.

(f) “Massage establishment” or “establishment” means a fixed location where massage is performed for compensation, excluding those locations where massage is only provided on an out-call basis.

(g) “Massage practitioner” means a person who is certified by the council pursuant to Section 4604.2 and who administers massage for compensation.

(h) “Massage therapist” means a person who is certified by the council under Section 4604 and who administers massage for compensation.

(i) “Sole provider” means a massage business where the owner owns 100 percent of the business, is the only person who provides massage services for compensation for that business pursuant to a valid and active certificate issued in accordance with this chapter, and has no other employees or independent contractors.

(Added by Stats. 2014, Ch. 406, Sec. 2. (AB 1147) Effective January 1, 2015. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4602.
  

(a) The California Massage Therapy Council, as defined in subdivision (d) of Section 4601, is hereby established and shall carry out the responsibilities and duties set forth in this chapter.

(b) The council may take any reasonable actions necessary to carry out the responsibilities and duties set forth in this chapter, including, but not limited to, hiring staff, entering into contracts, and developing policies, procedures, rules, and bylaws to implement this chapter.

(c) The council may require background checks for all employees, contractors, volunteers, and board members as a condition of their employment, formation of a contractual relationship, or participation in council activities.

(d) The council shall issue a certificate to an individual applicant who satisfies the requirements of this chapter for that certificate.

(e) The council is authorized to determine whether the information provided to the council in relation to the certification of an applicant is true and correct and meets the requirements of this chapter. If the council has any reason to question whether the information provided is true or correct, or meets the requirements of this chapter, the council is authorized to make any investigation it deems necessary to establish that the information received is accurate and satisfies any criteria established by this chapter. The applicant has the burden to prove that he or she is entitled to certification.

(f) The council shall be governed by a board of directors comprised of 13 members who shall be chosen in the following manner:

(1) One member shall be a representative of the League of California Cities, unless that entity chooses not to exercise this right to appoint.

(2) One member shall be a representative of the California Police Chiefs Association, unless that entity chooses not to exercise this right to appoint.

(3) One member shall be a representative of the California State Association of Counties, unless that entity chooses not to exercise this right to appoint.

(4) One member shall be a representative of an “anti-human trafficking” organization to be determined by the council. This organization shall appoint one member, unless the organization chooses not to exercise this right to appoint.

(5) One member shall be appointed by the Office of the Chancellor of the California Community Colleges, unless that office chooses not to exercise this right to appoint.

(6) One member shall be a member of the public appointed by the Director of the Department of Consumer Affairs, unless the director chooses not to exercise this right to appoint.

(7) One member shall be appointed by the California Association of Private Postsecondary Schools, unless that entity chooses not to exercise this right to appoint.

(8) One member shall be appointed by the American Massage Therapy Association, California Chapter, who shall be a California-certified massage therapist or massage practitioner who is a California resident and who has been practicing massage for at least three years, unless that entity chooses not to exercise this right to appoint.

(9) One member shall be a public health official representing a city, county, city and county, or state health department, to be determined by the council. The city, county, city and county, or state health department chosen, shall appoint one member unless that entity chooses not to exercise this right to appoint.

(10) (A) One member shall be a certified massage therapist or a certified massage practitioner who is a California resident who has practiced massage for at least three years prior to the appointment, selected by a professional society, association, or other entity which membership is comprised of massage therapist professionals, and that chooses to participate in the council. To qualify, a professional society, association, or other entity shall have a dues-paying membership in California of at least 1,000 individuals, have been established since 2000, and shall have bylaws that require its members to comply with a code of ethics.

(B) If there is more than one professional society, association, or other entity that meets the requirements of subparagraph (A), the appointment shall rotate based on a four-year term between each of the qualifying entities. The qualifying entity shall maintain its appointment authority during the entirety of the four-year term during which it holds the appointment authority. The order in which a qualifying professional society, association, or other entity has the authority to appoint shall be determined by alphabetical order based on the full legal name of the entity as of January 1, 2014.

