What is the History of the AMTA?

AMTA began in August 1943 with 29 Charter members. AMTA Wisconsin Chapter began May 1, 1955 with 14 charter members. You can learn about the rich history of the association on AMTA National's website

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Where can I find Massage Therapy job listings?

AMTA's Job Bank has great resources - search job listings, sign up for alerts by email when new jobs are posted, post your resume & much more.

You can also find job listings for massage therapists at the Job Center of Wisconsin. (*tip - use advanced search and select all options for job boards to search for greatest number of results)

(Created 01/15/2015 - lk)

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What are the rules on Gift Cards and Certificates?

Under Federal Reserve rules, the expiration dates on gift cards and printed or electronic gift certificates must be at least five years from the date of purchase. But issuers can start charging monthly fees on gift cards that are not used within a year

The so-called “dormancy” or “inactivity” fee may be charged once per month with no limit. The fee must be clearly disclosed, so check the fine print. Cards or certificates issued as a reward or part of a promotion can expire in one year. Also, gift card issuers are not required to replace lost or stolen gift cards.

The federal rules apply in Wisconsin which does not regulate the sale of gift cards and certificates. Some states, such as Massachusetts, extend gift card expiration dates beyond the federal requirement.

Moral of the story: Use your gift card within a year to ensure you get full value.

Source: Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection, 2/22/15

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Can a person who has recently graduated or moved to Wisconsin receive a tempory license to practice while they prepare for and pass the National Exam?

Currently Wisconsin does not have an option for a Temporary License, however wording to this affect is under consideration by the State and is expected to go into effect in 2015. Stay tuned for updates.

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Is it legal for massage therapists or bodyworkers to provide body wraps, scrubs or facials?

Body wraps, scrubs and facials, when done for beautification or improvement of the skin are to be done by those having aesthetician or cosmetology licenses. They are not in Massage Therapist or Bodyworker Scope of Practice.

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What should I do if I know or suspect someone is practicing without a license?

The first thing to do is get the persons complete name, check on the Department of Safety and Professional Services look up the name of the person under Look up a License select Massage Therapy and Bodyworker and enter the correct spelling of the person in question. If the name does not appear they are likely not licensed. You may then file a compliant of non-complince on that individual.

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What Continuing Education is required for Wisconsin license renewal?

Continuing Education requirement will go into effect March 1, 2015 with the first reporting cycle being 2017. You will not be required to report CE hours for the March 1, 2015 renewal.

24 hours of Continuing Education is required per 2 year renewal period. That is the same requirement currently met by AMTA Professional Members and NCBTMB no additional hours will be added.

Acceptable continuing education shall address topics within the scope of practice of massage therapy and bodywork therapy or related business practices. The topic of at least 2 of the total continuing education hours in each biennium shall be ethics.

Not all CEs will count. They must have approriate sponsorhsip or approval. ALL AMTA & AMTA-WI sponsored CEs do count. Follow the link to the law to see the list of other approved CE sponsors.

Newly licensed individuals will not have to submit their CEs until the second renewal, four years following initial licensure.

You can read the full text of the Massage CE Requirements law at http://docs.legis.wisconsin.gov/code/admin_code/mtbt/7

 Updated 01/18/2015 - LK

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I would like to report a business that is hiring non licensed people to practice massage. What should I do?

This is a problem that is not currently covered under our law. The best way to deal with this type of situation is to get the names of the people practicing, if you can get their full name you can report them to the department by filing a claim on the Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services click on Compalints and Inspections. If you are unable to obtain their full name it is best to call your local city officials and make an inquiry regarding the business, explain to the city that Massage Therapists need to have a state license and you believe this business has unlicensed people practicing there. Each community will handle such request differently, perserverance is your best option.

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How do I file a complaint against a Massage Therapist or Bodywork Therapist?

The state regulatory board is responsible for processing complaints against Massage Therapists and Bodywork Therapists, as well as unlicensed practitioners but they must be made in writing on the official form for that purpose. Here is the link for those forms: http://dsps.wi.gov/Complaints-and-Inspections/Professions-Complaints/

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Where can I find the laws related to Massage Therapy in Wisconsin?

Wisconsin Statues related to Massage Therapy are found at:

Statutes include topics such as:

460.01   Definitions (Include Scope of Practice)
460.02   License required.
460.03   Applicability.
460.04   Duties of affiliated credentialing board.
460.05   Licensure of massage therapists and bodywork therapists.
460.06   Examinations.
460.07   Display of certificate; expiration and renewal.
460.08   Temporary license.
460.09   Reciprocal license.
460.095   Massage therapy and bodywork therapy school, training program, and instructor requirements.
460.10   Continuing education.
460.11   Practice requirements.
460.12   Duty to make reports.
460.13   Advertising.
460.14   Disciplinary proceedings and actions.
460.15   Penalty.
460.17   Local regulation.

Wisconsin Administrative Code (Also Law)- Massage Therapy and Bodywork Therapy Affiliated Credentialing Board
Chapter MTBT 1 - Authority, intent, and definitions
Chapter MTBT 2 - Application (Requirements to apply for a massage license in WI, reciprocal licenseing & more)
Chapter MTBT 3 - Education
Chapter MTBT 4 - Requirements for renewal
Chapter MTBT 5 - Unprofessional conduct
Chapter MTBT 6 - Temporary licensure
Chapter MTBT 7 - Continuing education

DSPS Administractive Rules related to Administrative Procedures for all licensed individuals:

Chapter SPS 1   Procedures to review denial of an application
Chapter SPS 2 - Procedures for pleadings and hearings
Chapter SPS 3 - Administrative injunctions
Chapter SPS 4 - Department application procedures and application fee policies
Chapter SPS 6 - Summary suspensions
Chapter SPS 7 - Professional assistance procedure
Chapter SPS 8 - Administrative warnings
Chapter SPS 9 - Denial of renewal application because applicant is liable for delinquent taxes

You may also find the Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services (DSPS) page for Massage Therapists and Bodywork Therapists helpful:

Updated 9/28/2014 - LK

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When I join the AMTA do I automatically become a member of the Wisconsin Chapter?

