The Nurse Licensure Compact Quick Facts

The Nurse Licensure Compact Quick Facts

By Diane Norlander, Contributor

If you haven’t heard of the multi-state nursing license compact, it’s time to find out how this great program can streamline your eligibility for a variety of travel nursing opportunities—and how some recent changes might affect you.

Here’s the 411: if you are a nurse who lives in a state that is one of the nursing licensure compact states, you can get licensed to practice in all states that are participating members.

The Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC), sponsored by the National Council of State Boards of Nursing (NCSBN), opens you up to a number of new nursing jobs, and makes the process of getting hired much easier.

Already have your compact license? Travel with us

Quick facts about the nurse licensure compact states

  1. Your primary state of residence must be one of the compact nursing states. Primary residence is determined by where you file your tax return. 
  2. Nurses must still obtain licenses to qualify for travel nursing jobs in non-compact nursing states.
  3. RNs, LPNs and LVNs are included in the compact. Advanced practice nurses are not.
  4. A nurse whose primary state of residence is a compact state can apply for a multistate license, which allows nurses to practice in all nursing compact states.
  5. Nurses who live in non-compact states but practice in a compact nursing state will be issued a nursing license valid only in that member state (single state license). The nurse will not be granted the "multistate privilege to practice" in other compact states.
  6. Nurses are responsible for complying with the provisions of the Nurse Practice Act in all states where they practice.

 Updated as of June 2019 with the list of states in the NLC:

states in the NLC list

Chart provided by the NCSBN website.

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