The Green Project

RN and Advanced Practice Pocket Cards

Effective September 2017, the Board of Registered Nursing (BRN) will no longer issue pocket cards upon initial licensure or renewal of an RN license and advanced practice certificates. The BRN is taking steps to "Go Green" and eliminate the use of outdated pocket cards. License statuses can change at any time during a two-year renewal cycle. A license status can change from Active to Inactive, Inactive to Active, and can be disciplined which will change the license status. The most up to date information about licenses and certificates is available through the DCA License Search system. Changes made to a license status are immediately reflected on the BreEZe system. Employers can verify license status online 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. An easy access "License Search" button is available on the home page of the BRN website.

Wall Certificates

Wall Certificates will continue to be issued to licensees at the time of Initial licensure. Duplicate copies of wall certificates can be ordered through BreEZe. The cost for duplicate wall certificates is $30.

Online Renewal

Effective September 2017, to continue its efforts to "Go Green", the Board of Registered Nursing (BRN) is eliminating the multiple page paper renewal notice. The BRN will only send out a one-page renewal notification directing all licensees to renew via BreEZe online. Also, licensees will receive one combined notice for their RN license and all advanced practice certificate renewals. The new notice will not include a return renewal coupon or return envelope. The BRN encourages all licensees to renew via BreEZe online. An easy access "Renew Online" button is available on the home page of the BRN website.

Quick Facts Regarding License Verification and Renewal

  • The title "Registered Nurse" cannot be used unless licensed to practice in the State of California.
  • The Board recommends that employers of registered nurses verify licensure in California.
  • The California Department of Consumer Affairs DCA License Search is a primary source for verification of registered nurse licensure.
  • All registered nurse license information is included within the DCA License Search.
  • A combined courtesy renewal notice is mailed approximately 90 days prior to the license and certificate expiration date. All licensees are required to timely renew their license whether or not they receive a renewal notice from the Board.
  • Renewals can be submitted online using DCA BreEZe Online Services.
  • The DCA License Search is updated in real-time as a license is renewed.

Frequently Asked Questions

Pocket Cards and Proof of Renewal

Renewal Notices

  • I have been told I will no longer receive a paper renewal notice. How will I be notified to renew my license?
    The Board will continue to mail a reminder letter to all licensees a minimum of 90 days prior to their expiration date. Effective in September 2017, the Board will only send out a one-page renewal notification. Licensees will receive one combined notice for their RN license and all advanced practice certificate renewals. The renewal notice will direct licensees to the online renewal system BreEZe to renew their licenses and certifications.
  • Do I have to renew online?
    Renewing online is the fastest way to renew and pay for your license.
  • Can I send my renewal in the mail?
    The new notice will not include a return renewal coupon or return envelope. The Board encourages all licensees to renew via BreEZe online. An easy access "Renew Online" button is available on the home page of the Board's website.
  • Can I come into the Board's office to renew my license?
    The Board will accept your renewal in office, however the processing time for a paper renewal can be up to 60 days. Renewing online via BreEZe is the fastest way to renew and pay for your license.
  • I don’t have a computer; how am I supposed to renew online?
    You can renew your RN license online using a smart phone or tablet. If you do not have one, access to a computer is available at most public libraries. Some library locations will allow you to reserve a computer in advance. You can also ask a family member, friend or co-worker to assist you with accessing a computer, smart phone or tablet to renew your license online.