(11) The members appointed to the board in accordance with paragraphs (1) to (10), inclusive, shall appoint three additional members, at a duly held board meeting in accordance with the board’s bylaws. One of those appointees shall be an attorney licensed by the State Bar of California, who has been practicing law for at least three years and who at the time of appointment represents a city in the state. One of those appointees shall represent a massage business entity that has been operating in the state for at least three years. The council shall establish in its bylaws a process for appointing an additional member, provided that the member has knowledge of the massage industry or can bring needed expertise to the operation of the council for purposes of complying with Section 4603.

(g) Board member terms shall be for four years.

(h) The board of directors shall establish fees reasonably related to the cost of providing services and carrying out its ongoing responsibilities and duties. Initial and renewal fees for certificates shall be in an amount sufficient to support the functions of the council in the administration of this chapter, but in no event shall exceed three hundred dollars ($300). The renewal fee shall be reassessed biennially by the board.

(i) The meetings of the council shall be subject to the rules of the Bagley-Keene Open Meeting Act (Article 9 (commencing with Section 11120) of Chapter 1 of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2 of the Government Code). The board may adopt additional policies and procedures that provide greater transparency to certificate holders and the public than required by the Bagley-Keene Open Meeting Act.

(j) Prior to holding a meeting to vote upon a proposal to increase the certification fees, the board shall provide at least 90 days’ notice of the meeting, including posting a notice on the council’s Internet Web site unless at least two-thirds of the board members concur that there is an active threat to public safety and that voting at a meeting without prior notice is necessary. However, the board shall not waive the requirements of subdivision (i).

(k) If the board approves an increase in the certification fees, the council shall update all relevant areas of its Internet Web site and notify all certificate holders and affected applicants by email within 14 days of the board’s action.

(l) The council shall assess its contact with non-English speakers. Based on this assessment, the council shall offer and make available all publicly available written and electronic materials provided to certificate holders and applicants in languages other than English that the council determines will be used by a substantial number of non-English speakers who are in contact with the council. This subdivision shall not apply to examinations, denial and disciplinary legal documents, and email communications. The council shall provide a report to the Legislature on the findings of its assessment of contact with non-English speakers on or before January 1, 2019.

(Amended by Stats. 2017, Ch. 120, Sec. 1. (SB 315) Effective January 1, 2018. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4603.
  

Protection of the public shall be the highest priority for the council in exercising its certification and disciplinary authority, and any other functions. Whenever the protection of the public is inconsistent with other interests sought to be promoted, the protection of the public shall be paramount.

(Added by Stats. 2014, Ch. 406, Sec. 2. (AB 1147) Effective January 1, 2015. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4603.1.
  

Local governments shall impose and enforce only reasonable and necessary fees and regulations on massage businesses and massage establishments, in keeping with the requirements of existing law and being mindful of the need to protect legitimate business owners and massage professionals, particularly sole providers.

(Added by Stats. 2016, Ch. 411, Sec. 3. (AB 2194) Effective January 1, 2017. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4604.
  

(a) In order to obtain certification as a massage therapist, an applicant shall submit a written application and provide the council with satisfactory evidence that he or she meets all of the following requirements:

(1) The applicant is 18 years of age or older.

(2) The applicant has successfully completed the curricula in massage and related subjects totaling a minimum of 500 hours, or the credit unit equivalent, that incorporates appropriate school assessment of student knowledge and skills.

(A) Of the 500 hours, a minimum of 100 hours of instruction shall address anatomy and physiology, contraindications, health and hygiene, and business and ethics.

(B) All of the 500 hours shall be from approved schools. Notwithstanding any other law, pursuant to its policies and procedures for approval of schools, the council shall accept hours earned by an applicant for certification as a massage therapist if those hours were completed before July 1, 2016, and were earned from a school providing education in this state that was unapproved by the council after July 1, 2016, based solely on the fact that the National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Bodywork took denial or disciplinary action against the school. For purposes of this section, “unapproved” means that the council determined that it will not accept hours from a school toward certification.

