Are You Prepared to Join the Multi-State Nurse Licensure Compact?

February 6, 2023Legal Alerts

Are You Prepared to Join the Multi-State Nurse Licensure Compact?

On January 1, 2023, the Ohio Board of Nursing joined the multi-state Nurse Licensure Compact (“NLC”), allowing nurses who hold an Ohio nursing license to apply for a multi-state license.    Ohio has joined at least 37 other states that participate in the multi-state license.  The NLC allows a nurse to hold one multi-state license (MSL) in their primary state, while practicing virtually or in-person in many other states, making it easier to engage in travel nursing or tele-health.

Eligibility requirements to apply for a compact/multi-state license:

  • You must meet the Ohio licensure requirements;
  • Graduate from a Board approved RN or LPN prelicensure program;
  • Pass the NCLEX;
  • Hold an active, unencumbered Ohio nursing license;[1]
  • Submit to state and federal fingerprint/ FBI/BCI criminal background check;
  • Have not been convicted or found guilty of a felony;
  • Have not been convicted or found guilty of a misdemeanor related to the practice of nursing;[2]
  • Not currently enrolled in an alternative program or subject to self-disclosure requirements; and
  • Have a valid Social Security Number.

How to convert your Ohio nursing license to a multi-state license:

Click here for information on how to apply for a multi-state license, and to watch the informational video provided by the Ohio Board of Nursing.  You can also find the application here.

Renewal of your single state nursing license or conversion to a multi-state license is available for a one-time fee.  It is important to note, you may apply for a multi-state license only in the state of your primary residence (your home state). 

Practicing in Ohio with a multi-state license issued in another state?

Is converting your Ohio license to a multi-state license the right choice for your practice?

While practicing in a remote state, including with tele-health or tele-medicine[3], you are subject to that state’s nursing laws.  In addition, the NLC allows each member state/jurisdiction to take adverse action against the nurse’s privilege to practice within that state, in accordance with that state’s own disciplinary rules.  Disciplinary action taken by the home state deactivates all multi-state licensure privileges. 

Make sure you are complying with the Ohio Nursing Board’s laws and rules, R.C. 4123 and O.A.C. 4723

Do you have questions about multi-state licensure?  Please contact Beth Collis or LaTawnda Moore with questions about applying for the Nurse Licensure Compact.


[1] An unencumbered license means that you are not currently on probation, have no restrictions on your license and are not subject to a disciplinary action by the Ohio Board of Nursing.

[2] Determined on a case-by-case basis.

[3] The general rule is that you are considered to be practicing in whatever state the patient is located.