Renew Annual Licence

Every year, all nurses in Nova Scotia are required to renew their licence. This process is to ensure only nurses qualified to practise nursing are able to do so. Our goal is to review, process and renew all licences in a timely and efficient way. 

The 2019 licence renewal season is now over. All nurses practicing as of November 1, 2019, should have a current 2020 licence. Working without a current licence is illegal. Check Search for a Nurse for up to date licencing status of all nurses in Nova Scotia.  

With proclamation of the new Nursing Act, some elements of the licence renewal process have changed. However, rest assured that licensure fees, requirements and applications have remained the same. Click here for more information about what has changed this year.

If you have a question, email us at registration@nscn.ca or call us at 902-444-6726. We will respond by email or phone within 5 business days.

Maternity and Paternity Leave

Click here to find out how to navigate licence renewal and maternity/paternity leave.

Retirement or Resignation

Click here to find out how to navigate licence renewal if you plan to retire or resign. 

Have a Question?

Visit the links found throughout on this page or contact us by email or phone and we will respond within 5 days. During licence renewal, our 4 Registration Assistants receive over 600 emails and phone calls per week and make every attempt to respond as quickly as possible.

How to Renew

  1. Login to your account using your registration number and password:
    1. Renew as LPN: Log into the LPN Registrant Portal
    2. Renew as RN/NP: Log into the RN & NP Registrant Portal
  2. Follow the steps to submit your application and payment, if applicable.

Once we receive both your application and payment, your application will be reviewed to determine if:

  • Additional documentation and information is required (i.e. licensure verifications)
  • You are eligible for a licence

Once eligible, your licence will be processed within 5 business days.

Your Renewal Calendar: Important Deadlines

You have three months to renew your licence. During this time period, there are important dates to remember:

August 1: first day to renew your licence. 

September 4: deadline to renew if you are an RN or NP and on payroll deduction with your employer. What happens if I miss this deadline? You must submit your application and fee to us and contact your employer for reimbursement.

September 9: deadline to renew if you are an LPN and on payroll deduction with your employer.  What happens if I miss this deadline? You must submit your application and fee to us and contact your employer for reimbursement.

September 15: deadline to renew your licence and be automatically entered into the Licence Renewal Contest to win the amount of your licensure fee.

October 15: deadline to renew your licence and be guaranteed a practising licence on November 1. What happens if I miss this deadline? Due to the high volume of licences being processed at this time, it may take more than two weeks to process your licence and may impact your ability to work on or after November 1.  

October 31: deadline to renew your licence. What happens if I miss this deadline? You cannot legally work as a nurse until you submit your application and fee and we notify you that your licence is processed.

November 1: first day of the new licensure year. All nurses must have a 2020 licence in order to work as a nurse in Nova Scotia on November 1.

Not Renewing Your Licence

If you do not want to renew your licence this year, click on the link below that best fits your situation:

Your Accountability: Helpful Reminders

As a self-regulated professional, it is ultimately your responsibility to renew your licence every year in order to legally practise as a nurse. We support you to be successful by providing resources, reminders and more. As you renew your licence, remember that:

  • The application and fee must both be submitted by October 15 in order to ensure your licence is processed by November 1.
  • You will be notified by email when your licence has been renewed.
  • You must verify that your licence has been renewed using Search for a Nurse.
  • Working without a practising licence is illegal and may result in a professional conduct complaint.

Searching for Other Information?

If you’re looking for other information related to licence renewal, explore the links below: 

Frequently-Asked-Questions

Visit the Search for a Nurse and enter your name to find your licence number.

You must log back in to your portal account and select “payment”. Your application will not be processed until payment has been received.

Please email us at registration@nscn.ca or phone 902-444-6726. We will verify this information for you.

If you have sent us a copy of your name change document (i.e., marriage certificate, divorce decree) and have received an email confirmation that your name has been changed in our records, you must apply using your confirmed name.

You can find instructions on how to change your name on our website.

On June 4, the new Nursing Act was proclaimed and the Nova Scotia College of Nursing (NSCN) was established. As a new organization regulating all nurses in Nova Scotia, some elements of the licence renewal process have changed while other elements have remained the same.

As you prepare to renew your licence this year, please review the following information:

What’s New this Year?

  • New user-friendly website
  • New licence verification tool called Search for a Nurse
  • No CNA membership or association fee as part of RN and NP licensure

What’s Staying the Same this Year?

  • All LPNs, RNs and NPs must renew their licence in order to legally practise as a nurse
  • Licensure year from November 1 – October 31
  • Licensure fees, requirements and applications
  • Professional liability insurance coverage and carriers
  • Our commitment to customer service