Skip to:

Forms and FAQs



Licensee

  • How do I change my name on my license?
    Copy your marriage certificate, divorce decree or official government issued document and mail a copy with the processing fee of $10.00 to the board office.  A form is listed on the FAQ/Form section to guide you through.  If you submit this during the renewal period of November 1 to December 31, a separate fee is not required.  However, you must have an accurate license posted in your office for the public to validate your official name and license.   Current public information must correspond to the name, practice locations provided on the board’s website. 
  • How do I change my email, or telephone?
    Log on to your personal license data at the website and update those fields.  Board staff members are notified the following day of those official modifications.  
  • How do I have a License Verification sent to another state?

    Most states will require verification of your Minnesota license.  At this time, the board does not charge for the official notification sent the requesting state's board of optometry.  Merely email your name, license number and the state you wish the verification to be sent to Anna.hartsel@state.mn.us or optometry.board@state.mn.us.  The license verification will be sent within 72 hours of the receipt of the request.

  • How do I change my Practice Locations?
    Log on to your personal license data, and update those fields.  Board staff members are notified the following day of those official modifications.  
  • How do I request a replacement Wall Certificate (8.5 X 11)?

    If you misplace, lose or damage your license you may request a replacement by completing a request for wall certificate replacement.

  • How do I request a duplicate or replacement license renewal certificate (3 X 5 card)?

    If you misplace, lose or damage the renewal certificate card (3x5) you may request an replacement renewal card.

Applicants

  • How do I apply for my initial license?
    The home page has the electronic 'Initial Application for First License" online application which allows you to create your initial application for licensure. Staff will review the content and typically within 48 hours will email you a list a 'validation' requirements, such as College of Optometry transcript, two references, and NBEO examination scores. Once submitted, a check mark indicates acceptance. The downloadable paper application is also available. Instructions to complete the paper application is found under Applicants. 
  • How do I provide two letters of recommendation?

    For your initial license, two letters of recommendation must be provided, one of which must be a licensed Optometrist. The O.D. does not need to be a Minnesota optometrist, but licensed in good standing in their jurisdiction.

  • On the application it refers to practical experience, what should I list?
    include all student or paid practical experience related to Optometry
  • Under the section Application in other states/provinces; is that all states that I've applied for a license?
    formally applied
  • How do I request my NBEO scores be sent to Minnesota?
    When signing up for the examination, you are provided different options to notify various jurisdictions/states.  Once NBEO has received your official transcript notifying them that you have obtained your Doctor of Optometry, they release your scores to all jurisdictions that were previously identified in the application.  Applicants will contact NBEO at all times to release the examination scores even if requesting a license at a later date. 
  • I passed the NBEO how can I confirm the Minnesota Board received the scores?

    Once NBEO receives your official transcript notifying them of your successful completion of the Doctor of Optometry degree, they release your scores to all five jurisdictions that you listed when you applied to the NBEO. Applicants will also be notified when the scores are received as they are recorded in your Minnesota Board of Optometry (MBO) electronic file and you are automatically notified of all updates, indicating MBO accepting the official NBEO results. 

  • How do I complete the Minnesota Jurisprudence examination?
    The Minnesota jurisprudence or law exam is administered through NBEO.  You will follow nearly identical procedures as completing the national exam.  The law exam is an open book exam focused on the specific Minnesota laws that will be applicable to your practice. There are 34 multiple choice questions with a passing score of 75% required.  You may complete the Minnesota examination at any time convenient for you.  Results are sent to the MBO upon their official score review and release within days of the completion of the examination. 

    For a current copy of the specific Minnesota laws, go to the home page and review "Statutes and Rules".  Statutes are mandated by the legislature and the Rules are created by the board members to provide clarity to the statute. 
  • How soon can I get a license?
    All items must be completed to receive your initial license.  Most applicants complete the NBEO and Minnesota exams, have applied with all requirements (i.e. recommendations, undergraduate transcript etc) completed and as soon as the MBO and NBEO receive the official OD transcript, the initial license can be granted.  MBO has delegated authority to staff to complete routine applications and the license is granted within 48 hours of all ‘clean’ applications.  If the application is required to go before the board, the quarterly meeting schedule is posted on the board website.  The website identifies all 'active' licenses.  As soon as the board staff physically prints the license, the online validation of the license is updated with the license number, active status and the license expiration date.  
  • How much is the initial application and license?
    The application is $87.00, $50.00 for the TPA certification and a Minnesota Information Technology tax of 10% or $8.70 for a total fee of $145.70. Checks may be made to the Minnesota Board of Optometry.  

