How to Get Your Florida Medical License

It takes time and dedication to become a doctor and pursue a career in the medical field. Those interested in being doctors need to understand that they’ll have to become licensed to practice medicine in the state in which they reside. There are some differenc es in individual state rules when it comes to the process of acquiring a medical license.

If you are embarking on a career as a doctor, you’ll have to familiarize yourself with the process of getting licensed. While it might at first seem complicated, you can rest assured that becoming a licensed doctor in your state is achievable. You simply need to find all the pertinent information on the process and be persistent.

Once you have your medical license, you will be able to seek employment as a doctor either by working for a healthcare organization such as a hospital or by starting up your own practice. Aspiring doctors who have decided to make Florida their home should understand the steps they need to go through to get a Florida medical license.

Why Practice Medicine in Florida?

Florida is a state that offers many great advantages to medical professionals. One of the best things about is that the state offers financial advantages. Florida has a relatively low cost of living. This means that a doctor’s salary can go a long way in this state, and doctors can afford a particularly high quality of life. In Florida, physicians also don’t have to worry about paying any state income tax on their earnings. Unlike many states, the Sunshine State does not require state income tax from doctors or any other state resident. This helps to keep a consumer’s tax liabilities down each year.

Florida offers an enticing landscape for physicians seeking a place to practice medicine. Its vibrant healthcare sector, including world-class hospitals and research institutions, provides ample professional opportunities. Doctors practicing in this state can live in either rural, suburban, or urban areas such as Miami and Jacksonville according to their preferences.

The state of Florida has a diverse population with a broad range of patient cases and experiences. This enhances a doctor’s medical skills and expertise. Additionally, the state’s warm climate and beautiful beaches offer great recreation opportunities for physicians and their families.

Explore more: Guide to Practicing Medicine in Florida

Requirements for Getting a Medical License in Florida

The Sunshine State has strict licensing requirements that are set forth by the Florida Medical Board. These requirements help protect patients and ensure high quality medical care. Obtaining a medical license in Florida is a comprehensive process designed to ensure that physicians meet stringent standards of education, training, and ethical conduct.

The most basic requirement that applicants for a medical license need to meet is the educational requirement. To get a medical license, individuals must complete medical school. They must be graduates of accredited programs and hold either a doctor of medicine degree (MD) or a doctor of osteopathic medicine degree (DO).

Applicants for a medical license must meet examination requirements. They must have passed all parts of any of the following medical licensing exams:

  • The National Board of Medical Examiners examination (NBME)
  • The United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE)
  • Federation Licensing Examination (FLEX)

The residency requirement is another key requirement that individuals must meet to get a medical license. Applicants must have completed at least one year of residency training that is approved by the Florida Medical Board. For some applicants including foreign applicants, the applicant’s residency must be at least two years long to qualify for licensure.

The criminal background check is another important step that applicants must go through in order to qualify for a medical license. Those who have a criminal background may still be eligible for a Florida state medical license. However, many felony charges will disqualify an applicant from acquiring a medical license in Florida. Many criminal charges on an applicant’s record are judged on a case-by-case basis. Those who apply for a license will need to submit their fingerprints to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement as part of their background check.

Read more: USMLE, CBSE NBME, MCCQE, + More: Medical Licensing Exams Explained

Completing an Application for a Florida Medical License

The application for licensure is 27 pages long and requires the applicant to provide extensive information on his or her identity, place of residence, educational background, employment history, healthy history, and criminal history. Applicants must also provide information on any malpractice or liability claims that have been filed against them in the past. The application asks applicants whether they have ever had any previous medical license revoked, suspended, or placed on probation. If an applicant has had a past licensed revolted or restricted in some way, the applicant needs to include a written explanation with his or her application.

The application also includes a verification of the applicant’s medical degree. The name and contact details of the institution that granted the applicant’s degree must be provided. During the application process, the post-graduate training or residency of the applicant also needs to be verified. Therefore, contact information must be provided for the facility where the applicant did his or her residency.

Mailing an Application

Applicants can mail in their application to the Florida Board of Medicine. It’s possible to send an application by mail to the following address:

Board of Medicine

P.O. Box 6330

Tallahassee, FL  32314-6330

Emailing an Application

It is not possible for applicants to email their complete application. Applications must be submitted either by mail or in person. However, certain supporting documents can be emailed. Applicants can email their documentation for sections 11 and 12 of the application to Supporting documents for the background screening portions of the application- including sections 13 and 14- should be emailed to

Submitting an Application In Person

Those who prefer to submit their application in person can hand-deliver their application to the Licensure Support Services department of the Florida Medical Board at the following address.

Licensure Support Services

4052 Bald Cypress Way

Tallahassee, Florida  32399

Read this: Experts Weigh in on the Future of Healthcare in the Next 30 Years

Documents That Must Be Included With a Florida Medical License Application

It’s important for applicants to include all required supporting documents with their application. Leaving certain required documents out of an application packet can delay the process. This makes it so that it takes longer for an applicant to get a medical license.

