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Leaving or returning to practice

Information for current registrants considering leaving practice, or former/non-practising registrants who want to reinstate their registration and return to practice.

​​Understanding your options

View the registration status comparison table for an at-a-glance understanding of your registration options. If you have questions, contact BCCNM Registration Services at​ or 604.742.6200 (1.866.880.7101 toll-free within Canada only).
Registration status comparison
Practising ​Non-practising Former registrant
2021-22 annual fee​  $514.80 
Am I registrant of BCCNM? Yes Yes No
Can I practise or volunteer as a nurse in B.C.? Yes No No
Will I get communication from BCCNM? Yes. You receive the registrant newsletter and any special bulletins. Yes. You receive the registrant newsletter. Special bulletins as applicable​. No
Can I still call myself a nurse? Yes. You can use: 
  • Licensed practical nurse
  • Practical nurse
  • LPN
  • Nurse
Learn more​

No. However, you can use the follow titles depending on your qualifications:

  • non-practising practical nurse 
  • Non-practising LPN
  • Non-practising nurse
Learn more​
No. You cannot use the title "licensed practical nurse," "nurse, "practical nurse," the abbreviation "LPN," or any of the options in the non-practising category.
Can I be a member of a BCCNM committee? Yes, if you are in good standing with the college (subject to specific committee composition requirements). Yes, if you are in good standing with the college (subject to specific committee composition requirements). No​

​​​Leaving practice

If you are leaving practice, you have several options. Please note: if you wish to reinstate your practising registration in the future, the documents required, process, and fees are the same for former and non-practising registrants. 
​Maintain your practising registration
  • If you are going on a short-term leave (i.e. within the registration year, or a few months that straddles renewal cycles), you may wish to maintain your practising registration.
Convert to non-pr​actising registration
  • You may be eligible for a pro-rated refund on your practising registration fees.
  • You will continue to receive communication from the college
  • Non-practising registrants can use non-practising nursing titles such as "non-practicing registered nurse," "retired registered nurse," or "non-practising LPN."
  • See the registration status comparison above for more information
To convert to non-practising registration, sign in to your BCCNM account.
Cancel/lapse and become a former registrant
  • You may be eligible for a pro-rated refund on your practising registration fees.
  • As a former registrant you will no longer be a registrant of the college and cannot use a nursing title or call yourself a nurse. 
  • See the registration st​​atus comparison above for more information.​​
To cancel your registration, sign in to your BCCNM account​.

Leaving practice due to disability/illness

Check with your employer and/or disability insurance company before you make changes to your status. Some disability carriers or employers may require you to maintain practising or non-practising registration to receive benefits.​​​​​​​​

Returning to practice

If you are a former or non-practising BCCNM registrant, you must submit a reinstatement application to return to nursing practice. Please submit your reinstatement application at least one month before your estimated return to work date.

1. Prepare your documents
To avoid delays in processing your application, prepare the following documents before you start your application:

  • Notarized name change document or marriage certificate: If you have changed your name since you last held practising registration with us. Learn more about accepted forms of identification​.
  • Verification of registration: Complete ver​​ification of registration forms for all jurisdiction(s) you are/were registered since you last held practising registration with us. This form must be received directly from that jurisdiction.
  • Employment verification: Complete employment verification form(s) for each of your nursing employers within the last five years. This form must be received directly from the employer.
2. Compl​ete your application and pay fee
You must sign in to your BCCNM account​ to apply for reinstatement. Select "Apply" to start your application.

  • You may be asked to consent to a criminal record check (CRC) as an updated CRC is required for any leave from practice longer than 60 days. Please note: Criminal record check results take a minimum of two weeks to be processed and your application cannot be assessed until the results are received. Please ensure you submit your application at least a month before your return to work date to allow for delays.
  • You will pay a reinstatement application fee​ when your application is submitted. Reinstatement fees are non-refundable, so ensure you are ready to proceed before you pay.
  • The registration team will contact you if there are outstanding documents that BCCNM needs to proceed with your application.​
3. BCCNM review
BCCNM Registration Services will assess your application to determine whether you meet the requirements for reinstatement. The requirements for reinstatement include that you:

  • Were in compliance with all Quality Assurance program requirements at the time you last held practising registration
  • Meet the practice hours requirement
  • Have maintained your knowledge, skills and abilities as a registered nurse, or have successfully completed an exam or upgrading of your knowledge, skills or abilities
  • Have a satisfactory employment verification
  • Are of good character, including passing the criminal record check
  • Are fit to practice, and
  • Have paid any outstanding fines or fees

Note: If your registration was cancelled or suspended following an inquiry or discipline committee decision or you have a criminal charge since you last held practising registration you will be asked to provide additional information and evidence. Please contact the registration team for more information.
4. Registration Committee review/decision (if required)
Some applications are complex and require review and decision by the Registration Committee. Learn more about complex applications and Registration Committee review​.
5. Application approved/pay registration fees
If you meet the requirements for reinstatement, your application will be approved and you will be asked to pay your practising registration fee​.
6. Wait for confirmation of registration from BCCNM
Once you have paid your registration fees, we will send you an email confirming that you have been granted practising registration. Your updated status will also be listed on our nurse verification tool. You must not practise as a registered nurse until you receive confirmation of registration.

Haven't received a confirmation email?
Registration will not be granted until your payment has been received. Before calling to check on the status of your application, please:
  • Double-check that you submitted your application and that your payment went through
  • Check your junk mail and spam folders​​

If you have been away from practice for more than five years

If you have been away from nursing for more than five years, the pathway back to practising registration will take more time and requires additional evidence of your current competence to practice. ​Apply for reinstatement of your registration as instructed above. When assessing your application, we will determine if you need to complete additional registration requirements. They may include: ​

  • Completing a competency assessment by the Nursing Community Assessment Service​, and additional education or exams
  • Completing one of BCCNM’s recognized​ practical nursing education programs​​
  • Completing a supervised practice experience​
Contact BCCNM Registration Services for more details.​