Canadian RN wanting to relocate in the States


  • Specializes in ER , Med Surg, peads, Cardiac.

does anyone know which states recognize my ontario license and would not require me to rewrite the exams to be hired as a registered nurse. i have been nursing for 25 years with lots of experience in many areas. at my age i just really dread the thought of having to write the nclex exams at this time, so i just wanted to know if any of you know of any of the states that will accept me with my ontario license and years of experience.:heartbeat


3 Posts

I'm not sure, try calling the state's licensing dept. where you want to move to like WI Department of Regulation and Licensing or check there website or any other state you are thinking of moving to.

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Silverdragon102, BSN

1 Article; 39,477 Posts

Specializes in Medical and general practice now LTC. Has 35 years experience.

You will need to meet state requirements and sit NCLEX. It is the same if a US nurse wants to work in Canada they have to meet province requirements and sit CRNE

canoehead, BSN, RN

6,841 Posts

Specializes in ER. Has 30 years experience.

When I moved to Maine they accepted my NS license because I scored above a certain point on the RN exams in Canada. They have since switched to a pass/fail in Canada, and I hear anyone testing under that system has to redo the NCLEX.

The CGFNS was my big issue. After I had been working a year they passed that law. I had to go to Montreal and do a test that predicted whether I could pass the NCLEX, if I did take it. Just doing an NCLEX exam in Maine was not sufficient for them. I also was told I had to pass an TOEFL exam, even though I had taken my BSN in english. CGFNS required passport photos, and some other stuff, plus I think $400 to process it all. By the time I got my CGFNS completed I had been working in Maine for 6 years already, so it was all pointless. THEN I went to the border to renew my visa and asked the guy if they still required CGFNS paperwork. He said "Yup." So I asked him if he needed to see mine to process the visa. "Nope," In fact, no one has officially looked at the paperwork, although it is still "required."

I moved back to Nova Scotia 3 months ago.

Also I heard horror stories about crossing the border when you move. Make your list of belongings, but it doesn't have to be too detailed, no one actually checks it against your stuff. Then make sure you are with your things at the border instead of moving them separately. Apparently they tend to search more if you aren't right there. Most companies in Maine refused to do a crossborder move because of the hassles they get. Going both ways they just saw the U Haul, looked at my papers, and sent me through. Expect about an hour at the border for paperwork, but they were very nice. I also came through for vacation on Sept 13, 2001, and back towards the end of the month with just a "could you pop the trunk, miss?" The lineups during summertime were always the worst hassle.


7 Posts

Specializes in ER , Med Surg, peads, Cardiac.

wow ..ty canoehead...thank you for taking the time to be so explicit, btw, may i ask why you decided to move back to ns ?

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