(3) The applicant has passed a massage and bodywork competency assessment examination that meets generally recognized psychometric principles and standards and that is approved by the council. The successful completion of this examination may have been accomplished before the date the council is authorized by this chapter to begin issuing certificates.

(4) The applicant has successfully passed a background investigation pursuant to Section 4606, and has not violated any of the provisions of this chapter.

(5) All fees required by the council have been paid.

(6) The council may issue a certificate to an applicant who meets the qualifications of this chapter if he or she holds a current and valid registration, certification, or license from any other state whose licensure requirements meet or exceed those defined within this chapter. If an applicant has received education at a school that is not approved by the council, the council shall have the discretion to give credit for comparable academic work completed by an applicant in a program outside of California.

(b) A certificate issued pursuant to this chapter and any identification card issued by the council shall be surrendered to the council by any certificate holder whose certificate is suspended or revoked.

(Amended by Stats. 2017, Ch. 266, Sec. 1. (SB 314) Effective January 1, 2018. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4604.1.
  

(a) The council shall not accept applications to issue any new certificates to practice as a certified massage practitioner on or after January 1, 2015.

(b) Certificates to practice as a certified massage practitioner for applications accepted prior to January 1, 2015, may be renewed without any additional educational requirements.

(c) A massage practitioner certificate and any identification card issued by the council, shall be surrendered to the council by any certificate holder whose certificate is suspended or revoked.

(Added by Stats. 2014, Ch. 406, Sec. 2. (AB 1147) Effective January 1, 2015. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4604.2.
  

(a) A person who was issued a conditional certificate to practice as a massage practitioner shall, within five years of being issued the conditional certificate by the council, complete and report to the council the completion of, at least 30 hours of additional education per year from approved schools or from continuing education providers approved by the council, until he or she has completed a total of at least 250 hours of education.

(b) A conditional certificate issued to any person pursuant to this section shall immediately be nullified, without need for further action by the council, if proof of completion of the requirements specified in subdivision (a) is not filed with the council within the time period specified in subdivision (a).

(c) Notwithstanding subdivision (a) of Section 4604.1, the council shall issue a new certificate to practice as a massage practitioner to a person that successfully completes the requirements described in subdivision (a).

(Added by Stats. 2014, Ch. 406, Sec. 2. (AB 1147) Effective January 1, 2015. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4605.
  

Except as otherwise provided, a certification issued pursuant to this chapter shall be subject to renewal every two years in the manner prescribed by the council. A certificate issued by the council shall expire after two years unless renewed as prescribed. The council may provide for the late renewal of a certificate.

(Added by Stats. 2014, Ch. 406, Sec. 2. (AB 1147) Effective January 1, 2015. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4606.
  

(a) Prior to issuing a certificate to an applicant, or designating a custodian of records, the council shall require the applicant or the custodian of records candidate to submit fingerprint images as directed by the council and in a form consistent with the requirements of this section.

(b) The council shall submit the fingerprint images and related information to the Department of Justice for the purpose of obtaining information as to the existence and nature of a record of state and federal level convictions and of state and federal level arrests for which the Department of Justice establishes that the applicant or candidate was released on bail or on his or her own recognizance pending trial.

(c) Requests for federal level criminal offender record information received by the Department of Justice pursuant to this section shall be forwarded to the Federal Bureau of Investigation by the Department of Justice. The Department of Justice shall review the information returned from the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and shall compile and disseminate a fitness determination regarding the applicant or candidate to the council. The Department of Justice shall provide information to the council pursuant to subdivision (p) of Section 11105 of the Penal Code.

(d) The Department of Justice and the council shall charge a fee sufficient to cover the cost of processing the request for state and federal level criminal offender record information.

(e) The council shall request subsequent arrest notification service from the Department of Justice, as provided under Section 11105.2 of the Penal Code, for all applicants for certification or custodian of records candidates for whom fingerprint images and related information are submitted to conduct a search for state and federal level criminal offender record information.

