Returning to Nova Scotia

Welcome back to the nursing profession in this province. Once you have applied and met all licensure requirements, you will be eligible to receive a practising LPN, RN or NP licence. 

This webpage is for you if:

  1. You were licensed in Nova Scotia previously and you are returning to Nova Scotia after being licensed elsewhere. 
  2. You are an RN or NP and you did not apply to renew your licence within 30 days of the end of the licensure year.

Before you begin, it’s important to know:

  • We are available to help if you have any questions. Reach out to us at and we will respond within two business days. 
  • All application documents must be provided in English. Translations from a certified translator are also accepted. You are responsible for the cost of all translations.
  • All documents received through the application process are the property of NSCN and can only be released to another regulatory body with your written permission. Documents will not be released to you or to any third party unless required by law.
  • Provincial and federal legislation may have changed since you were last licensed with us. We recommend that you review the jurisprudence exam preparation material for any legislative changes. For RNs and NPs renewing their licence, click here  to access this information. For LPNs, click here. You are not required to take the jurisprudence exam.

Application Process

Please submit the following documents and fees to apply: 

1. Application for a Licence

2. If not already on file with NSCN, photocopy of two proof of name documents such as:

  • Birth certificate
  • Passport
  • Nexus Card
  • Canadian Military ID
  • Driver’s licence or learners permit
  • Canadian government-issued ID card (federal/provincial/ territorial)
  • Permanent resident (PR) card
  • Citizenship card (Canadian or international)
  • Immigration card (Canadian or international)

Note: if your name has changed, NSCN may require proof of name change documents (e.g., marriage certificate). You must submit these documents to us directly either through the mail or email. We will not accept unclear and/or faxed copies.

3. Prior to licensure, an original criminal record check if you have not been licensed with us in more than two licensure years.

4. Registration/Licensure Verification from the last province/territory/state/country where you held or currently hold nursing registration/licensure* 

*You must inform NSCN of all provinces/territories/states/countries where you held registration/licensure in the past or where you currently hold registration/licensure. This includes both nursing and non-nursing regulated professions (e.g., social worker, physiotherapist, etc.). 

5. NP only: If you have not been licensed with us since November 1, 2014, you must meet the controlled drugs and substances requirement by passing:

  • NSCN-approved controlled drugs & substances theory course
Contact before arranging to have these forms completed.


What happens once I submit all of my required documents?

It will take up to five business days to review your application. You will receive an email when your application is approved as well as information about next steps and how to pay for your licence. Click here for information about your licensure fees.

Expiry of your application

Your application will expire and close if your application documents are more than six months old and you have not been in contact with us for six months. 

If you change your mind and wish to become licensed once your file has been closed, you will be required to re-apply and meet the regulatory requirements in place at the time of your re-application, including paying the appropriate fees.

If you have any questions, please reach out to us at We strive to respond to you as soon as possible. However, due to the high volumes of emails and complexity of inquiries, our response time may vary.  

Please be advised that registration requirements and fees are subject to change. All registration and licensure fees are non-refundable. Click here to learn more about fees and payment options