Multistate license

  1. I have been a nurse for 15 years. I moved to my current state 10 years ago. I applied for my RN license a few months after getting settled in. Approximately 30 days After receiving my license here I got a letter in the mail stating that my license in my previous state needed to be given up or made inactive because I was not allowed to have two current licenses at one time. Both states are compact states. My license in the previous state is expired now and has been for some years. My question is should I not have let my license in the previous state expire? My current state is active.
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    About Randomnurse3, BSN, RN

    Joined: Nov '10; Posts: 126; Likes: 230

    19 Comments

  3. by   silverbat
    With the multi state license, I think you have to name the state you live in as your "home"state. So that state will be the one your compact license is in.
    When I moved from one state to another, both compact states, I had to list the state where my address was as my primary state.
  4. by   Randomnurse3
    Quote from silverbat
    With the multi state license, I think you have to name the state you live in as your "home"state. So that state will be the one your compact license is in.
    When I moved from one state to another, both compact states, I had to list the state where my address was as my primary state.

    So is your license in the other state active, inactive, or expired?
  5. by   inthecosmos
    I don't think it would be difficult to transfer your license back to your home state.
  6. by   Uncle-JoJo
    I ran into this problem when the whole ENLC kicked in because I was working between Texas and New Mexico during the time that New Mexico wasn't going to join new compact.

    You can only have one active license between compact states just like the letter said. It's not a threat, it's just how they do things. Put your old state as inactive so you're not paying for it anymore.

    For more information, go to this link:
    Original NLC | NCSBN

    Look at the PDF that's called "Moving to Other States" for details on "Compact to Compact". Hope that's helpful.
  7. by   Randomnurse3
    Quote from Uncle-JoJo
    I ran into this problem when the whole ENLC kicked in because I was working between Texas and New Mexico during the time that New Mexico wasn't going to join new compact.


    You can only have one active license between compact states just like the letter said. It's not a threat, it's just how they do things. Put your old state as inactive so you're not paying for it anymore.

    For more information, go to this link:
    Original NLC | NCSBN

    Look at the PDF that's called "Moving to Other States" for details on "Compact to Compact". Hope that's helpful.
    My license in the old state expired several years ago. How would I get it from expired to inactive. Would it be hard to do?
  8. by   chare
    Quote from Randomnurse3
    My license in the old state expired several years ago. How would I get it from expired to inactive. Would it be hard to do?
    What does it matter? When I lived in PA I also had licenses in NC and VA. when U relocated to NC and noticed the VA board of nursing my license was listed as expired. Just as my WV license was when WV joined the eNLC. If you need to reactivate it I doubt you'll have any problems.
  9. by   Uncle-JoJo
    You shouldn't have any problems reactivating it should you move back. If it costs nothing in an expired state, leave it alone.
  10. by   Randomnurse3
    Quote from Uncle-JoJo
    You shouldn't have any problems reactivating it should you move back. If it costs nothing in an expired state, leave it alone.
    That is what I was concerned about. That it would be hard to reactivate if I need to.
  11. by   Mavrick
    You will need to contact the state in which your expired license is held. They will be most able to tell you exactly how to reactivate your license. It usually involves a renewal fee and CEUs (if required by that state) also, sometimes they will tack on a reactivation fee.

    In Washington State, it's $120 license renewal fee plus $40 expired license reactivation fee, plus evidence of 531 hours of active nursing practice and 45 CEUs.

    With that you're good to go for another 3 years!
  12. by   NurseBlaq
    Both Uncle-Jojo and Maverick are right. You can't have dual compact licenses, only one in the state in which you reside. The penalty for expired license depends on the state in which the license expired. How to change the status and/or reactive it should be on the state's BON website, if not just call them and ask.
  13. by   FurBabyMom
    Quote from NurseBlaq
    Both Uncle-Jojo and Maverick are right. You can't have dual compact licenses, only one in the state in which you reside. The penalty for expired license depends on the state in which the license expired. How to change the status and/or reactive it should be on the state's BON website, if not just call them and ask.
    There may not be a "penalty". When I moved to my current state (compact) from my old state (also compact), the old state's Board of Nursing called me. They asked me where I was in the process of moving, and obtaining licensure in my new state. I had already started working, so they told me to make sure that I had been assigned a temporary license before I officially changed my state of residence. I did, I had the correspondence verifying my temporary license issuance with me (I had literally started my new job that day). They said that they would change the state of residence but that inactivates my old state license. In some places and searches it shows up as "inactive" and in others "expired". I have also inactivated two of my other licenses - and they also sometimes show up as "inactivate" and others "expired".

    Frankly, it seems to matter more that you are accurately licensed where you are currently practicing and residing. I mean as a compact state you can work in your old state...but the laws and practice act from your current state of licensure still governs what you can or cannot do. This is why you cannot maintain two compact licenses.
  14. by   elkpark
    Quote from FurBabyMom
    I mean as a compact state you can work in your old state...but the laws and practice act from your current state of licensure still governs what you can or cannot do. This is why you cannot maintain two compact licenses.
    Actually, when you hold a compact/multistate license and work in a different state (than your home state), you are bound by the Nurse Practice Act and BON rules/regs of the state in which you are practicing at that time, not your home state rules/regs. From the NCSBN NLC document, "What Nurses Need to Know":

    The NLC allows a nurse (RN and LPN/VN) to have one compact license in the nurse's primary state of residence (the home state) and to practice in other compact states (remote states). The nurse must follow the nurse practice act of each state (visit Find Your Nurse Practice Act | NCSBN to find your state's nurse practice act). The nurse could be subject to the discipline process in the states of practice.

    https://www.ncsbn.org/NLC_What_Nurses_Need_to_Know.pdf

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