To distribute, prescribe, or dispense any controlled substance in Alabama, physicians must obtain annually an Alabama Controlled Substances Certificate (ACSC).

The requirement is waived for physicians employed by and working exclusively for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and for medical residents for a period of 18 months from the start date of the first year of the residency program.

How to Apply/What Happens Next


The Initial ACSC application becomes available through the Licensee Portal after the medical license application is complete and the certificate of qualification is issued.

Applications must be completed personally by the applicant.

Print your certificate using the Licensee Portal.

  • IMPORTANT:  Application fees are non-refundable.

Eligibility Requirements

  • Must possess an Alabama medical license for an initial ACSC.
  • Apply for Alabama-specific DEA registration after receiving the initial ACSC.
  • For renewal, must have a current, Alabama-specific DEA registration and be registered to query the Prescription Drug Monitoring Databank.
  • ACSC holders must receive two Category 1 CME credits in controlled substances prescribing every two years. For more information, please see the controlled substances prescribing CME page.

Fees (Non-Transferable/Non-Refundable)

  • Initial ACSC: $150
  • ACSC renewal: $150

Receipts and certificates can be printed at the Licensee Portal.

Renewal and Reissuance After Expiration

  • ACSCs are renewed annually on or before Dec. 31 through the Licensee Portal.
  • Renewal applicants must certify that they have a current DEA registration, are registered to query the Prescription Drug Monitoring Databank, and have earned the required continuing medical education.
  • To apply for re-issuance of an expired ACSC, please contact the ACSC Department).



No, DEA registrations are location-specific. Please see DEA Registration for more information.

Yes.  One of the conditions imposed by the statute authorizing the delivery of opioids for maintenance or detoxification treatment of an opioid use disorder is that the controlled medication be delivered to the location that is listed on the practitioner’s certificate of registration.  21 U.S.C. 829a(a)(1).  Thus, unless the practitioner is registered at a particular location, there is no authorization for delivery of the controlled medication to that location.  Moreover, the CSA requires a separate registration “at each principal place of business or professional practice where the [registrant] . . . dispenses controlled substances.”  21 U.S.C. 822(e)(1); see also 21 CFR 1301.12(a).  The term “dispense,” as defined in 21 U.S.C. 802(10), means to “deliver a controlled substance to an ultimate user or research subject by, or pursuant to the lawful order of, a practitioner, including the prescribing and administering of a controlled substance.” EO-DEA285, DEA-DC82, February 21, 2024 Source: