LICENSING OF MILITARY SERVICE MEMBERS, MILITARY VETERANS, AND MILITARY SPOUSES

Occupations Code
Chapter 55
LICENSING OF MILITARY SERVICE MEMBERS, MILITARY VETERANS, AND MILITARY SPOUSES
(Effective September 1, 2017)

Sec. 55.001. Definitions.

In this chapter:

  • (1) “Active duty” means current full-time military service in the armed forces of the United States or active duty military service as a member of the Texas military forces, as defined by Section 437.001, Government Code, or similar military service of another state.
  • (2) “Armed forces of the United States” means the army, navy, air force, coast guard, or marine corps of the United States or a reserve unit of one of those branches of the armed forces.
  • (3) “License” means a license, certificate, registration, permit, or other form of authorization required by law or a state agency rule that must be obtained by an individual to engage in a particular business.
  • (4) “Military service member” means a person who is on active duty.
  • (5) “Military spouse” means a person who is married to a military service member.
  • (6) “Military veteran” means a person who has served on active duty and who was discharged or released from active duty.
  • (7) “State agency” means a department, board, bureau, commission, committee, division, office, council, or agency of the state.

Sec. 55.002. Exemption from Penalty for Failure to Renew License.

A state agency that issues a license shall adopt rules to exempt an individual who holds a license issued by the agency from any increased fee or other penalty imposed by the agency for failing to renew the license in a timely manner if the individual establishes to the satisfaction of the agency that the individual failed to renew the license in a timely manner because the individual was serving as a military service member.

Sec. 55.003. Extension of License Renewal Deadlines for Military Service Members.

A military service member who holds a license is entitled to two years of additional time to complete:

  • (1) any continuing education requirements; and
  • (2) any other requirement related to the renewal of the military service member’s license.

Sec. 55.004. Alternative Licensing for Military Service Members, Military Veterans, and Military Spouses.

  • (a) A state agency that issues a license shall adopt rules for the issuance of the license to an applicant who is a military service member, military veteran, or military spouse and:
    • (1) holds a current license issued by another jurisdiction that has licensing requirements that are substantially equivalent to the requirements for the license in this state; or
    • (2) within the five years preceding the application date held the license in this state.
  • (b) The executive director of a state agency may waive any prerequisite to obtaining a license for an applicant described by Subsection (a) after reviewing the applicant’s credentials.
  • (c) In addition to the rules adopted under Subsection (a), a state agency that issues a license may adopt rules that would establish alternate methods for a military service member, military veteran, or military spouse to demonstrate competency to meet the requirements for obtaining the license.

Sec. 55.005. Expedited License Procedure for Military Service Members, Military Veterans, and Military Spouses.

  • (a) A state agency that issues a license shall, as soon as practicable after a military service member, military veteran, or military spouse files an application for a license:
    • (1) process the application; and
    • (2) issue the license to an applicant who qualifies for the license under Section 55.004.
  • (b) A license issued under this section may not be a provisional license and must confer the same rights, privileges, and responsibilities as a license not issued under this section.

Sec. 55.006. Renewal of Expedited License Issued to Military Service Member, Military Veteran, or Military Spouse.

  • (a) As soon as practicable after a state agency issues a license under Section 55.005, the state agency shall determine the requirements for the license holder to renew the license.
  • (b) The state agency shall notify the license holder of the requirements for renewing the license in writing or by electronic means.
  • (c) A license issued under Section 55.005 has the term established by law or state agency rule, or a term of 12 months from the date the license is issued, whichever term is longer.

Sec. 55.007. License Eligibility Requirements for Applicants with Military Experience.

  • (a) Notwithstanding any other law, a state agency that issues a license shall, with respect to an applicant who is a military service member or military veteran, credit verified military service, training, or education toward the licensing requirements, other than an examination requirement, for a license issued by the state agency.
  • (b) The state agency shall adopt rules necessary to implement this section.
  • (c) Rules adopted under this section may not apply to an applicant who:
    • (1) holds a restricted license issued by another jurisdiction; or
    • (2) has an unacceptable criminal history according to the law applicable to the state agency.

Sec. 55.008. Apprenticeship Requirements for Applicant with Military Experience.

  • (a) Notwithstanding any other law, if an apprenticeship is required for a license issued by a state agency, the state agency shall have credit verified military service, training, or education that is relevant to the occupation toward the apprenticeship requirements for the license.
  • (b) The state agency shall adopt rules necessary to implement this section.

Sec. 55.009. License Application and Examination Fees.

Notwithstanding any other law, a state agency that issues a license shall waive the license application and examination fees paid to the state for an applicant who is:

  • (1) a military service member or military veteran whose military service, training, or education substantially meets all of the requirements for the license; or
  • (2) a military service member, military veteran, or military spouse who holds a current license issued by another jurisdiction that has licensing requirements that are substantially equivalent to the requirements for the license in this state.

Sec. 55.010. Notice of Chapter Provisions.

A state agency that issues a license shall prominently post a notice on the home page of the agency’s Internet website describing the provisions of this chapter that are available to military service members, military veterans, and military spouses.