Registered Nurses from the US or Mexico
You'll need to contact the nursing association in the province in which you wish to be licensed (contact details below) and request an out-of-country application package.
Once you've gathered all the necessary paperwork and completed your application, return it to the provincial organization. Upon receipt of your application, they'll create a file for you.
Depending on your circumstances, you may be asked to submit academic transcripts and various other records. This information can be sent directly from the various sources to the provincial association to be added to your file.
Once your file is complete, the provincial association will assess whether or not you qualify to write the Canadian Registered Nurse Examination (CRNE, formerly known as the CNAT), and notify you of their decision. If you qualify to write the CRNE, you'll then need to make an appointment with the Canadian Nurses Association (CNA) to write the CRNE. The CNA offers the exam three times per year (February, June, October), and one or more of the provincial bodies offer it once per year (August).
Please note: All Canadian provinces and territories, with the exception of Quebec, require that you write the CRNE as part of the registration or licensure process. Quebec has their own exam.
Once you've written the CRNE and the provincial association receives your passing score, you'll receive your provincial license.
In addition, medical professionals who do not speak English as a first language must write the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) examination to become licensed in any Canadian province (except Quebec where French is required, and New Brunswick where French may be chosen rather than English). You may also be required to write the TSE (Test of Spoken English). Many provinces require this examination in addition to the Provinces vary in the scores required. For further information, contact the TOEFL organization.
Visa information: Your profession is covered under NAFTA. If you are a citizen of the USA or Mexico, you are eligible for a visa. Permanent Residents of the USA or Mexico are not eligible under NAFTA.
You can obtain an Employment Authorization (NAFTA Professional Status) from any Canadian port of entry, US-Canadian border crossing, or Canadian Consulate (or in Canada, if you are already in the country as a visitor). No sponsorship is required. Job Offer Validation is not required. However, you will still need to provide proof of an offer of employment from your employer in Canada. You must also meet the minimum education, experience, and licensing Requirements set for your profession.
Your documentation* you present must indicate:
• the professional level activity you will carry out
• your job title
• summary of your job duties
• starting date and expected length of temporary stay
• arrangement for remuneration.
*This documentation can include: a signed contract between you and an employer; a letter from your prospective employer confirming that employment has been offered and accepted; a letter from your current employer stating that you are entering another NAFTA member country to render services pursuant to a signed contract between your employer and an enterprise in that country.
The duration of the Employment Authorization is set for an initial period of one year. An unlimited number of one-year extensions may be subsequently obtained so long as you can show that the employment remains temporary, and that you continue to be qualified to work in your profession