The Licensing Process
Who Must Be Licensed
Two groups of individuals involved in pari-mutuel racing must have a license from the Commission.
- Certain racing participants
Any individual that works and/or participates in pari-mutuel racing in Texas must be licensed.
Examples: Owner of a racing animal, Owner of a kennel, Trainer, Jockey, or Groom, etc.
- Association/Racetrack employees
The following racetrack employees must be licensed:
- those in jobs that provide the opportunity to influence racing
- those who will likely have significant access to the backside of a racetrack or to restricted areas of the front side of a racetrack.
In total, more than forty categories of occupational licenses exist to ensure all participants in racing are properly licensed. Here is the complete list of the Commission's licensing categories, the applicable annual license fees, and other requirements.
How to Apply for a License
To apply for a license, you must:
- Complete a hard copy application form or use the online process;
- Complete an addendum form, if necessary;
- If between ages 17 to 69, secure fingerprints on an FBI fingerprint card; and
- Pay the appropriate license fee and fingerprint fees (see Fingerprint Information below for fee amount) via a personal check, money order, Visa, MasterCard, or Diners Club. For security reasons, the Commission does not accept cash.
Applicants for most licenses should go to the licensing office at a pari-mutuel racetrack to be licensed. Some types of licenses can be processed by mail. To apply by mail, see the complete list of downloadable forms, including the various license application forms.
Because fingerprint checks can take several days, the Commission usually issues a temporary license to applicants who appear to qualify for a license. Commission staff will issue a license badge with a photograph to the licensee who must wear or carry the badge while actively engaged in the performance of his or her duties.
If you apply for a license by mail or online, once processed, the Commission will send you an acknowledgment letter. To get your photo badge, you may go to any Commission licensing office with the acknowledgment letter and proof of identity. Please note that owners are not required to have a photo badge.
Applicants ages 17 to 69 years must be fingerprinted at a Commission Licensing office or be fingerprinted on a FBI card at a local law enforcement office. If submitting a completed FBI fingerprint card you must first register the completed card before sending it to the Commission. Follow these instructions to register your fingerprint card.
Fingerprint fees are subject to change based on the fees established by the Department of Public Safety and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
NEW APPLICANTS - All new occupational license applicants who must submit a fingerprint card (applicants ages 17 - 69) for a background check must pay the 'New Applicant Fingerprint Processing Fee' in addition to the occupational license fee.
RENEWAL APPLICANTS - By law, every three years the Commission must obtain an updated background check on each occupational licensee. As there are two options available for submitting fingerprints for this requirement, licensees must call a Commission licensing office to see which option applies.
- Option 1: Your original fingerprints are NOT on file with the Department of Public Safety. This occurs when your original fingerprints were rejected for any number of reasons. You may go to a Commission Licensing office or to your local law enforcement office to be fingerprinted on a FBI card.
Submit your application for renewal,
your completed FBI fingerprint card after you have registered it, the applicable license fee and the 'Option 1 - Not Eligible for Fingerprint Resubmit Fee" to the Commission. (Follow these instructions to register your fingerprint card.)
- Option 2: Your original fingerprints are on file with the Department of Public Safety. If your original fingerprints are on file with the Department of Public Safety, the Commission can 'resubmit' them. It is very important to call a Commission licensing office to verify that you qualify for this option. Failure to do so may delay the processing of your application.
If you qualify for this option, submit your application for renewal, your applicable license fee and the Option 2-Eligible for Fingerprint Resubmit Fee to the Commission.
Please call the Austin Licensing office at 512-833-6699 if you have any questions.
Reasons for License Denial
Under the Texas Racing Act, §7.04, the Commission may deny a license if the applicant does not meet all of the requirements. Some reasons for denial are:
- The applicant has been convicted of a felony or a criminal offense relating to racing.
- The applicant owes money to the State of Texas.
- The applicant uses illegal drugs.
- The applicant abuses alcoholic beverages.
- The applicant lives with a person whose racing license was revoked during the preceding year.
Right to Review - Correction of Information
Pursuant to Texas Government Code, Ch. 559 and Commission Rule §311.8, if you submit information to the Commission, you have a right to view that information to ensure it is correct. If after reviewing the information you believe the information is incorrect, you are entitled to have that information corrected.
To review information the Commission has stored about you, contact any Commission licensing office or the Commission's Austin headquarters. To file a request to have the information corrected, contact the Commission's Austin headquarters.
See our Licensing FAQ's.