(f) The council is authorized to receive arrest notifications and other background materials about applicants and certificate holders from a city, county, or city and county.

(Added by Stats. 2014, Ch. 406, Sec. 2. (AB 1147) Effective January 1, 2015. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4607.
  

The council may discipline an owner or operator of a massage business or establishment who is certified pursuant to this chapter or is an applicant for certification pursuant to this chapter for the conduct of all individuals providing massage for compensation on the business premises.

(Amended by Stats. 2016, Ch. 411, Sec. 5. (AB 2194) Effective January 1, 2017. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4608.
  

In addition to the other requirements of this chapter, a certificate holder shall:

(a) Display his or her original certificate wherever he or she provides massage for compensation. A certificate holder shall have his or her identification card in his or her possession while providing massage services for compensation.

(b) Provide his or her full name and certificate number upon the request of a member of the public, the council, or a member of law enforcement, or a local government agency charged with regulating massage or massage establishments, at the location where he or she is providing massage services for compensation.

(c) Include the name under which he or she is certified and his or her certificate number in any and all advertising of massage for compensation.

(d) Notify the council within 30 days of any changes in the certificate holder’s home address or the address of any massage establishment or other location where he or she provides massage for compensation, excluding those locations where massage is only provided on an out-call basis. A certificate holder also shall notify the council of his or her primary email address, if any, and notify the council within 30 days of a change of the primary email address.

(Added by Stats. 2014, Ch. 406, Sec. 2. (AB 1147) Effective January 1, 2015. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4609.
  

(a) It is a violation of this chapter for an applicant or a certificate holder to commit any of the following acts, the commission of which is grounds for the council to deny an application for a certificate or to impose discipline on a certificate holder:

(1) Unprofessional conduct, including, but not limited to, any of the following:

(A) Engaging in sexually suggestive advertising related to massage services.

(B) Engaging in any form of sexual activity on the premises of a massage establishment where massage is provided for compensation, excluding a residence.

(C) Engaging in sexual activity while providing massage services for compensation.

(D) Practicing massage on a suspended certificate or practicing outside of the conditions of a restricted certificate.

(E) Providing massage of the genitals or anal region.

(F) Providing massage of female breasts without the written consent of the person receiving the massage and a referral from a licensed California health care provider.

(2) Procuring or attempting to procure a certificate by fraud, misrepresentation, or mistake.

(3) Failing to fully disclose all information requested on the application.

(4) Impersonating an applicant or acting as a proxy for an applicant in any examination referred to in this chapter for the issuance of a certificate.

(5) Impersonating a certificate holder, or permitting or allowing a noncertified person to use a certificate.

(6) Violating or attempting to violate, directly or indirectly, or assisting in or abetting the violation of, or conspiring to violate, any provision of this chapter or any rule or bylaw adopted by the council.

(7) Committing any fraudulent, dishonest, or corrupt act that is substantially related to the qualifications or duties of a certificate holder.

(8) Denial of licensure, revocation, suspension, restriction, citation, or any other disciplinary action against an applicant or certificate holder by another state or territory of the United States, by any other government agency, or by another California health care professional licensing board. A certified copy of the decision, order, judgment, or citation shall be conclusive evidence of these actions.

(9) Being convicted of any felony, misdemeanor, infraction, or municipal code violation, or being held liable in an administrative or civil action for an act, that is substantially related to the qualifications, functions, or duties of a certificate holder. A record of the conviction or other judgment or liability shall be conclusive evidence of the crime or liability.

(10) Dressing while engaged in the practice of massage for compensation, or while visible to clients in a massage establishment, in any of the following:

(A) Attire that is transparent, see-through, or substantially exposes the certificate holder’s undergarments.

(B) Swim attire, if not providing a water-based massage modality approved by the council.

(C) A manner that exposes the certificate holder’s breasts, buttocks, or genitals.

(D) A manner that constitutes a violation of Section 314 of the Penal Code.

