Full Statute Name:  Revised Statutes Annotated of the State of New Hampshire. Title XXX. Occupations and Professions. Chapter 332-B. New Hampshire Veterinary Practice Act.

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Popular Title:  Veterinary Practice Act Primary Citation:  N.H. Rev. Stat. § 332-B:1 - 332-B:20 Country of Origin:  United States Last Checked:  November, 2022 Alternate Citation:  NH ST § 332-B:1 - 332-B:20 Historical: 
Summary: These are the state's veterinary practice laws. Among the provisions include licensing requirements, laws concerning the state veterinary board, veterinary records laws, and the laws governing disciplinary actions for impaired or incompetent practitioners.

332-B:1 Definitions.

332-B:1-a Purpose.

332-B:2 License Required and Exceptions.

332-B:3 Board; Compensation.

332-B:3-a Temporary Member.

332-B:4 Qualifications.

332-B:5 Meetings and Duties.

332-B:6 Revenues.

332-B:7 Powers of the Board.

332-B:7-a Rulemaking Authority.

332-B:8 Status of Persons Previously Licensed.

332-B:9 Application for License; Qualifications.

332-B:10 Examinations.

332-B:11 Reciprocity.

332-B:12 Temporary Permit.

332-B:13 License Renewal and Lapse.

332-B:14 Disciplinary Action; Civil Penalty.

332-B:15 Investigations.

332-B:15-a Emergency Suspension.

332-B:16 Hearing, Decisions, and Appeals.

332-B:16-a Immunity From Civil Action.

332-B:17 Reinstatement Applications.

332-B:18 Practice by Corporations Prohibited.

332-B:19 Enforcement.

332-B:20 Animal Physical Therapy Certification.



332-B:1 Definitions.

When used in this chapter, these words and phrases shall be defined as follows:

I. “Animal” means any animal other than man and includes fowl, birds, fish, and reptiles, wild or domestic, living or dead.

I-a. “AVMA” means the American Veterinary Medical Association.

II. “Veterinary medicine” means and includes veterinary surgery, obstetrics, dentistry, and all other branches or specialties of veterinary medicine.

III. “Practice of veterinary medicine” means:

(a) To diagnose, treat, correct, change, relieve, or prevent animal disease, lameness, deformity, defect, injury, or other physical or mental conditions: including the prescription or administration of any drug, medicine, biologic, apparatus, application, anesthetic, or other therapeutic or diagnostic substance or technique, and the use of any manual or mechanical procedure for testing for pregnancy, or for correcting sterility, or infertility, or to render advice or recommendation with regard to any of the above.

(b) To represent directly or indirectly, publicly or privately, an ability and willingness to do any act described in subparagraph (a).

(c) To use any title, words, abbreviation, or letters in a manner or under circumstances which induce the belief that the person using them is qualified to do any act described in subparagraph (a), except where such person is a veterinarian.

IV. “Veterinarian” means a person who has received a doctor's degree in veterinary medicine from an accredited school of veterinary medicine or other veterinary school approved by the board, or a person from a foreign veterinary school holding an ECFVG certificate or a PAVE certificate.

V. “Licensed veterinarian” means a person who is validly and currently licensed to practice veterinary medicine in this state.

VI. “School of veterinary medicine” means any veterinary college or division of a university or college that offers the degree of doctor of veterinary medicine or its equivalent and that conforms to the standards required for accreditation by the AVMA.

VII. “Person” means any individual, firm, partnership, association, joint venture, cooperative, and corporation, or any other group or combination acting in concert; and whether or not acting as a principal, trustee, fiduciary, receiver, or as any other kind of legal or personal representative, or as the successor in interest, assignee, agent, factor, servant, employee, director, officer, or any other representative of such person.

VIII. “Board” means the board of veterinary medicine established in RSA 332-B:3.

IX. “ECFVG certificate” means a certificate issued by the AVMA educational commission for foreign veterinary graduates indicating that the holder has demonstrated knowledge and skill equivalent to that possessed by a graduate of an accredited or approved college of veterinary medicine.

X. “Animal physical therapist” means a person who is licensed to practice physical therapy in New Hampshire pursuant to RSA 328-A and has obtained a certification to practice animal physical therapy from the board of veterinary medicine.