Continuing Education

  • How do I receive my OE Tracker Number?
    You are automatically assigned an OE Tracker upon completion of the NBEO exams.  You may locate your personal OE Tracker number at www.arbo.org.      
  • What was the rationale for the utilization of OE Tracker and Online Renewals

    The Minnesota Board of Optometry discussed the robust capabilities of the 'one stop' national model for two years, mindful of two principles:
    1) the centralized electronic recording of CE will be most accurate and efficient, achieving a seamless final record for Optometrists, CE Sponsors and the board staff, and
    2) OD’s will find value in the system and voluntarily participate, rather than a mandate. At this time, O.D’s may elect to not participate in OE Tracker.  However, by not enrolling, there are limitations to viewing the accumulated CE during the Minnesota renewal cycle only.

  • How do I check my CE for the year?
    COPE permits all Minnesota OD's to access their OE Tracker data during the renewal period of October 15 to December 31 of each year.  The annual fee is $20.00 allows you full benefits to review and validate your CE records year round.  
    The Minnesota Continuing Education category limits: 

    Requirement

    Clock Hours

    Total Continuing Education for Two year period

      40  minimum

    Subcategories:  Not to Exceed

     

    Correspondence or Internet (non-live)

    15 maximum

    Practice Management

    6 maximum

    Volunteer Services

    7 maximum


    There are additional options for presentation(s) of a lecture or publishing articles.  Please contact the office of how to seek prior approval for those sessions.  

    Live Internet Webinars or synchronous education are considered a live event if originally broadcast and if interactive questions   and answers can occur during the original taping of the event.  Live Internet-Webinars have the capability of tracking a participant’s engagement.   
      
  • If it's my first license do I need CE the first year?
    The first partial year of the license period does not require any continuing education or CE. The CE requirement begins with the first full or complete year of license.  For example, a new OD licensed in June, 2014 will require 20 clock hours for 2015 and those licensed in 2015 will not require any CE for the renewal of their January 1, 2016 license.  The renewal of the license begins on October 15 of each year and the OD may earn CE up to December 31st to renew their license.  
  • How do I file my Professional Firm Registration?
    Minnesota Statutes, section 319B states that no professional firm may furnish professional services within Minnesota until the firm has filed information with each Board having jurisdiction over the pertinent professional services. Section 319B also requires every professional firm to file an annual report on or before January 1st of each year, with the Board that has jurisdiction over the professional service the firm is authorized to render. Forms are found under FAQ’s and FORMS. 

    Initial Report:  Please complete the Professional Firm Registration-Initial Report form. The form must be completed and signed, under oath, by a professional who is an owner or employee of the professional firm, who is licensed to practice optometry in Minnesota and who is duly authorized to make the statements on behalf of the professional firm. 

    This form serves as your first annual report. Please return the completed form along with a $100.00 filing fee and a copy of the firm’s organizational document, Certificate of Authority, or Statement of Qualification.

    Annual Report:  Minnesota Statutes section 319B provides that every professional firm shall file an annual report on or before January 1st of each year. The report must be filed with the Board that has jurisdiction over the professional service the firm is authorized to render. 

    Please complete the Professional Firm Registration-Annual Report form each year.  The form must be completed and signed, under oath, by a professional who is an owner or employee of the professional firm, who is licensed to practice optometry in Minnesota and who is duly authorized to make the statements on behalf of the professional firm. 
    Please return the form along with a $25 filing fee and a copy of any changes since your last filing to the firm’s organizational document, certificate of authority, or statement of qualification.

    For more information on the Professional Firms Act:  https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/?id=319B

  • How do I order a list of Minnesota Optometrists?
    Submit a request with your name, mailing address, email address and attach a $50.00 fee.  Once received the MBO will complete a set of labels or an excel spreadsheet with the public fields available and will email the list to the requesting party.
  • What are the basic steps to assure my CE is recorded in OE Tracker?

