(1) Any person is qualified for licensure as a massage therapist under this act who:
(a) Is at least 18 years of age or has received a high school diploma or high school equivalency diploma;
(b) Has completed a course of study at a board-approved massage school or has completed an apprenticeship program that meets standards adopted by the board; and
(c) Has received a passing grade on an examination administered by the department.
(2) Every person desiring to be examined for licensure as a massage therapist shall apply to the department in writing upon forms prepared and furnished by the department. Such applicants shall be subject to the provisions of s. 480.046(1). Applicants may take an examination administered by the department only upon meeting the requirements of this section as determined by the board. (3) An applicant must submit to background screening under s. 456.0135.
(4) Upon an applicant’s passing the examination and paying the initial licensure fee, the department shall issue to the applicant a license, valid until the next scheduled renewal date, to practice massage.
(5) The board shall adopt rules:
(a) Establishing a minimum training program for apprentices.
(b) Providing for educational standards, examination, and certification for the practice of colonic irrigation, as defined in s. 480.033(6), by massage therapists.
(c) Specifying licensing procedures for practitioners desiring to be licensed in this state who hold an active license and have practiced in any other state, territory, or jurisdiction of the United States or any foreign national jurisdiction which has licensing standards substantially similar to, equivalent to, or more stringent than the standards of this state.
(6) Massage therapists who were issued a license before July 1, 2014, must submit to the background screening requirements of s. 456.0135 by January 31, 2015. (7) The board shall deny an application for a new or renewal license if an applicant has been convicted or found guilty of, or enters a plea of guilty or nolo contendere to, regardless of adjudication, a felony offense under any of the following provisions of state law or a similar provision in another jurisdiction: (a) Section 787.01, relating to kidnapping. (b) Section 787.02, relating to false imprisonment. (c) Section 787.025, relating to luring or enticing a child. (d) Section 787.06, relating to human trafficking. (e) Section 787.07, relating to human smuggling. (f) Section 794.011, relating to sexual battery. (g) Section 794.08, relating to female genital mutilation. (h) Former s. 796.03, relating to procuring a person under the age of 18 for prostitution. (i) Former s. 796.035, relating to the selling or buying of minors into prostitution. (j) Section 796.04, relating to forcing, compelling, or coercing another to become a prostitute. (k) Section 796.05, relating to deriving support from the proceeds of prostitution. (l) Section 796.07(4)(c), relating to a felony of the third degree for a third or subsequent violation of s. 796.07, relating to prohibiting prostitution and related acts. (m) Section 800.04, relating to lewd or lascivious offenses committed upon or in the presence of persons less than 16 years of age. (n) Section 825.1025(2)(b), relating to lewd or lascivious offenses committed upon or in the presence of an elderly or disabled person. (o) Section 827.071, relating to sexual performance by a child. (p) Section 847.0133, relating to the protection of minors. (q) Section 847.0135, relating to computer pornography. (r) Section 847.0138, relating to the transmission of material harmful to minors to a minor by electronic device or equipment. (s) Section 847.0145, relating to the selling or buying of minors.