• Certifications and Licenses
  • RN - Vermont

    • Compact State
    • Participates in NURSYS
    • Renewal every 2 years

    Overview

    The Vermont State Board of Nursing governs nurses working in Vermont, while the Secretary of State (SOS), Office of Professional Regulation (OPR), processes nurse licensure applications and renewals. The Vermont State BON and the OPR work together to provide oversight and enforcement of the nursing profession. According to the 2021 Board of Nursing Re-licensure survey, 10,727 registered nurses (RNs) held Vermont nursing licenses and worked in the state in March 2021. By May 2022, over 21,000 RNs held Vermont RN licenses.

    About

    NCLEX Registration

    Register for the NCLEX examination and follow the registration instructions. Pearson VUE emails the authorization to test (ATT) to applicants. Applicants schedule the date and time to take their NCLEX examination through Pearson VUE.

    ADA Accommodations for the NCLEX Examination

    To request ADA accommodations for the NCLEX examination, you will need to submit the following documentation with your application: 1. A letter from the diagnosing physician stating the diagnosis and recommended accommodations. 2. A letter from the school stating the diagnosis and accommodations granted while enrolled in the nursing education program. 3. A letter from yourself stating the diagnosis and requested accommodations.

    Vermont RN Licensure by Exam

    Graduate nurses must apply for Vermont nursing licensure by exam. All applicants must provide evidence of completion of an approved registered nursing education program and an official transcript if educated outside of Vermont.

    1. Review Statutes and Rules which govern your profession.

    2. You will need to register for an account (if you have not already) or login to an existing account.

    3. Once you are logged in, click Apply for Individual License and complete the online application. You will pay at the end of the application with a debit card, credit card, or ACH (savings or checking account).

    4. Immediately after submitting your application, please contact Pearson VUE to register for your examination. You will need to work directly with the exam service to register, schedule, pay for, and take your exam. If you receive a deficiency email from the office after you submit your application stating you still need to register with Pearson VUE, please remember you must email the office confirming your registration is complete to become eligible to test. Please allow 3-5 business days for processing.

    5. OPR will notify you by email when you are approved to sit for the exam. You may check your status online at any time for more information.

    6. The exam service will send OPR notification of your passing score, at which time your license will be issued. Please allow 3-5 business days for processing.

    Licensure by Endorsement

    1. Review the Statutes and Rules which govern your profession. Credential-specific application instructions may be referenced on the corresponding credential page.

    2. You will need to register for an account (if you have not already) or login to an existing account.

    3. Once you are logged in, click Apply for Individual License and complete the online application. You will pay at the end of the OPR application with a debit card, credit card or ACH (savings or checking account). Within the online application, there is a link to the NURSYS website. If your State participates with NURSYS you will need to request your verification to be transmitted from NURSYS to OPR.

    4. Please allow 3-5 business days for processing and keep an eye on your email. OPR will notify you by email if there are additional items required for your application. You may check your status online at any time for more information.

    5. Once your application has met the requirements, your license will be issued. Please allow 3-5 business days for processing.

    Are you a professional who has been licensed in another state for the last 3 years and who is looking to relocate or work in Vermont?

    OPR has implemented a Fast-Track Endorsement option for individuals who currently hold an active license in good standing in another state for a minimum of 3 years immediately preceding the date of their application with our office.

    Application instructions are found on each profession’s webpage. To submit an application under Fast Track Endorsement, log in to your Online Licensing account and apply.

    Vermont RN Licensure for Foreign Educated Nurses

    Applicants, who acquired all or part of the qualifications for a profession for which they are seeking licensure in a country or jurisdiction other than the United States, shall have the qualifications obtained in a country or jurisdiction other than the United States evaluated by a CES that is a member of the National Association of Credential Evaluation Services (NACES) or of the Association of International Credential Evaluators, Inc. (AICE).

    Applicants shall apply for and obtain from a CES one or both of the following, as applicable:   

    1. If educational qualifications for licensure in the relevant profession were obtained in a country or jurisdiction other than the United states, a detailed, course-by-course translation and evaluation report of foreign transcripts;  

    2. If the applicant has obtained other qualifications for professional licensure in a country or jurisdiction other than the United States, including, but not limited to, a professional license, supervised practice or work experience hours, or professional competency examination passage, a determination will be made on a case by case basis.

    Second Chance Determination

    OPR believes that past criminal records should not automatically bar individuals from being licensed. Our office reviews prospective licensees’ backgrounds on a case-by-case basis. We consider the nature of past criminal convictions, time since the last conviction, evidence of rehabilitation, and the connection to the profession itself.