XI. “Animal physical therapy” means the practice of physical therapy on animals.

XII. “PAVE” means the Program for the Assessment of Veterinary Education Equivalence operated by the American Association of Veterinary State Boards.


Source. 1971, 328:1. 1977, 158:2. 1999, 314:1-6. 2010, 170:2, eff. June 17, 2010. 2011, 132:1, 2, eff. Aug. 6, 2011.

Amendments--2011. Paragraph IV: Chapter 132:1 added “or a PAVE certificate” following “ECFVG certificate”.


332-B:1-a Purpose.

The purpose of the board of veterinary medicine is to promote public health, safety, and welfare by safeguarding the people of New Hampshire against incompetent, unscrupulous, and unauthorized persons and from unprofessional or illegal practices by persons licensed to practice veterinary medicine. The right to practice veterinary medicine is a privilege granted by legislative authority to persons possessing personal and professional qualifications specified in this chapter.


Source. 1981, 490:13. 1999, 314:7, eff. Jan. 1, 2000.


332-B:2 License Required and Exceptions.

Except as provided in RSA 332-B:9, no person may practice veterinary medicine in the state who is not a licensed veterinarian or the holder of a valid temporary permit issued by the board. This chapter shall not be construed to prohibit:

I. An employee of the federal, state, or local government performing official duties.

II. A person who is a regular student in a veterinary school working under the direct supervision of a licensed veterinarian.

III. A person advising with respect to or performing acts which the board by rule has prescribed as accepted livestock management practices.

IV. A veterinarian regularly licensed in another state consulting with a licensed veterinarian in this state.

V. The owner of an animal or the owner's regular employee caring for and treating the animal belonging to such owner, except where the ownership of the animal was transferred for purposes of circumventing this chapter.

VI. A member of the faculty of a veterinary school performing regular functions, or a person lecturing, or giving instructions or demonstrations at a veterinary school or in connection with a continuing education course or seminar.

VII. Any person selling or applying any pesticide, insecticide, or herbicide.

VIII. Any person engaging in bona fide scientific research which reasonably requires experimentation involving animals.

IX. A person from doing veterinary or surgical work or giving advice to the person's neighbors; provided that the person does not make a regular practice thereof or receive pecuniary consideration.

X. An animal owner or his or her designated agent performing treatment as prescribed by a veterinarian with a valid veterinarian-patient relationship.


Source. 1971, 328:1. 1999, 314:8, eff. Jan. 1, 2000.


332-B:3 Board; Compensation.

I. There shall be a board of veterinary medicine consisting of 7 members: 5 veterinarians, the state veterinarian, and one public member. The members, other than the state veterinarian, shall be appointed by the governor, with the approval of the council, to a term of 5 years, and until a successor is appointed. No appointed member of the board shall be appointed to 2 consecutive 5-year terms. Vacancies shall be filled for the remainder of the term and in the same manner as the original appointment. Any appointed member of the board may be removed by the governor after a hearing by the board determines cause for removal. The state veterinarian shall serve as an ex officio member, provided any duties of the state veterinarian relative to this chapter shall be agreed upon in writing by the board and the commissioner of agriculture, markets, and food and which agreement may include:

(a) Recording and producing meeting minutes for regular board meetings;

(b) Representing the board on the advisory council established in RSA 126-A:96;

(c) Submission of periodic reports to the board; and

(d) Participation in complaint investigations.

II. When a vacancy has occurred, or is due to occur in a veterinary position on the board, the New Hampshire Veterinary Medical Association shall nominate 3 qualified persons and forward the nominations to the governor. The governor may make appointments from those nominated by the association, but shall not be required to appoint one of those so nominated.

III. [Repealed.]

IV. All administrative, clerical, and business processing functions of the board shall be transferred to the office of professional licensure and certification established in RSA 310-A:1 through RSA 310-A:1-e.

Source. 1971, 328:1. 1981, 490:3. 1985, 416:10. 1987, 289:4. 1995, 130:4; 183:2, 3. 1999, 314:9, eff. Jan. 1, 2000. 2019, 346:121, eff. July 1, 2019. 2021, 91:47, eff. July 1, 2021; 197:122, I, eff. July 1, 2021.


332-B:3-a Temporary Member.

The president or acting president of the board is authorized to appoint an additional person or persons to sit on a temporary or emergency basis at any hearing at which one or more board members is absent, so long as each person so chosen has in the past served as a board member.