    Beginning in July, 2013 all documented Continuing Education clock hours are recorded into the single location at OE Tracker.  OE Tracker allows for both Council of Optometric Practitioner Education (COPE) nationally approved and Non-COPE (Minnesota approved CE) to be uploaded into the OE Tracker account.   They are entered once approved by the accrediting body and the attendance validated by the sponsor via  two methods:

    1.       COPE Approved and sent in directly by the CE Sponsor or by the OD if the vendor does not submit them.  The Board encourages you to ask the vendor to send the documented attendance directly to OE Tracker. 

    2.       Minnesota Approved only will be validated with an identifier such as (MN14-001) and sent in by the Minnesota CE sponsor or the OD.

    ·       As you attend approved Continuing Education events, please verify with the sponsor that they have submitted your attendance validation to COPE.   You will no longer need to keep track of any paper certificates, nor any record keeping through OE Tracker for your Minnesota license. 

     ·       If you are using VOSH, presenting at a national seminar or academic presentations for CE credit, an ‘experiential CE request ‘is found on the Minnesota website.  For those options, the Minnesota Board will approve/deny and send in the approval directly to OE Tracker.  Please complete those within 21 days of the event to avoid any unnecessary delays. 


  • I have a COPE approved certificate of completion for an online program, how do I get it added to OE Tracker?

    Merely, scan and email, fax or mail a copy of the certificate to OE Tracker and it will be added to your OE Tracker record. 

    The Contact information is: 

    email directly to OE Tracker coordinator srice@arbo.org

    or 

    Association of Regulatory Boards of Optometry

    200 South College Street, Suite 2030

    Charlotte, NC  28202

    Phone: 704-970-2710

    Fax: 704-970-2720

     

    www.arbo.org

  • I completed CPR with a certificate of completion, is that approved?

    The Minnesota Board of Optometry recognizes the American Heart Association CPR courses within the scope of practice for continuing competency for Optometrists.  A maximum of four hours is approved within the OE Tracker system for Minnesota OD's. For subscribing OE Tracker members, merely send a copy of your card or certificate of attendance directly to OE Tracker.

    For non-subscribing OE Tracker members, you must either have the AHA sponsor send in the documentation or request the board staff who will assign a unique Minnesota identifier CE number and the board will send it in directly to OE Tracker near the end of the renewal cycle each year.

     

Board Advisory Guidance

Renewal Cycle

  • When do I renew?
    Renewal postcards are sent out on approximately October 15th of each year. An email blast is also sent at the same time with the online renewal system going 'live' at the same time. The board has directed staff to encourage online renewals with the OE Tracker system recording all CE activity of the individual optometrist.

  • Do I need to maintain a paper copy of the CE?

    No, CE Sponsors will be forwarding validation of your attendance to OE Tracker.  There is no reason to issue a paper copy of the CE anymore with this model. The board considers continuing education recorded once it's officially entered into OE Tracker. 

  • What happens if I'm audited?

    By using OE Tracker, the board has assurance that your attendance has been validated. There is no need to request an individual audit when using the OE Tracker system.

    Other Benefits:

    • Utilize proven technology and ’go green’ to avoid printing certificates of attendance.  
    • 100% CE audit compliance is achieved by the board. 
    • Ease of use for O.D’s to focus on the education and not the bookkeeping and maintenance of certificates of attendance.
    • Uniformity of completed continuing education for all O.D’s. 
    • Optional for the MN Optometrist to fully utilize OE Tracker. Without the $20 fee, the CE summary pages will only be available to you from October 15 to December 31.  
    • When you renew online, you will be able to review all your COPE and Minnesota approved CE which has been automatically downloaded into your Minnesota renewal.  No more manually completing your biennial attendance.  Please ask the sponsor of education if they have had the session COPE or MN Approved. If so, they will send the required OD participation information to OE Tracker.  

    Sponsors:

    • Pursue most CE to be uploaded into COPE for a single source understanding a few outliers may require a different option.  

