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How to apply for your Washington Nurse License online

We recommend applying online for your Washington state nurse license. It is the easiest and quickest way to get your license.

We will send you a one-time paper license in the mail 7 to 10 business days after we approve and activate your license.

Before you apply

Make sure you have all your documents and payment method ready, and your application is complete to avoid delays. 

To apply for your license online you will need: 

Ready to apply?

Before accessing the DOH Application Portal, please review the instructions for your application type:

Most people can apply online, but some situations may need to send a paper application. 

You can’t apply online if:

  • You have previously applied for a license in Washington state and your application was closed as deficient.
    • If your application was closed, you will need to submit a new application and fee.
    • If your application was closed more than 6 months ago, you will need to resubmit all required supporting documents.
  • You don’t have enough information in the public record to verify your identity.
  • You need to reactivate a previous Washington state license.

If you need to apply with a paper application, please email us at nursing@doh.wa.gov.

    Registered Nurse & Licensed Practical Nurse License 

    Washington state license application information for:

    • Registered Nurse (RN) 
    • Licensed Practical Nurse (LPN) 
    • If you currently hold an active Single-State Washington license and want to upgrade to a multistate license, please review the Upgrade to an MSL instructions.

    There are different requirements depending on your situation when applying for your RN or LPN license in Washington.

    DOH Online Application Portal

    Video overview of adding and using the DOH Online Application Portal.

    You need to add the DOH Online Application Portal to your SAW account.

    Steps to add the DOH Application Portal to your SAW account:

    1. Log in to your SAW account
    2. Click "Add a New Service"
    3. Click on "I would like to browse a list of services by agency."
    4. Select Department of Health
    5. Scroll to Online Application Portal
    6. Click "Apply"
    7. Click "OK

    You will be returned to your SAW account page. You should see Online Application Portal provided by Department of Health in your list of services.

    When you are ready to apply click Access Now and follow the online instructions.

    Tips

    • Apply on a desktop computer. Mobile and tablets tend to have more issues.
    • Use Google Chrome or Microsoft Edge for best results.

    Resources

    Download step-by-step instructions with graphics:

    Submitting forms and documents

    • You have 14 days after you submit your application to upload your documents online. 
    • After 14 days you won’t be able to access your application though SAW.  
    • If you have documents to submit after 14 days, email them to nurselicensing@doh.wa.gov

    Need help?

    If you have trouble with the Online Application Portal or online application process, you can contact us during business hours.