How long were you held before being allowed to transfer?



I am in the process of looking for a new job. My hospital system paid for my education, so I owed them 2 years of straight, full-time nursing. I now only owe them 6 months.

Here's the dilemma, I was just told that the unit director can hold a nurse up to 3 months! It is 'frowned upon' but possible if the unit director can prove the unit is in a tough time. Our unit is about to change med-surg specialties. Some of our RNs have decided to go to different floors, while we will be receiving a bunch of RNs as well.

I'm afraid that I will find the right job, then be told that the unit is in chaos and I have to stay. This could mean a very uncomfortable work environment with peers and unit director for much longer than a month! Although my unit director has always been really nice to me, people have said she can be really passive-aggressive. I'd be like dead RN walking :-(

I wondered how other RNs dealt with this? Has anyone been kept that long? Did they make life miserable?

Thanks in advance!

Specializes in Cardiac, ER. Has 18 years experience.

I assume you want to transfer with in the same hospital system,...our policy is no transfers for 6mo,..and I had a hard time transferring after almost 9 yrs! I got the same excuses,..short staffing,..I was finally able to transfer when I was at the end of my rope and threatened to quit, which I would have done. Good luck,..maybe it's best not to mention a transfer until you are sure you have the new job.

Specializes in Pediatric/Adolescent, Med-Surg.

The hospital system I'm with allows transfers after you've been with them for a year, but the manager can hold you for 4 weeks max at her discretion. I held my first job with the system for 13 months before applying and being accepted for a transfer. Despite everything in my file being in order, my boss did attempt to boss my transfer for 6-8 weeks, going completely against policy. When the new facility I was going to decided to finally over ride her block (since she had blocked for much longer than was allowed), she acted as if she had no idea I was trying to transfer out. What a moron. :yawn:


109 Posts

Specializes in Stepdown progressive care. Has 15 years experience.

We can be held for a max of 45 days which is usually how long everyone is held for. My manager takes every transfer personally so she likes to keep holding onto you as long as she can.


88 Posts

Specializes in Psych, Med-Surg.

Thanks for the responses!

One more question:

If I was hired Oct 15, should I wait until March 15 to apply? I figured that it will take at least a week or two to set up and have an interview. I don't want to seem desperate, but it is a crappy economy, and I'd like to jump on that 'perfect' job....

What do you think?


630 Posts

Where I worked, you weren't allowed to transfer for 6 months and the max you could be held was 30 days before transfer, that was in the employee handbook, is anything written in yours?

Specializes in med/surg, ICU. Has 3 years experience.

The facility I used to work at has no policy as to how long they can hold your transfer. They just hold you as long as they can which can really stink. I was held for 5 months when I transferred from med/surg to ICU.

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