Colorado OT Practice Act

After more than 30 years of OTAC regulatory efforts in Colorado, all occupational therapy practitioners in Colorado became licensed! Governor John Hickenlooper signed the OT Practice Act SB 13-180, into law on June 5, 2013 at approximately 12:38pm. The law went into effect on July 1, 2013 but there was not a process to become licensed until January 1, 2014. This finally follows suit with all other states in the country that previously had licensing for occupational therapists and the vast majority of states who have licensing for occupational therapy assistants.

Generally, for an individual to become licensed, they must have passed the national certification exam initially, successfully completed an internship under an occupational therapist, and have a degree in occupational therapy from an accredited school by the American Occupational Therapy Association or the World Federation of Occupational Therapists.

We would like to acknowledge the many licensure committees or task forces throughout the years and the support of the OTAC membership for our lobbyists’ efforts. Additionally, we would like to thank our Senate Sponsor for the bill, Dr. Irene Aquilar- Democrat from Denver and our House Sponsor, John Singer- Democrat from Longmont for their support of the bill.

Continued Professional Competency

Colorado Licensing for OT Practitioners DORAs’ “Deemed Status” definition

"If for the ENTIRE DORA renewal cycle for an OT or OTA holds an active license with CDE as a Special Service Provider or has current certification by NBCOT as an OTR or COTA then he/she will qualify for Deemed Status with DORA. The CDE Special Services Provider must also be employed by a school district in Colorado.  At the end of each DORA renewal cycle (2 years for OT), if the licensee is Deemed Status, he/she will attest that he/she is in compliance with CDE's or NBCOT’s requirements.  This means that they can complete their requirements in CDE's cycle not DORA's, in other words, he/she does have to complete 24 hours of continuing educational requirements in DORA’s 2 year period."

For further information regarding the requirements and application, please contact The Colorado Department of Regulatory Affairs.


School OT Practitioners

To work as an occupational therapist in Colorado's public schools, you must (a) maintain current certification by the National Board for Certification in Occupational Therapy (NBCOT), (b) be licensed as an occupational therapist with the Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA), and (c) have a Special Services License through the Colorado Department of Education (CDE). CDE oversees credentialing for teachers, administrative services, and special service personnel (e.g; OTs) who work in Colorado's schools.