Criminal Convictions

The Board does not pre-evaluate criminal convictions, the evaluation is a part of the application process. Since the Board has the responsibility to protect the public, a primary objective of the Board is to ensure registrations or licenses are not issued to applicants who have serious criminal convictions substantially related to the practice of the professional license. For this reason, the Board evaluates all misdemeanor and felony convictions in the same manner for each type of professional license. Refer to Section 480 of the Business and Professions Code for acts disqualifying an applicant.

All applicants are required under law to report all misdemeanor and felony convictions, EXCEPT for convictions adjudicated in the juvenile court or convictions two years or older under California Health and Safety Code section 11357 (b), (d), (e), or section 11360(b). All other convictions must be reported even if they have been expunged under Penal Code Section 1203.4. Offenses prior to the applicant's 18th birthday or any traffic violations for which a fine of $500.00 or less was imposed do not need to be included. NOTE that traffic violations which result in a felony or misdemeanor conviction must be reported. Failure to report prior convictions is considered falsification of an application and is grounds for denial of an application.

For each reportable conviction, the applicant is required to provide:

  • a complete explanation of the underlying circumstances in a detailed written explanation of the actions which led to arrest and/or conviction
  • copies of police reports
  • certified copies of the court documents
  • sufficient evidence of rehabilitation which can include proof of compliance with voluntary or court ordered programs and letters of recommendation from employers and/or instructors
  • See application instructions for additional details

The Board evaluates each application with any reported convictions on a case-by-case basis to make a determination concerning the applicant's ability to practice with safety to the public. Included in the Board's evaluation is the nature and severity of the offense, additional subsequent acts, recency of crime, compliance with sanctions and evidence of rehabilitation.

NOTE: If the applicant has a conviction history, the processing time may be longer than the normal processing time and will be dependent on the applicant providing all information required by the Board.

See FAQ&'s for Applicants who must disclose convictions for additional information.

If you have additional questions, please contact the Board of Behavioral Sciences at (916) 574-7830 or send an e-mail to