New Jersey Enacts Applied Behavior Analyst Licensing Act

January 21, 2020

 

On January 13, 2020, Governor Phil Murphy signed the “Applied Behavior Analyst Licensing Act” (the “Act“) into law, which becomes effective on July 11, 2020. The Act creates the State Board of Applied Behavior Analysts (the “Board“) within the New Jersey Department of Law and Public Safety, Division of Consumer Affairs. The Governor will appoint seven (7) residents of the State to serve on the Board, which is tasked with licensing persons that engage in the practice of applied behavior analysis (“ABA“).

Persons that engage in ABA must apply to the Board for licensure as a Licensed Applied Behavior Analyst (“LBA“) or as a Licensed Assistant Applied Behavior Analyst (“LABA“) by July 11, 2020 and satisfy the following requirements:

  1. LBA License Requirements: Such person: (i) is certified as a Board Certified Behavior Analyst (“BCBA“) by the Behavior Analyst Certification Board (“BACB“), or substantial equivalent; (ii) is at least 21 years of age; and (iii) holds a graduate degree from an accredited university.
  2. LABA License Requirements: Such person: (i) is certified as a Board Certified Assistant Behavior Analyst (“BCaBA“) by the BACB, or substantial equivalent; (ii) is at least 21 years of age; (iii) holds an undergraduate degree from an accredited university; and (iv) submits submission of proof, satisfactory to the Board, of ongoing supervision by a LBA.

The Board may also issue licenses to applicants who hold valid licenses issued by another state which has standards substantially equivalent to the Board, as determined by the Board in its discretion.

Qualified members of other professions already licensed by a New Jersey licensing board do not need to obtain licensure as an LBA or LABA, provided that such professionals do not hold themselves out to the public as possessing a license issued by the Board and the services provided by such qualified members are within their scope of education, training, and competence.

Further, the Act exempts the following persons from obtaining licensure from the Board: (i) family members of recipients of ABA who implement ABA treatment plans under the extended authority and direction of an LBA or LABA; (ii) paraprofessional technicians who deliver ABA services under the extended authority and direction of an LBA or LABA; (iii) applied behavior analysts who practice with nonhumans; (iv) professionals who provide general ABA services to organizations; (v) college students in ABA programs; (vi) unlicensed persons pursuing experience in ABA supervised by an LBA or LABA; (vii) persons who teach or research ABA, as long as it does not involve direct delivery of ABA services to persons; (viii) BCBAs or BCaBAs who reside outside of New Jersey but work in New Jersey for no more than 10 consecutive business days or not more than 15 intermittent business days in any 90-day period; (ix) employees of a school district, charter school, education services commission or private school in the performance of regular employment duties, provided that the provision of ABA services is only on behalf of the school employer; (x) persons that work with the Division of Developmental Disabilities[1]; and (xi) persons that work under the authority and under contract with the New Jersey Early Intervention Program[2].

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Should you have any questions regarding this Alert, please contact the Garfunkel Wild attorney with whom you regularly work.

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[1]  This exemption expires three years after the effective date of the Act.
[2]  This exemption expires five years after the effective date of the Act.