(E) A manner that is otherwise deemed by the council to constitute unprofessional attire based on the custom and practice of the profession in California.

(11) Committing any act punishable as a sexually related crime or being required to register pursuant to the Sex Offender Registration Act (Chapter 5.5 (commencing with Section 290) of Title 9 of Part 1 of the Penal Code), or being required to register as a sex offender in another state.

(b) The council may deny an application for a certificate for the commission of any of the acts described in subdivision (a). The council may also discipline a certificate holder, in any manner permitted by this chapter, for the commission of any of those acts by a certificate holder.

(c) The council shall deny an application for a certificate, or revoke the certificate of a certificate holder, if the applicant or certificate holder is required to register pursuant to the Sex Offender Registration Act (Chapter 5.5 (commencing with Section 290) of Title 9 of Part 1 of the Penal Code), or is required to register as a sex offender in another state.

(Added by Stats. 2014, Ch. 406, Sec. 2. (AB 1147) Effective January 1, 2015. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4610.
  

(a) An applicant for a certificate shall not be denied a certificate, and a certificate holder shall not be disciplined pursuant to this chapter except according to procedures that satisfy the requirements of this section. Denial or discipline that is not in accord with this section shall be void and without effect.

(b) The council may discipline a certificate holder by any, or a combination, of the following methods:

(1) Placing the certificate holder on probation, which may include limitations or conditions on practice.

(2) Suspending the certificate and the rights conferred by this chapter on a certificate holder for a period not to exceed one year.

(3) Suspending or staying the disciplinary order, or portions of it, with or without conditions.

(4) Revoking the certificate.

(5) Taking other action as the council deems proper, as authorized by this chapter or policies, procedures, rules, or bylaws adopted by the board.

(c) The council may issue an initial certificate on probation, with specific terms and conditions, to any applicant.

(d) Any denial or discipline shall be decided upon and imposed in good faith and in a fair and reasonable manner. Any procedure that conforms to the requirements of subdivision (e) is fair and reasonable.

(e) A procedure is fair and reasonable and meets requirements for fair procedure if the procedures specified in subdivision (f) or (g) are followed or if all of the following apply:

(1) Denial or discipline shall be based on a preponderance of the evidence. In determining the basis for the denial or discipline and making a final decision that denial or discipline shall be imposed, the council may consider all written documents or statements as evidence, but shall weigh the reliability of those documents or statements. A final decision to deny or impose discipline may be based solely on a written statement or declaration made under penalty of perjury and the individual providing the written statement or declaration made under penalty of perjury shall not be required to appear at an oral hearing or provide additional documents or information beyond the written statement or declaration made under penalty of perjury that was already provided.

(2) The provisions of the procedure are publicly available on the council’s Internet Web site.

(3) The council provides 15 calendar days prior notice of the denial or discipline and the reasons for the denial or discipline.

(4) The council provides an opportunity for the applicant or certificate holder, to be heard, orally or in writing, not less than five days before the effective date of the denial or discipline, by a person or body authorized to decide whether the proposed denial or discipline should go into effect.

(f)  (1) Notwithstanding any other law, if the council receives notice that a certificate holder has been arrested and charges have been filed by the appropriate prosecuting agency against the certificate holder alleging a violation of subdivision (b) of Section 647 of the Penal Code or any other offense described in paragraph (11) of subdivision (a) of Section 4609, the council shall immediately suspend, on an interim basis, the certificate of that certificate holder, and take all of the following additional actions:

(A) Notify the certificate holder at the address last filed with the council that the certificate has been suspended and the reason for the suspension within 10 business days.

(B) Provide notification of the suspension by email to the clerk or other designated contact of the city, county, or city and county in which the certificate holder lives or works, pursuant to the council’s records, within 10 business days.

(C) Provide notification of the suspension by email or first-class mail to any establishment or employer, whether public or private, that the council has in its records as employing the certificate holder, within 10 business days.

