Understanding and complying with new legislation is not always easy. Here's what the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs (NJDCA) said to clarify the issue.
Effective 2008, RN license renewals require mandatory background checks. Nurses who have already completed a background check don't have to do it again unless they are applying for a subsequent license.
RNs who are up for license renewal this year cannot renew without completing their background check. All background checks must be completed before the state-mandated Oct. 31, 2009, deadline.
Furthermore, if the nurse has not gotten a background check, their license expired and the nurse is not active, a background check would be required to reactivate the license.
The bottom line, according to the NJDCA, is that all New Jersey nurses need to complete a background check. In 2006, legislation was enacted requiring nurses seeking license renewal to get criminal background checks.
Without the checks, licenses will not be renewed.