Enhanced Nursing Licensure Compact Explained

Are you a licensed nurse in Puerto Rico but you would like to practice in Texas or Florida? Here’s the good news-you can practice nursing in any other state that is part of the Nursing Licensure Compact.

The Nursing Licensure Compact was originally implemented in 2000. Then, the Enhanced Nursing Licensure Compact (NLC) was developed and implemented on January 19, 2018, as more states signed up on the agreement.

Mutual recognition

In essence, the participating states agree to recognize the license a nurse obtained from a state that is a member of the NLC. Meaning, nurses who obtained their license from Texas can practice in any member state without securing another license in that state.

Here’s an updated list of the participating states in the Enhanced Nurse Licensure Compact:

  1. Arizona
  2. Arkansas
  3. Colorado
  4. Delaware
  5. Florida
  6. Georgia
  7. Idaho
  8. Iowa
  9. Kansas (it will be implemented on July 1, 2019)
  10. Kentucky
  11. Louisiana (the state will implement the agreement on July 1, 2019)
  12. Maine
  13. Maryland
  14. Mississippi
  15. Missouri
  16. Montana
  17. Nebraska
  18. New Hampshire
  19. New Mexico
  20. North Carolina
  21. North Dakota
  22. Rhode Island
  23. South Carolina
  24. South Dakota
  25. Tennessee
  26. Texas
  27. Utah
  28. Virginia
  29. West Virginia
  30. Wisconsin

There are four states with pending legislation for the agreement, such as- Indiana, Massachusetts, Michigan and New Jersey.

Impact of eNLC on Nurses

If you have an NLC and your state of practice is still part of the eNLC, you don’t have to apply for a new license in that state to continue practicing.

But, here are things you would like to do to ensure that you can continue working as a nurse in a participating state.

1. Apply for residency in an eNLC state so you can apply for a license.

2. If you reside in a state which is not a member of the eNLC, you can still apply for licensure by endorsement for the state.  However, you are not eligible to receive a compact license. You will receive a single state license instead.

3. If you are an eNLC holder, you have to meet the continuing education requirements in your own state, in terms of specific CE courses and the required number of hours.

4. When it comes to license renewal, the rules of the state that issued the eNLC license apply.

Do you reside in any of the participating states?  Stay updated on the latest developments as more opportunities for nurses like you increase in the eNLC member states.