Source. 1979, 401:1. 1999, 314:9, eff. Jan. 1, 2000.


332-B:4 Qualifications.

I. A veterinarian shall be qualified to serve as a member of the board if the person is a graduate of a veterinary school, a resident of this state, and has been licensed to practice veterinary medicine in this state for the 5 years preceding the time of appointment.

II. The public member of the board shall be a person who is not, and never was, a member of the veterinary profession or the spouse of any such person, and who does not have, and never has had, a material financial interest in either the provision of veterinary services or an activity directly related to veterinary medicine, including the representation of the board or profession for a fee at any time during the 5 years preceding appointment.


Source. 1971, 328:1. 1981, 490:4. 1999, 314:9, eff. Jan. 1, 2000.


332-B:5 Meetings and Duties.

The board shall meet at least 6 times a year at the time and place fixed by rule of the board. Other necessary meetings may be called by the president of the board by giving notice as may be required by rule. The quorum and the actions of the board shall be in accordance with RSA 91-A. At its annual meeting, the board shall organize by electing a president and such other officers as may be prescribed by rule. Officers of the board serve for terms of one year and until a successor is elected, without limitation on the number of terms an officer may serve. The president shall preside at board meetings and serve as administrative head of the board. Records shall be kept pursuant to RSA 91-A:3 and in accordance with the retention policy established by the office of professional licensure and certification.

Source. 1971, 328:1. 1999, 314:9, eff. Jan. 1, 2000. 2021, 197:120, eff. July 1, 2021.


332-B:6 Revenues.

All revenues received by the board shall be deposited in the general fund.


Source. 1971, 328:1. 1981, 490:14, eff. July 1, 1981.


332-B:7 Powers of the Board.

The board shall have the power to:

I. Examine and determine the qualifications and fitness of applicants for a license to practice veterinary medicine in this state.

II. Issue, renew, deny, suspend, revoke licenses and temporary permits to practice veterinary medicine in the state or otherwise discipline licensed veterinarians consistent with the provisions of this chapter and the rules and regulations adopted thereunder.

III. [Repealed.]

IV. Conduct investigations and hearings as provided in RSA 332-B:15 and RSA 332-B:16.

V. [Repealed.]

V-a. [Repealed.]

VI. Employ full-time or part-time professional, clerical or special personnel necessary to effectuate the provisions of this chapter and purchase or rent necessary office space, equipment and supplies within the limits of appropriations made therefor.

VII. Appoint from its own membership one or more of the members to act as representatives of the board at any meeting within or without the state where such representation is deemed desirable.

VIII. Bring proceedings in the courts for the enforcement of this chapter or any regulations made pursuant thereto.

IX-XI. [Repealed.]

Source. 1971, 328:1. 1981, 490:5, 11, 16. 1999, 314:10, 11, 32, I, eff. Jan. 1, 2000. 2021, 197:122, II and III, eff. July 1, 2021.


332-B:7-a Rulemaking Authority.

The board shall adopt rules, pursuant to RSA 541-A, relative to:

I. [Repealed.]

II. The qualifications of applicants in addition to those requirements set by statute;

III. [Repealed.]

IV. How an applicant shall be examined, including:

(a) Time and place of examination;

(b) The subjects to be tested;

(c) Passing grade; and

(d) Disposition of examination papers;

V. Conditions for license renewal;

VI. Ethical standards required to be met by each holder of any license issued under this chapter and how such license may be revoked for violation of these standards;

VII. [Repealed.]

VIII. Procedures for the conduct of investigations;

IX. Procedures for the conduct of hearings;

X. The training and scope of activity for non-veterinarians employed under the direction and responsibility of a licensed veterinarian;

XI. Standards for approval of educational programs;

XII. Establishing and enforcing standards for veterinary facilities; and

XIII. Procedures for assessing, compromising, and collecting civil penalties.

XIV. Additional criteria for the certification and continuing education requirements of animal physical therapists under RSA 328-A:15-b.

XV. Formulating treatment plans for chronic pain and continuing education requirements regarding opioid use and prescribing opioids.

Source. 1981, 490:6. 1999, 314:12-14. 2009, 311:4. 2016, 213:8, eff. June 7, 2016. 2017, 128:1, eff. Aug. 15, 2017. 2021, 3:12, eff. June 22, 2021; 197:122, IV, eff. July 1, 2021.