(2) Upon notice to the council that the charges described in paragraph (1) have resulted in a conviction, the council shall permanently revoke the suspended certificate. The council shall provide notice to the certificate holder, at the address last filed with the council by a method providing delivery confirmation, within 10 business days that it has evidence of a valid record of conviction and that the certificate will be revoked unless the certificate holder provides evidence within 15 days from the date of the council’s mailing of the notice that the conviction is either invalid or that the information is otherwise erroneous.

(3) Upon notice that the charges described in paragraph (1) have resulted in an acquittal or have been otherwise dismissed prior to conviction, the certificate shall be immediately reinstated and the certificate holder and any establishment or employer that received notice pursuant to this section shall be notified of the reinstatement within 10 business days.

(g)  (1) Notwithstanding any other law, if the council determines that a certificate holder has committed an act punishable as a sexually related crime or a felony that is substantially related to the qualifications, functions, or duties of a certificate holder, the council may immediately suspend the certificate of that certificate holder. A determination to immediately suspend a certificate pursuant to this subdivision shall be based upon a preponderance of the evidence and the council shall also consider any available credible mitigating evidence before making a decision. Written statements by any person shall not be considered by the council when determining whether to immediately suspend a certificate unless made under penalty of perjury. If the council suspends a certificate in accordance with this subdivision, the council shall take all of the following additional actions:

(A) Notify the certificate holder within 10 business days, at the address last filed with the council, by a method providing delivery confirmation, that the certificate has been suspended, the reason for the suspension, and that the certificate holder has the right to request a hearing pursuant to paragraph (2).

(B) Notify by email or any other means consistent with the notice requirements of this chapter, any business or employer, whether public or private, that the council has in its records as employing or contracting with the certificate holder for massage services, and the California city, county, or city and county that has jurisdiction over that establishment or employer, that the certificate has been suspended within 10 business days.

(2) A certificate holder whose certificate is suspended pursuant to this subdivision shall have the right to request, in writing, an oral hearing or consideration of a written statement to challenge the factual basis for the suspension. If the holder of the suspended certificate requests an oral hearing or consideration of a written statement on the suspension, the oral hearing or consideration of a written statement shall be held within 30 calendar days after receipt of the request. A holder whose certificate is suspended based on paragraph (1) shall be subject to revocation or other discipline in accordance with subdivision (a).

(3) If the council determines, after a hearing conducted pursuant to this subdivision, to lift the suspension, the certificate shall be immediately reinstated and the certificate holder, any establishment or employer, and the city, county, or city and county that has jurisdiction over that establishment or employer, that received notice pursuant to this section shall be notified of the reinstatement within 10 business days.

(h) Any notice required under this section may be given by any method reasonably calculated to provide actual notice. Any notice given by mail shall be given by first-class or certified mail sent to the last address of the applicant or certificate holder shown on the council’s records.

(i) An applicant or certificate holder may challenge a denial or discipline decision issued pursuant to this section in a court of competent jurisdiction. Any action challenging a denial or discipline, including any claim alleging defective notice, shall be commenced within 90 days after the effective date of the denial or discipline. Certification issued pursuant to this chapter is not a fundamental vested right and judicial review of denial and disciplinary decisions made by the council shall be conducted using the substantial evidence standard of review. If the action is successful, the court may order any relief, including reinstatement, that it finds equitable under the circumstances.

(j) This section governs only the procedures for denial or discipline decision and not the substantive grounds for the denial or discipline. Denial or discipline based upon substantive grounds that violates contractual or other rights of the applicant or certificate holder, or is otherwise unlawful, is not made valid by compliance with this section.

(Amended by Stats. 2016, Ch. 411, Sec. 6. (AB 2194) Effective January 1, 2017. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4611.
  

(a) It is an unfair business practice for a person to do any of the following:

(1) To hold himself or herself out or to use the title of “certified massage therapist” or “certified massage practitioner,” or any other term, such as “licensed,” “certified,” “CMT,” or “CMP,” in any manner whatsoever that implies or suggests that the person is certified as a massage therapist or massage practitioner, unless that person currently holds an active and valid certificate issued by the council pursuant to this chapter.

