Welcome to the complete guide on RN license renewal!

In this article, returning nurses will learn about the different requirements and processes involved in selected states regarding registered nurse license renewal.

Specifically, this guide covers:

  • Continuing Education Requirements
  • How do I renew my license online?
  • State by State RN license renewal requirements

Keep reading to find out more!


Introduction of RN License Renewal

Nurses are the country’s second-largest group of licensed professionals.

Before you may practice nursing, you must first obtain a license from your home state’s Board of Nursing (BON) by passing the NCLEX-RN licensing exam and meeting any additional state criteria.

You must also complete specific standards for RN license renewal once you have earned your license.

Continuing Education Requirements

Nursing school will give you a wealth of helpful information, but it will not teach you everything you need to know.

Nursing is a continuous process thanks to advancements in the medical sector through technological developments and improvements in current practices.

Continuing education (CE) is vital for keeping your knowledge and abilities current, so many states demand it while renewing your nursing license.

State-specific CE requirements vary, but 30 contact hours are usually required.

Some states require you to complete specific courses and take CE courses in your areas of interest.

Some states offer online CE courses, while others limit the number of credits you can earn online and demand extra on-site training.

All CE courses must be completed regularly and certified by your state’s BON through a CE provider.

Your company may also require particular CE hours for you to keep your job or advance.

Before renewing your license, you must report your continuing education (CE) hours to the Department of Health’s tracking system.

How do I renew my RN license online?

How do I renew my RN license online

First, log into the State’sState’s official state website and search for a renewal form.

First-time users of the website will have to create an account.

It would help the process if you have your continuing education certificates and National certifications already scanned.

You should also have pertinent information at your fingertips, such as the license number.  

During the renewal process, you will be requested to submit information.

Selected State RN license renewal requirements

Selected State RN license renewal requirements


The renewal period for registered nurses (RNs) for Massachusetts nursing license is two years.

The nurse practitioners must complete 15 contact hours every two (2) years to be eligible for renewal.


California RNs interested in renewing their license must complete a minimum of 30 CE hours for license renewal.

They must also confirm that the contact hours of CE courses have been completed through board-approved providers within the past two years.

New York

New York’sYork’s nurse practitioners (RNs) can become eligible for license renewal by completing three contact hours on infection control every four years.

In addition, for initial license renewers, there is a one-time requirement to complete two contact hours on child abuse and sexual harassment.

Before you can enroll in any of these programs, you must ensure that they are an approved provider by the state.


As a nurse in Texas, you are required to earn continuing education to renew your active license.

The requirements include 24 hours of appropriate CE during each renewal period.

These include two (2) hours relating to preventing medical errors and two (2) hours on Laws and Rules in Nursing.

Furthermore, you require two (2) hours of domestic violence CE for every third renewal.

Therefore, every nurse practitioner looking to be eligible for license renewal must complete 26 to 30 hours of continuing education in total.

South Carolina

The South Carolina Board of Nursing does register nurse’s license renewal in South Carolina.

The licensure renewal period is done after every two years.

For the nurse to be considered for license renewal, they must fulfill one of the following requirements:

  •   They have completed a total of 30 contact hours of continuing education (CE)
  •   They have earned a certification or recertification by the national certifying body
  •   They have completed an academic nursing program or a related field
  •   They have earned an employer certification of competency and completed several hours of practice


All Florida-licensed RNs are subject to a (two-year) 24-month renewal cycle.

For the nurse practitioners to be eligible for lease renewal in Florida, they must complete 24 continuing education hours during each renewal period (2 years).

First-time registered nurses who are subject to a first renewal period and were licensed by exam qualify for a waiver of the contact hours.

For each month during the licensure cycle, one contact hour is required.

HIV/AIDS and must be completed before the first renewal.

They must also complete two (2) hours on Prevention of Medical Errors.

If it is your third renewal, the Florida Board requires you to complete 2 hours of CE on Domestic Violence.

A 2-hour CE course is required for the Recognizing Impairment in the Workplace that becomes effective every other biennium.


The Kentucky Board of Nursing (BON) has its requirements for nurse practitioners seeking eligibility for lease renewal.

Each nurse must fulfill one of the following requirements within the past two years.

However, the requirement is waived for the first renewal after licensure. The requirements include:

  • A total of fourteen (14) contact hours of continuing education (CE)    
  • They have earned a national, practice-related certification or recertification
  • They have completed a nursing research project as director, principal investigator, or co-investigator
  • They have a publication of a nursing-related article
  • They have a professional nursing education presentation    
  • They have completed 120 hours as a preceptor        
  • They have seven (7) contact hours plus a satisfactory employment evaluation for CE.

You must also complete three contact hours of domestic violence education within the first three years after licensure (one time only) and two contact hours of HIV/AIDS education.


Conclusion on RN license renewal

The standards for renewing an RN license differ by state.

The BON in each state specifies the steps you must take to renew your nursing license regularly.

As part of their renewal process, many BONs require a certain quantity of ongoing education and practice hours through approved education programs or refresher courses.

Several states have no mandatory renewal requirements, but they charge a fee and require timely renewals.

The requirements for resuming or renewing an inactive license differ as well.

If you’re confused about your state’s specific renewal process, contact your state board for information as soon as possible after receiving your original license to ensure you don’t miss any deadlines.

Online renewals are crucial if you need to beat the deadline.

Check the renewal process on the state BON website.

Whether your state needs particular processes to renew your nursing license or merely a fee, you must follow these guidelines regularly.

The most typical renewal frequency is every two years.

Still, some jurisdictions need annual renewal, so it’s vital to double-check RN license renewal criteria right after you have your license.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

FAQs about RN license renewal

When does the RN license expire?

This is a subjective question with the answer changing depending on a State’s Board of Nursing. For some states, renewal could be annual, after two years, and for some, after four years. In most states, nurses are required to show advancements/maintain their nursing skills by completing continuing education hours.

How much is an RN license renewal?

The cost of professional license renewal depends on your respective state. They have set a fee schedule where you can confirm how much each nurse practitioner should pay when renewing their lease. In addition to the standard fee, you should confirm the miscellaneous payable fees.

How long does it take for a nursing license to renew?

Similar to, Licensed Practical Nurse ( LPN), and Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN), the Registered Nurse license renewal period varies by state. Most states operate on a renewal cycle of two years from our research. It’s best practice to check with your state of residency’s nursing board or the nurse’s website.

Does the Board of nursing typically require continuing education credits for renewal?

According to a Board Rule, for each registered nurse license renewal, each Board of Nursing requires every nurse to adhere to if they are to be considered eligible for lease renewal. Check with the BON in your state about the required contact hours of continuing nursing education (CNE).

After how long should I expect a renewal notice?

The State Board of Nursing is very efficient in its administration, and you should expect a renewal notice some three months before the expiry of your current license. However, this time frame and the renewal fee, which may cover a criminal background check and other services, vary by state.

How does one place their license on inactive status?

Generally, nursing licenses are valid for two years. After the expiration of this two-year cycle and you do not contact the state board of nursing to renew it, the permit is considered expired and inactive until reinstatement. Working with an expired nursing license can result in hefty fines or suspension.

What will happen if one doesn’t have the required continuing education hours for renewal?

The tracking system will prompt the nurse about the missing CE hours during the submission process. You will receive a delinquent status on your license. A registered nurse will have to enroll in a nursing program/ course, submit the lost hours and pay additional fees.


Texas Board of Nursing

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