Licensure fee increase receives final state approval

With the receipt last month of final approval from the state Office of Administrative Law, initial and biennial dental licensure fees will be increasing for the first time since 1998, effective July 1, 2014. A group of ancillary fees that is linked by law to the biennial renewal fee will be increasing as well.

The Dental Board of California approved moving ahead with regulations to increase the fees last year, largely in response to growing costs for increased enforcement staff mandated but not funded by the state, and for other ongoing programmatic and legal expenses. Throughout the regulatory process, CDA urged the board to assure that any fee increases result in measurable improvements to the board's overall service to licensees and to patients.

The specific fee increases, which dentists likely will begin receiving in May for licenses that expire in July, are as follows:

  • Initial licensure — from $365 to $450.
  • Biennial licensure renewal — from $365 to $450.
  • Inactive license — from $365 to $450.
  • Retirement status — from $182.50 to $225.
  • Disability status — from $182.50 to $225.
  • Delinquency fee for retired or disabled status license — from $91.25 to $112.50.
  • OMS permit renewal — from $365 to $450.
  • Initial fictitious business name permit — from $365 to $450.

Current state law sets limits on how high licensure fees can be raised by the board via regulation, and this increase will raise the initial and biennial renewal fees to their legal maximum.

In addition to this July 1 fee increase, the Dental Board is sponsoring Senate Bill 1416 (Block), which is intended to raise the current statutory maximum to address what board fiscal documents indicate to be a continuing deficit condition even after the latest increase. At a special March 12 meeting, the board voted to move forward with language in SB 1416 that would reset the licensure fees at $525 effective Jan. 1, 2015.