(2) To falsely state or advertise or put out any sign or card or other device, or to falsely represent to the public through any print or electronic media, that he or she or any other individual is licensed, certified, or registered by a governmental agency as a massage therapist or massage practitioner.

(b) In addition to any other available remedies, engaging in any of the prohibited behaviors described in subdivision (a) constitutes unfair competition under Section 17200.

(Added by Stats. 2014, Ch. 406, Sec. 2. (AB 1147) Effective January 1, 2015. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4612.
  

(a) Notwithstanding any other law, a city, county, or city and county shall not enact or enforce an ordinance that conflicts with this chapter or Section 51034 of the Government Code.

(b) Nothing in this chapter shall prevent a city, county, or city and county from licensing, regulating, prohibiting, or permitting an individual who provides massage for compensation without a valid certificate.

(Added by Stats. 2014, Ch. 406, Sec. 2. (AB 1147) Effective January 1, 2015. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4614.
  

(a) Upon the request of any law enforcement agency or any other representative of a local government agency with responsibility for regulating or administering a local ordinance relating to massage or massage establishments, the council shall provide information concerning an applicant or a certificate holder, including, but not limited to, any of the following:

(1) The current status of an application or certificate.

(2) Any history of disciplinary actions.

(3) The home and work addresses of the applicant or certificate holder.

(4) The name and home and work addresses of any person whose certificate has been suspended and the length of the suspension, if the work address is located within the jurisdiction of agency making the request.

(5) Any other information in the council’s possession that is necessary to verify facts relevant to administering the local ordinance.

(b) Upon the request of the council, any law enforcement agency or any other representative of a local government agency with responsibility for regulating or administering a local ordinance relating to massage or massage establishments is authorized to provide information to the council concerning an applicant or certificate holder, including, but not limited to, any of the following:

(1) The current status of any local application or permit.

(2) Any history of legal or administrative action taken against the applicant or certificate holder.

(3) Any information related to criminal activity or unprofessional conduct allegedly engaged in by a certificate applicant or certificate holder, including, but not limited to, police reports and declarations of conduct.

(4) The home and work addresses of the applicant or certificate holder.

(5) Any other information in the possession of the law enforcement agency or other local government agency that is necessary to verify information or otherwise implement this chapter.

(c) The council shall accept information provided by any law enforcement agency or any other representative of a local government agency with responsibility for regulating or administering a local ordinance relating to massage and review that information in a timely manner. The council shall have the responsibility to review any information received pursuant to this subdivision and to take any actions authorized by this chapter that are warranted by that information.

(Added by Stats. 2014, Ch. 406, Sec. 2. (AB 1147) Effective January 1, 2015. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4615.
  

(a) The council shall have the responsibility to determine whether the school from which an applicant has obtained the education required by this chapter meets the requirements of this chapter.

(1) If the council has any reason to question whether or not the applicant received the education that is required by this chapter from the school or schools that the applicant is claiming, the council shall investigate the facts to determine that the applicant received the required education prior to issuing a certificate.

(2) For purposes of this section and any other provision of this chapter that authorizes the council to receive factual information as a condition of taking any action, the council may conduct oral interviews of the applicant and others or conduct any investigation deemed necessary to establish that the information received is accurate and satisfies the criteria established by this chapter.

(b) The council shall develop policies, procedures, rules, or bylaws governing the requirements and process for the approval and unapproval of schools consistent with Section 4601, including any corrective action required to return a school to approved status. These policies, procedures, rules, or bylaws shall address topics including, but not limited to, what constitutes an acceptable curriculum, facility requirements, student-teacher ratios, clinical practice requirements, and provisions for the acceptance of accreditation from a recognized accreditation body or other form of acceptance. The council shall exercise its authority to approve and unapprove schools and specify corrective action in keeping with the purposes set forth in Section 4603.

