NJ: What Employers Can and Cannot Do When Inspecting Nurse Licenses

New Jersey employers are responsible for verifying whether a nurse's license is current and valid before and during the period of employment. Based upon Board regulations, "No licensee shall engage in nursing practice without being in possession of a current license that is active and not suspended, revoked or surrendered." [N.J.S.A. 45:1-21n, N.J.A.C. 13:37-5.1]
The Board's website address is: njconsumeraffairs.gov
The face on top of the license currently being issued by the Board of Nursing is tamper proof and contains the following statement: "THE FACE OF THIS DOCUMENT HAS A MULTICOLORED BACKGROUND AND MULTIPLE SECURITY FEATURES".
A photocopied license in NOT acceptable evidence of current licensure. However, a license may be copied only for purposes of meeting the requirements of the employing organization’s personnel policy or regulatory purposes. (N.J.A.C. 13:45B-14.4(d)
  • EMPLOYERS CAN inspect the original license - CANNOT copy.
  • EMPLOYERS CAN check the original license to see that the New Jersey license is current and valid. 
  • EMPLOYERS CAN verify that the name on the license is the employee's legal name.
  • EMPLOYERS CAN check that the New Jersey licensure status (R.N., L.P.N., C.H.H.H.A. or A.P.N.) corresponds with the nursing position in which the nurse is employed.
  • EMPLOYERS CAN retain a secured record of the license inspection, including the license number, date checked and by whom, etc.
  • EMPLOYERS CAN perform license verification annually of all nursing employees.
  • EMPLOYERS CANNOT ask for a photocopy of a license.
  • EMPLOYERS CANNOT accept a photocopy as a valid license.
  • EMPLOYERS CANNOT accept a license with a name different from the employee's legal name.
  • EMPLOYERS CANNOT accept a license from any other state, as valid evidence of the individual's right to practice nursing in New Jersey.
If members have concerns regarding Employers Inspecting your Nursing License, please contact JNESO's Director of Practice: Barbara Conklin at bconklin@jneso.org or call (800) 292-0542.