    OPR has puta pre-approval process for potential applicants, allowing individuals to ask if their criminal history will prohibit them from licensure in a specific profession before they begin training or invest time and money into an education program.

    The cost will be $25 for the office to review your criminal history and will require you to submit certain information for review. The $25 will then be deducted from your application once submitted.

    Before submitting your request, please review the Second Chance Determination Policy and Procedures. Log in to your Online Services account and select Second Chance Determination from the online dashboard to submit your request for review.

    1. Purpose. Vermont law allows a prospective applicant for a professional license administered by the Office of Professional Regulation (OPR) to request a pre-application assessment as to whether past criminal conduct would present a barrier to obtaining an OPR-administered license. Such an assessment is known as a “second chance determination.”  

    2. Policy. The purpose of professional and occupational licensing is to protect the public. A professional license may be denied or restricted for conviction of a crime related to the practice of the profession or conviction of a felony, whether or not related to the practice of the profession.” State policy favors rehabilitation and reintegration of persons whose past criminal conduct does not bear on their present fitness to practice the regulated professions. It is therefore, OPR policy to offer favorable second chance determinations to the extent possible without limiting licensing authorities’ ability to protect the public. Second chance determinations clarify the license eligibility of a natural person, who fully and candidly discloses actual criminal convictions, and who has a bona fide interest in knowing his or her eligibility for an identified professional license administered by OPR pursuant to 3 V.S.A. § 122.  Second chance determinations are not available for: 

    (a.) business and institutional licenses; 

    (b.) hypothetical or counterfactual questions; or 

    (c.) requestors who would be ineligible for licensure regardless of criminal history.  

    3. Effect. An OPR second chance determination articulates the maximum licensing sanction the State will seek if the recipient, having engaged in no intervening bad conduct, subsequently applies for a professional license. A second chance determination binds the State only in relation to the specific professional license type or types for which the determination was sought and only concerning convictions accurately disclosed. The Director of Professional Regulation shall monitor board activities to ensure that second chance determinations are honored as written.

    4. Procedure (a.) An application for second chance determination must be made online at the OPR website, using an electronic form prepared for that purpose.

    (b.) The second chance determination request fee must be paid with the request submission; however, if the applicant later applies for licensure, the pre-application fee shall be deducted from the license application fee as a one-time deduction of the application fee for the full license.

    (c.)  Applications must include full disclosure of criminal conviction history, to include without limitation:

    1. The charging instrument (indictment, police report, affidavit of probable cause); 

    2. The sentencing instrument (court order, final adjudication including sentence); 

    3. Conditions of probation or parole, or evidence of successful completion;

    4. If under penal supervision, a statement of support from the supervising official; 

    5. Evidence of rehabilitation;  

    6. A narrative explanation by the applicant; and 

    7. Such additional documentation as OPR may reasonably request to understand the nature and context of the disclosed conduct and its relation to the profession in question. 

    8. Incomplete applications will not be processed. An application is incomplete if an unresolved deficiency has been identified by OPR in writing through the Online Services System. After six months of inactivity, an incomplete application may be closed.

    5. Form of Determination. Within 30 days of receiving a completed request for a second chance determination, OPR will provide a concise written assessment of the nature of the underlying conviction or convictions, the nexus to the credential of interest, and the evidence of rehabilitation offered. Such an assessment will conclude that the convictions disclosed:

    (a.) would not affect license eligibility; 

    (b.) would provoke the State to seek a warning or reprimand, but not to seek restrictions upon the license; 

    (c.) would provoke the State to seek a warning or reprimand as well as conditions and limitations on the license, such as peer supervision; or

    (d.) would provoke the State to oppose the issuance of the license. 

    6.  Finality. A person who has received a second chance determination is ineligible for reassessment unless the Director finds that there has been a compelling change in circumstances warranting reassessment. 

    Will my practice hours be subject to an audit?

    Yes. 30 days after the renewal period ends, OPR conducts an audit. A percentage of licensees are chosen at random. You will be notified by email if you are chosen for an audit and again if the office requires additional information.

    Temporary Nurse License in Vermont

    Health care professionals can quickly become temporarily licensed in Vermont to provide care during the COVID-19 public health emergency. There is no fee for temporary licensure.

    Gov. Phil Scott signed Act 91 on March 31st, granting emergency authority to expedite temporary licensure for healthcare professionals. Bolstering the ranks of health care providers will expand access to medical services for patients and allow qualified retirees to serve Vermont at this difficult time. 

