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I recently finished massage school and licensed in Las Vegas, but moved to San Jose, California before I got a chance to put my license to use in the field. I am now waiting to be licensed in California, its been about 80 days now and I and really eager to get into the work force. My question is should I start applying for massage therapist position now or should I wait to be licensed?

The reason for my question is I have been told to apply as soon as I get to CA but I am glad I didn't with how long I have been waiting for my license. I would hate to have a employer have to wait this long to get me started or regret hiring me so quickly. What are your thoughts?


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Start looking and talking to the owners/managers. Find out which places you want to work for. Some will let you work as soon as you applied if you have all the requirements in order. I wouldn't wait, after all you want to start making money if you can. I haven't seen any problems with people licensed in Las Vegas who apply here.

Thanks Daniel I appreciate the reply.


A point of clarification. The state of California does not license massage therapists. The certificate is certification ONLY. You will still need a business license to practice but not a permit. Good luck.


Hey Jody,  maybe that's why Will is still waiting for his license.....there ain't no such thing :-)

I would think the city or county biz license would apply only to someone with his own studio and not be needed for an employee.

Will, I agree with Daniel that you should be talking to potential employers now.


Without the CAMTC Certification you must be locally licensed (if district requires) to do massage but many cities have ended licensing massage in favor of the certification. In effect this and CAMTC Certification requirements by employers has made a voluntary system mandatory. When you are CAMTC Certified the locale (county, city) can not by state law require you to be licensed or meet licensing requirements that go beyond any other professional business tax permit. In Los Angeles this means you file for the tax permit but if gross receipts are under $100,000.00 you have no fee.

The terminology, voluntary/mandatory, and state or organization certification can be confusing but actually straight forward and easily understood from the CAMTC website or calling them.

But back to the original question, get out there and find out what employers are offering and where you would like to be working. There are many employers and competing MTs for the jobs. Explore your options and develop relations.

Thanks everyone for the feedback. I've started getting my resume out there and hoping something falls in place. It's a bit of a challenge since most would like to see the certification before going any further. 

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