    ARBO and COPE: 

    • Pledge their cooperation to make the next two transition years smooth. 
    • COPE is the single source for CE especially for those with multiple state licenses. 
    • If interested in more information on OE Tracker; contact Sierra.Rice@arbo.com

    Optometrists:

    • All Minnesota Sponsors of Education will either have COPE approval numbers or Minnesota CE approval.  All sponsors will submit their CE roster listing attendee’s OE Tracker number and the approved hours of attendance. 
    • The comprehensive benefit of utilizing OE TRACKER would be achieved by logging into the OE Tracker system at www.arbo.org. and paying the $20.00 annual fee. 
    • This will provide even greater benefits than the free enrollment.  Minnesota Optometrists that decide they do not wish to pay the annual fee will have a limited window from October 15 through December 31 to review and attest to their continuing education.  

Renewals

  • When is the deadline for renewal of my Minnesota Optometry License?

    All renewals must be submitted by December 31 with the office closing at 4:00 PM.  Postmarks with December 31st are accepted.  All late renewals can only be processed once the late fee of $35.00  is submitted.

  • How do I officially record CE into my personal OE Tracker file?

    The Minnesota Board of Optometry is encouraging all approved CE sponsors to forward your earned continuing education directly to OE Tracker.  Once entered, the Minnesota Board accepts the entered CE as official documentation of your CE.  If you have a certificate of attendance from another sponsor, you may mail, scan, or fax the copy of the certificate directly to: 

    Contact Information

    Association of Regulatory Boards of Optometry

    200 South College St., Suite 2030  * Note new suite number *
    Charlotte, NC 28202

    Phone Number
    (704) 970-2710

    Fax Number
    (704) 970-2720

    E-mail
    ARBO@arbo.org

    Office Hours: 

    Monday-Friday
    9 am - 5 pm Eastern 

     

  • What is the electronic link to renew online?

    The direct link is found on the home page and will be activated only during the renewal cycle. 

  • How can I print off the renewal form and submit a paper form?
    Download Paper Renewal Form. The board desires a 100% audit of continuing education and therefore if you renew by paper, you will need to print off documentation from OE Tracker or by any means you desire to validate your attendance for those sessions submitted. 
  • If I'm late with my renewal can I still practice?

    All licenses expire on December 31th.   Minnesota Rule 6500.1900 Subp 5 states, Practicing optometry without a renewed or current license shall have the same force, effect and potential legal consequences as practicing optometry with a license.

    If you provide services to patients as an OD, you must have an active license. The Minnesota Board allows a six month period to complete CE if you contact the board with a hardship case to be continuously licensed. This means that an expired license renewed within six months will not be required to meet current applicant license or payment requirements. However a significant trend by credentialing services, Third Party Payers, and Insurance Companies is to monitor the board's website for active licenses. This may also cause a contractual issue between a licensed Optometrist and various vendors.  The board does not control the individual expectations of an employer or contracted third party administrator as to having a license expire on December 31 and those internal contractual expectations. 

  • How do I report my Continuing Education?

Late Renewals

  • How many days does it take for the board to renew a license?
    All postmarked mail as of December 31 will be considered on time with a continuous license date and a new expiration date for the following year.  Renewals are processed daily.  As staff update the internal records and approve the renewal of license, the new expiration date is automatically posted to the website.  The mailed renewal certificate will arrive in the mail a few days later.   

    When renewing online, the payment is validated first at US Bank and an electronically acceptance of the payment file is sent to the board.  This may take up to 48 hours. Once the payment transaction from is received at the board office, licenses are renewed within 48 hours. 
  • Our organization’s policy is that you need an active license in order to practice, what if I don't have a license for a few days?
    The website shows immediately when a renewal is approved by the board.  If a person doesn't renew, the website will show they were licensed until December 31, 20XX.  Board staff process all clean renewals in hand or postmarked on 12/31 as soon as possible after the first of the year and the license is considered continuous without a break. The board will reinstate your license for up to six months however, conflicting statutory language currently being reviewed suggests that Doctors of Optometry cannot perform the duties of an OD without possessing an active license which is many times defined by the various third party contracts.  The board will renew the license using Minnesota Rules 6500.2800.