    The new emergency measures grant a temporary license for health professionals who:

    • Are licensed and in good standing in other states

    • Were licensed in Vermont, but whose licenses lapsed in recent years.

    Renewal

    Renewals are due on March 31st of odd years. Renewal notices will be emailed to you 6 weeks prior to your license expiration date. The online renewal will not be available until you receive this notice. Please make sure we have your current email address on file, so you receive this information. You may log in to your online account ahead of time to ensure your information is up to date.

    1. Navigate to our Online Services.

    2. Enter your user ID and password.

    3. Once you are in your dashboard, click Renew License.

    4. Select the license you wish to renew and click Next.

    5. Continue through the renewal by answering all the questions on each page (scroll to the bottom to ensure all questions have been answered) and clicking Next.

    6. Once you reach the payment screen and submit your payment information, please be sure to wait until you receive the confirmation page that your license has successfully been renewed! A receipt will be emailed to the email address on file.

    What happens if I do not renew my license on time?

    If you do not complete your renewal by midnight of the day your license expires, late penalties will go into effect per 3 V.S.A §127(d)(1).

    You will still be able to renew by logging in to your account and clicking “Renew License”. Any penalties associated with your late renewal will need to be paid for your license to be renewed. You may contact the renewal clerk if you wish to receive the form to request relief from the reinstatement penalty.

    You typically will receive three (3) courtesy notifications to your email on file when it is time to renew. You are required to keep your email contact up to date in the online system.

    Will my practice hours be subject to an audit?

    Yes. 30 days after the renewal period ends, OPR conducts an audit. A percentage of licensees are chosen at random. You will be notified by email if you are chosen for an audit and again if the office requires additional information.

    Continuing Education Requirements

    There are currently no requirements for continuing education units for RNs, only practice hour requirements.

    RN/LPN: Renewal period is every 2 years, March 31st of odd years:

    Practice hour requirements:

    • 50 days (400 hours) every 2 years; or

    • 120 days (960 hours) within 5 years of the end of the current licensing period

    Requirements

    Uniform Licensure Requirements (ULRs). 

    To be eligible for a Vermont-issued MSL, licensees must meet the following criteria:

    1. Provide proof of residency in the State of Vermont.

    2.  Hold or obtain an unencumbered Vermont single-state license;

    3. For applicants whose programs were conducted in languages other than English or who are not native English speakers, achieve a passing score on the TOEFL or a similar language-proficiency assessment;

    4. Achieve a passing score on the NCLEX;

    5. Submit a fingerprint-supported criminal background check;

    6. Have no felony conviction;

    7. Have no misdemeanor conviction for an offense related to the practice of nursing, as determined on a case-by-case basis;

    8. Not be enrolled in an alternative program in any jurisdiction;

    9. Agree to self-disclose alternative-program participation; and

    10. Possess a valid United States Social Security Number.

    Whether applying by exam or endorsement, all applicants must meet the Board’s nurse education requirements. If they completed an in-state RN education program, the program must be accredited by the Board. Programs conducted outside the State must either meet the Board's minimum requirements for an accredited program completed within the State or be accredited by the National League for Nursing.

    The Uniform License Requirements

    An applicant for licensure in a state that is part of the eNLC will need to meet the following uniform licensure requirements:

    1. Meets the requirements for licensure in the home state (state of residency)

    2. a. Has graduated from a board-approved education program or 

    b. Has graduated from an international education program (approved by the authorized accrediting body in the applicable country and verified by an independent credentials review agency)

    1. Has passed an English proficiency examination (applies to graduates of an international education program not taught in English or if English is not the individual’s native language)

    2. Has passed an NCLEX-RN Examination

    3. Is eligible for or holds an active, unencumbered license (i.e., without active discipline)

    4. Has submitted to state and federal fingerprint-based criminal background checks 

    5. Has not been convicted or found guilty or has entered into an agreed disposition of a felony offense under applicable state or federal criminal law

    6. Has no misdemeanor convictions related to the practice of nursing (determined on a case-by-case basis) 

    7. Is not currently a participant in an alternative program

    8. Is required to self-disclose current participation in an alternative program 

    9. Has a valid United States Social Security number

    Continuing Education Requirements

    There are currently no requirements for continuing education units for RNs, only practice hour requirements.

    RN/LPN: Renewal period is every 2 years, March 31st of odd years:

    Practice hour requirements:

    • 50 days (400 hours) every 2 years; or

    • 120 days (960 hours) within 5 years of the end of the current licensing period

    FBI Background check and fingerprinting

    3 V.S.A. § 123(j) grants Vermont the authority to inquire into the criminal backgrounds of several of our licensed professions. Please visit your profession’s webpage for profession-specific information.

