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Are there any special requirements for being licensed in two states?

Friday September 7, 2012
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Question:

Dear Nancy,

I will be graduating from nursing school soon. I would like to get a license in one state because I have a job offer there. Eventually, I would like to get a license in another state. Can I do that? If so, are there any special requirements?

Davida



Nancy Brent replies:

Dear Davida,

There is nothing prohibiting you from being licensed in several states. Obviously, the state in which you have a job would be the first place to obtain licensure. While working there, write to the board of nursing in the state you also wish to obtain licensure. You can get this information on the board's website. Then follow the instructions for applying for a license in the second state. Oftentimes, the forms you need can be downloaded from the website. The process of obtaining the second license may be termed "endorsement" or "reciprocity", so look for those terms as you do your research.

Note that if both states are members of the Nurse Licensure Compact, the process of obtaining the second license will be different than if one or both of the states are not members of the NLC. You can read more about the NLC by going to the National Council of State Boards of Nursing's website (www.ncsbn.org), click on the tab Nursing Education, Licensure and Practice, and then click on Nurse Licensure Compact from the drop-down menu.

Sincerely,
Nancy




Nancy J. Brent, RN, MS, JD, is an attorney in private practice in Wilmette, Ill. This information is for educational purposes only and is not intended as legal or any other advice. The reader is encouraged to seek the advice of an attorney or other professional when an opinion is needed.