NBCOT’s character review program serves the public interest by screening illegal, unethical, and incompetent behaviors of individuals who are certified by NBCOT.
To ensure that occupational therapy practitioners meet standards of professional conduct, all applicants for certification renewal are required to provide information and documentation related to affirmative responses to character questions on the renewal application.
Applicants applying for renewal of their OCCUPATIONAL THERAPIST REGISTERED OTR® (OTR.) or CERTIFIED OCCUPATIONAL THERAPY ASSISTANT COTA® (COTA) must answer each of the following questions on the examination application:
If the answer to any of these questions is “yes,” the applicant must submit the following information to NBCOT’s Credentialing Services Department:
NBCOT will review the information submitted on an individual basis and determine whether the incident(s) has a direct relationship to a potential violation(s) of the Candidate/Certificant Code of Conduct. If a direct relationship is found, the NBCOT’s Qualifications and Compliance Review Committee may impose sanctions. For additional information see Procedures For The Enforcement Of The NBCOT Candidate/Certificant Code Of Conduct.
All information must be submitted and reviewed by NBCOT before eligibility to take the certification examination is determined.
Any questions an applicant may have regarding whether or not there would be problems being licensed in the field would have to be answered by the regulatory entity in the jurisdiction where the candidate intends to practice. While all jurisdictions that regulate occupational therapy accept NBCOT certification as one of the prerequisites for licensure, each makes its own decision and has its own rules and criteria for reviewing matters regarding good moral character. For additional information on licensure requirements.
On the whole, an incident(s) that is more than 10 years old, where an individual can clearly demonstrate that he or she has taken remedial or rehabilitative measures to change their behavior, is generally reviewed favorably. Whereas, a more recent incident(s), (e.g., where an individual might still be under probationary conditions or restrictions), is reviewed with more caution and scrutiny, and may be subject to sanction by NBCOT’s Qualifications and Compliance Review Committee.