    The Criminal background check (CBC) is being rolled out in phases; RNs will be required to submit a background check in Vermont starting in early 2023.

    OPR Process

    1. Complete the release form. This form is provided to you within your online application. Upload by logging into your account and selecting “update license/application”.

    2. Once OPR receives the release form, OPR will send you a signed authorization form to complete and bring to your fingerprint appointment.

    3. Make an appointment with an Identification Center or local law enforcement agency (see below regarding fingerprints being taken inside or outside of Vermont).

    4. Once VCIC receives your fingerprints and signed authorization form, it can take 4-6 weeks (sometimes longer) to return the results to VCIC, send them to OPR, and process them.

    5. Once OPR receives your background check results from VCIC, we will complete processing which can take additional processing time.

    Providing Fingerprints in Vermont

    Contact a Vermont Identification Center for an appointment. You may also contact a local law enforcement agency to inquire if they offer fingerprinting services.

    Make sure to bring your completed, signed authorization form to your appointment. Most identification centers will submit this form to VCIC with your fingerprints.

    If they require you to mail the fingerprint cards in, you must also bring a large envelope to seal the fingerprints in before leaving the Identification center. You are not allowed to leave the enforcement agency with open fingerprint cards. Completed fingerprint cards and signed authorization forms should be mailed to Vermont Crime Information Center, 45 State Drive, Waterbury, VT 05671

    Providing Fingerprints While Outside of Vermont

    • Contact a local law enforcement agency to inquire if they offer fingerprinting services

    • Please ensure that all required documents are filled out completely.

    • Fingerprint cards completed by agencies outside of Vermont should be submitted in an envelope sealed directly by the criminal justice agency taking the fingerprints. You must bring a large envelope to seal the fingerprints before leaving the Identification center. You are not allowed to leave the enforcement agency with open fingerprint cards. Completed fingerprint cards and signed authorization forms should be mailed to: Vermont Crime Information Center, 45 State Drive, Waterbury, VT 05671

    • Applicant fingerprints should be printed on a standard FD-258 Applicant Fingerprint Card. Generally, this will be provided by the agency taking your prints. If needed, a template may be downloaded directly from the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

    VCIC will not accept fingerprint cards from OPR. The applicant MUST send completed inked fingerprint cards and signed authorization forms to: Vermont Crime Information Center, 45 State Drive, Waterbury, VT 05671

    Contact Information

    Vermont State Board of Nursing SOS Office of Professional Regulation 89 Main Street, 3rd Floor Montpelier, VT 05620-3402 Contact Form (802) 828-1505

    Multistate

    The Vermont Nurse Licensure Compact (NLC) became effective February 1, 2022.

    Timing

    Please allow five (5) business days for processing. OPR no longer accepts paper applications. Verification requests must be submitted through the Online Services Platform. Licenses are issued within 24 to 72 hours of passing the NCLEX. Permanent licenses for any applicant type are only issued when all requirements are fulfilled, with applications processed on a first-in, first-out basis.

    Fees

    Licensure by exam fees:

    Application Fee:        $60

    NCLEX Exam:        $200

    Fingerprint fee:    $25

    Licensing fee by endorsement (already have RN licensure):

    Application fee:    $150

    Fingerprint fee:     $25

    License renewal fee:    $95

    Applicants must pay a $200 registration fee to take the NCLEX-RN licensing exam. This fee won’t be refunded for any reason and must be paid by a VISA, MasterCard, or American Express credit, debit, or prepaid card. Should an applicant fail the exam and retake it, another $200 fee applies. 

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    Frequently asked questions

    I have a single-state license in Vermont and a multistate license in another state. Once Vermont is a compact state, what happens to my single-state license?

    As of February 1, 2022, Vermont is a compact state. RNs and LPNs who hold a compact license in another state no longer need to maintain their Vermont RN or LPN license to practice in Vermont. Your license will expire at the end of the renewal cycle.

    I just recently had a background check performed for another license. Can I use that background check for my multistate license?

    No. The background check must be done at the time of the application, and it is the only purpose for which it will be able to be used.

    When will I be required to have my background check completed?

    OPR will be opening up this new requirement in phases. You will receive an email with information on the timing and process. Please make sure your email address is up to date and check back frequently for updates.

    When are the license renewal periods?

    Renewal is due on March 31st of every odd year.