Yes, if you reside in the State of Wisconsin you automatically become a Wisconsin Chapter member.

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Is it required to have a  License to Practice Massage In Wisconsin?

Yes, Effective December 1, 2010, an active state license is required to practice massage therapy and bodywork therapy in Wisconsin. The passage of AB 588, now designated as Chapter 460 http://legis.wisconsin.gov/statutes/Stat0460.pdf.

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What is the Scope of Practice for Massage Therapists in Wisconsin?

The Scope of Practrice for Massage Therapists language is at http://legis.wisconsin.gov/statutes/Stat0460.pdf, specifically in 460.01 Definitions.

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What is a course from an “approved provider” for CRP/AED?

 It can be any course from the APPROVED provider list below that certifies you in CPR and the use of an Automated External Defibrillator.  Note that many of these providers offer blended learning, meaning that you can do part of the course online and then have your hands-on skills tested by a certified instructor.

An important detail about the CPR requirement: you do not need a course that is specifically for healthcare professionals, just one that gives you certification in the use of an AED.

Here is the official language from the State of Wisconsin Department of Health Services, also available at: http://www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/ems/License_certification/CPR.htm

  The following are the department-approved providers:

  • American Heart Association 
  • American Red Cross 
  • American Safety and Health Institute (includes Medic First Aid)
  • Emergency Care and Safety Institute - (AAOS) 
  • Emergency University - (CPR Pro Course)
  • EMS Safety Services
  • National Safety Council
  • ProTrainings, LLC
  • T-E-A-M CPR & AED

Any course offered by the above providers that includes the following is approved by this department to fulfill the cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and automated external defibrillator (AED) training objectives for persons who are required, as a condition of licensure, certification, or registration to be proficient in CPR or in the use of an AED.  

  • Instruction of CPR
  • Instruction in the use of an AED
  • Verified course completion through a certification/completion card
  • Certification not to exceed two years

Updated 1/28/17 - LK

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What are the qualifications for licensure?

1.      Complete an approved, minimum 600-hour massage therapy or bodywork therapy program.

2.      Pass a nationally administered, entry-level competency exam accepted by the board.

3.      Pass a state exam on massage and bodywork laws and regulations.

4.      Demonstrate proof of professional liability insurance (which is included in your AMTA membership).

5.      Pay the fee.

6.     Complete the application form 2960 at this link: http://dsps.wi.gov/Documents/Credentialing%20Forms/Health%20Application%20Forms/fm2960.pdf

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Bodywork is a general term; are any practitioners exempt from licensure?

Specific practices are not named in the law. However, there are four exemption categories by description: 

1.   Persons manipulating only the soft tissue of the hands, feet, and ears; and

2.   Persons using touch, words, and directed movement to change a client’s awareness of existing patterns of movement; and

3.   Persons using touch to affect the energy systems of the human body; and

4.   Persons using touch and education to effect change in the structure of the body while engaged in the practice of structural integration.

Two additional groups are not required to get a license as a massage therapist or bodywork therapist: 1) persons whose scope of practice includes massage therapy or bodywork therapy; 2) persons who are authorized to practice by another state or country and are providing a demonstration with or consultation to another license holder.

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What title will I use if I practice one of the exempt practices?

A person who is exempt from licensure may use the terms “bodywork,” “bodyworker,” and “bodywork therapy.”

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What do I do if I want to work as soon as possible after graduation?

Graduates are encouraged to apply for a state license immediately after graduation, even if their national exam requirement has not been completed.  Although the temporary licenses have yet to be approved by the Board via administrative rules, there is a 60-day grace period for new graduates in effect in the interim, providing the new graduate is supervised by a licensed massage therapist or bodywork therapist and clients are informed that their application for state licensure is pending.


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What is the "Affiliated Credentialing Board"?

The law created the Massage Therapy and Bodywork Therapy Affiliated Credentialing Board. A credentialing board has similar responsibilities to an examining board. Members are appointed by the governor and subject to senate confirmation; they will have authority to issue administrative rules interpreting the licensing law, and they will have authority to investigate complaints and discipline licensees.

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Who is appointed to the Massage Therapy and Bodywork Therapy Credentialing Board?

The board is comprised of six massage and bodywork therapists who have engaged in the practice of massage or bodywork therapy for at least two years. One represents private, occupational schools approved by the Educational Approval Board and one represents massage and bodywork programs offered by the Wisconsin Technical Colleges. A seventh member is a public member. Each member will serve a four-year term.

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How do I apply to be a member of the state credentialing board?

Members of Wisconsin state boards and commissions are vital participants in developing policy, regulation, advisory and advocacy efforts for a wide variety of issues affecting all Wisconsinites. AMTA encourages members looking for a meaningful volunteer experience within the massage therapy profession to apply. This is not a paid position. Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis.

If you wish to apply, simply complete the Appointments Application (http://walker.wi.gov/governor-office/apply-to-serve/boards-commissions/application) and return it with your resume to the Governor’s office by email (govappointments@wisconsin.gov) or fax it to (608) 267-7888. You can also mail your application to Governor’s Office, Appointments Department, PO Box 7863, Madison, WI 53707-7863, (608)266-7493.


updated 9/28/14 ceg

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