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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. Choose which situation applies to you below in How to apply. 

Multistate License (MSL) information 

Starting Jan. 31, 2024, nurses whose primary state of residence (PSOR) is Washington can apply for a Washington MSL. 

This includes:

  • Nurses moving and changing their PSOR to Washington state.
  • Nurses who are getting their first Washington state license.
  • Nurses with a single-state Washington license.

*If you already have a Washington single-state license, it won’t change automatically. If you want a multistate license, you must apply for an MSL upgrade.

If you have an active RN or LPN multistate license (MSL) from another state, you don't need to apply for a Washington state license unless you change your primary state of residence (PSOR) to Washington state.

If moving to Washington state, please note that under the Interstate Commission of Nurse Licensure Compact Administrators rules section 403 (1), a nurse who changes his or her primary state of residence from one party state to another party state may continue to practice under the existing multistate license while the nurse's application is processed, and a multistate license is issued in the new primary state of residence.

Under section 402 (2) of the NLC rules, a multistate licensee who changes primary state of residence to another party state shall apply for a multistate license in the new party state within 60 days. Note, a change in primary state of residency does not include travelers living in a state temporarily and plan to return to another state of residence.

Before you apply

  • Decide if you want a single-state or a multistate license (MSL).
  • Make sure you meet all requirements.
  • Complete any verifications needed.
  • Register for any exams needed.
  • Get your forms signed and ready to upload.
  • Get your required documents ready to upload.
  • Have a payment method ready to pay online.

How to apply

There are different requirements depending on your situation to apply for a single-state or multistate license in Washington. Choose which situation applies to you: 

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 more documents to submit after 14 days, please email them to