ALBME

Limited License

Limited licenses are issued for practice in a residency or fellowship program, as a visiting, distinguished, or specialty professor at a medical college, or as an employee of a state mental or penal institution.

A limited licensee’s medical practice is restricted to the confines of the program or institution.

How to Apply/What Happens Next

Limited licenses are issued through the medical school/state institution. You should contact your program director or administrator for additional information.

Application forms are provided to the institutions but are also available on this page.

Once your limited certificate of qualification (COQ) is issued by the Board, apply to the Commission for a license using the License Application Form.

Apply for an Alabama Controlled Substances Certificate (optional) through the Licensee Portal.

Eligibility Requirements

Graduates of LCME- or AOA-accredited medical schools:

  • Diploma from a college of medicine or osteopathy approved by the Board.
  • Served or be serving a one-year residency approved by the AMA or the Board.
  • Letter from the Dean, Chief Medical Officer, or Program Director certifying training or employment at the institution.

Graduates of non-LCME-accredited medical schools:

  • Diploma translated to English from a college of medicine or osteopathy and be eligible for examination by the Education Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (medical school must be listed at the time of graduation in the World Directory of Medical Schools by the World Health Organization).
  • Served or be serving one year of residency approved by the AMA or the Board.
  • ECFMG certification unless received medical training from primarily English-speaking medical school (may be waived for a distinguished professor or specialty professor).

Applicants employed full-time at state penal or mental institution:

  • Does not qualify to take a required licensing examination.
  • Has achieved a passing score on USMLE Step 3, but steps 1, 2 and 3 were not completed within a seven-year period.
  • Has achieved a passing score on USMLE Step 3, but the passing score was achieved in more than three administrations.
  • An applicant does not qualify for a limited license if the applicant is eligible to take a required licensing examination.

Visiting Professor

  • Hold an MD degree.
  • Employed as a faculty member at accredited Alabama College of Medicine.
  • Appointed for a specific limited period of time, normally not exceeding 24 months.

Distinguished Professor

  • Hold an MD degree.
  • Appointed to the rank of Professor at an accredited Alabama College of Medicine.
  • Proven recognition by peers, invited to be a lecturer at other colleges of medicine, delivery of scholarly papers, letters of support.
  • There is no specific duration for this appointment.

Specialty Professor

  • Hold an MD degree.
  • Appointed to regular, full-time faculty of medicine at an accredited Alabama College of Medicine at the rank of assistant, associate, or full professor.
  • Not eligible to obtain a regular license due to lack of required residency training or inability to submit to exams required for a regular license or other circumstances.
  • Proven recognition by peers, invited to be a lecturer at other colleges of medicine, delivery of scholarly papers, letters of support.

Forms

Fees

  • Initial limited COQ: $175
  • Initial limited license: $75
  • Limited COQ renewal: $15
  • Limited license renewal: $300
  • Print receipts at the Licensee Portal

Renewal Requirements

Limited certificates of qualification (COQ) and licenses are issued for one year only.

Limited COQs must be renewed prior to Nov. 30 each year.

Once the COQ is renewed, you must also renew the limited license through the Licensee Portal.

All lawful aliens/foreign national licensees practicing in Alabama are required to submit annually a Declaration of Lawful Presence form with proof of legal presence as a non-permanent alien prior to renewing your license. You will not be allowed to renew until legal presence documentation has been received and approved by SAVE.  Likewise, manual renewals will not be processed without proper documentation.

FAQ

Alabama law does not require licensure for residents and fellows who do not meet the requirements for a full license; however, individual programs do require a limited or full license.


No, a limited license restricts your medical practice to the residency/fellowship program, professorship, or state penal or mental institution, and you may not practice outside of those confines.


No. You must apply for a full license once you have met the requirements for full licensure if you plan to remain in postgraduate training or practice in Alabama. Provisional approval is offered to those who meet all the qualifications for full licensure except for completion of residency. You can apply for a full license when you are 3-4 months from completion, and once the program has sent evidence of completion, the license is issued.