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Applying for First Veterinary License

Applicants not currently licensed (including senior students)

Examination requirements for becoming licensed in the state of Minnesota include passing the NAVLE and the Minnesota Jurisprudence Examination. 

Applications for the North American Veterinary Licensing Examination (NAVLE) are available from the International Council for Veterinary Assessment (ICVA). If your NAVLE approval is from a state other than Minnesota, you will need to have your score officially transferred to Minnesota by the Veterinary Information Verifying Agency (VIVA). 

The license application may be completed online or by printing a paper application form. The following documents are required prior to taking the Minnesota Jurisprudence Examination: 

Completed application: 

  1. Paper form or Online Application

  2. Fees (Pay by credit card if applying online.) Pay by check or money order to Minnesota Board of Veterinary Medicine if using paper application. All payments must be in U.S. funds and are non-refundable. 

    - $50 Application Fee (NOTE: This is required and is separate from the NAVLE application fee which is paid to NBVME) 
    - $50 Jurisprudence Examination Fee 
    - $32 Criminal Background Check Fee (see item 3. below)
    - $200 Initial 2-year License Fee

    TOTAL: $332

  3. Criminal Background Check information. Beginning on June 1, 2016, Minnesota law and Board policy now require that all applicants for initial licensure or license reinstatement must complete a fingerprint-based criminal background check (Minn. Stat. § 214.075). When you apply for licensure, the criminal background check fee ($32) must be bundled into your other licensing fees and paid at the same time. After you have paid all required licensing fees and the criminal background check fee, you will be mailed a packet containing additional information and directions from the Criminal Background Check Program. You are responsible for having your fingerprints taken promptly and for completing all required paperwork so as to not delay finalizing your license application. Previously taken fingerprints cannot be used. Some agencies charge a fee for fingerprinting services. Fingerprinting can be done without a fee at the Criminal Background Check Program office at 2829 University Avenue SE, Suite 555, Minneapolis, MN 55414. Please contact that office at (651) 201-2822 or cbc.staff@state.mn.us to make an appointment after you receive the information packet.

  4. Notarized letters of reference from at least 2 veterinarians and 3 other adults who are not related to you setting forth how long a time, when and under what circumstances they have known you and any other facts as may be proper to determine your qualifications for licensure. Letters of reference are considered affidavits and therefore require a notarized signature on each letter. You may search for a notary using the Minnesota Secretary of State's notary website. Please have veterinarians include in their letter an active license number and state where currently practicing (veterinarians may be practicing in a state other than Minnesota). Notarized letters may be sent separately from the application form via mail to 2829 University Ave SE #401, Minneapolis, MN 55414.

  5. Copy of discharge papers if you have served in the military. 

  6. Either:

    a. A copy of your diploma conferring the DVM degree from an AVMA accredited College of Veterinary Medicine; or a letter from the Dean attesting that you are a student in good standing, your enrollment date, and anticipated graduation date if you are applying before your anticipated graduation date. NOTE FOR UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA STUDENTS: The Dean will provide a list to the Board prior to the Board meeting but it is your responsibility to provide the Board with a copy of your diploma or transcripts after you have successfully completed graduation requirements. 

    b. If enrolled in a non-accredited school, verification of ECFVG or PAVE enrollment and anticipated completion date. 

  7. Jurisprudence exam (see paragraph below for details)

The Minnesota Jurisprudence Examination is a 50-question open book examination on the laws and rules governing the practice of veterinary medicine in Minnesota. An applicant is eligible to take the Jurisprudence examination when all other requirements for licensure have been submitted, including a passing score on the NAVLE examination. You are allowed to take the jurisprudence exam before the Board receives Criminal Background Check results. There is a two-hour time limit for taking the exam. The jurisprudence exam will be given to Minnesota senior students at the College of Veterinary Medicine in March and April. For licensure applicants residing in other states, individual arrangements will be made for taking the exam at the Board Office or by mail. Passing score for the jurisprudence exam is 90%. If special accommodations are needed for the exam, please reach out to the Board.

Even though you’ve passed the NAVLE, Jurisprudence Exam, received your diploma, and have a clean background check, you CANNOT practice veterinary medicine until the Board issues you a license. Three regularly scheduled Board meetings are held each year, at which time all applications and scores are reviewed and qualified candidates are licensed. Licenses are normally mailed to successful applicants within two business days of the Board meeting or graduation date, whichever is later. See the Board meeting schedule

A temporary permit can be requested if you complete the requirements and wish to practice before the upcoming Board meeting. There is an additional $50 fee for a temporary permit and the payment can be included with your initial licensing fees or you may pay for a temporary permit separately after you have submitted an application.

If you require special test accommodations because of a disability, please contact the Board Office 30 days prior to the application deadline. After your application is received and approved, we will contact you and make arrangements for you to take the Jurisprudence Exam. In some cases, this exam will be emailed to you, or if you are in the vicinity of the Twin Cities, the exam can be taken at the Board office. 90% is the passing score and there is a two-hour time limit for taking the exam. Once you have completed the Jurisprudence Exam and all your documentation is in order, your file will be presented to the Board for formal license approval. Board meetings are generally held in February, May and September.

Please note that letters of reference MUST BE notarized for your application. Please contact the Board Office with questions.
Please use this document as a guidance document if you need help creating an online application. Please call the Board office if you need additional help.
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