(c) The council may charge a reasonable fee for the inspection or approval of schools, provided the fees do not exceed the reasonable cost of the inspection or approval process.

(Added by Stats. 2014, Ch. 406, Sec. 2. (AB 1147) Effective January 1, 2015. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4616.
  

The council shall be sued only in the county of its principal office, which shall be in Sacramento, unless otherwise designated by the council.

(Added by Stats. 2014, Ch. 406, Sec. 2. (AB 1147) Effective January 1, 2015. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4617.
  

The superior court of a county of competent jurisdiction may, upon a petition by any person, issue an injunction or any other relief the court deems appropriate for a violation of this chapter by any person or establishment operating in that county subject to the provisions of this chapter. An injunction proceeding under this section shall be governed by Chapter 3 (commencing with Section 525) of Title 7 of Part 2 of the Code of Civil Procedure.

(Added by Stats. 2014, Ch. 406, Sec. 2. (AB 1147) Effective January 1, 2015. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4618.
  

The Legislature finds and declares that due to important health, safety, and welfare concerns that affect the entire state, establishing a uniform standard of certification for massage practitioners and massage therapists upon which consumers may rely to identify individuals who have achieved specified levels of education, training, and skill is a matter of statewide concern and not a municipal affair, as that term is used in Section 5 of Article XI of the California Constitution. Therefore, this chapter shall apply to all cities, counties, and cities and counties, including charter cities and charter counties.

(Added by Stats. 2014, Ch. 406, Sec. 2. (AB 1147) Effective January 1, 2015. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4619.
  

(a) This chapter shall be liberally construed to effectuate its purposes.

(b) The provisions of this chapter are severable. If any provision of this chapter or its application is held invalid, that invalidity shall not affect other provisions or applications that can be given effect without the invalid provision or application.

(c) If any provision of this chapter or the application of these provisions to any person or circumstance is held to be invalid, the invalidity shall not affect other provisions or applications of the chapter that can be given effect without the invalid provision or application, and to this end the provisions of this chapter are severable.

(Added by Stats. 2014, Ch. 406, Sec. 2. (AB 1147) Effective January 1, 2015. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4620.
  

(a) On or before January 1, 2017, for the time period beginning on January 1, 2015, the council shall provide a report to the appropriate policy committees of the Legislature that includes all of the following:

(1) A feasibility study of licensure for the massage profession, including a proposed scope of practice, legitimate techniques of massage, and related statutory recommendations.

(2) The council’s compensation guidelines and current salary levels.

(3) The status of the council’s progress towards revising the school approval process.

(4) Performance metrics, including, but not limited to:

(A) The annual number of denied certificate applications, and a brief description of the grounds for each decision.

(B) The annual number of suspended, revoked, or otherwise disciplined certificates, and a brief description of the grounds for each decision.

(C) The number of certificates taken off suspension, and a brief description of the grounds for each decision.

(D) The number of schools inspected and unapproved and a brief description of the grounds for each decision to unapprove.

(E) The total number of complaints about certificate holders received annually, including a subtotal of complaints received from local law enforcement and the action taken by the council as a result of those complaints.

(b) The council shall testify in person if requested by the appropriate policy committees of the Legislature.

(c) This section shall be repealed on January 1, 2021.

(Amended by Stats. 2016, Ch. 411, Sec. 7. (AB 2194) Effective January 1, 2017. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, pursuant to Section 4621.)

4621.
  

(a) This chapter shall remain in effect only until January 1, 2021, and as of that date is repealed, unless a later enacted statute, that is enacted before January 1, 2021, deletes or extends that date.

(b) Notwithstanding any other law, the powers and duties of the council shall be subject to review by the appropriate policy committees of the Legislature.

(Amended by Stats. 2016, Ch. 411, Sec. 8. (AB 2194) Effective January 1, 2017. Repealed as of January 1, 2021, by its own provisions. Note: Repeal affects Chapter 10.5, commencing with Section 4600.)

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