Amendments--2017.  Paragraph XV:  Amended generally.

--2016.  Paragraph XV:  Added.

--2009.  Paragraph XIV:  Added.

--1999.  Chapter 314:12, generally amended par. V; ch. 314:13 substituted “and scope” for “certification, and limits” preceding “of activity for” and “non-veterinarians” for “assistants being trained and” thereafter, and deleted “and” following “veterinarian” in par. X; and, ch. 314:14 made a minor change in punctuation in par. XI and added pars. XII and XIII.


332-B:8 Status of Persons Previously Licensed.

Any person holding a valid license to practice veterinary medicine in this state on August 24, 1971, shall be recognized as a licensed veterinarian and shall be entitled to retain this status so long as the person complies with the provisions of this chapter, including biennial renewal of the license.


Source. 1971, 328:1. 1999, 314:15, eff. Jan. 1, 2000. 2011, 224:159, eff. July 1, 2011.

Amendments--2011. Substituted “biennial” for “annual” preceding “renewal”.


332-B:9 Application for License; Qualifications.

Any person desiring a license to practice veterinary medicine in this state shall make written application to the board. The application shall show that the applicant is 18 years of age or more, a graduate of an AVMA accredited school of veterinary medicine or other veterinary school acceptable to the board, or the holder of an ECFVG certificate or a PAVE certificate, a person of good professional character, and such other information and proof as the board may require by rule. The application shall be accompanied by a fee in the amount established and published by the board.


Source. 1971, 328:1. 1973, 72:54. 1977, 158:3. 1981, 490:7. 1999, 314:16, eff. Jan. 1, 2000. 2011, 132:3, eff. Aug. 6, 2011.

Amendments--2011. Inserted “AVMA” following “The” and “or a PAVE certificate” following “ECFVG certificate” in the second sentence.


332-B:10 Examinations.

The board shall hold at least one examination during each year and may hold such additional examinations as are necessary. The board shall give public notice of the time and place for each examination at least 90 days in advance of the date set for the examination. A person desiring to take an examination shall make application at least 30 days before the date of the examination. The preparation, administration, and grading of examinations shall be governed by rules prescribed by the board. Examinations shall be designed to test the examinee's knowledge of and proficiency in the subjects and techniques commonly taught in veterinary schools and familiarity with the law and rules governing veterinary medicine in this state. To pass the examination, the examinee must demonstrate scientific and practical knowledge sufficient to prove that he or she is a competent person to practice veterinary medicine in the judgment of the board. All examinees shall be tested by a written examination, supplemented by such oral interviews and practical demonstrations as the board may deem necessary. The board may adopt and use a national examination as adopted in rules of the board. For purposes of licensure, except by reciprocity, an individual's results from a national examination shall be valid for 5 years from the date of the examination. After each examination, the board shall notify each examinee of the results of the examination, and the board shall issue licenses to the persons successfully completing the examination. The board shall record the new licenses and issue a certificate of registration to the new licensees. Any person failing an examination shall be admitted to any subsequent examination on payment of the application fee.


Source. 1971, 328:1. 1999, 314:16, eff. Jan. 1, 2000.


332-B:11 Reciprocity.

I. The board may issue a license without examination to a person who:

(a) Is a graduate of an accredited school of veterinary medicine and holds a current license in good standing in another state, U.S. territory, or province of Canada; or is a graduate of an unapproved veterinary school outside the United States and Canada and possesses a certificate of board certification in a clinical specialty from an organization approved by the American Board of Veterinary Specialists and holds a current license in good standing in another state, U.S. territory, or province of Canada;

(b) Has passed a national board examination adopted by rules of the board;

(c) Has actively practiced clinical veterinary medicine for at least 1,000 hours during each of 3 of the previous 5 calendar years with a minimum of 3,000 practice hours; and

(d) Provides evidence of good professional character, completed application, and payment of fees.

II. Applicants who are not graduates of schools of veterinary medicine accredited by the AVMA, other than those described in paragraph I, shall possess a certificate issued by the ECFVG, PAVE, or a Certificate of Qualification issued by the Canadian Veterinary Medical Association, unless at the time such applicant became licensed in the state, province, or U.S. territory from which they are applying, an ECFVG certificate or a PAVE certificate was not required by this state.

