You must be licensed and registered by the New York State Education Department (NYSED) as a registered professional nurse (RN) to practice nursing as an RN or refer to yourself as an “RN”, “registered nurse” or “registered professional nurse” in New York State.
Licensure and Registration
To be licensed and registered as an RN in New York State, you must:
- be of good moral character;
- be at least eighteen years of age;
- graduate from a nursing education program acceptable to NYSED;
- complete New York State required infection control coursework and child abuse reporting coursework;
- pass the National Council Licensure Examination for Registered Nurses (NCLEX-RN) or another license examination acceptable to NYSED; and,
- apply for an RN license with NYSED.
After you qualify for a license as an RN, NYSED will issue you a license parchment and a registration certificate.
- Your license is valid for life, unless it is surrendered, revoked, annulled, or suspended by the New York State Board of Regents.
- Your RN registration certificate will authorize you to practice as an RN for 3 years in New York State. The second registration after licensure is shortened to move your re-registration period to align with your month of birth. The registration renewal fee will be prorated for that period. You must renew your registration every 3 years to continue to practice as an RN in New York State. You are not legally allowed to practice as an RN while your registration is expired
Laws that govern RN licensure are included in Education Law Article 139 and 8 NYCRR Part 64.
You should also read the general licensing information applicable for all professions.