Attention California Nurses: Be Careful, Do Not Let Your License Lapse

July 6, 2012 in News

California Registered Nurses

You have done the most difficult part in becoming a nurse, you completed all of your education and most importantly you passed your licensure exam; you are a Licensed Registered Nurse!  It is extremely important that you keep that license up to date without letting it expire or lapse in any way.

Make sure you understand all the rules and regulations regarding your license.  Many other types of “licenses” or certifications have a yearly or biyearly renewal from the date you received it, not a RN license.  Your first California RN license is issued for two birthdays, NOT years!  That license expires the last day of the month following your birth date.  After that date, if you renew it in a timely manner, it will expire every two years from that date.

This may become slightly complicated if you decide to let your license lapse and not practice nursing for a while, then return to it after renewing your license.  In California your license number always remains the same whether or not it lapses and you renew it later, you are issued the same number.  Now if your license does lapse and you renew it a few years later, the renewal cycle will remain the same as it was when you first received your license.  Let’s say your license expired 5/31/01 and you decide to renew in February of 2003.  First you need to pay the delinquent fee and also prove that you have 30 contact hours of continuing education that was completed within the last two years.  Once that is taken care of your license is reinstated, but will expire on 5/31/03 and you will need to complete another 30 hours of continuing education.  As stated, it is slightly more complicated, but very important because in California you cannot practice without a current license.

Also of great importance is making sure you are completing the required hours of continuing education.  You can pay your renewal fee once your license is up for renewal, but without completing your continuing education hours your license becomes “inactive.”  Inactive is as good as an expired license; you cannot practice with an expired license.  After completing your hours of continuing education courses, you must submit proof to activate your license.

Please remember to notify the Board of Registered Nursing of any name or address changes within 30 days of said change.  By law you must give the Board the information change by telephone or in writing.  Name changes must be given in writing along with other information.

For current and more information contact you Board of Registered Nursing.

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