III. The board may require that prior to licensure under this section the applicant shall show satisfactory completion of an examination covering state law and rules concerning veterinary medicine and state or national veterinary codes of ethics.


Source. 1971, 328:1. 1981, 490:8. 1999, 314:17, eff. Jan. 1, 2000. 2011, 132:4, eff. Aug. 6, 2011.

Amendments--2011. Paragraph II: Inserted “, PAVE, following “ECFVG” and “or a PAVE certificate” following “ECFVG certificate”.


332-B:12 Temporary Permit.

The board may issue without examination a temporary permit to practice veterinary medicine in this state to any person who is a graduate of a veterinary college recognized as provided for in RSA 332-B:9 for a period not to exceed one year, providing that the person write the next available set of examinations and also providing said person is employed by and practices the profession under the supervision of a duly licensed veterinarian practicing in the state. A temporary permit may be summarily revoked by a majority vote of the board.


Source. 1971, 328:1. 1999, 314:18, eff. Jan. 1, 2000.


332-B:13 License Renewal and Lapse.

I. The procedure and timeframe for license renewals shall be as described in RSA 310-A:1-h. Persons previously licensed who allow their license to lapse shall be required to file a reinstatement application containing such information as required by the board. Persons who have allowed their license to lapse more than 5 years shall apply for reinstatement of licensure in accordance with RSA 332-B:17.

II. The board may by rule waive the payment of the renewal fee of a licensed veterinarian during the period when the person is on active duty with any branch of the armed services of the United States, not to exceed 3 years or the duration of a national emergency, whichever is longer.

III. As a condition of renewal of license, each licensed veterinarian shall be required to show proof that he or she has attended an approved educational program or programs totaling at least 24 hours in the 2-year period preceding each renewal date. Approved educational programs shall be at the discretion of the board, in accordance with rules adopted by the board. The board may excuse a licensee from all or a portion of the educational requirement upon the filing of a petition establishing good cause for the waiver as set forth in rules adopted by the board.

Source. 1971, 328:1. 1977, 158:1. 1999, 314:19. 2011, 224:158, eff. July 1, 2011. 2021, 3:13, eff. June 22, 2021.

Amendments--2011. Substituted “biennially on December 31 of each even-numbered year for even-numbered licenses and on December 31 of each odd-numbered year for odd-numbered licenses” for “on December 31 of each year” and added “; except that for licenses which expire December 31, 2011, odd numbered licenses shall be issued for 2 years and even numbered licenses shall be issued for one year, and the board shall charge fees accordingly” in the first sentence of par. I; added “Not later than” preceding “one month prior” in the second sentence of par. I; deleted “registration” preceding “renewal fee” in par. II; and, substituted “24 hours in the 2-year period” for “12 hours per calendar year” in the first sentence of par. III.


332-B:14 Disciplinary Action; Civil Penalty.

I. The board may undertake disciplinary proceedings:

(a) Upon its own initiative; or

(b) Upon written complaint of any person which charges that a person licensed by the board has committed misconduct under paragraph II and which specifies the grounds therefor.

II. Misconduct sufficient to support disciplinary proceedings under this section shall include:

(a) The practice of fraud or deceit in procuring or attempting to procure a license to practice under this chapter;

(b) Conviction of a felony or any offense involving moral turpitude;

(c) Any unprofessional conduct, or dishonorable conduct unworthy of, and affecting the practice of, the profession;

(d) Unfitness or incompetency to practice the profession or any particular aspect or specialty thereof as evidenced by negligent or willful acts performed in a manner inconsistent with the health or safety of animals under the care of the licensee, the intentional injury of an animal or human in a context related to the profession, or a pattern of conduct inconsistent with the basic skills and knowledge required to practice the profession;

(e) Addiction to the use of alcohol or other habit-forming drugs to a degree which renders the person unfit to practice under this chapter;

(f) Mental or physical incompetency to practice under this chapter;

(g) Willful or repeated violation of the provisions of this chapter;

(h) Suspension or revocation of a license, similar to one issued under this chapter, in another jurisdiction and not reinstated;

(i) The use of advertising or solicitation which is false, misleading, or fraudulent or is otherwise deemed unprofessional under rules adopted by the board;

(j) Having professional association with or employing any person practicing veterinary medicine unlawfully;

(k) Fraud or dishonesty in the application or reporting of any test disease in animals;

(l) Failure to keep the veterinary premises and equipment in a safe, clean, and sanitary condition;

(m) Failure to report as required by law, or making false report of any contagious or infectious disease;

(n) Dishonesty or gross negligence in the inspection of foodstuffs, maintenance of medical records, or the issuance of health, vaccination, or inspection certificates; or

(o) [Repealed.]

