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How to Get a Nursing License out of an Inactive Status

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Each state is responsible for creating the state’s licensing and renewal requirements for a nurse. Therefore, the procedure to obtain a nursing license and have a license reinstated varies by state. However, many states make it easy to renew a nursing license, even if the license has been inactive for a number of years. Renewing a nursing license can make you eligible to obtain employment in one of the fastest growing careers in the country.

Contact your state’s licensing board. Each state has different fees and requirements for renewing an inactive nursing license. For example; if the nursing license has been inactive for a long period, you may be required to take and pass the state’s licensing examination again.

Complete a nursing license renewal form. The renewal form is usually available on the state’s website, or you can contact the licensing board to ask them to mail the appropriate form to you. Complete the entire form and sign the bottom before you submit it to the licensing board.

Pay any applicable fees to reactivate the nursing license. The fee to renew an inactive nursing license varies by state. In addition, you should ask the licensing board the form of payment the licensing board accepts, as many nursing licensing boards do not accept cash or credit card payments.

Fulfill any continuing education courses requirements necessary to renew your nursing license. Some states require an inactive nurse to complete continuing education or clinical hours before the licensing board will reinstate a nursing license. Ensure you only complete continuing education through an institution acceptable to the state’s nursing board.

Submit all information to the state’s licensing board. Do not send the original copy of any documents, including your nursing license or continuing education certificate, but provide photocopies.

Registered Nurses salary

  • Top 10% Annual Salary: More than $116,230 ($55.88/hour)
  • Median Annual Salary: $75,330 ($36.22/hour)
  • Bottom 10% Annual Salary: Less than $53,410 ($25.68/hour)

Elizabeth Stock began writing professionally in 2010. Before pursuing a career as a freelance writer, Stock was an editor and note writer for the "Thomas Jefferson Law Review" while attending Thomas Jefferson School of Law in San Diego. Stock recently graduated magna cum laude from Thomas Jefferson earning a Juris Doctor.