Applications must include transcripts from all medical schools that the applicant studied at. It’s also essential for applicants to include their residency certificate. Other supporting documents that may be required in some application packets include written explanations regarding past disciplinary actions against the applicants and written explanations regarding any criminal charges against the applicant.

Those who answer “Yes” to any of the health history questions also may be required to submit a written statement including details on the severity of their condition and the potential for their condition to impact their ability to safely practice medicine. Applicants with health issues may additionally be required to submit a letter from their physician on their treatment and diagnosis.

Applicants are required to get a fingerprint criminal background check done by a Livescan service provider. Those applying for a medical license in Florida can find Livescan service provider locations at the following link: The results to the Livescan background screening should be sent to the Medical Board by the Livescan service provider at the following email address:

If you’re considering opening your own practice, read our guide on How to Start a Medical Practice

Cost of Applying for a Florida Medical License Application

There are numerous costs associated with applying for a medical license in the Sunshine State. Applicants must pay a non-refundable application fee of $350.00. They also must pay an initial license fee of $355.00.

Most applicants will also have to make a payment to the Neurological Injury Compensation Association Fund (NICA). The NICA fee for a medical license applicant can range from $250.00 to $5,000. Some applicants may qualify for an exemption from this fee depending on their employment status.

Applicants need to pay a dispensing practioner fee of $100.00 if pharmaceuticals will be sold at the office in which they work.

Fees that must be paid to the Florida Medical Board can be paid by check, money order, or credit card. In addition to the above-mentioned fees, applicants also must pay for the Livescan service they use for their criminal background check. This service typically costs approximately $80. However, the price can vary depending on the service provider.

Some medical schools might require you to pay a fee to have your transcripts transferred to the Florida Medical Board. You’ll be responsible for contacting your medical school and finding out what the process for transcript transfers are as part of your application.

MD vs DO Application Requirements

Applicants with MD degrees go through the same process to get a medical license in Florida as applicants with DO degrees do. Graduates of osteopathic medical schools can apply for a medical license in Florida as long as their osteopathic medical school is accredited by the US Office of Education.

Read this: Pros and Cons of a DO vs MD

Requirements for Applicants Who Are Foreign Medical School Graduates

Doctors who were trained outside of the United States can become licensed to practice medicine in Florida. However, there may be a few additional requirements that they need to meet as part of the licensure process. Like domestically trained doctors, doctors with foreign training will also need to show that they have passed the NBME, USMLE, or FLEX exam.

Foreign doctors also need to acquire certification from the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates. This ensures that their medical school degree from overseas will be honored by the Florida Medical Board. Applicants can become ECFMG-certified by applying on the following website:

In addition to acquiring ECFMG certifications, applicants educated at a foreign medical school also need to meet the residency requirement to get a Florida medical license. Foreign applicants need to have at least two years of residency training to be eligible to apply.

Read More: Physician’s Guide to J-1 Visa Renewal

Timeframe for Applying for a Florida Medical License

The Medical Board in Florida typically takes several months to process medical license applications. The entire process can take anywhere from two to six months. A medical license application is valid for one year after it is submitted. Applicants must make sure to get all required documents in within this period of time so that their application can be processed.

Applicants who don’t have any criminal history or past disciplinary actions to report shouldn’t face any delays in getting their license. On the other hand, those who have issues like past disciplinary actions might need to wait longer to get their license. If there are any issues with your applications such as missing documentation, you should be notified by the Medical Board so that you can correct these issues.

After submitting their application, applicants should receive a deficiency letter from the Medical Board within about 30 days. This letter verifies that the application was received. Applicants can check on the status of their application online at the following link: They can find out the status of their application by entering their last name, social security number, and date of birth.

Individuals cannot legally practice medicine in Florida until they have been granted a medical license. Once an application is approved, the Medical Board can send a licensed doctor an e-license within two days.

Relocating? Read this: How Moving Can Help Physicians Pay Off Student Loans

Ready to Get Started on Your Path?

Once aspiring Florida doctors have the information they need, they should be able to navigate the process of applying for a medical license. This can open up many promising career opportunities to those with the necessary medical training and skills. Getting a license to practice medicine in Florida allows trained doctors to take advantage of the financial and lifestyle benefits of being a doctor in the Sunshine State.

Are you still deciding where to practice medicine in the United States? Explore your options by checking out our guide on the Top 10 Places to Live and Work and consult our Annual Physician Compensation Report to help with your decision. If you decide to practice medicine in Florida, you can rely on Physicians Thrive to provide you with expert advice on issues like income protection, contract negotiation, and much more. Let our experienced professionals help you to navigate the legal and financial complexities of being a doctor in the 21st century.

Need help with something else?

Work with advisors that know doctors.

Get Financial Planning

Get Free Disability Insurance Quotes

Have Your Contract Reviewed

Subscribe to our email newsletter for expert tips about finances, insurance, employment contracts, and more!

About the Author