(p) Unprofessional conduct as defined in rules adopted by the board.

III. The board may take disciplinary action in any one or more of the following ways:

(a) By reprimand;

(b) By suspension, limitation, or restriction of license;

(c) By revocation of license;

(d) By requiring the person to participate in a program of continuing education in the area or areas in which the person has been found deficient; or

(e) By the imposition of civil penalties of up to $2,000 per violation, or in the case of continuing violations, not more than $200 per day, whichever is greater.

IV. The board may informally dispose of any complaint by stipulation, agreed settlement, consent order or default. The board may hold preliminary hearings to facilitate the informal disposition of complaints which, during the preliminary hearing, are found to be unwarranted or unjustified. The board shall follow the provisions of RSA 541-A:31, V in conducting such hearings. All such investigations and preliminary hearings shall be confidential and exempt from the provisions of RSA 91-A, provided that the board shall make public any action taken under RSA 332-B:14, III resulting from a preliminary hearing or investigation.


Source. 1971, 328:1. 1981, 490:9. 1987, 289:3. 1994, 412:43. 1999, 314:20, 21, 22, 23, 24, eff. Jan. 1, 2000.


332-B:15 Investigations.

I. The board may investigate possible misconduct by licensees, permittees, certificate holders, and applicants, and other matters included in this chapter. Investigations may be conducted with or without the issuance of a board order setting forth the general scope of the investigation. Board investigations and any information obtained by the board pursuant to such investigations shall be exempt from the public disclosure provisions of RSA 91-A, unless such information is subsequently included in the record in a public disciplinary hearing. The board may, however, disclose information obtained in its investigations to law enforcement or health licensing agencies in this state or any other jurisdiction, or in accordance with specific statutory requirements or court orders.

II. The board may commence a formal or informal investigation, or an adjudicative hearing, concerning allegations of misconduct and other matters within the scope of this chapter on its own motion whenever it has a reasonable basis for doing so, and the type of procedure chosen shall be a matter reserved to the discretion of the board. Formal or informal investigations may be conducted on an ex parte basis.

III. The board may administer oaths or affirmations, preserve testimony, and issue subpoenas for witnesses and for documents during any formal investigation or adjudicatory hearing, and as provided by paragraph IV of this section. Subpoenas not covered by paragraph IV shall be served in accordance with the procedures and fee schedules established by the superior court, except that:

(a) Board licensees shall not be entitled to a witness fee or mileage expenses for travel within the state.

(b) Witness fees and mileage expenses need not be tendered in advance if the subpoena is annotated: "Fees Guaranteed by the N.H. Veterinary Board."

(c) The respondent shall be allowed at least 48 hours to comply.

IV. The board may at any time subpoena the professional records of its licensees and relevant veterinary and billing records from pharmacies and drug suppliers, laboratories, veterinary suppliers, and veterinary insurers doing business with veterinary licensees in this state. Such subpoenas shall be served by certified mail or by personal delivery to the address provided to the board pursuant to RSA 332-B:15, V, and no witness or other fee shall be necessary for valid service. A minimum of 15 days' advance notice shall be allowed for complying with a subpoena duces tecum issued under this chapter.

V. Persons holding or applying for licenses or permits granted by the board shall keep the board informed of their current business and residence addresses, and shall furnish written notice to the board of any change in such addresses within 30 days from the date the change occurs. A licensee or applicant shall receive adequate notice of any hearing or other action taken by the board under this chapter if notice is mailed in a timely fashion to the most recent home or business address furnished under this paragraph.

VI. (a) Complaints of licensee misconduct shall be in writing, and shall be treated as requests for the commencement of a disciplinary hearing to which the time limitations of RSA 541-A:29 shall not apply.

(b) A complaint which fails to state a cause of action may be dismissed or summarily denied in whole or in part.

(c) The board shall fairly investigate all complaints to the extent warranted by the allegations and the resources available to the board. Following an investigation, the board shall have discretion to decline to prosecute or to defer prosecution on allegations made in any complaint based upon the board's assessment of the seriousness of the alleged misconduct and the resources and priorities of the board. Board decisions deferring misconduct prosecutions shall be final and shall not be subject to judicial review.

