Iowa Board of Nursing

Online Services

Board Information

Iowa Board of Nursing
RiverPoint Business Park
400 S.W. 8th Street, Suite B
Des Moines, IA 50309-4685
Tel: 515/281-3255
Fax: 515/281-4825

Office Hours:
8:00 a.m.–4:30 p.m.
Monday – Friday

Initial License by Endorsement from Another State

NOTE: The License by Endorsement Application Process is available Online. Choose IBON Online Services and then License by Endorsement

Upon completion of the application and payment process, an Endorsement Packet (Fingerprint Cards) will be mailed to the address you provided on the application.


Print the Following Endorsement Forms/Instructions and only request the Fingerprint Cards be mailed or call your local police station or sheriff's office to see if they have the Blue Applicant Fingerprint Cards Available:

An endorsement packet may also be requested from the Iowa Board of Nursing by sending an email to Iowa Board of Nursing or calling 515/281-4826.

Please review the instructions below regarding the requirements for license by endorsement. This information will also be included in the packet you will receive by mail.

Applicants MUST provide an Iowa or a Non-Compact state mailing address when applying for license by endorsement. If you reside in a state that is a member of the Nurse License Compact agreement and submit your application for licensure using that address, the application will be returned to you. Before applying for license by endorsement please ensure you have an Iowa or non-compact state address. The list of states that are currently members of the Nurse License Compact Agreement can be found at the following link

Applicants MUST provide a Social Security Number when applying for license by endorsement. If a Social Security Number is not available the applicant will need to submit the documentation that allows them access to the United States.

Foreign Educated Nurses:

    • If the certificate program was completed through CGFNS apply for the Verification of certificate letter to be submitted to the Iowa Board of Nursing.
    • If the full education course-by-course report requirements or the Professional Report of the CGFNS Credentials Evaluation Service (CES) has been completed apply for the Re-evaluation of a Full Education Course-By-Course Report or Professional Report be submitted to the Iowa Board of Nursing.
    • If neither has been completed apply for the Professional Report (full education course-by-course report requirements) of the CGFNS Credentials Evaluation Service (CES) for practical nurse and registered nurse applicants be submitted to the Iowa Board of Nursing.
    • A valid license/registration must be held in the original country.
    • The English language proficiency exam is not required as part of the report.

      Commission on Graduates of Foreign Nursing Schools
      ATTN: Credential Evaluation Service
      3600 Market Street, Suite 400
      Philadelphia, PA 19104-2651 U.S.A.

      Customer Service:
      Telephone: 215.349.8767
      (Between 8 - 12 Eastern Time US)

      CGFNS Web site

    Qualifications for Licensure in Iowa:

    1. Graduation from a board-approved RN or LPN nursing program. (RN Program applicants or RN graduates who did NOT complete or graduate from an LPN Program are not eligible for to be licensed as an LPN in Iowa)

    2. Prior to being licensed, the board may consider the past criminal record of an applicant or a record of prior disciplinary action, regardless of jurisdiction.

    3. Passing the appropriate (LPN/RN) NCLEX examination as prescribed by the board.

    The following items are required before a license by endorsement will be issued:

    • Iowa Application for Licensure by Endorsement (Online or Paper)
    • Two Completed Fingerprint Cards and Signed Waiver Form
    • Total fee of $169, payable to the Iowa Board of Nursing Online Payment, Personal check, money order or cashier’s check is acceptable
    • Official Transcripts sent directly from the School of Nursing (Transcripts received in a sealed envelope from the applicant are NOT acceptable. Transcripts are NOT acceptable by FAX.)
    • Verification of Original License

    The Fees are Non-Refundable

    To avoid confusion and unnecessary delays in processing, PLEASE submit the application (If not completed Online), the fee (If not paid Online), the fingerprint cards, and the waiver form in the same envelope.

    NOTE:  To find out the status of your application go to the Nursing Board Website ( and choose - “Check the Status of an Application in Process” prior to calling the Nursing Board office.

    Questions about the application process may be directed to Email or 515/281-4827.

    Updated 2/14