Things to Know as an LPN or RN If You Move to Another State
Whether you’re a licensed practical nurse (LPN) or registered nurse (RN), you’re worked hard for your license. If you’re moving to a new state, you’ll probably want to know how to transfer your license with you, so your hard work isn’t wasted.
For most nurses, the process to transfer your license from one state to another can be fairly easy, but the exact method and requirements will vary a little from state to state.
Read on to learn how you can transfer your license to your new state when you move, and check here for great nursing job opportunities near you now where you live or in your new home city.
Transfer Your LPN or RN License
There are several ways to transfer your license to a new state, and that depends entirely on the state you’re moving from and the state you’re moving to. Many states have made this a relatively easy process by choosing to become part of the Nurse Licensure Compact.
What is the Nurse Licensure Compact?
You’ve likely heard about the Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC) during nursing school. As a refresher, the NLC is an agreement between many states that if you have an active LPN or RN license in one of those states, it applies to any of the other states that participate in the NLC. The NLC is meant to standardized nursing requirements, making it easy for nurses to move between states or work in multiple states at the same standards.
A newer version of the NLC is called the Enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact (eNLC). This version outlines more specific requirements and what you can do with your license in other eNLC states. The eNLC was released in 2018, and any nurse that qualified for the NLC before 2018 can qualify for the eNLC.
If you live in a state that wasn’t part of the NLC before 2018, and you got your LPN or RN license before January 19, 2018, you’ll need to look up your original board of nursing and apply through them for a multistate license. The states that this applies to are Florida, Georgia, Oklahoma, West Virginia, and Wyoming.
Most states are part of the eNLC. But if you’re moving to or from one of the following states that aren’t eNLC, you’ll need to contact the nurse licensing boards in your old and new states to learn how to transfer your license. States that aren’t part of the eNLC are the following: Alabama, California, Connecticut, Georgia, Kansas, Oklahoma, and Pennsylvania.
You can read more about the NLC and find the state nursing regulatory board that you need by doing an online search or through the National Council of State Boards of Nursing.
How Do I Transfer My License from One eNLC State to Another?
If your new and old states are part of eNLC, then transferring your license from one to another is fairly straightforward. Here are the basic steps that you’ll go through to transfer your license:
- Your LPN or RN license needs to be active and valid, and you can’t have any issues with it in the state you’re moving from.
- If you’re moving from one eNLC state to another eNLC state, go to the Nursys website and make sure you have a multistate license by looking yourself up.
- If you find that you do have a multistate license, then all you need to do next is request the transfer under the licensure verification option. Follow the instructions, pay $30 per license that you’re verifying, and you’re done!
How Do I Transfer My License If I’m Moving To/From a Non-eNLC State?
If you’re moving to or from one of the seven states that don’t participate in the eNLC, you’ll have a different process to transfer your license:
- You’ll need an active and valid LPN or RN license in the state you’re moving from.
- Look up the state board of nursing for the state you’ll be moving to. On the board’s website, you’ll find instructions that will tell you what you’ll need to do in order to transfer your license to that state. The exact process will vary.
- You’ll need to fill out an application for licensure. There are a couple ways that you can apply for a license in the new state: either by exam or by endorsement. You’ll then need to pay a transfer fee. The state board of nursing will tell you which method you can apply with and the details of how to proceed, like how to take the exam or get an endorsement from your original board and state.