(d) Some or all of the allegations in a complaint may be consolidated with another complaint or with issues which the board wishes to investigate or hear on its own motion.

(e) The board may at any time settle misconduct allegations made in a complaint without the consent of the complainant, provided the complainant is given an opportunity to comment in writing upon the terms of the proposed settlement.

VII. At the commencement of an adjudicatory proceeding, or at any time during a formal or informal investigation, and without issuing a subpoena, the board, or a person to whom the board has delegated appropriate authority, may mail a statement of the allegations being investigated to a licensee and order that person to provide a detailed and good faith written response thereto. In such circumstances the board may also require a licensee to furnish complete copies of appropriate professional records concerning matters relevant to allegations at issue and provide access for inspection of clinic or hospital premises. In both instances, the licensee shall respond within a reasonable time period of not less than 15 days as the board may specify in its written request.


Source. 1971, 328:1. 1981, 490:10. 1999, 314:25, eff. Jan. 1, 2000.


332-B:15-a Emergency Suspension.

I. The board may immediately suspend a veterinarian's license if the board determines that the public health, safety, or welfare requires emergency action.

II. If the board suspends a license under this section, the licensee shall be provided a hearing within 10 days of the effective date of suspension. A suspension shall remain in effect during the pendency of the hearing, which shall not be unreasonably delayed by the board.


Source. 1981, 490:12. 1999, 314:26, eff. Jan. 1, 2000.


332-B:16 Hearing, Decisions, and Appeals.

I. Adjudicatory proceedings shall be open to the public. The board's public docket file for each such proceeding shall include a taped or written account of all oral hearings and shall be retained by the board in accordance with the retention policy established by the office of professional licensure and certification.

II. (a) Any member of the board, or any other qualified person appointed by the board, may act as the presiding officer in an adjudicatory proceeding and may issue oaths or affirmations to witnesses, rule on evidentiary and other procedural matters, and prepare a proposal for decision as provided by RSA 541-A:34, without regard to any quorum requirements otherwise applicable to board action or activities.

(b) If a non-board member acts as a presiding officer, but does not prepare a proposal for decision, that person may participate in board deliberations only to the extent of providing technical assistance to the board in preparing its final decision.

(c) If any person acting as a presiding officer prepares a proposal for decision, that person shall not participate in the board's deliberations.

III. (a) Except as otherwise provided by this chapter or RSA 541-A:30, respondents in adjudicatory proceedings shall receive at least 15 days written notice of the date, time, and place of a hearing. Such hearing notices shall include an itemization of the issues to be heard and shall be public documents.

(b) When a board investigation includes consideration of a written complaint against a licensee, any hearing notice issued by the board against that licensee shall also be served upon the complainant. The hearing notice shall constitute a final ruling on the complainant's request for the initiation of disciplinary proceedings, and shall provide the complainant with an opportunity to intervene subject to restrictions which will reasonably advance the public interest objectives of this chapter.

(c) Any person appearing as a party or witness in an adjudicatory proceeding, or any person who is the subject of an investigation, or who is questioned in an investigation, is entitled to be represented by legal counsel, but the board shall have no obligation or authority to appoint or provide an attorney to any such person.

IV. In adjudicatory proceedings, the board may hold prehearing conferences which are closed to the public and exempt from the provisions of RSA 91-A until such time as a public evidentiary hearing is convened in the proceeding. In any event, settlement discussions engaged in by the parties at prehearing conferences may be conducted off the record.

V. The board may dispose of issues or allegations at any time during an investigation or adjudicatory proceeding by issuing a settlement agreement or consent order; an order of dismissal for default or failure to state a proper basis for disciplinary action; or a summary judgment order based upon undisputed material facts, provided, however, that disciplinary action taken by the board at any stage of a proceeding, and dispositive action of any kind taken after the issuance of a public hearing notice, shall be reduced to writing and made available to the public.

VI. Final decisions in adjudicatory proceedings shall be made by a majority of the board members eligible to participate in the decision. Such decisions shall not be made public until they have been reduced to writing, signed by a representative of the board, and served upon the parties.

VII. Final disciplinary actions taken by the board may be appealed to the supreme court pursuant to RSA 541, and shall not be subject to stay pending appeal.

