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Top Nursing Compact Licensure FAQs Answered


Top Nursing Compact Licensure FAQs Answered

Obtaining a compact nursing license may be easier than you think. On July 20, 2017, the Enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact (eNLC) was enacted, making it easier than ever to travel between the 26 nursing compact states.

No matter where you live, you should be abreast of the latest developments on the nurse’s compact licensure.

LEARN MORE about nursing compact states

Your Compact Nursing License Questions Answered

Question: What is the Nurse Licensure Compact?

Answer: The eNLC allows nurses with a multistate license to practice physically, telephonically, or electronically in their home state and other nursing compact states.

One of the goals of the eNLC is to increase access to care while maintaining public protection at the state level.

Question: Can you tell me how to get a compact nursing license?

Answer: The good news is you may already have a compact nursing license. If you declared a nurses compact state as your primary state of residence and met all licensure requirements, the license you have should be a compact nursing license.

You can use Quick Confirm to check the status of your compact nursing license.

Question: I live in a non-compact state and have a current license with that state. Can you tell me how to get a compact nursing license?

Answer: You are not eligible for a compact nursing license unless you declare primary residence in a nursing compact state. You may apply for a single state license in nursing compact states.

Question: Is there a separate compact nursing license application?

Answer: There is no separate application. If you are a resident of a compact state and are eligible for licensure, you can apply by using the state board of nursing application for licensure by exam or endorsement, which can be found on your state board of nursing website.

Licensure fees and application requirements vary by state. Visit your state board of nursing for more information.

Question: How long can I work on a travel assignment in another one of the nursing compact states?

Answer: You can work in all nurses compact states as long as your home state of residence is a compact state and you remain in good standing.

Question: How do I get a license in a non-compact state?

Answer: In order to obtain a license in a non-compact state, you need to apply for licensure by endorsement to the board of nursing in the state you seek licensure. You can obtain the application on the board of nursing website for that state.

Question: I have a compact nursing license. I am working in another compact state. My employer instructed me to apply for an individual state license. Is this correct?

Answer: You do not need to apply for an individual state license of another compact state. Once you have a compact nurse license, you can work in any other compact nursing state without obtaining a state-specific license.

Question: I have heard that some states do not want to be part one of the nursing compact states because it decreases the requirement to obtain a license in some states. Is this true?

Answer: With the implementation of the eNLC, new applicants must meet 11 uniform licensure requirements. Nurses who obtained a compact license under the original nurse licensure compact are grandfathered in and do not need to apply for a new license.

Question: I think all states should be part of the nurse licensure compact. How can I help?

Answer: According to David Benton, Chief Executive at National Council of State Boards of Nursing: “Passing legislation needs a groundswell of support from practicing nurses and their patients. Reach out to your colleagues in non-eNLC states and tell them your experience.”

If you need more information about obtaining your compact nursing license, reach out to your state board of nursing for their latest developments on the eNLC. 

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