Source. 1971, 328:1. 1989, 62:1. 1999, 314:27, eff. Jan. 1, 2000. 2021, 197:121, eff. July 1, 2021.


332-B:16-a Immunity From Civil Action.

No civil action shall be maintained against the board or any member thereof, or any agent or employee of the board, with regard to any action or activity in the performance of any duty or authority established by this chapter. Nor shall any civil action be maintained against any other organization or individual for or by reason of any good faith statement, report, communication, or testimony to the board or determination by the board in relation to proceedings under this chapter.


Source. 1999, 314:28, eff. Jan. 1, 2000.


332-B:17 Reinstatement Applications.

Persons whose licenses have lapsed for 5 or more years due to nonrenewal shall not again be licensed without filing an application for reinstatement which contains such information as the board may by rule require for the purpose of determining whether the applicant retains the level of professional qualifications expected of existing practitioners, provided, however, that persons who have not practiced veterinary medicine for at least 1,000 hours per year in a jurisdiction with license requirements comparable to those of this state for 3 or more years since they were last licensed in New Hampshire shall meet all requirements for initial licensure.


Source. 1971, 328:1. 1999, 314:29, eff. Jan. 1, 2000.


332-B:18 Practice by Corporations Prohibited.

No corporation shall, except in the manner permitted by RSA 294-A, engage in the practice of, or hold itself out to the public or advertise as being entitled to engage in the practice of veterinary medicine, in any manner or as being entitled to do so, by or through any person orally or by advertisement, letter, or circular; provided that the foregoing prohibition shall not prevent a corporation from employing a veterinarian in regard to its own affairs or to existing corporations organized under the laws of this state so long as its capital stock is owned by persons who are duly licensed or otherwise legally authorized to practice veterinary medicine. Any corporation violating any provisions of this section shall be fined not less than $200 nor more than $500; and every officer, agent, or employee of any such corporation who, on its behalf, directly or indirectly engages in any of the acts herein prohibited, or assists such corporation to do such prohibited acts, shall be fined not less than $200 nor more than $500.


Source. 1971, 328:1, eff. Aug. 24, 1971.


332-B:19 Enforcement.

I. Any person who shall practice veterinary medicine without a currently valid license or temporary permit shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and each act of such unlawful practice shall constitute a distinct and separate offense.

II. No person who shall practice veterinary medicine without a currently valid license or temporary permit may receive any compensation for services so rendered.

III. The board or any citizen of this state may bring an action to enjoin any person from practicing veterinary medicine without a currently valid license or temporary permit. If the court finds that the person is violating, or is threatening to violate, the provisions of this chapter, it shall enter an injunction restraining the person from such unlawful acts.

IV. The successful maintenance of an action based on any one of the remedies set forth in this section shall in no way prejudice the prosecution of an action based on any other of the remedies.

V. In addition to other penalties imposed by this section, a person who practices veterinary medicine without a currently valid license or temporary permit shall be subject to civil penalties assessed by the board in the amount of $2,000 per violation, or, in the case of continuing violations, $200 for each day the violation continues, whichever is greater. A person who disputes such an assessment may request a hearing by the board, and any final disposition rendered by the board shall be enforceable as any other civil judgement [sic].


Source. 1971, 328:1. 1973, 528:218. 1999, 314:30, 31, eff. Jan. 1, 2000.


332-B:20 Animal Physical Therapy Certification.

I. Any physical therapist practicing physical therapy on any animal shall meet the requirements of this section and any additional requirements set by the board of veterinarians pursuant to RSA 332-B:7-a, XIV and shall be certified by the board of veterinary medicine.

II. Before treating an animal, an animal physical therapist shall receive a referral from a veterinarian licensed under RSA 332-B. Such referral shall be oral or written and an oral referral shall be followed by a written referral filed within 7 days of the first treatment by the animal physical therapist. The written referral shall contain the following:

(a) The name of the animal;

(b) The name of the owner;

(c) A description of the animal;

(d) A veterinary diagnosis; and

(e) The referring veterinarian's signature.

III. An animal physical therapist treating an animal shall provide to the referring veterinarian:

(a) A written evaluation within 7 days after initial evaluation;

(b) Any additional progress notes every 30 days; and

(c) Notice of discharge or termination of treatment.


Source. 2010, 170:1, eff. June 17, 2010.



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